Best sounding phono preamp under $600

I am presently using a Jolida JD-9 with a Pro-ject RM-5 turntable and Ortofon X5-MC cartridge and am looking for opinions on solid state phono preamps that cost $600 or less. The rest of the system consists of the Qinpu integrated amp and Buggtussel Somu floorstanding speakers. Would appreciate any advice on the subject. Thanks, Bob
Hi Bob,
& physical animal.
Without going into mega detail which is only my view in any case - the Quicksilver just seemed to give the best approximation of 'real' music.
I listen to lots of live recordings and the Quicksilver was the one that had me pulling out albums for hours on end.
Paints a with a broad brushstroke but vocals,soundstage -width, height & depth and a nice solidity without being overly warm still makes it my favourite phonostage.
Sold it now as my Supratek has a built in pre so could not justify keeping it (her indoors on the case).
It is also a very quiet stage whether used alone with mm or used with the step up for lo mc.

It also, to my ears, does not have the grain/edge and un-natural dynamics of most of the ss designs I have tried.
Not saying valve wins every time as I enjoyed the Creek, Clearaudio Basic Ltd and Camelot very much, mainly because they manage to minimise my negatives about ss phonostages.
Even though I live in the UK , I got great service from Camelot and Quicksilver - never had any problems , only some queries and requests for advice. That fact that these were answered speedily and enthusiastically led me to believe both companies would address any problems with their gear as a matter of urgency - not always the caes in my experience.
I also found that some stages will give their best with a wide range of cartridges and some are very picky.
My favourites tend to be in the former camp .
Rgds Simon
Simon - thanks again for your comments; I know what you mean about Quicksliver; I met them one year at the CES show; they are a down-to-earth group of people and I was very impressed with their vacuum tube preamp and power amplifiers. I shall keep an eye out for the Quicksilver phono preamp.
don't forget the jolida 9 with some NOS tubes, it blew away my Monolithic Ps-1. Derek
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I've been living with a Musical Fidelity X-LPS for the past year or so. It's funny how blind we can be. I've been singing its praises since it arrived. Well, I just picked up a Musical Surroundings Phonomena earlier tonight for $300. Here's my impression after a couple of hours of listening:

Grateful Dead's Touch of Grey has never sounded more three dimensional. I've listened to this album many times, but Jerry's voice has never sounded so real and throaty. Pink Floyd's Dark Side of the Moon has never sounded so open and airy. In particular, Breath felt huge with lots of space around it. There's a completely new spaciousness going on in my living room. Sound is coming from behind and to the sides of my speakers where it's never come from before. I've been waiting for this upgrade for a long time, but didn't know where to find it. The skeptic in me has kept me from looking for it in a phono preamp. I've been let down so many times with "must-have upgrades," that I've become numb to the hype. This one has proven me wrong and it's exciting. My bass has improved too. It's hard to pin it all down, but there's a significant improvement going on. "An Evening with Windham Hill Live" (1983) has never sounded so absolutely real. It's one of the best recordings I've ever heard, so it sounds good on any system, but it took on a whole new dimension tonight. I was listening to Fleetwood Mac Rumors last night, so it was fresh in my mind. I heard something new on "Dreams" that sounded like someone was outside howling. Stevie Nicks does some sort of echoed scream that sounds like it's coming from somewhere else. It's very cool! My speakers are disappearing like they've never done before. I just found the component that brings my system to a new level. I thought it would be an expensive cd player, but when that didn't happen, I thought it would be a tube preamp. When that didn't do it, I thought bi-amping would clinch the deal. When that didn't do it, I bought different speaker wire. On and on and on... In terms of upgrades, this one ranks at the very top. My X-LPS is going up for sale as soon as possible. I've never felt so detached from a piece of old equipment. I usually want to keep it for sentimental reasons, but not this time. I'm in love with the Phonomena! I'm running it with a Denon DL-103 on a Micro Seiki DQX-500 with an RB300 arm rewired with Incognito. -Mark