This is a good phono pre but I would look at a used Graham Slee 2SE in that price range (MM only)
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I never heard the Micro Phono Drive, so offer no opinion.
But check out my system.
I'm using Pro-Ject Tube Box II phono stage, retail $350.
It is really surprising how good this thing is. At some point I suspected it of being the culprit of several faults in the sound of the analog set up in my system when I first got everything(TT, cartridge and the Tube Box II), but it was the Sumiko Pearl cartridge that was the limiting factor. Once I switched to Benz Micro Ace, the Pro-Ject stage came through and really showed what it is capable of. I would recommend you audition it. It has MM and MC capabilities and uses 2 12Ax7 tubes. Sounds really good. I can easily say that my turntable setup compares well to the digital front end. If you find a used Tube Box II, it should be under $300.
I owned a McCormack Micro Phono Drive for quite a few years. New retail list when it was introduced was $750.
I was very happy with the unit, never had any problems with it, and only decided to sell it here not long back after I had the opportunity to acquire a mint Sutherland PhD at a very good price.
Is the Sutherland better? Of course, for $3K new, one would sure hope it is! ;-)
The McCormack was a smooth performer, silent in operation, well built, small in size, had the ability to use any user insertable Resistors into it's internal plug, and play ports. Default setting is 47K.
About the only things I can knock the Micro Phono Drive for, was only 2 gain options of I'm pretty sure 40db, and 60db. This sort of left a gap in the middle, that I felt would've better supported many current MC Cartridges. For the original HO Benz Glider that I used with this Stage at 1.8mv, I felt 60db was a bit too hot-raw, and at 40db just slightly lacking in gain, but did work better IMO set at 40db. Just meant dialing up my main pre-amp a bit more was all.
The other downside some may frown on, was its need of a Wall Wart for it's power Supply, but if my memory is correct, Steve McCormack still does market an External Power Supply for the Unit (at SMc Audio) which should further it's performance.
If you have any further technical questions of this Unit, Steve is the person who I'm sure can more technically answer those questions for you. Mark