Is Audio Research PH3 phono the best for today's price?

It is know that for the analogue setup we can get Audio Research PH3 phono preamp for bellow $1k. Is there any better phono in this price range on the audio market?
I am currently auditioning one in my solid-state setup and I think that I should try something else to compare?
If you can audition the Lehmann Audio Black Cube SE (the new version with the PWX power supply), I suggest you do so. I recently upgraded my Black Cube with the PWX power supply, and am VERY impressed with it. The new power supply makes the Black Cube a MUCH better unit, and at its MSRP of under $900 it's a real bargain.
I used to own the Ph 3 (tube)and thought very highly of it. However, you should compare it to the Aragon 47K (SS). They are so close, I sold my PH 3 and pocketed the $700 difference. Yes, the tubes have ever slightly better harmonics - better for classical (and this was with Telefunken and Amperx nos), but the 47K was more dynamic and actually sounded as-good-as and sometimes better on most everything else. Rarely found on Audiogon (hmm), I think the 47 k is a best buy for around $600 new! Mondial only ramps up the assembly line for a couple of weeks out of the year. Sometimes there is a waiting list for new units. Unit of choice for former Atlanta Audio Society Club President I understand. - A thought.
It depends on what you want. I had a PH3 loved it. Being tube based (Not all tube) it had some noise, but it was very minimal. Great detail, if you find a used PH3SE for $400 - $500 more, it's worth the upgrade. I now have an ARC Ref Phono, it's noiser because it's an all unit, but it's been upgraded by Nick Gowan and I use NOS tubes so it's very quiet and has great dynamics. ALL ARC tube gear benefits greatly from getting different tubes.
It seems to me that PH3 needs a freequent retubing like a baby needs its diaper changed. You change the tubes every 1.5 years -- it feels better and sounds more open and faster.
Any thoughts?
With good tubes, probably 4 to 5 yeras.
Bingo! What is the best way to get high quality tubes? Their retail price is usually $100 each. I can see that some of them go off ebay for $25-30 a piece. Are these tubes fake? In fact I do not know how to distinguish real ones.
You can get great tubes for $50 - $60 each from eiher Upscale Audio or Vintage Tube. I use Mullards. I would only buy tubes from a respected dealer or with some sort of documentation.
Blues man, what tubes have you tried on the PH3/PH3SE? I've just had my analog front end set up for a few weeks. I've replaced the Sovteks with Amperex white label 7308s. And the whole thing sounded great! (Now I regret buying all thosed CDs.)

I've got a big stash of tubes, so I can experiment for a bit.
By the way, I've compared Black Cube with power supply upgrades($900) in the demo room with AR PH3 on couple of jazz and rock vinyls -- AR outperforms in both cases. Phonomena lays back even with battery power supply to both Black Cube and AR as well. The only one I know is Pass Ono which is rare and costly.
I've had good success with the Mod Squad Phono Drive, which you can pick up used for about $400. Amazingly open, detailed and smooth and very flexible (adjustable loading and an active gain stage which can be used or not (via jumpers). I've heard the External Power Supply version is even better, if you can find one.
I got a set of Amperex tubes from Upscale. I also have Amperex in my Ref phono stage which replaced the PH3.