Looking for Help - LS27 or SLP-05

I've been an equipment junky for 30 years as you can see by my feedback. Its been my hobby since I was young. Now as retirement is nearing, I'm trying to put together a system I can stick with. I've searched and read threads and reviews and I still don't know which way to go. I've owned a couple of ARC preamps and have really enjoyed them. I've never owned a Cary. My current system is exaSound e22, Rowland Capri, Pass X250.8 and SF Olympica III's. I am running a 5m Nordost Heimdall 2 from pre to amp. My most memorable (favorite)sound was an AMR DP-777 direct into a McIntosh 402 driving Cremona Ms. My system does need tubes. The midrange is nice, but it is missing something. I don't feel I'm getting the most from my speakers. I know you can't tell me what I would like, but I'd like to hear some comparisons or advice.
Like yourself I am trying to set up my retirement system as I will not have the bucks at that time to keep replacing gear in my main system. I have not heard the LS27 but I have owned the SLP05 for several years now and it is staying. It replaced a Sonic Frontiers Line3 that I really liked but even before I started tube rolling the Cary was better not by a longshot but enough to make me write a check and I have never regretted the purchase. The SLP05 feeds signals into my Cary 211AE amps which in turn power my Martin Logan Summit speakers. As one of my clients who was a solid state guy stated, the system sounds simply wonderful and complains I cost him thousands of dollars. He has since converted to an all tube system. Both Cary & ARC are solid companies & I don't think you could go wrong with either preamp. I think the main difference is that ARC tends to come out with newer models more frequently then Cary which could result in some "what if's". Good luck and I hope this helped.
I've owned both and preferred the Cary by a significant amount. It has more of the tube attributes than the LS27 did in my system, and was just better essentially in every aspect. I would probably still own it if it had more remote functions (changing input, power, etc).

I honestly wasn't that impressed with the LS27. It wasn't bad per se in any sense, but when compared back to back with the Cary there was no mistaking what I was missing.

The Cary was more extended up top, had a more articulated bottom end and more of the midrange magic that I wanted from a tubed unit. The ARC leaned a little too far towards the solid state side of the house in terms of presentation. The Cary was more transparent/open and allowed me to "see" a little deeper into the soundstage. The ARC seemed a little congested in comparison.

Your experience may be completely different with your equipment, and since I've never-ever heard any of your gear, I can't possibly tell you if it would be a good match or not.

For what it's worth I was using both preamps with a Levinson 336 amp, Aerial 10T speakers and Linn Unidisk 1.1 source.

Good luck with the search.
SLP-05 is the preamp of choice for me.
My SLP-05 is a treasure. It uses 6SN7s (I imagine the ARC uses 6922s or 6H30s),which to my ears is generally a "ballsier", richer, bigger sounding tube - particularly in this circuit, but without sacrificing air or detail. It sounds as if this may be the ticket for what the OP is seeking.

I've not heard the LS27 and am not denigrating it in any way - ARC is a venerable firm which produces many superb components.
Thanks guys. I went with an SLP-05. I just got it hooked up this evening and it hasn't taken long to understand why you responded the way you did. I love it. It is perfect with the rest of my system.
Oh dude... vgrubb... you gotta get a philips mini watt for the rectifier... it is amazing.
I have some NOS Pope Holland 6SN7's that I used in my SLP05 before I sold it. They made quite a difference. They are not presently for sale but I could be persueded
Can't go wrong with a First Sound pre amp. Four tubes, separate power supply, just a tremendous piece of kit. Coupled with a Cary ph 302 phono pre and you've got a winning combo.
I just replaced the rectifier tube in my SLP-05 and what a difference it made. It had an NOS RCA 5AR4 tube that had just run out of life. Did not sound bad, just lost a lot of the punch and bass the unit is capable of. I put in a new Mullard GZ34 and it really brought it back to file. People need to decide if they want new or NOS, but the point is replace the rectifier tube on a regular basis. In my case I will probably replace it every 3 years or so after this experience. Short money if you use the Mullard.

AS to the 6SN7, note that if you are running singe ended, you only need to change the left 4 tubes. The 2 right ones of the group of 6 are only used in balanced mode. And, of course, if you don't use the headphones you don't need to worry abut the far right two.