I'd go with the KEF/Arcam setup, should sound great...
I'd probably find some older good sounding used B&W center channels n use three of those across the front, set on end, a-la THX style (must mind room acoustics issues n treatments without using horn speakers or focused sound propegation directed speakers...or recommend long wall setup, minimum), then some small matching series minis in back. ..keep ur sub if u like it. Then maybe consider a nice anthem AV receiver w room EQ (you'll most definitely need that, BTW).
Otherwise, go similar route with other brands u like, but I recommend at least twin mid\woof DAppolito configured speaks for solid sound propegation , power handling, dynamics, n lack o distortion, up front. (I only recommend single woof\tweeter music speakers in small room spaces)
As a budget minded person, I think you definitely have to take a serious look at the Anthem MRX series. You can even use a separate amp or even a good stereo integrated to drive the 2 front channels. The Anthem has one of the best room correction system on the market and it comes with the microphone, mic stand and software. If you enjoy movies or concerts (on blurays) you will love this system.
I shopped all over to find a amp/preamp combo that would give me the best of both worlds at a reasonable price(yes I am also and audiophile) and I recently bought the Anthem MRX 510 and a Hegel H80 (which drives the front channels, it has a home theater by-pass). I defy anyone to find a better overall solution for all my needs at less than $4,000 (Amp/ pre amp).
If you have smaller acoustic space in, say, a modest smaller flat, I'd say you'd probably do good with some acoustics friendly Kef UniQ driver, coaxial, something'er-other's, matching center and or surrounds, and stay with your favorite British amplification, integrated, etc. Then, as you say regarding the lack of UK based Surround soundy gear, I recommend you loop a good HT digital processor for Dolby/DTS Master surround, into your two ch pre and or multi-channel amp setup, and look for budget. What comes to mind, is something like Emotiva $699US prepro, with EQ. Probably do plenty for your movie application, and then you switch it out of the loop for your 2 ch British sound duties.
Pretty sure you'd be happy this way. Peace...
Kef make nice speakers.. i used to won them years ago.. they sound more refined , if you like alot of jazz and classical , the newer one's might have more bass, so i would imagine they should sound ok on rock too.. but Arcam and KEF are a great match IMO.. arcam sounds very musical and should go fine with the KEF's... i have a arcam cd73 and its been awesome for a long time....
weeellll i hear theres lots of hungry people in England these days...jobs er payin less, n prices be inflated, n stuff?. Thats a shame. Really is.
Hell, what happened to all those colonies they used to own a couple/few centuries ago?!? Guess they shoulda kept one more speaker brand after all! Hell, where else is the money comin from?! I always say.
Just sayin .. Maybe Paul McCartney, Robert Plant,Mick Fleetwood, Ozzy, Elton, and Mick Jagger should kick back some of those bazillions, n help the homeless around town. Only seems fair, no?.. just sayin
Seriously though. Where is this country getting its money from if they stop sellin stuff or providing services?! Just don't understand
I have an Arcam AVR360 and KEF R300's + T301c , and LOVE the way it sounds. That said, I've had issues with video processing with my Arcam AVR, and am currently looking to replace it with something more stable, or just use the amplifier tech in the AVR, and get a separate processor. The video issues are EXTREMELY annoying.
I take the output of my DirecTV HD-DVR via HDMI to my Oppo BDP 105 and HDMI-1 from the Oppo directly to my projector, thereby bypassing the processor. The Oppo has very capable video processing. I think the same would be true of a BDP 103, though analog audio processing would not be the same as with a 105.