"Barn find" Original Thorens TD 125 LB! Advice on Cart...

Hello all first time poster here...Have sold a couple things but never posted.  So here is the story:  It appears all my hours of hawking Craigslist has finally paid off!  Don't get me wrong I have always been lucky here and there but recently I hit the mother lode!  I found an original Thorens TD 125 LB (YES LONG BASE)...Not a replica but the real thing, with an SME 3012 attached!  It is all original and I would say it's what car guys call a "daily driver" (I know because I'm a car guy) EVERYTHING works as it should and is all there, albeit 45 +/- years old.  Anyway, the table is off to be "rebuilt & restored" by a 30 year pro with high end classics such as this...My question is what can you folks recommend as a very good Cartridge for this Table?  Let me tell you there is a budget and my ears are pleased with SOUNDSTAGE and Dimension, dynamics are very nice but with my budget I realize I may have to temper my desires...I am not opposed to MM or MC as my Pre accommodates both.

As for parameters:

1. Budget is $500 or less...I would say that would put me about $700 +/- Retail.

2. I listen to classic rock/pop and occasional jazz from the 60's and up not really classical.

3. Don't judge but...My 2 channel is:  2 Emotiva XPR-1 monoblocs, Def-Tech BP-7000sc's, Musical Fidelity Pre-Amp and currently a Rebuilt heavily modded Thorens TD-145 with an Ortofon 2M Red.

Any comments, advice are highly appreciated!



I just inspected and (re) adjusted the Thorens TD 125 from

my brother in law. You will need a new belt , cleaning the bearing

and changing the oil and, if needed, readjusting the 3 springs to

get the platter level. To get the belt in the right position you need

to invert the platter and position the  belt in the middle.

Nandric thank you for the reply...But as I said the TT is being restored as I write this...I have settled on the Denon 103R as a cart (being gently nudged by the restorer lol) now what advice I seek is a pre amp that will give me a great soundstage for under $1k street value...