Your thoughts on a phono step-up transformer?

I recently bought a vintage high-quality turntable, which included a vintage "Reference" moving coil cartridge. My preamp (an MFA Magus) has a quality moving magnet input. As a step-up, I'm using an inline Ortofon STM-72. I'm not unhappy with the sound, but I have to think that there is more to be heard. A megabuck step-up is probably not in my future but I can see a $1-2K investment if it results in even better, more transparent sound. I trust this audio community, and your individual experiences, to recommend either a step-up (preferable) or a complete phono stage for my system.
I'm inclined to buy pre-owned but I have been known to stretch for the right component.

I welcome your input.
Ag insider logo xs@2xtonykay
I've owned three MFA preamps in the past. two were the magus units. They work well with step up transformers.

No need to lose the qualities of tubes, with a transformer in play. The tube  dynamics would be thrown away if you went to any form of SS amplification, so it is advised to head toward using a transformer.
The new PS Audio Stellar amp is worth a look.
SUT - Bob’s Devices Cinemag if you want warmth and Lundahl LL1931 from K&K for more clarity and transparency.
I have and can recommend the Bellari MT502 SUT. Made here in the USA - $500. There is one now available on eBay for $350 + $11.44 shipping from California. Seller is "rbaudio925". It is certainly the sonic equal of SUT's costing 2X - 3X more!
Thanks for sharing your thoughts and recommendations. I’ll give them some thought, and probably make a purchase in the very near future. The vintage MC cartridge I referenced in my posting is a Benz Micro Reference. If you have any further thoughts, feel free to share them.
I'll retire this thread by saying that I finally settled on a brand new Denon AU-S1 step-up transformer. I bought it from The Music Room. They are very easy to deal with and I recommend them highly. The sound of the step-up was just what my system needed.