I'm putting together a new system from scratch, and was hoping I could get some comments from the experts around here :) It'll be used for 60 to 70% music, mostly rock -- anything from Tom Petty to Metallica -- with a little country thrown in. My room is 17x21x8.
Center: CSiA6 (if I can find a place for it) or CSiA4
No sub yet
Receiver: Yamaha 663
Amp: Emotiva XPA5
My question is with the receiver. A little background: my video needs are very basic. I don't have an HDTV or any HDMI devices, so the 2 HDMI ports, BTB/WTW, and lack of scaling in the 663 isn't an issue to me right now. I do like having the HDMI capability for future expansion though.
Other receivers I looked at were the Pioneer 1018, H/K 254, and Onkyo 706. I passed on all of them for one reason or another.
A few years ago I had a Denon and Polk setup, but I had to sell it when money was tight. I was very happy with the way the two sounded together, and I would love to get another Denon. Plus I've heard good things about the Dynamic Volume capability in their new receivers. Unfortunately, it's a big jump to the 2809 to get pre-outs, and if I were to do that, I would have to put off the separate amp for a while. I budgeted $2000, and the system I spec'ed out above will be around $2200 so I definitely don't want to go much higher than that. Even the prices I'm seeing on last year's 2808 would put me way over what I want to spend right now.
Any opinions? Stick with what I described, or hold off on the amp for the higher end receiver? Other than the Dynamic Volume and a couple minor things (for example being able to listen to digital inputs in zone 2, which is something I would probably use but could work around with just an analog cable), are there any must-have features the Denon provides for 2x the price? Also, are there any other receivers I should be considering in the ~$400 price range of the 663?
Thanks for the help!