Thanks for your reply lovinthehdthe Crown XLS1500 looks nice ! being two channel, i would be required to run one for the 2 fronts, and a seperate one for the centre speaker .. are rear speakers commonly power-amped? (please correct me if im using incorrect terminology .. from my thoughts the yamaha rx-v1400 would become a pre-amp, and the "Crown XLS1500 " would be a power amp"??
Unfortunately my amplifier does not have HDMI .. this has never bothered me as i do not watch blu-rays or any tv media content, so have never had a need for an HDMI input on the amplifier, and i just connect the TV to my PC via HDMI.. - in fact i dispise tv/movies with a passion, i smply do not have the concentration span for them.
i have done a bit of research regarding the HDMI vs optical, and have found the following
"Neither of the S/PDIF standards for transferring digital audio--optical and coaxial--can transmit the bandwidth necessary for Blu-ray-specific audio formats like Dolby TrueHD, DTS HD Master Audio, and Linear PCM. That requires HDMI. Blu-ray players send Dolby TrueHD signals down S/PDIF cables as Dolby Digital, DTS HD MA as DTS, and 5.1 PCM as two-track stereo PCM. (Some players also have an option to convert everything to DTS.)"
"For those sources, or really for anything (currently) except Blu-ray or devices playing back BD content (from a server, for example), there should be no difference. Those sources will be producing, at best, DD5.1 content, which will be identical over optical digital or HDMI. (ok, if you play a DVD through the Xbox, you could get a DTS soundtrack, which would not likely be passed through the TV - yet).
Blu-ray will have the advanced HD audio codecs (DTS-MA and Dolby Digital Plus), which cannot be passed over the optical digital cable, and so there will be an audio performance difference vs a direct HDMI connection to the receiver."
Since im not watching blu-ray movies, and gaming is unlikely to use those codecs, nor audio cd's, i dont think im missing anything in terms of decoding codecs on that line.
I haven't done a DB reading, i dont have a meter and i dont think the store would lend me one, if they had one unfortunately. None of my friends are performance car shop owners either as that would be another place i could obtain a db reader easily.
I had forgot about the 2x power = ~3db increase .. i should have remembered this when i was trying to push from 145db to 150db on my SPL setup in my car. a side note that was running 2x DD (digital Designs) 3515's with 2x e-audio 1000wrms d-class monoblocks, one for each, a few years ago. . ended up with 148.2db
hopefuly someone can shed more answers for me :-) Thank you
Perhaps i should just wait until i can fill a rear sound-stage to give me 'more power'