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Onkyo for 5 years running has made the best amplification sections in their class, bench tests have proven this over and over year after year. You cant argue real numbers and Onkyo have real good numbers when it comes to output all channels driven. Most receivers tested under $1500 usually drop to around 60% of their rated output Onkyo always seems to get in the 75 to 80% range unheard of for recivers in that price range.
 

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-Marantz SR5006

or

NAD T748

I!
I looked and sample both receivers when I was shopping around for a AVR for my Martin Logan setup (Vantage, Depth, Motif). Between the two, I'd go with NAD, they're awesome in stereo mode and more than capable with a HT setup. The SR5006 is a great receiver, but If you're going to do Marantz, don't over look the AV7005 pre/pro setup. You can find a great deal on one (refurb) at Accessories4Less. Probably the best bang/$ out there.
 
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