WhestTHREE signature phono pre vs. ModWright PH 9.0X

I've mostly got my phono preamp upgrade down to a shortlist shootout choice between the WhestTHREE and the ModWright PH 9.0X. They're pretty much at the same price point (the MW is ~$300 more than the whest, give or take). 

What I listen to mostly: Jazz & Jazz Fusion primarily (I do have things from many other genres, but want to tune my system to Jazz since that's 95% of my listening on vinyl).

What I like: wide soundstage, incredible mid-range, detail, some warmth

What I don't like: clinical! 


There are a lot of passionate Whest owners out there all over forums raving about them, but I've also seen people mention that they can be a little on the clinical side. 

The modwright has less hands-on info out there that I could find, but the few things I could find review it very highly. 

If owners of either could comment on their experience and some objective pros / cons of either, it would be helpful! 


I did have someone recommend the Gold note PH10 to me some time ago, and while it is at a lower price point, I've seen a lot of mixed reviews. 


Quick update - have had the 9.0X for a few months and love it. Was a significant, immediate upgrade from the Phonomena II+ (as I'd hope given the large price difference), and sounds fantastic. Very happy with it.

@mmcgill829 Congrats! Dan makes an incredible phono stage for sure! It will also benefit from an upgraded fuse and aftermarket power cables, and I preferred the unit with Reflektor 6H23 and Amperex PQ 6922 or 7308. 

Super helpful thread, I followed suit in upgrading the Manley Chinook SE to the ModWright Ph9.0XT. I love me a good tube rectified PS and had a stash of NOS 5AU4 and 274b tubes to swap. I think for the extra $500 cost, the tube rectified PS option is a no brained upgrade.

I’ve upgraded the 6922 tubes to NOS Tungsram. 

All the same superlatives as other posts, but noting how much quieter the MW is over my Manley which felt downright noisy in comparison, 

I am thrilled with the ModWright. And a lot of folks seem to run the Hana Unami so I may have to look at that option too.


@blisshifi Thanks for those recommendations! I'll probably look into experimenting with some upgrades in the future. What sort of power cables do you recommend?

@davehg Congrats! I'm definitely loving it. I'm looking forward to experimenting with some different tubes at some point myself, but enjoying as-is as well.

I'm looking into the Umami red currently, but that will probably be my last upgrade after I swap out my speakers and amp (I have speakers being built now, and then amp to come after), so it's a little ways down the line for me. I really like the Hana ML I have now, so I can only imagine the Umami will likely take it to the next level once I have everything else dialed in.