Pro-ject and EAR 834p - On the wrong path?

Ok, I had no intentions to set in motion an entire analog overhaul, but I recently had an opportunity to acquire an EAR 834p on the used market, as I've been curious to audition this piece for sometime. I just wanted to try it in place of my current Pro-ject Tube Box, which is part of what has otherwise been a fine homogenous Pro-ject/Sumiko analog set-up (eXperience table, Blackbird cart, Speed box II, and the Tube Box). Will have my first opportunity to A/B this wknd, but already running into the realization that I cannot run the Speed Box w/ the EAR. Maybe the improvements will be so significant that I won't miss it? Maybe the EAR is overkill to my current analog rig? Just looking for a more revealing/extended analog presentation - a little less warm & rolled off the top. I'm certain the EAR offers an improvement, but starting to feel it out classes the current table and a piece usually integrated w/ a bit better table. Of course I'll let my ears be my guide, but just curious - does anyone run a Pro-ject table w/ the EAR 834p, and if so, your impressions?
Why can't you run the Speed Box with the EAR?
I run the Project Speedbox with a Music Hall MM7 (Project table) with an EAR 834p so I don't know what the problem is. What does the motor control have to do with the phono pre?
Apologies - Of course-Speed Box a non-issue. Please disregard. In my haste to write and the fact its been so long since I first set up the SB, didn't think it through. Stevecham: What have been your impressions with the MM7/EAR combination?
I think I responded on your Vinyl Asylum post also. Anyway, I think the 834P is great with my MMF-7 (I have a Benz Glider, which is in the same ballpark as the Blackbird I believe).
I don't know how your Tube Box is, but I know when I upgraded from a Creek to the 834P it was huge a improvement, definitely my biggest upgrade so far. I have upgraded the tubes in the 834P as well (Upscale Audio has good advice about that). I don't see how you can go wrong with that combo. I don't think you are spending too much on the phono stage in relation to the TT (of course I don't know how much you are spending) but I definitely think the Blackbird is in the same league with the EAR. You can always upgrade the TT later.
I am very fond of the EAR 834p and actually own two of them, one each for my primary and secondary systems. In order to upgrade from this phono pre, I realize I will have to make the leap to a Manley Steelhead, Audio Research PH7, Aesthetix Rhea, EAR 88P or equivalent; the 834p is that good. The combination of the speedbox, table, cart (Lyra Argo i) and EAR along with Harmonic Tech cables, provde a very dynamic, extended and forgiving vinyl experience that is satisfactory in every way.
You all have been very helpful - thank you for your perspectives. I've enjoyed this all-Project/Sumiko set up for some yrs now, but have noted that the Tube Box-as liquid a presentation as it offers-tended to roll off upper frequencies and be undefined in mids/bass in certain musical examples. The 834p (this is the Delux mm/mc version) was admittedly an impulse acquisition - just a good deal that, knowing the market, would be a sound investment to experiment with. Stevecham: I too currently have HTs (Truthlinks) to/from the Tube Box. I have a couple prs of Nordost Red Dawns in the closet that I might experiment w/ after test-driving the 834p. Could be a nice way of gaining a bit more definition & detail.