Phono Pre for Grado Statement Reference 0.5mV


What would be a good match for the Grado Statement series Reference - low ouput 0.5mV version?
peteraudio7
Make a true statement and get a reference level preamp phonostage. I think Aesthetics top o the line is good. I hear that Boulder makes one that is a reference and a statement.
All that aside you must be really into vinyl and I truly think the Manley Steelhead is as good as they get. And it doesn't cost as much as the other big name phonos.
Those are some mighty pricey suggestions for a grado sonata :)
The aesthetics rhea is nice, but uses a multitude of tubes and making it behave quietly is a challenge to say the least - i was unimpressed. I have not heard the Steelhead, but retail is over $7k! Obviously Boulder will be ridiculously priced as well...
In any case, you do need to state your budget. I would think you'd want to stay under $2k for sure, but even then, your choices are many.
For around $300 used, the Lehmann Black Cube (especially with PWX power supply) is a good one. The Grado is also supposed to be decent but I haven't heard it.
A little further up the chain, for around $1200 a used ARC PH3SE will do nicely (it's the one I use with my dynavector 17d3) - dynamics, detail, nice warmth as well as rhythm and flow - it has it all. Even further up the chain is the JLTI (an excellent value, although it can sound a little mechanical, but may be good with the sonata) and then the Pass XONO, which will be under $2k as well (used). The XONO is a real performer, with everything you'd want from a reference phono stage (and also will hold up performance-wise even if you make serious cartridge/table upgrades).
Finally, if you're looking to spend the kind of cash that Mechans is advising, make sure to check out the Rossner and Sohn Canofer. It's around $7k as well I think, and is a reference quality phono (excel stereo in canada sells them http://excelstereo.com/Rossner/Phono.htm, as well as John at MyKindOfMusic.com)
Although mechans offers some nice suggestions, all of them are overkill IMO. Far too much money for a serviceable phono cartridge that can never optimize any of the products mentioned.

I would look for a used Graham Slee Era Gold; they go for $600-$800 and will provide all the performance needed for this cartridge.
Hello Peteraudio7,

I'm using a Grado Statement Master 0.5mv on a Whest Audio PS30RDT and trust me the combo is simply Magical
The Graham Slee Era Gold does not have enough gain for the low output Grado
Thanks for the replies!

I am actually just getting into vinyl. The turntable would be a VPI Scoutmaster. I am looking at pairing the Grado with either the Wright WPP-200C or the Quicksilver phono at the moment. Both are less than a thousand and are a tube based. Both are very well regarded.

I looked into the Graham Slee Era Gold V and the only way for it to work with the Grado is if I purchase the Elevator EXP along with it.

I need to stay under $1000 - which I know narrows it down. But I feel that I can get a very musical phono for this price. The Wright is really calling... heard they can be improved by tube-rolling.

I'm going to take a look at the suggestions made so far...