Well, the only things I RE are level 2 and below. And I still carefully look at them.
I do have a nice L3 gun that has .850 eff against shields...with a 900 max dam. Tears through even Tier 4 ships pretty quick (I am a 2/2/1/1 pilot again).
As far as the rest of my stuff, I still carefully look at all things. It is nice to know that there are other pilots out there that really fly for the love of flying though.
The other thing that I noticed (from talking to Ms. Wren) is that people spend time hunting in Deep Space or Kessel.
While that is good, almost all of my loot is from doing duty missions. That includes the L10 iterms (of which I have MANY), L9 stuff (of which I have "some") and so on.
I don't buy loot from anyone, however. I like to earn it the hard way. Besides, doing Pilot over and over helps me get good loot across the spectrum....that and I earn prestige sick fast.