I got my first receiver I think christmas of 00 (leading into 01). It only played Dolby Digital 5.1.. 12 long years until I got a new amp. I think because of the limitation I was never interested in keeping it hooked up. I only hooked it up and the speakers once every couple of years then got sick of dusting and put them away.
Now that I got a new receiver I really like it. But it's surprising seeing DTS on my screen lol.
My original Pioneer receiver also had only Dolby 5.1 and no DTS. It replaced a Kenwood stereo system. Modern HDMI systems, despite their quirks, do produce much better sound -- of course, a lot of that is due to having better audio on the discs themselves.