I'm so glad you've decided to switch horses, I believe you'll be very happy with the Denon, I didn't want to say anything but I tried messing with a cheap Yamaha a while back (just before the 3900 was released) just for the preamplifier stage and I was afraid you were in for a world of hurt if you went the Yammy route to pair with Axioms, especially with a vp180 on the horizon.

"If you try to turn toward it, you go against it."