Best AV receiver to use as an AV pre amp

I want to get another AV receiver, but I want one that has a really good pre section in it so I can also use it well for 2 channel music. I have a Bryston 5B ST that I use for the front 3 channels(and for 2 channel music), but I want to use the internal amps in the receiver for the surround channels only (hence why I can't use *just* a preamp).
I am using my Denon AVR 2808 as the pre now with the Bryston and it is OK, but I feel is really holding it back.
Any suggestions on what would be a go AV receiver that has a great preamp section in it ?
If you must integrate, probably the best of both worlds is as hinted above, and that is use a high quality 2 channel preamp, using it's auxillary or bypass input to loop the L/R outs from a high quality n much more budget friendly AV receiver or pre/pro for the HT swiching dubties. This allows you to connecdt high quality CD player or pure sources to the 2 channel preamp, and shuts out the AV for 2 channel dubties all together. Then, your AV sources simply connect to the AV pre/receiver, and the L/R are simply passed through the 2ch pre's pass-through during multi/movies and such. (Even $200 HK AVR 354 on used market with EQ and latest DD/DTS HD Master audio will thrill your for HT dubties, fed to more powerful amps certainly!
If you simply strive for a higher end AV receiver to handle both music and movies, and you are after the purest 2 channel dubties possible from that, you'll typically find a bit of a compromise (if you can find one with dirrect bypass, you'll have some advantages with purity of sound), at least through the analog inputs.
That said, doing the latter route here, your best bet is typically a digital connection ,using the othewise very good quality dac's in the AV receivers these days! (all the digital processin the AV receiver/pre!) Another benefit here, especially wiht multi-ch dubties, is that you can get the EQ circuit involved in teh digital domain on many offerings these days! And believe me, most rooms need this assistance, badly! -and considering most don't know how to optimmally place the speakers, seating, and acoustic treatments, to compound things! - EQ's help!
If you're leaning to simplify, and simply want the best AV receiver with great 2 channel analog connectivity, digital processing, etc, and overall great 2 channel purity, ya might check into the Arcam's, Anthem's, and anything from some high end essoteric company out there (i.e, Krell, Macintosh, Theta, and similar), to see what they're offering in the AV receiver route???
On the budget, I always was pleased with what I got from the Harman Kardon line! I used to run the HK AVR354 to a Parasound HCA1205a, and it was VERY NICE! - at least for mid/hi-fi budget gear! Movies and music were just terrific on this setup on the cheap! ($250 for the receiver and $400 for the amp, great deal!)

After just rereading this entire thread, I've come to the conclusion that:
1. I will be giving Snofun3 an actual or atleast a verbal atomic wedgie. This will necessitate me pulling Snofu's underpants waist band firmly upwards from the back side until it is pulled completely over his head ending loudly with a painful 'snap' as I release the waistband underneath his chin, and
2. If you continue to refuse to go the separates route, then you will continue to be unsatisfied with your system's performance in some area with no clear cut solution.

However, I would still like to help you find a solution and have some ideas. But, if you're serious about better sound, you need to be flexible,keep an open mind and overcome any space constraints or other obstacles. Here's one solution:

Sell your Denon avr.
Keep your 3 channel Bryston (this is a very good amp that should provide the basis for both a very good 2-channel and ht system).
Buy a surround processor (prepro) either new or used
Buy a high quality ss or tube preamp with HT Pass Through, either new or used (the better the preamp, the better the 2-channel sound).
Buy a small stereo amp to power your surrounds, either new or used(doesn't need to match Bryston quality or expense).

I know you have objections that I'm still not exactly clear on. But the easy solution, of just getting a better avr with very good 2-channel performance, may not even be attainable at any price. You have reached a fork in the road on your audio quest. Either keep chasing an unattainable goal with an avr based system or make a bold and decisive move in a separates based system direction that will almost certainly result in very good to excellent 2-channel performance).

I would be willing to assist you if you choose the separates route. If you're looking for the easy avr solution, I'm sorry but you're on your own. Let me know if you want my guidance on choosing components or setup. Or, let me know I should stop beating this dead horse. Thanks

I Come in Peace . . . I recently changed over to av receiver from separates although I thought there would be a downgrade in 2 channel sound. So I went from the Integra Research RDC-7.1 pre-processor (struck by lightning) to Pioneer Elite SC-68 using same front amplifiers. So far, I am satisfied with the quality of the two channel sound (actually pleasantly surprised). However, as most of us suffer from 'there has to be something better out there' fever, I am entertaining the thought of inserting a stand alone 2 channel pre amp with bypass. But I could be happy sticking with Pioneer as it does have superior dacs and is well engineered, not to mention the best internal surround amps
Is there a slimline receiver that would free up the space needed for a two channel preamplifier?
i have a mcintosh mx132 h/t pre-amp tuner for 2 chanell listening paired with a mcintosh amp. is this ok?? i like it.