I'm running Denon 1712 hooked up to BIC Venturi series speakers and couldn't be happier.
I've always dug Denon and 1712 has treated me very well, it has all the stuff I "need" 5.1, Audyssey MultEQ, 3D, etc .... it's last years model but and can be had for around $325. Or, if networking is a big deal for you, you could go with this years 1613, most of the same features, and adds network airplay for about $400.
As for the BIC america speakers, I can't say enough about them. In my personal opinion, they are best sounding speakers at their price point. I have 2 BIC America DV62si Bookshelfs for rears ($110 pair), DV64's towers for fronts ($250 pair) , a DV-62CLRS Center ($105) and BIC V1020 10" ($150) Subwoofer and they kill it in my 16 x 12 foot living/theater room.
If you shopped around and looked for deals and free shipping, you could get the whole lot for under a grand, maybe even well under. In my opinion these will give you a great setup, dynamic sound, and higher quality than a HTiB or even the Energy Take Classics (which is what my BIC's replaced, and are now up in my upstairs living room