Upgrading Preamp - How About Some Suggestions

Hi Folks,

I'm wanting to upgrade the preamp in my current system, which consists of:

Teres 255 TT, Origin Live Silver Taper arm, Shelter 501ii,
Electrocompaniet EC-1up CDP,
Audible Illusions Modulus 3a preamp
Cary SLM70 amps, modded for triode
Quad 988 speakers

I am hoping for something more dynamic and engaging then the Audible Illusions. It must have a good MC phono stage. Balance control (or dual mono) is also a requirement. Everything else is negotiable (e.g. remote would be great). Open to tubes and good solid state. Cost up to $4k, but hopefully a bit less.

The Cary amps are very liquid, good micro resolution, yet still warm. The Quads are great midrange. I really like imaging, so a preamp that excels in that area is a plus.

Right now I'm thinking CAT, Aesthetix Janus, not sure what else. Thanks in advance for any suggestions.

All the Best, Peter S.
vtl 5.5
Yes. the CAT is a great option considering you want a full-function preamp, my other suggestions would go for a First Sound or a Hovland but you may need a separate preamp to take care of your phono source.
I would also see the CAT as an option for punchy sound. A used one of course -- the CAT is expensive new.

Another alternative is to borrow a transformer volume control and try that out (with a line source). Check if that rocks yr boat...