Lehmann Decade Vs ARC PH5 Phonostages
I am slowly putting together a 'better' headphone based system. At present, I'm using a Graham Slee Reflex phono stage with a Solo (both with the Slee PSU1 power supplies) with a pair of Sennheiser 650 cans. (an Technics SP10 TT is in the house, and soon, an SME 12" arm will be part of the set-up too)
Although I have recently bought a Slee Elevator EXP head amp, I think there might be better phono-stages out there that would bring out the best in my newly acquired Ortofon Winfeld MC.
In my $2,000 price range, I have whittled it down to the Lehmann Decade from Germany and the Audio Research PH5.
I can only find one review on the PH5- a glowing (pun intended) piece written by Soundstage. I have had some so-so experiences with tubes, so I'm nervous going down that path again (an old ARC preamp, single ended mono blocks etc). The heat, the hiss, the hum, the dodgy bass etc. I'm a solid state guy, but on paper at least, the PH5 could be good. Any other reviews/users of the PH5 out there?
The Lehmann Decade phonostage also suffers from lack-of-review-itis. All versions of the Black Cube phono are lavished with praise, but the Decade is a bit of a mystery. Perhaps one of the European 'Goners can help here. Again, on paper it looks like a great piece of kit. Perhaps, it's a more modern approach to the preamp. To be upfront, this little combo is the front-runner but more info is required.
Music? 70s to now, rock, pop and dance. I have a large collection of very dynamic, loudly cut 12" singles... The winner must have a firm grip on the bass (not shy either!) and excellent PRT.
I also am wondering about the Headphone amp, but that's another thread....