Van Alstine preamp sound character?

I'd appreciate hearing comments from anyone with experience with the Van Alstine preamp line. How would you describe the sound? How does the sound compare to Audio Research and Conrad Johnson?
It's funny you should ask that question. I can share my experience with you. I had 5 or 6 preamps before I purchased my VanAlstine Super PAS3si over a 6 month period. A CJ PV5, Audible Illusions 2D, Audio Research L9, A Chinese tube preamp a Odyssey Tempest, PS Audio 4.6 and a couple others. I thought the Conrad Johnson was good but I was told to get rid of it by a close friend and I bought the Audio Research LS9. It was the quietest preamp I had owned at the time but not enough gain. The sound was pretty good. When I found I could not have it set up with more gain I sold it and bought the Super PAS3si. When I inserted it into my system it had a very refined sound to it. Warm yet detailed reminding me of both the CJ and the Audio Research. So it was the best of both worlds.
Well, recently I had Tom Tutay go through it and when I received it back it was transformed. I have even more top end extension (not bright at all), a taught bottom end and a very sweet and detailed midrange too. It's quiet and I only have 9 db of gain and as long as the speaker is 85 db spl or higher the system sings. I have in addition a Dynaco ST 70 with a Sound Valves input board but Tom modified it too. So right now I'm hearing things I never heard before.
What I'm saying is I liked the Vanalstine it when I first got it and I love it now. I didn't compare it to the tube Audio Research preamps but I'd choose it over any of the vintage CJ's with the exception of the PV9 and I think as it sits today with the mods it could be better then the SP9 and some others. I'm very happy with mine and it bears the name of Transition Audio Design.

The later line of VanAlstine designs uses different tubes and I hear they are solided designed too. I haven't heard one yet!
I bought my Super pas4i off E-bay for just over $200 from a seller whose ad read, " Un-tested and as is ". The seller appeared to be honest and answered every mundane question I had in a polite and sincere manner. I've never owned a tubed Pre, and I figured I would jump out after the bid goes north of $250 anyways.
I ended up winning it,and when the Pre arrived I noticed it was a solid 8 on the A.gon cosmetics scale and after removing the cover and discovering a huge power supply and 4 Telefunken flat plate 12AX7's, I was starting to feel very good about this purchase. Right out of the box, and after 1 hour of warm-up, I cued some Wynton Kelly and noticed the warmest, most natural mid-range tones I had ever heard in my life. The treble and bass are there as well, just not as extended and as 3 dimensinal as the mid-range is. Anyhow, like Ponnie, I love the way it sounds now and would love to send it to AVA for the Pas41 upgrade, but I am worried about losing the magic mids due to the different tube types used in the upgrade. Hope I've helped.
I agree with Rinnie and Rod 1957. I have an Ultra SL hybrid pre amp w/o phono, two Ultra 350 hybrid power amps, an Insight bridge inverter with an Ultra Hybrid phono pre amp. Out of the box this pre amp was all that and some. I started with one Ultra 350 power amp I got from an Audiogon member that just killed my YBA Passion 1000 power amp. Being so impressed with the amp I ask Frank to build me an Ultra pre amp. I compared the pre amp using the Passion power amp then the Ultra power amp. The difference was like day and night. All the Alstine cost less then a fourth of the Passion 1000 power and pre amp's twenty one thousand dollar price tag. Thanks to member Alnozak for the introduction to Alstine eletronics.