I am using the silicon damping trough with the SME V arm. It is not an ideal situation. If the arm is to be able to rest at the end of the trough, then on long playing LPs it will not track til the end of that side. Aside from that I am very pleased with the way the arm works with the TT, especially with my recent Shelter 501 addition.
Your comment on the two tables is interesting. My impression of the Hperspace is that it is definately quieter then the Townshend. Do you have personal experience with the two decks and/or the Townshend? I would think that from your point of view, my upgrade path would be through a Townshend Rock Reference or a SME TT. I could shop for a used Rock Reference, but they are hard to find. And the new Rock is something like $7,000. Do you have in mind some other TT that I should be looking for.