I have had good luck using my Onkyo 805 for HT and separate monoblocks. I then upgraded to a preamp with HT pass through for watching movies.
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Boat anchor the reciever and do yourself a major favor. You an get a Mapletree for under 1K and the AES AE-3 upgraded to the hilt both brand new. The AES will cost a bit than 1K I would chose either over a pedestrian reciver. That is unless you need to decode and processing. If this is your first outing with a preamp make it a good one. I can think of others much less than 1K the early Classe's the Nikko beta (very good) the Aragon 24AU, even the original but really versatile and serious Accuphase 200 I think. I saw one recently for about $800. Great sound there are so many choices why use a reciever? Just asking? I imagine its OK but not much more given the way the whole reviever sounds.
In my secondary set-up I use a Pioneer VSX-D601. In addition to my preamp it serves as my phono stage and a tuner. I didn't want to go too crazy spending all sorts of $ on various components with my secondary set-up so I opted to use the VSX-D601. To my ears it is doing a fine job. The Pioneer Elite or some Pioneer models in general really aren't that bad quality wise. I wouldn't give up on that Pioneer Elite yet. What model # is it?
I have an old but versatile and good quality NAD 7020 receiver that I use as a spare receiver, amp, pre-amp tuner as needed.
I swapped it into my second system last winter when the pre-amp there developed a problem and have been satisfied enough to leave it in since, though eventually I would like to get a newer pre-amp for that system and return the NAD to spare/bench duties only.