Graduating to separates need help

Graduating to separates need help
I currently have a Marantz SR 18 receiver  that was feeding and Adcom GFA 555 that has been modified. my SR 18 had a memory issue and the local shop messed up the micro processor and I can’t set my speakers to large now in the menu
I also have a Denon AVR 5600 receiver which I’m using now and there is no comparison in the sound the Marantz destroys the Denon

I don’t know enough about preamplifiers to buy a good used one I need something with good DAC  
the DAC chips in the Marantz sounded phenomenal. should I just buy another SR 18 and feed it to a better amplifier or should I jump to a parasound preamp P6 and buy a better amplifier I was looking at some Bryston amplifiers which I really like but my budget is not big I want to keep my budget around 2000.  I don’t mind used.  I just want better sound than the sr18 adcom setup.  Any suggestions 
I’m using kef 104/2 speakers.  Not the biwired
I am sure you can find a used Parasound A23 amp and a Parasound preamp for 2K.  
I guess I need help choosing a good preamp w built in DACs   Something better than the marantz
So you are still doing integrated gear, but just splitting it up differently.

In your case you are combining the DAC with the preamp, and looking for a separate amp.

In your budget I would instead suggest you go the other way. Get a separate DAC, and get a good integrated. Like right now A’gon has a nice Ayre integrated for $1,500. That leaves you $500 for a DAC.


Wattage a little low on the ayre
I have heard some excellent Adcom GFA555s with mods, and not sure what mods yours has, but if your amp has been overhauled, you can still use it and concentrate on a preamp and separate dac. Enjoy ! MrD.
I believe at your price point, unless you require separates for system arrangement, you should consider an integrated amplifier. Many have onboard DACs. I would be more inclined to purchase a separate DAC.  What sources do you input to your DAC?
Aric Audio Unlimited tube preamp plus a Schiit Modi Multibit, total cost ~$1200. Keep the Adcom. 
I’m streaming. Or Cd.  
Anyone familiar with the Marantz Sr18

i need a dac/intg amp/intg preamp with better dac than marantz. 

It it seems silly but a used Denon AVR-5805 has crazy processing for usually $1000 and has gobs of power.  If I spend $1000 on a dac will it sound better?

The modded Adcom might still be useful for the time being. I’d focus on the preamp, as a good stereo pre will provide a big performance boost over the preamp section of an AVR. As others have mentioned, a separate DAC is a better idea than an onboard DAC in a preamp or integrated. It will likely sound better, and requiring an onboard DAC will significantly limit your choices in preamps. With that in mind, here are some very good preamps currently available that will wipe the floor over the pre section of your AVR, and I believe both have HT bypass, which is nice...

And here’s a good DAC...

Oh, and if you go the separate DAC route you’ll need a digital cable. This one is very good and only 40 bucks. No need to spend more at least for now. Make sure you heed the direction arrows -- I installed mine backwards once and sounded like total crap.

And yes, if you spend $1000 on a DAC you will certainly get better performance over the DAC in the Marantz. If you can spend that much, here’s another good option, but even the Schiit Bifrost I listed above will be an improvement over the Marantz.

One of the benefits of stepping up to this level, if you buy one of the preamps I listed above you can run the DAC balanced into the preamp. Then you’ll want this digital cable...

In theory, digital cables are better when terminated with balanced connectors.

Hope this helps, and best of luck!
DACs look good but only pass 96/24 on toslink input?
Would one of those DACs beat this?

THX Surround EX, Dolby Digital EX, DTS-ES®, Pro Logic IIx, DTS Neo:6 and Dolby Headphone processing
3 Texas Instruments 32-bit processors for main room, one SHARC 32-bit processor for 2nd room
32 Burr-Brown 192kHz/24-bit D/A converters (20 for main room, 12 for 2nd room)
192kHz/24-bit A/D converters
multichannel Advanced ALPHA 24 Processing
Pure Direct mode
HDCD decoding
DDSC-Digital construction
Audessey Laboratories' MultEQ XT eight-point auto setup and room calibration system (microphone included)
4-room/4-source capability:
line-level and powered audio outputs for 2nd, 3rd and 4th rooms
composite, S-video and component video output for 2nd room
composite and S-video output for 3rd room
learning/multibrand touchscreen electro-luminescent remote
Faroudja DCDi scaling (480p/720p/1080i) for main-room component video output
Denon Link input
Two IEEE 1394 inputs (digital audio only)
DVI/HDMI switching (one DVI input, 3 HDMI inputs, one DVI output, one HDMI output — only one output can be used at a time)
HDMI version 1.1
2 multichannel inputs (one 9.1, one 5.1)
2 preamp outputs: one 9.1 (main room), one 5.1 (2nd room)
component video switching (100MHz bandwidth): 6 in (1 BNC), 3 out (1 BNC)
component video conversion for main-room and 2nd room
digital inputs: 6 optical (including one front-panel), 6 coaxial

Yes toslink tops out at 24/96 usually. Digital coax or usb is typically better. 
I’m with the guys suggesting a good integrated. and with or without the DAC, really DAC’s are going to be old faster then the integrated amp or amp-preamp. good quality integrated will last decades.

But you could put together a nice new system with the Schitt Audio Fraya or Saga preamp, Vidar Amp ( maybe 2 for mono’s), then one of their DAC’s like the Bifrost multibit that would put you right at $2k. could sub out the Bifrost multibit for the reg Bifrost and use the extra cash for cables. that would give you a very good system and flexibility, even a taste of tubes or not (switchable) with the Fraya

that actually looks really good. mmmm skip the integrated ;-)

spelled Freya. What were the mods done on the Adcom GFA 555, if you know ? I still feel it might hold it's own with some other things mentioned. Enjoy ! MrD.
DACs look good but only pass 96/24 on toslink input?

Why in the world would you even use the toslink input?  Just use SPDIF. 

I would suggest looking at the Peachtree Nova 300 or one of the similar offerings from Marantz, Yamaha, Rogue Audio, etc. You should be able to find a nice integrated within your budget that will sound much better than your 17 year old Marantz. I mention the Peachtree because it has a very good DAC and home theater bypass. 
So many of these suggestions seem that they might hit home for you...

I’ve heard nothing but great things about the Adcom amps in a modded config. Some prefer to completely start from scratch, personally I’m into the additive/change a bit at a time philosophy. 

I’ve got a Schiit Uber 2 that sounds great. Can only imagine what the Multibit here on Agon would sound like! Pair that with a Saga or Freya and keep your Killin Adcom, good cables. I’ve considered that exact configuration for myself. The good thing about those preamps, they can opperate in active/passive/buffered modes so they’re flexible (not sure if they both go that far, but at least Teo out of three for the saga I think). You can tailor your sound depending on the recordings. 

Couldn’t go wrong with that?

Yep, I don’t know. I might buy that Multibit for myself! Jk ;)

.....Foegotcto mention that I’m not sure about the impedance  matching for that? Someone here more knowledgeable could answer to that.
No comments on the Denon AVR-5805 with 32 burr Brown DACs   And Audyssey     32 bit processors 
I keep reading on forums that in its price range there are no pre pro combos that can compete.   
I can still use my adcom.  
Or use extra money to upgrade to a better amp.   Adcom sounds ok to me more powerful but the old marantz sr18 amp sounded warmer.   And the denon avr5600 is actually pretty strong but the preamp section of the old denon is grainy harsh and lacks detail 
The world is your oyster right now, many good options. The only advice I would give is seperate dac for sure! The tech is moving fast. For audio anyway. Good luck!
Seems the separates patrons have been silenced.  Lol.  

Really need to test side by side. No way to remember one from another.   
With that budget, you need to give a call to Odyssey Audio. You could likely get a very good package deal for not much over $2K.
Anyone else?   Can anyone tell me if there is a preamp dac amp package I can get that will sound better than Denon AVR-5805
Mytek Manhattan II or even the Brooklyn really will beat it, whether they have the flexibility you are looking for in a pre/DAC I don't know.
Broke down and bought an AVR-5805 for 1300.  Sounds amazing. Super crisp and detailed.  However my old Marantz sr18 may have been better.   I just ordered an sr14ex.  I’m going to do a head to head
Marantz Sr14ex trounces all others.  To be fair I’m going to order the mic to use audessey adjustments on denon.   Otherwise marantz wins

Finally got my goosebumps back 

Bought a pioneer Vsx59Txi.  Again the marantz wins 
I want to do a head-to-head comparison of the pioneer the Denon and the Marantz receivers. I want to use a digital optical output and be able to switch between the receivers and have the speaker level outputs going into another switching system that goes to one set of speakers anybody know what components I would need