Every arm is different. The only way to know is by trying and listening.

  1. Make sure VTF, VTA, azimuth and impedance loading are all dialed in first. Trying to adjust damping if those parameters are off is very difficult.
  2. Start with no damping, then add fluid in small amounts. When you get near the sweet spot, one full drop from the end of a pin would be a LARGE amount to add.
  3. At some point you’ll hear a good balance of energetic transients and clear, extended highs vs. full body and weight. As you add still more fluid (now in really tiny amounts) transients will start to dull and highs will start to be muffled. That’s when you’ll know you’ve gone too far.
  4. Remove fluid (in tiny amounts, of course) until you get back to the sweet spot.

You’ll probably find that different cartridges require different levels of fluid. Measuring the tiny difference needed for one cartridge vs. another is probably impossible, which makes cartridge swapping on arms which require fluid damping a more time consuming process than those arm manufacturers would have the customer believe.