Recently I decided to play with the loadings on my SuperLine. I use a DV XX-2 and since installation had happily used the 453R plug recommended in the early SuperLine loading threads.

Getting on for two years ago I started experiencing loud cracks on vinyl replay that drove me crazy. It took the best part of a year to resolve, and I’m in debt to the many forum members who offered advice and suggestions. One positive to come from it is the experience gave me a better knowledge of my system and the turntable in particular.

Being more hands on led me to experiment with the loadings on the SuperLine. I find it amazing just how much those little loading plugs affect the sound.
Some loadings were so obviously wrong, some less so.
To cut a long story short I pretty much came full circle back to 453R. However some recordings seemed to favour the addition of the 1nF plug too.

At that point I found out about the Z-foil version of the Airplug (I started out with the old metal bodied plug modified from 470R to 453R by my dealer and later purchased the Airplug version when they first came out). So I decided to buy a 453R Z-foil and a 1nF Airplug. They sound very different to the metal bodied plug and the traditional resistor version of the Airplug they replace.

It may sound like an exaggeration but the comparing Z-foil 453R against Z-foil 453R with 1nF Airplug reminds me very much of the differences I heard when going from CDX to CDS3 and from 282 to 252 - that grab you by the balls excitement of CDX over CDS3 and 282 over 252. The addition of the 1nF Airplug has the same effect. The in your face presentation I liken to CDX or 282 is replaced by what initially sounds like a more polite sound but on prolonged listening turns out to be a more resolving sound.

Forty years in this hobby and I can still be amazed.


I recently put a 17D3 on my Schröder arm while my SPU Royal N was being rebuilt. I last used this cartridge on an Aro when I used 470Ω and a 470pF loading plugs. The latter initially because of some radio pickup but when I cured I removed it but it soon went back in. I did try a 453Ω plug but didn’t think it improved much, if a all on the combination.

The move to the Schröder arm happened whilst I was using a Transfiguration Proteus, which on the Aro I used with 100Ω and no cap plug, on the Schröder the 470pF joined it.

The 17D3 at 470Ω with no cap on the Schröder was highly detailed but un involving, adding 1nF changed that to something that could move the emotions (and feet), this time the 470pF wasn’t enough despite it being an airplug while the 1nF is a standard plug.
What was still lacking compared to the SPU was the sense of weight/substance particularly noticeable when a large piano was featured in the recording. The SPU runs at 220Ω with no cap plug on the Schröder.

The Aro seems to load with around 500pF more than the Schröder via its arm leads, I’d guess other arms will be different again.

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