I was in a similar situation as you in Q1 & Q2 of last year when I had a Rega P10 with Apheta 3 cartridge and a Rega Aura Phono Stage with the P10 mounted on a Rega TT wall bracket. It sounded great (although I didn't use it very often - see my write up below) but I have always wanted to know if a higher end TT would make my TOTL headphone system sound better and always wanted to own a TOTL TT for may many years.
I looked at the Technics SL-1000R and SP-10R as well as the Kuzma Stabi S, Stabi R and XL DC TT's and 4Point Tonearms (with the XL DC in RAL 9006 metallic silver custom paint job to match my other hifi components being my dream TT set-up with a Kuzma 4Point arm for the past 6 years purely on looks alone, although the cost of it made it only a dream) or a GrandPrix Audio Monaco with a 4Point arm (as I liked the compactness and small foot print and the reviews I read about the Monaco especially the V2.0 sounded great, but again my thoughts and dreams halted due to it's very high cost).
I have never heard the Technics TT's but after reading many reviews and realising that the Technics tonearm that comes with the SL-1000R cannot be easily removed and replaced with a better arm unless you have the Technics tonearm tonearm shelves to fit another arm which I didn't like the look of. I then looked at and read reviews on the Technics SP-10R which when mounted in a high mass plinth (of your choice) you could also fit a number of different tonearms and it sounded better than the SL-1000R. So if I was going to buy a Technics TT it would be a SP-10R in a high mass plinth. However, I am currently restricted to space for such a TT, and as the Kuzma Stabi Reference and XL DC were more compact in usable surface area required (I didn't look in detail at the Stabi M as I didn't like the look of it although from the reviews it sounded like a great TT).
I was lucky to hear a great synergistically matched hifi system at a hifi show in the UK in July last year. The system consisted of a Kuzma Stabi Reference with a Kuzma 4Point 14" arm and a Kuzma CAR50 connected to a great SUT and a lovely tube phono, pre-amp & two 300B power amps connected to Living Voice OBX RW4 speakers. The sound was so organic, natural, real and musical and to my ears was one of the best sounding at the show. For me the Kuzma Stabi R TT set-up seemed like such a solid, planted and great performer, although I couldn't tell how good it was in isolation. From talking to the Owner of the demo system, he said that the that the XL DC is even better than the Stabi R (with it also being the TOTL Kuzma TT - now the Kuzma XL AIR) although the Stabi R is a fantastic TT and possibly the best cost vs performance TT in the KUzma range as being able to take multiple arms like the XL DC but not the Stabi M). I also preferred the looks of the XL DC to the Stabi R and Stabi M. The Owner of the demo system is also the UK dealer for GrandPrix Audio and also said the Monaco V2.0 was a fantastic performer, although different to the XL DC both with it being a lighter TT and direct drive even with the same Kuzma 4point 11" or 14" arm.
Then in July last year with looking through the internet, I came across a one owner used Kuzma XL DC with two tonearm towers both with VTA and a Kuzma 4Point 11" from a Kuzma Dealer in Norway at a great price. So I sought the finances and bought it. I bought it with an MSL Eminent EX (professionally installed by the Norwegian hifi dealer).
The difference in performance between the XL DC and the Rega P10 even through the Rega Aura Phono Stage and my headphone system was amazing i.e. much deeper bass, deeper and wider sound stage, more musical, more natural and analogue sounding. The sound was addictive. The P10 was for some 15 to 20% of my LP's better sounding than CD's through my Chord Blu (with M Scaler) CD Transporter & Chord DAVE digital source set-up and therefore most of the time I was using my digital source with my headphone system.
With my XL DC set-up (especially since I also bought a used one owner CH Precision P1 Phono Stage in November last year, again from reading great reviews, liking the look of the CH range, the build quality, expandability over time etc.), I now hear 90 to 95% of my music with my LP's through my TT set-up and have been buying lost of vinyl (new and used).
I am now totally addicted to analogue playback and using my TT is a great pleasure.
I plan over the next couple of years, to install a second tonearm and cartridge to my XL DC that will complement the 4Point 11" and MSL Eminent EX and purchase a CH X1 Power Unit for the P1.
The major differences I found between the Rega P10 and Kuzma XL DC was that the P10 is mainly a 'plug and play' and a 'leave it alone' TT set-up that plays great music but with more of a digital sound to it and bit of a 'toy' feel to it, whereas the XL DC feels more like a proper TT set-up that you can tinker with the set-up parameters for the tonearm to your hears content, have multiple arms, multiple cartridges mounted on multiple demountable tonearm head shells. It also looks amazing (to my eyes - even in brass), is built like a tank, will certainly last my lifetime giving me many years of pleasure.
Hope from my experiences 'jsec' that this will help you make a good decision for your TT set-up search. I wasn't able to hear any of the components I bought from a demo (even the Rega P10 & Aura). I bought them with my heart from how I liked the look of the components and with my brain from the many online reviews I read and talking to a Kuzma Dealer for the XL DC and Stabi R ). I haven't regretted buying any of my hifi components to date.