Are you sure you want to go with Proceed now that the brand is being phased out and merged into Mark Levinson?
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Hpshps...I don't see why not. The fact that Proceed is, in essence, simply being re-badged as Mark Levinson doesn't detract at all from the fact that the Proceeds out there are an elite line of components. Quite the contrary. It simply confirms that Proceeds are worthy of being in the company of Levison components. Not a bad thing at all.
If you want my two cents worth, you're not compromising much, if anything, going the Proceed route.
As far as the PAV is concerned, I'm currently trying out a Proceed set up I recently purchased that includes the PAV, and I must say it is outstanding. I'm comparing this to my previous Meridian set up, which was in no way a slouch either, when it came to music. The advantage of the Proceeed is its balanced inputs/outputs. I haven'tried out the PRE, so I can't compare it to that. But I have had pre's from Audio Research and others... and IMHO, the PAV is definitely a strong contender, if not their equal in many ways.
My music source is a Theta Jade transport and Theta DSPro Gen Va DAC.
Hope this helps.