Interesting read. I have an Onkyo 809 as well but hooked up to Monitor Audio RX6, RXC and RXFX. Tonight March 18 I will be an owner of an XPA-3 that I am going to hook up. Always wanted to try an Emo amp in my mix and pulled the trigger. I hope it impresses me as I have been impressed with the reviews but understand my mileage will vary.
My room is 19x11x8 and sit about 9 ft away from the fronts. Also in the mix is a cheaper but decent Bic Acoustech PL-200 sub. Love the speakers and my setup right now as I was fortunate enough to get a dedicated room in the new house I built. I will post pix sometime soon.
Also to the original poster very nice speakers. Too bad shipping costs a bit here to Canada for me to consider them. How do you like your 809?
I'm driving old inefficient speakers, and when I first got my Yamaha RXA3010 receiver, I compared the 150wpc amp in it to the old outboard 125wpc amp I had been using, and noticed a difference, but not a marked difference. Again, the difference came in at higher volumes. I don't know the efficiency rating on my speakers, it's been too many years, but somewhere in 87 range, so way lower than most 'modern' speakers. This has me wondering... I had planned to upgrade amps before the main speakers, (PSB Synchrony Ones highest on the list so far), but perhaps that would be the cart before the horse.
Alternately, I could just drink more and better wine....I wonder if there's a thread on the comparison between better amps or better wines and where the best bang for the buck is there...?