Looking for a new phono preamp


Long time lurker, first time poster.

Here's the deal. I'd like to find a new phono preamp. I'd prefer solid state, tubes get noisy too fast. My latest cartridge is an AT-ART9XA. I'm currently running thru a sut into a cj pv10a with phono stage, but I have just got my hands on a Bel Canto pre5 that the new phono pre will be paired with.

I've got a hard upper limit of $2.5k, less is OK for the right unit. I'm looking to buy new. Dealers around me aren't really set up to demo vinyl, so I'm hoping the collective experience in here can at least point me in the right direction. Hopefully, it would have a one month return policy so I can try out the preamp.


@clearthinker, nice of you to follow me around. I suppose you need the exercise.
I was at a demonstration Where the Lino C was being compared with the Herron VTPA-2, a tube phonostage $1000 more expensive than the LinoC. The cartridge being used was a Lyra Kleos a medium low impedance cartridge at 5 ohms. It was being used because it was not ultra low (the lower the better) and it is medium priced. It was loaded with 100 ohms. This was not mentioned but I drifted behind the setup and checked out the Herrons load jacks. I do not know what tubes were being used but I suspect whatever is supplied by Herron. The Lino C made it seem like there was something wrong with the Herron. Not kidding.
If I were to recommend a voltage mode phono stage in this price range it would be the Parasound JC3+. John Curl is the master of voltage mode phono stages. This unit would cost $9K if made by any one else. 
As for airplanes you must be pretty young. You don't remember the older planes. They had 10 times as many problems as new planes. I would get in a 737 Max long before I would get in a DC 4. American pilots had no problem managing the Max. It was only foreign pilots that crashed. All they had to do was turn the auto pilot off. This is not an excuse for Boing.
They will pay dearly for this one and should. The FAA should have been notified of the problem. Instead it was covered up. I also said modern jet liners. There are always anecdotes. Nice of you to pick one out. Would you like me to tell you which thread I'm going to next?
i have the ART9XA and it sounds excellent with my Sutherland 20 20.  64db gain, 200 ohms.  
i was previously running a much higher output .5mv mc.  the low output ART9XA .2mv is no sweat for the 20 20 and it's clean transparent dynamic capabilities.  it really proved itself with the XA.  very happy i do not need to think about SUTs and extra cables.  
peace and good luck with your choice.  
In the case of phono preamps, I would definitely at least look into the possibility of tube based ones. That’s not to say there aren’t some great solid state options out there. If you’re looking into a tube based unit, Tavish Designs makes some great sounding well thought out designs, which is why I own one. The owner, Scott Reynolds “holds a PhD in electrical engineering and has more than 25 years of industry experience in design engineering and engineering management, and he has more than 30 US patents.” That’s someone I trust designing and building a phono preamp. I hope that’s of at least some help to you, and good luck on your quest for a new phono pre! ✌️🎶

As for a phono stage recommendation,I would look into the line up from Whest.They are manufactured in the U.K.and only build high quality s.s. phono stages.Since they only concentrate on phonos,all their models are built to a very high standard,are dead quiet,and will probably last you a lifetime.I use the MC Ref V,but all the models,regardless of price,sound wonderful,and I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend them to anyone.I believe the lower priced ones start around 2k,but you would be hard pressed to find a better,more musical phono stage at any price point.Best of luck in your search for a phono that makes you happy,it can be a rough journey,buckle up! John
I've had a good experience with tube phono stages.   I recently upgraded my solid state phono stage to an Icon Audio valve unit and there is much greater clarity and a darker (noise free) background.