As you know, I was a huge CJ/Gryphon fan for 11 years consecutively. CJ GAT 2 is certainly within your budget if you go demo, discount and certainly 2nd hand. It is a surprisingly neutral, linear response in my experience...far from the stereotypical CJ of old with its wonderful (but colored) golden hue. That said, like many of the today's true reference standards, the CJ GAT 2 manages to create tonal purity and natural organic qualities without using artifice/color to do so.
Do keep us posted...what a great pairing you are on your way to finding!