Counterpoint Preamp Upgrade Sonic Improvements

I am looking into upgrading a Counterpoint SA-5000 and was looking to see who has experienced a preamp upgrade from Mile Elliott (or other) and what the sonic differences were. Please explain what upgrades you had performed and the sonic differences you are hearing significant or slight. Would you do the upgrade again or buy a different preamp? I am especially interested in knowing if you had also had any issues with your Counterpoint preamp such as noise, hum or failures. I only use the preamp as a line stage and not for TT playback.

Thanks and Happy Listening.
The SA-5000 has one of the best phono stage out there for a full function preamp. It has the buffer stage which made it sound more dynamic for the low output MCs.
I didn't go with Mike Elliott mod ( I did my own) but a friend of my did.
Compare the two:
Mike Elliott version is quiet and better seperation ( even more 3-D ) than the original version.
My version is more liquid and full and less analytical than Mike's upgrade.
However, being different sonic character, I would think either one has the character of it is own.
Both are great sweet sound. Even the original stock has good sonic character.
In any case, the 3 units me and my friends had NEVER had any issues. They are one of the quietest preamp out there.

If you plan any upgrade, please replace the volume control. The old one might make noise when you adjust the volume.

Mike will be happy to answer your questions.

You can also check audioreview from other folks who had the upgrade from Mike.

It is a keeper for me.

After tryout over 20 different brand/type of 6DJ8/6922 family, I use only NOS tubes. Siemens 7308 for the phono and Amperex D-getter 6DJ8 ( earlier type ) for the line stage. Pinch Waisted 6DJ8 Amperex are the best line stage tube but I only have a NOS pair and you can't get them any more even if you're looking to pay over $100 per tube.
I can only address part of your question. I had an SA 5.1 preamp which I seriously considered having upgraded by Michael Elliot. I went as far as getting an RA #.

The reason I was going to send it in was it had developed a serious noise problem. Rather than having it repaired I sold it to another person (yes I did tell them about the noise) for a lot less than it was worth.

At that point I was very frustrated with tubes and replaced the SA 5.1 with a solid state preamp.

...and dats da name a dat tune.
I have a SA-5.1 and I had it upgraded with all the available upgrades. It has made a HUGE difference. Previous pre-amps I have owned include a Manley 300-B and a Gryphon linestage. It may have been a synergy issue with these pre-amps, but neither sounded as "real" as with the upgraded SA-5.1. The upgrades are quite pricey but well worth it. They provide a much better 3-D presentation. Both the linestage and the phono stage are quiet!!! Good luck!
The side mounted tube base is very delicate on the earlier counterpoint models.

IMHO, The SA5000 is the peak of the counterpoint history. It might be even better than the SA-11 cost no object model. A lot of more thoughts were implemented in the SA5000 because of the "heat" issue in the SA-11
Had the 1000 basic upgrade about 2 yrs ago.Also had a stock 3000 for 10 yrs.Both sound very good,but I cannot compare because of time between listening years.Overall I am very happy with all his stuff over the years,also had a sa 12 and sa20 amp that were good.Sorry for the vagueness,my mind wanders alot,good luck,Bob
Hello Bigkidz,
I have had a few Counterpoint preamps and have upgraded a couple as well. The models are SA-3.1 upgraded, SA-1000 upgraded 1 only (3 of these), SA-3000. The Counterpoint equipment gives you the best bang for the buck, as stock units they sound good but once they have been upgraded they sound very musical and quiet. Mr. Elliott has done a very good job on the design which comes out in his upgrades. I upgraded some of the preamps and amps I have owned and they just blew me away due to the before and after difference. Since most of his preamps are Hybrids the power supply to me is the key and will make the biggest difference along with the Volume/Balance control that I have noticed. I have totally upgraded the 3.1 preamp and this came out very very nice and the SA-1000 that I'm still fine tuning sounds great and quiet. If you like the basic type of sound you get from the Counterpoint equipment then you will love the upgrades from Mike Elliott. One thing that people don't understand that is the prices seems very expensive but you have to remember is that the parts he uses are expensive the labor you have to go through on some of these preamps just to get to replace the parts is very time comsumming as I know from upgrading mine (SA-1000 a pain) also you are having the man who designed the equipment doing the upgrades just to name a few and this doesn't include operating cost to due this type of work. After I was done doing the upgrade on the SA-3.1 the parts came out to over $500.00. Do the upgrades in steps power supply first because if the power isn't right no matter what parts you use it will not sound that good. Hope this helps you out!