Happy new year back atcha, and to the rest of the board.
I took out the variable R loading because I couldn't hear any difference, until going so low the input tube was affected. But, I was working within the philosophy of make the C as low as possible first (I installed low capacitance cables to the turntable) which pushes the resonant frequency up. I calculated it was around 17k or 20k or so, probably beyond what I can hear anymore. Otherwise there were no issues with it. Lately I've been experimenting with improving RF noise filtering on this and my other gear, which has been worthwhile, especially for my phono premps (lowest signal level of all gear.)