Need preamp recommendation

Hello, everyone-

I recently acquired an older (early 80's) Yamaha PC2002M power amp and am hoping to use it in my 2ch system which I am putting together piece by piece as budget allows. It is a solid state amp rated at 240w/ch at 8 ohms. I was thinking in the direction of a tube preamp but am open to whatever will complement this amp well. Budget is sub-$1000 if possible. Speakers are Goldenear Triton 2 towers. I've so far been looking online at the Rouge Metis, Anthem TLP-1, Emotiva USP-1, and a few others. I haven't auditioned any preamps yet but was curious if any of you had heard any with these older Yamaha amps before. I'm also open to the idea of ditching the separates route and going with a solid integrated amp if I could still stay around a grand. Just really looking for some solid suggestions. Thanks in advance-
What inputs does your PC2002M have? All that I have seen only have balanced and 1/4" inputs. You could replace the 1/4" jacks with RCA inputs if you found a preamp you really want for a good deal, but if you don't want to make a switch like that, you'll probably have to concentrate on preamps with balanced outputs.

To my knowledge, the Rogue, Anthem, and Emotiva models that you mentioned do not have a set of balanced outputs. You can usually find an Audio Research LS-2 in your price range. I like mine, but it's not really a tube preamp. There's a single 6DJ8, but it's not a preamp that I would describe as having that "tubey" midrange bloom.
Hey man how the bass playing? I would go for a Modwright 9.0 preamp and get a new amp later. scott
Hi Teeshot- Bass playing is going well, thanks! :) That Modwright looks super-sweet but it's unfortunately out of my price range. I'd probably need to find a used one...

Hey Jazzerdave, just now seeing your posts. You are correct; the PC2002M has both unbalanced 1/4" inputs as well as balanced XLR inputs. Is it imperative I utilize the balanced in's? Could I just use RCA->1/4" cables and use the unbalanced in's, instead? Would I sacrificing significant performance or sound quality? I did notice that none of the pre's I mentioned had balanced outs, but just assumed I'd connect in the aforementioned manner. That LS-2 looks really nice, as well. I've never seen those before...

Thanks for the input so far, guys-
If you end up with a preamp with balanced outs, then that's what you should use. If not, RCA to 1/4" cables would work, but make sure it's the actual cable - don't just use RCA to 1/4" adapters.

Here's a few more preamp suggestions:
- Sonic Frontiers SFL-1 (there always seems to be one for sale here or one eBay). If you look around, you should be able to find one for a good deal less than $1000, and they're popular with the modding community if you want to upgrade without paying for a whole new preamp.
- Rogue Audio R99 Magnum (one is on eBay right now for $899) It's a great preamp, especially at that price. I'd probably pick it up myself if I weren't in a clamp-down mode budget-wise.
- Quicksilver Audio (any model) There are actually a couple of the full function models for $1000 here and on eBay, and you can usually find one of the line stages for $7-900. Good tube preamps.
Thanks, jazzerdave. Are you by any chance familiar with the Parasound P3? It has balanced outs and was recommended by a somewhat local high-end dealer. It's not tube, but I hear they sound good. Around $850 new. I'm not sure how it would stack up to that Rogue on eBay though.
I would probably snap up the Rogue, but I also haven't heard and Parasound products. I just haven't had the opportunity. From what I've read about them, Parasound seems to be a solid company.
I would recommend the Sonic Euphoria PLC that is for sale on Audiogon right now. I have owned two of these, after foolishly sellling my first one. This preamp has beat up on some much more expensive contenders. No other way to put it, other than it just sounds "right".

Go with the Rogue, and not the Anthem. I have had both and there is no comparison. I was surprised (shocked) at the difference. The added bass was especially unexpected. A Rogue integrated amp is another option. The Goldenear's are pretty sensitive (91db).

Mark O'Brien at Rogue provides the best customer service in the industry. Currently, I am using an Athena and it's the best preamp that I have heard for my taste. I could not imagine not incorporating a Rogue tubes into any mix that I put together.