Price range? What's your table, cart, arm combo? I'm fond of my Manley Chinook. If you have more to spend, I hear the Allnic H1201 is really nice. At under $1k, I'd go with a Ray Samuel's Nighthawk F-117.
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Herron vtph 2 does kick ass but is out of the op's budget. If I were shopping in that range I would buy the bottlehead Eros at $700. In fact someone compared it to the vtph2 and it was only a whisker behind. I built the bottlehead Beepre and it is the best preamp I have ever heard with a few mods and some upgraded tubes.
Tons of phono amps out there under a grand,,,and im no expert as I do digital most the time.Having said that I really like the new Jasmine 2.5du ,two piece unit,the build quality is fantastic.I upgraded the caps with Mundorf but into it for under $700 new.I liked it better than the Lehmann,Musical surroundings I tried.