Also, I could go w. tubes if there is anything is this price range that would work.
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You could do much worse than a B&K amp (along the lines of ST1400 Series II @ 125w, Reference 4420 @ 200w) and Acurus RL11 remote-controlled preamp (one of Acurus' GOOD products -- forget about their amps though.) You'd probably still have some money leftover. The B&K amps are about the best available for the money used - they lack the harsh and nasty character that alot of SS amps in the sub $1000 price range display. They're just warm and smooth, and have a laid back and coherent soundstage. Don't let the "boutique brand" crowd upnose you away from B&K - you'll be eating their lunch until you spend quite a bit more money. Also, a Conrad Johnson Sonograph SA-250 is another great amp in this price range, perhaps even better than most B&Ks. Another smooth performer, with expanded clarity.
Hope this helps!
You will go slightly over $1000 but worth it. For a preamp I highly recommend a tube Conrad Johnson PV-10AL probably (+/-)$550. Get a solid state power amp to go with it, like the CJ MF2100, or any number of other great used power amps in the $500 to $600 range. The key to great music in this price range is a good preamp like the CJ PV-10 preamp IMHO.
Have you considered an integrated, or do you need power?
As far as integrated vs ss vs Tube...I don't care. I just want something that sounds good, not aproaching perfect. The gear will be hidden. I do want to be able to run speakers in 4 locations. I already have a switch box that seems to work with my Kyocera 85 wpc reciever. I apreciate all of your input.
I was going to suggest the PV-10AL before I even read the above statements.
A PV-10 paired with McCormack's micro would be absolutely heavenly.
The Micro sounds even better than the DNA.5 (which sounds better than the DNA 1, which sounds better than the DNA 2... you get the picture.)
McCormack's amps sound worse (but it never gets bad)as you move up the wattage ladder.
For Klipsch speakers, you really don't need (even) 50 watts per side.
I haven't heard the CJ solid state stuff, but the tube products are very nice sounding.
I no longer own any CJ, but my first "high end" (haha) piece was a brand new PV-10AL.
I would go for a nice integrated.. for the money..
Try a Musical fidelity A300.. very nice piece supposed class a design and true dual mono.. Great binding posts and very musical with tons of bottom end... the klipschs will sing. The Krell 300i is a little pricer but still nice..
If i had to pick separates.. go for a b and k Pro 10 mc for about 300.00 and spend the rest on an aragon 8002 dual mono... that is a killer combination.. Try to get an 8002 with xlr.. the pro 10 has xlr outs and is a sweet preamp with a passive mode and external power supply.. great piece..
"I do want to be able to run speakers in 4 locations."
Better check Audio by Van Alstine's integrated amp. The professor knows what he's doing...and his amps are designed for long speaker runs. I heard his stuff at the Chicago Audio Society last November--truly outstanding, affordable high end gear.
BTW, I heard that Musical Fidelity A300 in Ann Arbor last month and sounded AWFUL. Read my post "Voodoo in Ann Arbor."
Try picking up an Acurus amp & preamp combo. Mondial who was bought out by Klipsch had cleared out most of their stock as they were dropping this brand name.
They have a 5 channel 125X5 and a 200X5 that you may be able to get used for under 70.00??
I still see some of the amps for sale out on audioreview.com and many people have posted reviews out there as well.