As you probably guessed before you opened this thread, I decided to give the Panasonic SA-XR50 digitally amplified receiver a go 'round in my system to see what all of the hype has been about for the last year. I expected to be somewhat impressed from alot of the opinions I've heard, and from people who's judgement I've come to respect. What I didn't expect was to be all but floored w/ the sound that comes from this little, lightweight, and inexpensive box. Everything that you've heard about these digitally amplified Panasonics are true. They are hyper-clean, airy, open, and surprisingly powerful in my 26L X 11W X 8H room. I can hit reference levels easy w/ power to spare in my listening area. I have had upper tiered receivers from Yamaha, H/K, Denon, Rotel, Sony ES, and Pioneer Elite. Half of those were powered w/ outboard amps from H/K, Acurus, and Adcom. I just sold an Adcom amp that I loved, but had I listened to this receiver a year ago, I would've sold the Adcom then. I was looking into getting a new seven channel Adcom amp and the new Onkyo TX-702 7-channel receiver, but right now, I'm in no hurry to spend the money. This is the sound that I've been aiming for for a long time. I've heard it said that digital amplification is the future, and after hearing the Panny XR50, I think I am thoroughly convinced of that. With all of that aside, the Panny does have some shortcomings. First, where is a 7-channel incarnation? Harman Kardon does a 7-channel digital receiver, and so should the Panny and others. Second, it doesn't have all of the sophisticated switching and ins/outs of traditional analog designs, and it has a few usability issues w/ the speaker connectors, but for $220 delivered, I'm not gonna complain much about it. Next, some may find the sound a little forward and slightly cool, but the detail and ultra-clean sound will astound any first timer. If I could describe the sound in one word, it would be DETAIL. You hear every little thing w/ the Panasonic - especially, and not limited, to center channel dialog. No longer do I ask my wife, "What did they say?" Believe me, you hear everything, and you hear it very well. When it comes to digital amplification, yes, I am now a believer that it is indeed the future, and I encourage everyone who hasn't given it a listen to do so. Like it or not, you'll be impressed w/ what these lightweight contenders can do.