McIntosh 255 vs Parasound Halo A51 vs Anthem MCA 525

Looking to replace my Yamaha MX-A5000 with one of the above 5 Channel Amplifiers. I currently have and will use the Yamaha CX-A5100 Processor. Obviously, the McIntosh is considerably more then the other two.

I currently have the following system in my home theater:

Paradigm Studio 100 V5 (Main Speakers)
Paradigm Studio CC-690 V5 (Center Channel)
Paradigm Studio 20 V5 (Surrounds Rear)
Paradigm SUB 12 (Subwoofer)

I have always felt I was buying the MX-A5000 for the convenience of fitting nicely with the system and also being able to power other zones. Ready to take a step up for sound quality in my main system and think I need more clean power to drive the Studio 100's. My room isn't great but it is what I have for now, so I know it won't sound as good as what it might in a better room...

Any advice is appreciated!


I would personally look at your preamp before the amp, especially because of the amps you’re considering. You will go farther in performance doing it this way than the latter. Look at Anthem’s AVM60.
Just listening in stereo to a better preamp with your amp vs your preamp with a better amp, I guarantee you’ll hear why what I suggest is better.
Amps are like engines in cars, but the preamp is the driver putting the car in gear applying the throttle and brake, computer to manage all electronics, and most importantly, the steering of the car, but all controlling what the engine does. The preamp is the heart and soul of the system because it not only has to control what the amp does, it has to manage, and not wreck, all the sources coming into it.

If you buy Anthem’s AVM60 with an Anthem Amp, you can save 10% off the amplifier from any authorized dealer.  Paradigm owns Anthem and the speakers are built off of their electronics and vice versa.

I hope this gives you some good direction to start. Thank you for your time.
Of the three, go with the Parasound A51 to match with the Studios..  Having owned several Paradigm speakers and Parasound amps in different configurations, they are a near perfect match. 
Your Yamaha CX-A5100 will work just fine.  I briefly owned an AVM60 as a potential replacement for my Classe SSP800, but unfortunately was no match in sound quality so I sold it. It might be ok for folks who mostly watch movies, but I spend 90% listening to music, so sound quality is #1 priority for me.