I am going to audition a set of Vandersteen 2CE's signature speakers tomorrow and have 3/4 talked myself into getting them bar a poor audition. Now that I'm thinking of getting a set of revealing audiophile speakers the question of what to drive them with that won't break my bank is foremost. I understand that speakers such as these will glaringly reveal any weaknesses in your electronics so I'm hesitant to just hook up a receiver when it's likely that I should plan on a pre-amp and at a minimum an integrated amp. If I get the Vandersteen's it's likely that I'll also get the surrounds to match and leave the system as a 4 speaker set up with phantom center as I only need to have proper sound for one sweet spot. What pre-amp will be sufficient for 5.1 decoding into 4.1 and what integrated amp would be adequate for simply driving 4 speakers. I'm trying to keep the cost of the electronics down due to blowing more than my budget on speakers. The outlaw 950 pre and amp combo at $2400 is more than I can justify spending so what I'm looking for is something in the $1800 or less range if possible. If I can't find a good combination pre-amp and amp in my budget what receiver should I take a chance on not sounding poor with the Vandersteen's?