It looks like AVR manufacturers run out of ideas long time ago. Look at the back panel obscenity of those monsters! 9.2, seriously? Netflix streaming, Networking... It looks like AVR pretend to be anything but kitchen sink. Alas Steve Jobs didn't have a chance to look into this dismal affair. I can only imagine what words would he mutter if he ever saw AVR remote. Dolby-Surround, Dolby 3, Digital, Digital EX(!), DTS, Pro Logic, Pro Logic IIx, Logic 7 -- one just can't suppress a smell of walking through poorly designed outhouse.
Let me reassure you that an attempt making AVR "smart" is destined to fail. It is just dumb amplifier which is never going to become HTPC. If you offer 50 lbs AVR $1800 apiece, why don't you just box in free HTPC inside? Make it modular, so that a user can upgrade PC components. Yes, "modular" is good marketing speak.
Next, what about power consumption? My data are quite dated (AVR240 -- little reason to upgrade), but little "Kill A Watt" experiment revealed an appalling truth: 2.5 watts on standby, and 90+ watts powered on when generating perhaps 90db on Cervin Vega VS150. A tiny 10W Lepai class T amplifier makes the same volume, consuming less than AVR240 on standby! Did AVR vendors completely miss greenwash train?