If you don't need a remote consider an EAR834L - its just as you describe. Tonally it is very similar to the ARC SP10 I use in my main system. It only has three tubes - I have used one in a second system for about 4 years, tubes are long lived (I just changed them for the first time last month - I leave them on 24/7). The preamp is very quiet. You see them advertised used for 500 to 750 depending on model etc. Harry Pearson of TAS reviewed this a number of years ago & thought highly of it, for what ever that is worth.
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