How good are recievers these days?

Hi Folks. I haven't been on here in years. I sort of fell out of the high end audio about 8-9 years ago. Need some advice

So long story short, i have a set of Magnepan MMGw's i use as my mains which replaced a damaged paif of Jmlab Chorus.. I had a Denon 3805 and planned to pick up an outboard amplifier to drive the speakers. A friend loaned me an amp which had serious issues and killed my Denon 3805, so my amp budget got raided to replace it with a used Denon 3806.

As it stands now, it does not sound horrible, but i now have a small budget for an amplifer. between 500-1000 and i had planned on getting something used.

I ran into an old friend when i was picking up a 4k LED TV this weekend who worked at Best Buy (i can already hear your eyes rolling) at thier magnolia center. He mentioned they did multimillion dollar installations, full high end audio, etc. Today i asked him if he had any recommendations for a good 2 channel amp that can handle a 4 ohm load.

His response suprised me, he recommended a Pioneer Elite SC-81 receiver.

He does this stuff for a living, I have been out of the audio hobby and not been paying attention for the better part of the last 10 years. This receiver sports the D3 digital amp, and it claims to be stable with a 4 ohm load.

How good are these digital amps? I remember Velodyne putting digital amps in thier subwoofers a long time ago, but i know nothing else about them. Can that actually push the Magnepan MMGw? or should i go back to looking at a second hand Parasound or even some Adcoms?

Thank you in advance!
Hi Slappy:

In re-reading your original post, it seems that you already bought another receiver, the Denon 3806 and you were asking which 2 channel amp would mate with it. I don't know your receiver but can you de-couple the preamp and amp sections? And are you looking to use the new amp with the preamp section of the Denon?

It seems the recommendations above, although all good, all of them might not be answering your question, with the except of mofimadness' answer.

Just wondering....
My father just picked up an Anthem MXR510 and it's awesome. Great feature set with no gimmicky stuff you'll never use. Easy to set up and use and it sounds great driving his Sonus Faber Concertos and solo center. I'm strictly 2 channel but if I ever did surround in another room I would not hesitate to pick one up.
Actually a good question especially if one keeps a reasonable perspective that we're discussing Home Theater which is essentially a digital media that will pass through more of your systems digital conversions before it gets to your ears.

I was never able to maintain the level of sound stage and imaging from my two channel system with a big ass display between the main speakers. Likewise, I found the surround effect suffers when dissimilar speakers, even from the same manufacture, are used in a 7.1 system. You end up using more EQ and/or room correction to compensate. In both cases speaker placement is critical and any deviation requires more digital tailoring.

In most cases the room needed to evenly space home theater speakers around the listening position is impossible so the quality and adjustability of the room correction within consumer receivers becomes more important than the amplification circuits.

So, if you maintain the perspective that its simply TV, even todays economical consumer receivers actually do a pretty good job of increasing one television experience.

I enjoy music videos and usually at loud volumes. Along with all the digital conversions I mentioned earlier I've found that finding higher sensitivity speakers a bigger bang for the buck than spending money on high powered separates. This is were switching (class D) amplification technology trumps linear A/B amplification in a receiver. The power supplies required for seven channels of 100 watt A/B amplification is simply impossible for a consumer receiver. With class D its not a problem.

I can crank my class D Pioneer Elite receiver all the way up without any discernible congestion or fatiguing shrill through my Triangle Comete Speakers. I could never do that with with my old A/B Denon or Integra receivers. Now, comes 4K. Isn' it easier to upgrade a receiver than separates to accommodate the higher resolution?
Update: The ARC room correction utility is awesome. I did the USB upate and ARC software update in about 5 min. The firmware updates and ARC utility are super easy to use.

I did a quick Auto ARC with 5 measurement points, the computer traced the response of each position, crunched the numbers and automatically updated the receiver's ARC files automatically. The Sonus Fabers have never sounded better, this is an impressive piece of hardware