What was said is the wisdom... I have literally been in more bad situations of my own making, just because it seemed like a good idea and money was burning a proverbial hole in my pocket. Ahh, that 20/20 hindsight. It seems fairly true that good equipment set up correctly, will whip a good amount of poorly setup exceptional quality equipment as well. And, as most have hopefully learned, expensive does not always equate to good or exceptional.Ain't that the truth :bigsmile:
................The AVR that I am looking at only has unbalanced RCA connections for pre-outs and I plan to add an amp in due course. Based on what I understand from this post, it would work pefectly well if I pick an amp that takes unbalanced input and I connect them with good RCA cables (they will be in the same shelf less than 2 ft from each other). Correct?
Absolutely. The only way you might run into problems is if the AVR and the external amp were plugged into different 110VAC circuits and that is unlikely.
I also have a question about the cables. I read on many web-based buyer guides and online forums that expensive cables are a rip-off. The general recommendation is to go with any decent competetively priced online sellers of cables. Do 'good RCA cables' in this case also fall into the same category or are they an exception?
Again you're on the right track. Many expensive cables don't offer any improvements in sound quality and that applies to "RCA cables" as well. Just be sure to buy cables that have decent connectors and durable construction. Monoprice has a great offering of audio cables that would meet your needs.