Originally Posted by gte
I want to be able to plug things in and go, and so far it's been the exact opposite.
Perhaps this is more to your needs. You flick the power button, and turn the volume knob. (You're done...)
It can only connect 2 things to it though... a bluetooth device or
1 stereo rca analog device.
It also may or may not have the power you need.
With the A500 you'd have to keep the receiver, as the A500 has two discrete input attenuators which could get annoying if that was your ONLY device for controlling loudness.
The setup isn't any more complicated than the Lepai. You crank the knobs fully clockwise on both channels, and then slowly turn up the volume knob on the receiver. You never have to touch the A500 again if you don't want to. Technically you don't ever need to turn it off. It won't even add $10 to your power bill.
I don't recall if it has a remote trigger input or not (used for automatic power toggling). Triggers use a simple "1/8th mini" connector. I also don't know if your receiver has a trigger. But with it installed... the receiver powers on the amplifier when it itself turns on.
I don't really understand how a receiver could be confusing. It only has a volume knob and a input selector (used to select the input you want to listen to, such as: radio or HDMI1 or mains-in etc.) The rest is just useless settings that can be left as default-values.
The only tricky part is knowing that you MUST select what you want to listen to before you can listen to it (it will either startup on input 1 or the last input used).
All receivers act in this way, they are all functionally the same.
Perhaps the only hard part is enabling analog inputs if the thing has that turned off from the factory, and ensuring that the selector name is "named" what the input device actually is.... if that model even has that capability... some don't. If it doesn't then that can be hella annoying and confusing because input "DVD" might actually be an iPhone headphone jack or a CD player. (Print out the mappings in large font and staple it to the wall. DVD -> Phone. HDMI1 -> CD Player) etc...