Good HT, bad 2 channel. On Budget, Any advise?

Hello folks!

Im new on this place, and relativly new to the world of high-end audio(ive got mid-grade licked!;), which im attempting to break into.

To break it down, here is my current setup.

FL/FR -Difinitive Technologies BP2004TL Loudspeakers
Center -Difinitive Technologies ProCenter 200
SL/SR -Difinitive Technologies BP6 Loudspeakers
Sub -Difinitive Technologies ProSub 200

All cables are monster level 3 (I like good solid cables, but don't see any need to spend more on these than I have)

Panasonic DVD-A7 DVD-Audio player
Pioneer 3 disk CD Changer/Recorder (forgot model number)
Monster Stage 2 Power Supply
Technics SA-TX50 THX certified Surround reciever.

Now, I guess I have some explaining to do about the reciever. Technics is not exactly known for high-end recievers (cough), however, this is a flagship model they produced around 1996-1997. I picked this up in Japan while I was in the military. The look of this thing is incredible, big analog meters showing the amplifier's power output, totally retro. That's the reason I bought it. 6 years ago I knew nothing about sound, so it was all about the look and power which this thing does have, 125W/chan @8ohms

Anyways, this thing really does rock with home theater, it does not quite do my Deftechs justice with music however, but im fond of it, and most people would be surprised with its sound. So, don't bother saying BURN IT, or BLOW IT UP, cause im probably going to hold onto this and use it as a base for a system in another room.

I do want to upgrade though!!!! The problem is, if im going to upgrade, I want real good products. I cannot afford a $10,000 setup, I cannot even afford a $5,000 setup. But I can afford $500-$600 here and there, and save up for something near $2000.00

------MY PLAN----
Ever since visiting Soundings in Denver, I've been hooked on the idea of a real nice 2 channel setup. They showed me a Primare A30.1 amplifier that I'm really aiming to get when tax-refund time is near. In the meantime, I'm trying to get things ready for it.

I want an AMP/PRE-AMP setup. I have no AMPS now. Ive been looking in the classifieds here and I see a lot of Marantz Monoblock 500 & 700 series for a pretty good price. I am thinking of purchasing 4 of these to power my Deftech tower speakers.
I can immediately start using these thanks to the designers at Technics adding a set of Pre-Outs on the reciever. I assume at that point that I will immediately see an increase in sonic preformance.

Next on the step I was looking into getting a Marantz Reciever, Possibly the AR7300. (I would get a Pre-Amp only, however, untill I get the Primare A30.1 I would only be able to power 4 channels, not enough for 5.1, unless I kept that technics in, which I really don't want to do.

Next comes the Premare A30.1 Which would then be used to drive my main 2 channels which are the DefTech BP2004TLs.

Further down the road still, would possibly be a pair of REL monitors or a set of Vandersteens for the B speakers

This would leave me with a Home Theater system with all Deftech speaks, which im sure everyone can agree are about as good as anyone could possible need for HT.
All my DSP (if used) and switching would be done with Marantz, The Surrounds, center, and rear would be powered by Marantz amplifiers.
For 2 channel listening I would have the A30.1 with a set of good monitors.


Does Anybody know any problems with the Primare Amplifiers?

If opting to go with the reciever with pre-outs, instead of a pre-amp, and eventually using the reciever itself as a pre-amp, would this be causing any problems? The reciever should remain cold because the internal amplifiers should not be turned on if im using all external separate amplifiers right? Would it be better just to get a pre-amp instead and keep the technics untill I have enough amplifiers to drive all channels?

Anybody know upsides and downsides for the Marantz Monoblock amps? They would be used for effect channels, not the maint l/r speaks, so even if they are sub-par I should be ok.

Would having 2 types of amplifiers be a huge mistake?

Am I completely mad? Lacking the even most basic understanding of Audio? Sitting like a little child in the trenches of a world war? Like an insect drowning in the madness and insanity of the money dropping cesspool that people like us call a hobby???????? WHERE DOES IT END???

Or does this sound like a respectable Audio system? It does to me, and all my friends, but none of them are audiophiles. To them, Cerwin Vega's are the best speaks ever built. (I must say, they CAN handle punishment)

Wow. That was a book.
My respect to anyone who reads all of this and answers.
The Primare A30.1 is an integrated amp, why would you not use it's preamp?
I know your confusion, I'm pretty much in the same boat, want to upgrade to better components, but don't know were to start. Our budget's sound about the same. I don't know if I want to go with a new receiver, a wide screen HDTV, or go to seperate components. During my research one of the companies I was directed to was Outlaw Audio. The have a pre/pro and amp combo sale going on right now that might be what your looking for. I've never heard it myself, but have read some pretty good review's about their products. You can look in the review section of A-gon for reviews of the model 950 preamp, and just type in outlaw in the discussion forums for some of their power amps. Good luck.
I think you'd get further, faster, getting some speakers more suitable for two channel audio right away and driving them with your current receiver. I don't know what kind of decor or WAF you have to deal with, but I wouldn't rule out trying some new speakers alongside the DefTechs to use with two-channel music.

Also I honestly wouldn't expect a jump in performance with the Marantz monos - they're entry level and there's not a BIG reason to expect them to significantly best your pioneer amps. Much better would be nOrh LeAmps/IRD MB100s.

I know,, nOrh has a cult and all that. I'm not saying "replace your system with nOrh stuff". But those LeAmps SLAUGHTER the Marantz and can be had for the same price.

jm (very) ho - ymmv.
Since you have a CD player and a DVD player you could split your systems. One system for 2 channel and the other for HT. Since you have another room this might work. You will need speakers that sound good with 2 channel music and for a starter you could pick up some used monitors in the $200-$400 range such as these:

NHT Super One
Mission 780
B&W 601 S2

To make the best of these speakers you would need decent speaker stands and you would be giving up bass response for the time being. The only other pieces you would need would be a good integrated amplifier or pre/amp combination, another set of speaker cables and some type of shelf to hold the equipment. The Primare 30.1 appears to be a good entry level (to high-end) integrated that could also be used as a 2 channel pre-amp later. I was looking at Primare myself, but there was no dealer in my area so I went with something else. If you want something very inexpensive and used you could look at these integrated amps:

Creek 4330
Arcam Diva A65

With these choices, I think you could put together a completely separate 2 channel system for music listening and stay close to you budget. The system would not have a lot of power or deep bass response, but could be quite enjoyable. This would give you a start and could be upgraded in pieces. I think this would be a good option since it seems like your HT system is pretty well set and is enjoyable for you. Also, as you are finding out, upgrading your HT system to work better for 2 channel with the equipment you have is problematic.
Audiophanatik, you may have heard the phrase 'less is more'. You may have a classic case in point.

Have you considered selling all of your HT equipment (except for the receiver) and starting over with a excellent 2-channel music system that also plays excellent 2-channel HT?

For example, suppose you purchased:
Odyssey Stratos 2-channel amp. $1k
Primare P30 pre/pro. used $1800
Von SCHWEIKERT VR-4 Gen III full range speakers used $2k.
And I believe the VR-4's go down to 16Hz, therefore, you would not need a sub.
Sony DVP s9000es DVD/SACD/CD player. $600 used.

... and sold what you currently have (we all do that at some point) you would probably break even dollar-wise.

However, your sonics would probably improve substantially. Not to mention less cabling, clutter.

And you would be in a prime position for a much improved HT if you decided you still need to expand the 2-channel. And you may not feel that need.

Just thought I'd throw another log onto the fire.