The SX-780 from Pioneer is my favorite receiver. There's just something about it that I love.
It has a wonderful warm sound with low distortion and lots of headroom. It was available from 1978 to 1980 for about $325 according to Silverpioneer. If you adjust $325 dollars for inflation that translates to about $1000 now.
45 watts per channel? Really? No way! It feels like MUCH more. I have been through my share of Vintage Marantz and Yamahas and I have never found a better receiver than the SX-780. It's not like "they don't build them like this anymore". THEY NEVER DID! This was it. The SX-780, 1080, 1280 and 1980 are among the best receivers EVER built. The SX-1980 IS the greatest by a landslide.
I recommend the SX-780 to anyone. I pushed 4 HPM-100's with NO problem at all. Great sound.
Pictured is my SX-780 that I use with my Apple G5, a PL-530, a CT-F9191 and a pair of HPM-100's.