I just did this research. For the low end, rotel is supposed to make a good $200 unit. For medium end ($600), I read the lehman black cube and mccormack phono stages are well regarded. Higher end, I heard that the $1500-2000 Sonic Frontiers and BAT phono stages are good. My decision came down to the ARC PH-3 and the Pass Labs Phono Ono. This is because I have Pass and ARC amplifiers + they are both reasonably priced and very well rated. The Pass is supposed to be one of the the most accurate and quietest you can buy. I didn't want something 'too revealing' for my mid level rega 25/super elys system. I found a 9 month old ARC PH-3, and could not be happier. It has that wonderful tube warmth and presence, but also very accurate. If you like the vt100/ls25 sound, you will like this. I think records and tubes complement each other. It only uses 3 6922's, so retube costs is a non-issue. They sell new for 1700, and used 900-1000.
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