I recently purchased a Panasonic TH-50PX60U Plamsa TV - my first foray in the world of HD tvs, and would like to buy a receiver to deliver surround sound. Back in the old days, setting up a home theater was relatively easy. Plug everything into the receiver and then have 1 cable out to the TV. Seems as though things have gotten quite complicated in the last couple years though. I need some advice about what to look for in a good HT receiver.
I moved into an apartment wired for 5 channel surround sound, and have the following components:
Cox Communications (San Diego) SA 8300 HD STB - This has HDMI outs as well as component outs.
DVD player with HDMI out (to be purchased soon)
My question is how important is HDMI switching when shopping for a HT receiver? There does not seem to be many options available as of yet, and from what I've seen on this board, some STBs do not play nice with HDMI switching receivers.
On the other hand, others have suggested that if you connect STB -> TV via HDMI, then you cannot also use an optical out to your receiver. So either you have to use components + optical out OR use HDMI + analog audio.
If possible I would like to get a receiver for $500 or less. And to be honest, I am quite confused as to what wil be compatible with my system and what I should be looking for. Any recommendations are greatly appreciated!