I cannot really speak to how much an external amp will help you, but I can say that with the proximity to your surround speakers, you'd be just fine with a 3ch.
Also with a 3ch, if in the future you wanted to drive your wife nuts, you could get a beefier 2ch and use the 3 for center/surrounds!
HT: Samsung LN32B460 32" LCD (greyscale calibrated) | AVR: Yamaha RX-V765 | L/R: Emp E55Ti | C: Paradigm Center 1 | Rears: Sony Junk | SW: Klipsch RW-10d miniDSP | Sources: Acer Revo Ion running XBMC with mySQL library server and 4 TB HDD, PS3, Technics SL-Q2 TT | 2x Aura Pro Bass Shakers
Bookshelf: Yamaha RX-V992 | Paradigm Mini Monitors
Shelved for now: Paradigm 11 SE Deluxe