1. I understand the audio ports on an AV Receiver but why does it also have video ports, ie, s-video etc. Isn't it ok just to connect devices, ie, dvd player, directly to the tv and not go via the receiver ?
the benifit of also conecting all your equipment for video through your amp is manily to cut down on wires going to your display and also 90% of modern recivers also have good upscaling features, so you can simply have 1 HDMI cable coming out of your reciver to your tv, so ever time you chose dvd,cable etc on your amp the picture swithces without ever needing to touch the tv remote.
2. My set-up is going to be plasma, dvd player, sky+ box, and AV Receiver equipment listed below).
a. Dvd will connect to tv with HDMI cable(audio and video), and to AV Receiver with digital cable for dvd (surround sound) and cd (2 speaker). I understand that if I want to play SuperAudio CD's or Video cd's then I need a 5.1 cable set to connect from my dvd to receiver. Is this correct, and if I do connect this cable set, will normal cd's play through all surround speakers or still just through front 2 from the digital cable link ?
b. Sky+ will connect to AV Receiver with digital cable (surround sound) but am restricted with tv connection. Sky+ only has SCART or S-video OUTs, but my tv doesn't have s-video (I don't think so anyway, it's not delivered until this Saturday). Is Scart to Scart my only option, or is there a different cable which will connect Scart to another tv port, or s-video to another tv port, and if these cables do exist, would they noticeably improve the quality over a normal SCART cable.
Firstly, given your equipment I would not bother routing the video through your amp as IMHO I always prefer to have my video source connected directly to the screen where this is possible and seeing as you only have a DVD player and Sky box this is easilly done.
Right Sky box first, stick with a good RGB scart cable for the video to the screen and optical to your amp. You can either go for a fully wired RGB scart if you want to use the internal speakers or a RGB video only one if like me you dont intend on using the tv's speakers,(why use them when you have a amp??) The RGB feed from the scart is the best picture you can get out of a standard Sky box but you can allways upgrade to Sky HD in the future.
With your DVD player personally unless you intend on getting SACD's or DVD AUDIO discs I would not bother with seperate 5.1 inputs and stick with a good coax digital for your sound and HDMI direct to the screen. If you do intend to listen to SACD then yes get the player hooked up via the 5.1 multi-channel inputs to enjoy SACD's properly, simply select the multi-channel input on your amp and off you go, but if you listen to cd's via these inputs it will be in 2 channel stereo which again IMHO is how you should listen to a cd. If you conect both 5.1 inputs and a Digital coax you can chose which input you wish to use.
Hope that helped.