Having been through a number of pre's I want to know what other people use. Have a SMMC3 and a MMC3 cart and synergy is very important to me.
You do only need a right amp / receiver
Using for example Beomaster 3000 you don't need preamp, because it has RIAA build in on the PHONO input. Beomaster 1000 or few other also... The advantage of the Beomaster 3000 is that it has also the RCA/Cinch-Plugs (using Beomaster 1000 you have to use adapter to 5-pole DIN...).
If you don't want to change your amp, I think people posted here positive recensions about Beograms in connection with Project pre-amp...
Vintage Bang & Olufsen
This is the unit I use.
It's designed with B&O tables in mind, not only does it offer more gain than most phono preamps (due to the lower output of B&O cartridges, particularly the MMC series), the gain is adjustable to match the volume of other sources, and it has a DIN connector so you don't have to use a DIN to RCA adapter. I've been very satisfied with this on my Beogram 3000 with MMC2. It sounds great, solves gain and level matching issues with my BS9000's CD volume, and has been reliable as a brick for the past 7 or 8 years I've owned it. Great company to deal with too. And it's never hummed or shown any other grounding issues.
Beovirus victim, it's gotten to be too much to list!
I just acquired a TX2, got a new SMMC3 cart for it. Good sounding table, but have same conundrum on on pre-amps. When I plug the table into any of my amps with built-in pre's, it sounds phenomenal....BUT, I have my Technics SL1200 MKII hooked to my old Marantz amp, and my TEAC is in my master bedroom...wife said no turntables in there (DANG!), so I decided to put it in my living room connected to my Onkyo surround sound amp, next to my U-Turn Orbit (you can surmise by now I have a nagging and costly turntable addiction :) )
Having said that, I have been using a Rolls VP29 on my Orbit and sounds good, so I thought I'd hook the TX2 to it....HUMS like crazy! So I had an old Pyle PP999 laying around, hooked it up, no hum (which is good....then again it didn't hum on my other amps), but the sound is rather muddy and flat on the Pyle (the Orbit sounded the same).
I'm going to try a ART DJ PRE II which allows selecting input capacitance (100pf and 200pf) and has a gain adjustment (that's another thing, I have to crank the volume WAY up playing the TX2 on the PP999, but not on the Rolls with the Orbit). For $50, worth a shot, so I am picking one up tomorrow.
Short of that, may invest in one of those tube pre-amps. I used to give my buddy endless crap about spending $$ on tube amps, but now have gotten to the point, maybe he's right LOL.
Enjoy your table. IF you got a Pre-amp already that you like, which did you get?
Completely addicted to anything and everything vinyl... 3000+ LP records and the following turntables:
1. B&O TX2 (newly acquired), SMMC3 cart
2. Technics SL-1200 MK2 / AT120eb cart
3. U-Turn Orbit / Ortofon OM 5E
4. Realistic (C.E.C) LAB-420 / Shure M97X
5. Realistic (C.E.C) LAB-450 / AT95e
6. Pioneer (C.E.C) PL-12D II / Pickering AC-1 (conical)
Some pre's i can recommend at the lower price range of things would be a Lounge Audio LCR and a Parks Budgie Tube pre. Am using an Avid Pellar with stellar results but used its about double the price of the two i mentioned. BTW, no hum at all with the 3 with the RX2 and TX2...