Hi guys. Just a quick update. I'm enjoying the SP13/PH12. It sounds really nice and its dead quiet. I was surprised at just how good the phono stage sounds. Especially with some tube rolling. I guess I was expecting a bit of compromise when compared to the excellent phono stage in the Threshold preamp it replaced.
So, with either of my sources (OPPO BDP95 for CD & SACD or Thorens TD126 / SME309 / ADC ZLM for vinyl) I can say that the SP13/PH12 bests my Threshold SL-10 in sound stage width/depth plus it has a more 'organic' midrange sound. These improvements are really noticeable on vocals. At the same time it gives up nothing in dynamic range or frequency response extremes. Similar to my experience replacing a McCormack solid state amp with the ST-120, I was surprised that the SP13's deep bass response equals the Threshold's deep bass response.
The one area that could be improved I suppose is the 'feel' of the stepped attenuator. In time, maybe I'll swap it for a Goldpoint or DACT or something similar. Not in any hurry though. Will probably turn my attention to some tube rolling
BTW, I understand the choice of attenuator is a decision to keep the cost down so I'm not complaining, just passing on my observations.
I'm really happy that I found this site and tubes4hifi. My music has never sounded better!