Back to the OP and original topic...
I myself have puristic tendencies. I believe many homebrewers, myself included, have had a tendency to meddle too much, without very well determining whether our additional efforts are really adding anything positive to the bottom line, which, of course, is beer flavor and quality.
Also take into consideration that many brewers make fantastic beer the easy way and don't fart around. They just come up with a reasonable recipe, brew it, and enjoy it.
So I am with you. I'm interested in getting back to basics, and not sweating details too much. Crush well, mash well, mash in the right pH range, clean fermenters well, ferment well with healthy yeast. That....... that is about it.
I am starting to wonder if I am the only homebrewer left who brews this way.
Just filter my tap water for chlorine and brew.
I don't know if my beer is considered "fantastic" but they mostly turn out well.
I occasionly consider getting my water tested but never have.
Mash pH is something I do think about but without spending money on meter I can't really do anything about it.
The brewer at a local brewery is adament that "if your water tastes good to drink don't mess with it"