Bellari VP129 vs. PrimaLuna Internal phono-stage

This is probably a “small change” quandary from the lower tier of high end. But I’d very much appreciate any input – including blunder prevention, as I’m about to take the plunge into tube audio – admittedly into the wading pool. I’m about to purchase a Prima Luna Prologue II. Prima Luna now offers an internal SS/MM phono stage for about $159. Its relevant specs are 50k ohms input and a 42 db gain output.
The Bellari Rolls VP129 external tube phono stage can be had new for the same price with matching input impedance to that of the Prima Luna, but with only a 30k db gain output.
I’m leaning toward the Bellari, even though it would dictate a high output MM cartridge.
The advantages of the Bellari for me would be: 1- Headphone jack 2- Using as a tape recording output 3- The debatable soundstaging a single Sovtek can bring to this audio arena. 4- Keeping a set of line inputs on the back of the Prima Luna undedicated.
Does this make sense? Have I overlooked something in this choice that might cause regrets later? Any advice would be greatly appreciated. Thanks in advance. - Mario
You might be missing a couple of things if you are going to be using an MM cartridge. The most important thing might be that an outboard phono amp adds another set of IC's as well as the attendant problems in avoiding hum from grounding and cable related issues. The output gain of the PL also gives you greater flexibility in cartridge choice. Whether or not the addition of a single 6922 in the phono stage would be better than a built in SS stage, sonically, I don't know. But in that regard I would think that the phono stage would reverse absolute polarity (you could probably overcome this by just reversing phono leads) and the selection of the tube brand and tube type would be more critical. You would probably want to get a tube which has very balanced halves. A mixed bag, but personally I would get the PL and pass on the headphone.
So what did you end up doing? Though we rep both I have not compared them. I think the Bellari is a nifty piece but the technical aspect of the PrimaLuna is way ahead of the curve compared to anything else I have seen.

But I would love your input.
Hi Kevin,
As you may know, I went with the Prima Luna phono stage - actually soldered it in myself.
Initially, the PL board was pretty tepid. I kept checking to see if my VTA was too low because of the absence of bass. But after about a 200 hour burn-in, this mini board kicked in with a vengence and I haven't looked back. With the Prima Luna's KT-88s warmed up, the combo produces excellent bass slam, yet remains faithfull to detail in the upper end. Now, in truth, there are probably source factors that are initially responsible for this fidelity, but I'm very satisfied with the way that Prima Luna pushes this musical envelope warmly along.
For sure, I'm still curious about what a tube driven phono stage-amp would bring to the table. Also curious to hear the likes of an every-day-man's MC like the Denon DL103. Any recommendations for a tube driven phono stage that can handle low-output and still come in at an every-day-man's price?