AVS Special Member
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Southern California
Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
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The Crown amp is basically a PA amplifier, not what you want for a home sound system. You will not get decent sound quality with it; totally inappropriate.
The cheaper Parasound stuff is also not very good at all IMO.
For your price range, Emotiva is really the only game in town for separates, and I think its sound quality is mediocre.
Those are very good speakers which will not perform at their best with that kind of gear.
At that price level you will get better sound quality than the Emotiva gear IMO with an integrated amplifier from Cambridge.
I recommend that you look at the Cambridge 651A integrated, which will sound WAY better than the options you have mentioned. It costs $800. It also has preamp outputs, so you could add a larger power amp and use it as your preamp later if desired. You would probably have to spend at least $2000 to improve much on its preamp section.
It has plenty of power and very good sound quality; you will probably not feel any need to upgrade if you get it. It could be the ideal solution, at least for now.
There are really very few good preamps for under $2000.
I usually don't recommend separates unless you have at least $4000-6000 to spend.
If you really really want separates, the cheapest I could recommend to do justice to your speakers would be the Vincent SP-31MK preamp, which is $1600, and the Vincent 331 power amplifier for $1400. That IS very good stuff for the money.