First tube preamp recommendations (under $5k)

Right now have di20he -> terminator -> he9 -> pass x350.8 -> ATC scm7 / NS5000.
I am thinking of introducing some tubes into my chain. I like the sound I am getting but want to explore what tubes can do to the sound (slight warmth, biggest soundstage, better layering etc etc). Don’t want to go to nuts on price. If price is over $5k would consider if its really exceptional (but for sure not over $10k). Totally fine with used. Balanced would be nice but not mandatory.
So far I am thinking RP7, EVO400, bhk. Any thoughts?
ARC Ref 3, best Aesthetix you can find, CJ, …. Just my bias….


audio research and conrad johnson have not been stealing deaf people's money for 40+ years

the gear is built to last and sounds truly excellent

All of the ones I’d recommend are already in here (EAR, Lamm, Atmosphere, Cary, CAT)…

I’ll throw in another vintage brand: Joule-Electra. Rich Brkich at Signature Sound (1-315-622-4137 and on Audiogon) can take care of you.

I am using an ARC LS-26 with Pass Labs 30.8. Best sound quality I have found yet. 
You need to check out Aric audio. They are a small Company on the East Coast, All American made, Point to point wiring, very good products and priced just right. His new top-of-the-line Motherlode 2 preamp is getting some buzz. I own one of his earlier top-of-the-line preamp and also his top-of-the-lineTranscend MM phono stage, I love both pieces.