The Coplands have the phono stage included. I let my friend borrow it because he has analog and he said it has a nice phono stage.
As far as comparing it to other pre's on the used market, it was a no-brainer. The CTA 305 was on AudiogoN auction for $1000 start. It had no bidders so I contacted the guy and offered him the $1000. It was a demo unit. I have had the Audible Illusions, The Hovland, Spectral, Audio Research, and a few others I forgot. The Copland did all the things I needed it to do without looking back or pining at the thought of not having the latest review rave.