I apologize if this topic has been beaten to death. I am planning to upgrade from my htib. I will have to do it in stages. Have: 50" Panasonic plasma--720p FIOS 12' wide, 16' deep room Will very soon have HD player--they are cheap enough now. Want: 5.1 surround Don't care about: AM/FM/XM won't listen to cd's much might listen to ipod--probably not though because my wife likes simple hook up From what I gather, using a preamp and separate amp will give me much better sound quality than an all in one receiver. I have also heard a 5 five year old amp is just as high quality as a new amp--given it's a high quality brand. Is this correct? That question leads me to the question I need answered most. If I just care about SOUND ONLY through my preamp (I can switch HDMI through my TV), is there any reason not to buy an older preamp--just as long as it is good quality with optical in??? My budget is pretty limited so I can only buy in stages. I really liked the sound of the B&W bookshelf speakers--I haven't shopped much. I also like the looks of the Emotiva equipment but I don't know if it is any good.