Well, a while back I picked up a Bryston amp, and had it hooked up to my old H/K avi200-mkii as the pre-amp.
Thought I would hook up the Pioneer VSX-816 as a pre as it has a crossover, and could cut off the LSi9's at 80Hz. I figured surely it isn't that hard to be a pre-amp, right?
So got it hooked up to start (no crossover or anything set yet) and popped in a Pentangle CD. About fifteen seconds into the first track it turned into "WTF is this??" all the high end was gone, acoustic strings went flat and lifeless, just plain sucked. Checked settings on Pioneer, even reset it to factory defaults.
Listened a little more ... c'mon Pioneer, this thing sucks.
It's coming out and the H/K going back in.
To double check I connected the CD player (which has variable output levels) straight into amp and wham, there was the way it sounded when hooked up to the HK. So I know it wasn't that the HK was "adding something" there.
So much for having a crossover, but it ain't worth it if the music sounds like crap.