If you don't even need the Denon for surround sound, and you want it under a grand, under seven hundred, you could get a sealelectronics.com amplifier kit which either of the two top of the line models would cost you less than $500 in parts and from there find a nice preamplifier at a good used price (or build one too) and sell the denon to help fund it all. The designer of the kits, Randy Slone, has a book on amplifier design which is good and full of other "state-of-the-art" designs. (I own a copy). If comparisons are important, on another site, which had a never ending thread on these amps (it went way off topic is why, funny that) one individual built two of his opti-mos kits and said they bettered his $3,500 Naim by far. But that would give you really nice sound for "pennies." The Van Alstine gear is good too, but you'll have to shell out $1,000 for one of their amps avahifi.com (built of course). I've heard Randy Slone is rather friendly so you could drop him a line and he could tell you alot.
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