VPI Turntable Motor Pop - Did I Damage My Analog System?

I'm quite a bit deflated and numb, and not sure what to do.

I have a VPI Signature Classic that has the well known issue of the loud pop through the speakers when the turntable motor is turned off.  I never perused the fix of soldering a capacitor into the system.  As a work-a-round, I do what a lot of folks do and mute the system by turning down the volume or change the input on the integrated amp.
The other evening, I forgot to mute the system before turning off the TT motor and the pop I got out of the speakers seemed to contain a heck of a lot more energy/volume than usual.  In ten months I've probably forgotten to mute the system only a handful of times, mostly when I first got the system.  The unusual volume of the pop was somewhat alarming.  I thought maybe the dry air caused more static buld-up in the system for I was noticing a bit more static buildup on some of the pressings.  When I removed the record, the platter mat would stick to the vinyl.  Though, not with every pressing.

Again, I was alarmed at the volume of the pop and after cleaning the stylus, I continued my listening session it seemed like things weren't quite the same!  To the average person, I don't think they would have noticed a difference but to me, something was wrong.  The airiness of the sound disappeared.  The depth of the sound stage disappeared.  Some of the sound on the vinyl seemed to disappear.  I would describe it as "what a 60 year old pristine white hot stamper might sound like before a deep cleaning. 

To confirm that these subtle changes in sound weren't my imagination, I did an A/B comparison using some of my  reference vinyl against my digital system using streamed lossless files. I do this every so often just to confirm my analog side is "up to snuff" and to remind my self why I am so pleased with listening to vinyl!   Unfortunately, the A/B test confirmed my fears. I could barley tell the difference between my analog and digital systems.

If in fact this "pop" damaged something in my analog system, what component(s) were likely damaged; cartridge, TT, phono pre-amp, integrated amp, speakers, subs?   I'm just incredibly deflated and paralyzed with angst, and don't know where to start to solve this problem. 

-IsoTek EVO3 Aquarius power conditioner- VPI Classic Signature TT- Soundsmith Paua mk II (low output  >0.4 mV)
- Manley Chinook Phone Stage - Primaluna integrated tube amp.- Focal Aria 936 speakers- 2- Rel S/3"s
With that said, I gotta ask this question:  What is the likelihood a pop like this could/did actually cause any damage to a system?    I did a lot of searching and though the VPI pop is a common issue, I found no others that experienced damage from this pop when turning off a VPI turntable. 

One last piece of information:  The reason I turned off the turntable was to clean the stylus before continuing the listening session.  I clean my stylus with a "sticky gel bubble" and sometimes, but not always, the stylus sticks to the bubble when raising the tone arm up from the sticky bubble.  In fact, this is one of those times the stylus stuck to the cleaning bubble when lifting the tone arm.  Could this have misaligned the stylus in some fashion?  If yes, would adjusting the VTA be an appropriate remedy? (I'm grasping at straws).

Thanks in advance for any suggestions.

Static electricity is a big problem when the humidity is low.  I'm having this problem right now when removing the lp from the platter it makes a big pop.  
If your digital sounds ok, then you can probably rule out the speakers and integrated amp as having any issue, and it’s difficult to imagine that your phono stage was somehow damaged by this incident.

That leaves your phono cartridge as the most likely suspect, especially because you state that the stylus sometimes sticks to the "cleaning bubble" that you use to clean it. That really shouldn’t happen. Can you tell us what cleaning product you are using?

I’d inspect the cantilever closely and check cartridge alignment from the ground up, as if it were a fresh install, and then listen to the result.

And I’m sure you don’t want to hear this, but I’d do whatever necessary to fix the "pop" made by your turntable motor. That shouldn’t happen, either.
Thanks for the reply!
The cleaning product I use to clean the stylus is ZeroDust.  You lay down the stylus onto the sticky material and immediately lift it back up.  Dust and dirt on the stylus sticks to the Zerodust material.
A really loud POP in your speakers could wipe out one of the tweeters. I would check them for proper operation. You said you lost some airiness, that comes from the tweets.
You are plainly too obsessed! Try to get outside for some fresh air more often!

I had the same issue when I bought my Classic 3 Sig SE. Then I had a SDS. I turned them on separately. I now have the ADS. I leave the TT on all the time and cut both units on/off with the ADS switch. Now, zero issues.

I found the problem. I first realigned the cartridge with no luck.  I then discovered the nut securing the tonearm to the tonearm base was loose.  It took less than 1/2 turn to tighten it, ...bam... problem solved!

I suspect the nut was already loose and the power button pop was the straw that broke the camel's back. 

"You are plainly too obsessed.",  says the man with 3,400 plus posts (not that there anything wrong with that)!  You should be proud! Isn't obsession a prerequisite to being an audiophile?  Until one has a capable rig and allows themselves the gift of nearly crying at hearing emotional and moving detail, depth, clarity and realism of analog, i.e., the air flowing over Stan Getz, saxophone reed or Ella's soft attack of the letters S and T in "At Last" (Ella Fitzgerald and Joe Pass, Speak Love)   ..... you may likely never understand the sinking feeling of loosing that analog magic at the pop of a power button!
I am not sure this has anything to do with static charge build-up.  If you solder a .01uF ceramic capacitor across the switch that seems to be implicated, that will eliminate popping due to the switch.  Also, as someone else said, and despite the fact that you now feel everything is OK, you may want to check your tweeters.  One of them may have been damaged.  How do you suppose that the "power button pop" and the loose screw are connected?  I am at a loss.
I don’t know anything for sure. And I don’t want to imply the pop loosened the nut. I suspect vibrations over time caused it to loosen. I am suggesting vibrations from pop was the straw the broke the camels back. Again, I really don’t know. All I can share is that after I tightened the nut, all is normal.
No Blown tweeters, at least as I can tell.  (is there a way to test them other than placing your ear up to them?).

Now you know everything I know about this.
A possible explanation would be that a ground from the tonearm was secured by the arm base mounting, and when it was loose it caused the pop you experienced when switching the motor. Once you secured the mount the ground connection was made resolving the problem. In any case glad that you found the cause and no damage was done.
malatu ,

The pop could damage any downstream component, but I doubt that you've such problem yet.

The value of the stock suppressing capacitor across the switch is too low for your system. The stock capacitor is .001 uF which works fine with most the systems out there. Changing it to .01 uF usually solve the pop problem.

However, if you are not handy with a soldering iron, please contact VPI to ask for a replacement board with the new value capacitor installed.

Hope that helps.