Need help with a Tube Preamp under $3000

Hello, I have a Bryston 3BST 2 channel amp, connected with Bryston XLR cables to a BP20 Bryston Pre amp. Today the majority of my music listening is with a Wadia itransport (coaxial) and a DAC majic by Cambridge Audio (XLR). Before buying my Maggies I had heard the Magnepan 1.6QR being played through on a Vintage CJ tube preamp & Sansui Solid state receiver. I absolutely loved the warmth of the music even with my ipod as the source hooked up through an RCA cable from the headset Jack. I would like a big sound stage for my Classical, Jazz, Movie Soundtracks and Opera listening pleasures. So what would be a good match for Bryston and a Tube Pre amp and my Magnepan speakers. My system is also connected to a Martin Logan Abyss Subwoofer for some added bass beyond the 1.6QR range of 40Hz.Nordost Speaker wires.

What would you folks recommend as NEW Tube Preamp around $3000 ???
My friend runs Maggie 1.6s with an Emotiva XPA-2 amp. For a preamp he's uses a Doge 8 Clarity recently acquired from Pacific Valve. He swapped the tubes to vintage NOS. This preamp needs good NOS tubes to sound its best. He paid about $2k, not including the NOS tubes. This is an impressive preamp for the money. Quality built using excellent components. Has a very nice phono stage too and includes a remote. Check it out. I think you'd be hard pressed to do better for the money.
Try the used Hovland HP100 Preamp on sale here at Audiogon. This is a very fine tube preamp, with a rich warm sound, plenty of 'space' and it is a great match for your Maggies.
VTL 2.5
If you go this approach, you MUST audition the specific combination. I have found the tube linestage feeding solid state to be more unpredictable in outcome than any other combination. You are more likely to end up with the worst of both worlds rather than the best of both.
I've owned the VTL 2.5 which is a nice preamp but it's not in the same league as the Doge 8 Clarity.
The JE Audio preamp selling at $1900 seems like an absolute steal

Good Listening

while not owning a 3B-ST I have paired a number of tubed preamps to larger Bryston amps (4B-SST/14B-SST/7B-SST2). Hovland HP-100, Rogue Magnum 99, Audio Horizon, ARC LS-26 & Ref 3, Lamm L2 Ref and LL2 Deluxe (I think I got them all).

Of the units that are in your budget range (some of which have to be bought used) the Hovland was very good, not as "tubey" as the Rogue but offered up more detail. The LL2 Deluxe, IMHO, was the best of the lot - a hint of warmth (you can tube roll to adjust to taste) and presented the best overall presentation - soundstage beyond the speakers and as much detail as the Hovland. I think of all the tubed preamps I have owned it offered the best bang for the buck.

Just my experience, YMMV
Take a long look at the Audio Space Line-2. I went through several pre's after hooking up my Maggies until I landed on this one. It is an absolute game-changer. I ran the stock tubes for quite a while with no complaints. I then changed over to some tung sols and so no appreciable improvement. Last week went to some NOS Mullards and Siemens.....minor improvement (verdict: the units sounds excellent out of the box!). Regardless of what you do, you must demo in your system....way too many variables to say what sounds best in your system. For those interested in why I like it so much: Of all the pre's I tried, it had the best combo of gain and detail but not harsh. It was also the quietest pre I demo'ed at any price. An absolute black background, with an immediacy that can actually startle some people.
Thank you for everyone's responses. I have been researching some of your answers. One company I came across is out of BC Canada "SpaceTech Labs". The man made a few recommendations to improve my system. A tube preamp obviously but he also said that a Buffer between my DAC Magic and Bryston PRE AMP would improve the sound by 80-100%. I am not at all familiar with Buffers. Does anyone have any comments or technical view on Buffers? Thank you in advance
Hello Birdiewins, I have some experience with what I consider a very nice buffer. It's made by Joseph Chow at Audio Horizons (check out their site). There is also quite a bit of information here on A-gon about AH flagship product - the TP preamp line. Just search the archives.

As far as the tube buffer ... Joseph custom built a combination buffer and phono pre into one box for me; and I have been very happy with it. The buffer section uses two (2) 6922/6DJ8 type tubes and responds well to tube rolling, interconnect changes, and power cord flavors. It's been great in helping integrate my HT set-up with 2-channel listening. I have it placed between Pre/Pro in front of Channel Island (Class D) monos.

Check out the specs as well as the write-up on the Audio Horizon site. As we know, the numbers only tell part of the story. The proof is how it sounds in your system and in your room. AH offers a "qualified" in-home free trial or a money back 20-day trial if purchased outright - no questions asked. There is no "restocking" fee or any other disincentive to try it out for yourself.

These guys stand behind their products and their work. BTW I've also had Joseph modify a DAC for me that (to me at least) outperforms a number of popular brands that I have owned and/or auditioned.

I have no affiliation or financial interest with this company; however, you may see an unsolicited testimonial that I gave them permission to use.

Good luck and Happy Listening!

Kind of homely looking, but may be just what you are looking for. Musical Design Chameleon Pre-amp. Tube roll till you find the exact sound you'r looking for.
I have a belles 21A with the Aroura Cap upgrade and I would put it up agianst any $3,000.00 new preamp.
they are about 1,200.00 used. My 2nd choice would be a Von Gaylord L1. It beat my Belles in transparancy and sounded more real.