Just to Clarify the Planet 2000 MK3 issue, there is no Planet 2000 MK3.
Rega made some modifications in the early part of the 2003 to the 2000 to help with disk stability. These changes were never made to change the sound of the product, however according to some people it did and very much for the better. Rega is not calling them an upgrade. As with all manufactures, they make minor production changes to make the product better when they see the need to do so and can do it.
From a Rega Engineer:
The only difference from the planet 2000 and the current planet (mk3?) is the lid. It was changed due to better functionality and easier production methods.
The easiest way to see the difference is that the latter has straight edges, rather than curved edges on the 2000.
It didn't get the '3' logo as it was really only an external modification. It is not a new product, just an aesthetic improvement.
I hope this information has helped.
I have not seen the newer version of the 2000 but from what I can gleen from the photo of the Planet at Regas website dealing with the lid
the latter has straight edges stated above means the top edge of the star trek enterprise styled lid is closer to the original Planet edge than the more rolled one on the early production units of the 2000. Since I have an original and an early production version of the 2000, that is the conclusion I have reached. I have never had the lid/puck spinning noise problems others may have experienced, which may have precipitated this change. I am quite happy with my units in their current state.
I dont feel Rega would have changed the sonic quality of the player without re-launching the product and trumpeting that change. Rega has always been a stand-up company and if this is all that they did, I believe them.
Hope this helps,