Check out accessories4less. They have 8805 and 7705 refurbished units with 3 year warranties at great prices. If you search, you'll find a thread somewhere where a group got together and compared the sound quality of one of the 8800 series processors with one of the 7700 series (sorry, I don't remember the exact model off the top of my head) and found no noticeable difference.
When I bought my 4K TV and decided to upgrade my processor, I went from the 8801 to the 7704 and have been very happy with it.
Unless the 8805 has some connectivity options you need that the 7705 doesn't have, I'd give serious consideration to the 7705. In my system, the 7704 is as good as, if not better than the 8801 was and considerably cheaper.
The Marantz 8805 is a really excellent processor for the cost. Very full and powerful sound. However, it does have a slight rolloff on the high frequencies (just very slightly warm). If you combine this with the slightly warmer sounding Parsound amps, you may not get as much high frequency response and excitement that you might expect. If this is a concern, the Anthem AVM60 will be a better solution.
I’m in your exact spot and am looking at the Lexicon MC-10. I currently have the Marantz 8805. I like it, no complaints, its certainly trouble less and that’s important. I keep hearing about Dirac room correction and I just want to try it. My system is all Legacy with their new I*V 7 amp. The Arcam AV 40 is the newer model of this processor and its supposed to have better bass correction than the MC-10, but they are having tons of teething pains with it and I’m just not wanting to buy a problem. The MC-10 on the other hand seems rock solid …
Price wise ,you can find these for slightly under 4 grand, even cheaper if you know where to look
Good prepros are obviously pricey, and if HT is super important to you there’s no getting around that. Me? 2-channel is far more important and HT is a fun treat I just want to be good enough for me to enjoy, which doesn’t really require uber-expensive gear in my case. Anyway, if this somewhat describes you I’d buy a decent AVR for processing and powering center, surround, ATMOS speakers and a really good stereo pre that plays nice with your nice front L/R speaks and stereo amp. For example, you can get a Yamaha Aventage RXA1080 for about $700 from Accessories4less.com (or an Anthem AVR if you want to kick it up a notch) and have a bunch left over for a really nice stereo pre like a used JC-2BP or Pass X1 that will likely outperform a $5k prepro for critical stereo listening (not to mention you’ll have a much wider selection of stereo preamps to choose from than good prepros). Just another way to go if you’re more of a 2-channel guy. Best of luck in your search.
So, if you get a prepro you’ll need another box to power your HT speakers, so two boxes right? The Anthem MRX 720 AVR is on sale at Anthem for $2k, and I’m not sure what else the AVM 60 offers but the 720 seems pretty dang good and takes care of your HT processing/amplification in one box. And it leaves you $3k for a nice stereo pre, which you just take the front L/R pre outs from the 720 into the stereo pre and you’re done again with only two boxes, but now you’ve got a superior preamp in the chain for critical 2-channel listening. Switch between HT and stereo with the push of one button, and in 2-channel the Anthem is completely out of the chain. Couldn’t be simpler really (I did this for years before I had a dedicated listening room), and that’s certainly what I’d do if I had your speakers and amps. FWIW, and again best of luck.
The OP has mentioned that he has amplifiers sitting unused, waiting to be installed with a new prepro. I'm not clear on whether those are new amps or old ones that he's had for years. It sounds like there are several options being considered, 5.1 vs .7.1, atmos, avr vs separates.
If the amps are going to be employed, it goes without saying that there will need to be rack space and proper heat management for them. As long as those needs can be met, I'd encourage a prepro, and you shouldn't need to spend anywhere near 5k. Any model selected would be a MAJOR improvement over the currently being used Denon 3400.
The Marantz 7705 would provide everything needed and be thousands less. They have the Audyssey room correction system, which is widely used and almost the industry standard. Integra has Audyssey as well, where as the Yamaha model mentioned has their own room correction.
All of these units have features, bells and whistles and connection options that may overwhelm. No getting around that.
The AVM60 and MRX1120 share the same toroidal power transformer = better noise isolation and power distribution over the MRX720 and MRX520 receivers. The AVM60 has a balanced digital section and is truly balanced across all channels on the output stage. All current MRX Receivers and the AVM60 Processor have HDMI 2.0a 4k HDR w/Dolby Vision. 2.0b gives you eARC (enhanced Audio Return Channel in this case) and whether that actually gets used will remain to be seen with HDMI 2.1 now on the horizon. If you need to decide whether you can’t live without current eARC compatibility, here’s a good article explaining it:
The most complaints we received from Dealers was that we should have priced it at $5000.00 retail instead of $3000.00. :)
It is on sale right now at 20% off till May 31, 2020.
I hope some of this information helps you in your decision making process if you ended up disappointed or decided differently?
I live in Canada and I have owned several different processors from Anthem. It's a good solid company and they do make decent product but when I did a direct comparison between the new AVM 60 (on loan) and my Anthem Statement D2v, an older Anthem processor, it was not even close.
I then called Anthem because I was shocked at the results and they were very honest and said that all the parts from the previous $12,000 D2v were hand-picked for quality control and the DAC's were much better in the older D2v. If you do not need some of the newer formats but still want HDMI and are strictly looking for sound quality than the D2v is among the best processors ever built. They can be found for less than $2000 in excellent condition with full ARC systems on the used market.
Cheers and this is my opinion for whatever it's worth.