surround processor with a decent phono stage?

I am struggling to find the right surround processor to complete my audio / HT set up. For years I was 2 channel only, and then a few years ago started experimenting with 5 channel home theater. I settled on a Rotel RSDX-02 all-in-one unit as my main box, and connected my Thorens turntable using a Rotel RQ-970BX as the pre-amp. All was good in my world, until I came across a too-good-to-be-true deal on a pair of Martin Logan Sequel II’s. They are now my mains. While my Rotel all-in-one still works well, I really need more power to drive the Logans, and I also decided to make the leap to separates.

I just bought a used Sunfire Cinema Grand 5 channel amp. Now I need to find a suitable pre-amp/surround processor. I’d like to get a decent quality surround processor that also handles 2 channel well – and has a decent quality phono stage built-in. (While I have been happy with the Rotel RQ-970BX phono pre-amp, it does add a bunch of wires to the rat’s nest.) My budget is flexible, I’d like to keep it under $2,000, but I always believe you get what you pay for. On the other hand, I don’t need all the bells and whistles, just a simple, easy to use unit that provides high quality sound for 2 channel and 5.1 movies. I’d connect a DVD player or two, along with my turntable, cable box, and maybe one other device.

From my research, my choices are the following:

Sherwood Newcastle AVP-9080 ~ $300
Rotel RTC-965 ~ $350
Sherwood Newcastle P-965 ~ $750
Outlaw Audio 990 ~ $900 (new)
Sunfire Theater Grand ~ $500 - $2000 (depending on model)
Integra Research RDC-7 ~ $1500
Arcam AV8 ~ $2500

Any comments or suggestions?
Sunfire IV or V.
Sherbourne is the same as the Sunfire for a little less money.

Both of these will crush the rest of your list!
If the pre/pro you like doesn't have a phono stage, consider a separate outboard phono stage.
I have a Sunfire Theater Grand II and the phono section is decent. I have a separate phono preamp for my 2 channel setup, but I use the Sunfire for my 2nd turntable and it sounds quite nice. At your price point, you won't be disappointed with a Sunfire.
Try a Sony TA-P9000ES. I run a Grace Ruby Red into the phone input and it sounds great. Best of all the unit can be had for 400-500. Be sure to get one that has the 2.1 software and its related remote. Cheap never sounded better. The build quality is just the best you can find.
I would choose the best pre/pro ignoring whether it has a phono section. If the one you buy happens to have a phono section try it in your own room/rig. If you're satisfied, great, but expect to buy an outboard phono pre or use your RQ for it.

The sonics, user interface, and features of pre/pros are too complicated to compromise on.

As for the Sherwood AVP 9080 - I have one, and while it's a great buy at under $300, its user interface is clumsy for HT. The phone stage is flexible (MM/MC)but not very good sounding. I use it as a stereo preamp in my workshop system - it's great sounding for stereo and is remote controlled.

I think your idea of a muti-channel pre-amp may just be the ticket. I googled the Sony, and came across this artice from Soundstage: This approach would simplify things. Sadly, the Sony unit has no phono stage, but I could keep my Rotel 970BX phono pre and have a decent, simple 4-box solution.
Now that I've read the other members posts, my angle has changed: Getting a unit with phono is probably a waste of your efforts. Buy an outboard unit. My Sherbourn 7010A has phono but it can't touch the quality of my $179 Cambridge 640.
I am seriously considering a change of plans by forgoing a surround processor completely and using a multi-channel pre-amp instead. I almost pulled the trigger on a Mccormack MAP-1 last night. But I thought too long, and it sold. I would have had to install a phono card, but it would be a one box solution. The surrround processing would come from the DVD player itself, then 5.1 analog out to the pre-amp. I could get a Sony TA-P900ES and a stereo pre-amp, or maybe a Linn Exotik or Kontrol. The Linn units have some additional digital processing as well.

At this point I think I will go Sony TA-P9000ES and a Rotel RC-1070. Should set me back only $1K combined. Simple solution, a few more interconnects, but quality audio.