Correct. Power strip, external amp, etc ...basically any device that will take a 12v DC trigger cable.
That depends on what features you're looking for as these are very easy speakers to drive, however, the X2000 uses Audyssey MultEQ XT which can EQ the subwoofer in your future 5.1 setup whereas the YPAO that the 1020 uses cannot.
If you know it's not a reception problem (eg. you can get FM stations from another source or your car in the garage), then it's possible there could be an issue with the FM Tuner. Just to confirm .. ... you have the FM antenna that came with the unit connected to the coax input as noted below?
Movie mode tends to focus the dialogue more towards the center speaker while Music mode focuses it towards the FL/FR speakers and AFAIK, Game mode is supposed to emphasize the surrounds a little more, but doubt that anyone really uses that mode.
Note that this requirement (ie PCM/stereo) is only specific to some cable/sat boxes like your Cisco box as my DirecTV box is able to be left at Dolby Digital and will downmix to stereo when passing audio to Zone 2 so I don't have to make any adjustments, rather I can still watch an HD channel broadcasting DD 5.1 and it will pass audio to Zone 2. This requirement also likely means you would not be able to use the Standby Pass through feature with the Cisco box unless it...