Hi, I am currently running a B&K Ref 50 with a NAD Master Series 7 channel amp to Paradigm Studio Series 100v2 mains, Studio CC 570 center, and four Studio Series in ceiling as surrounds. I have one sub (HSU VTF-2). My sources are PS3 (movies and gaming) and a Marantz DVD-18 for CD's. I have a second zone (6 speakers) that is controlled by the Ref 50 and powered by a 6 channel B&K amp.
I am looking to get into the newer audio formats, specifically those for blue rays and gaming. I think it is time to replace my Ref 50 that I've owned for 7+ yrs.
The new NAD Master Seried HD pre/pro is out of my price range, so I've been reading about the Marantz AV7005. I keep seeing the Denon 4311CI pop up as a more feature packed performer at the same price point. My original thought is since I've already got the NAD Master Series amp, I should stay with separates and go for the Marantz.
I could sell the NAD amp and the B&K, and get the Denon and be out to pocket $0. That option scares me as the NAD amp is a beast and drives my 100's like a champ. I just cant believe that the 4311 internal amps are in the league of the $2K, 95 pound NAD amp - I know I could be wrong here, but it doesn't make sense to me.
I am 80% movies, games, sports TV versus 20% music. Running ITunes and satellite radio would be very cool.
I do not have local dealers that I can audition the gear. Everything will be purchased mail order.
I'd like to throw my situation out to you guys and get some informed opinions. Am I missing an option?
Lastly will these newer units with their advanced audio formats be a noticeable sonic improvement over the older B&K?