My preferred stones are from elsewhere so I will refrain from comment. PM me if you would like to talk more.
Dont refrain, please, they play that sh!t on the other site...I think we a more mature than that.. everyone can have a different opinion, adding more to the pot only strengthens the opinions. I have no problem saying I really like Geshin stones, but I am open to others.
I think youre right Kalaeb.
King 800(Gesshin 1200)
Very good coarse stone. There are others I am interested in, but while my Beston has still got life I will not upgrade. There is no need to. This stone was the biggest suprise for me. I began with only a 1000 (Red Brick). My biggest improvement was not when I got my fine stone, but when I got the Beston 500.
Raise a slurry by sharpening or with a diamond plate/slurry plate and you can begin your kasumi finish (with light pressure).
The King 800 I use for Kasumi finishes. Like I said, it's kasumi finish is hard to surpass. For 30 bucks, not bad. I will soon upgrade to a Gesshin 1200 which is a soft muddy stone and will have a very even smooth kasumi finish. But leaves a more refined edge (800:1200). I was able to try out the Gesshin 1200 when visiting the store.
The Gesshin 2000, hard, very fast cutting. Cuts all steel types. Just expensive. I recommended the Bester 1200, because if I hadn't invested in a Gesshin 2000, I would have bought it.
Gesshin 5000/JNS Aoto/Ice Bear 6000
These are my finishing stones. The first two are fast cutting and splash and go. However, I soak them while I'm using my middle grit stone.
Gesshin leaves a Bright mirror, the Aoto a bit hazy not as refined. However both are harder stones and have less smooth finishes. More for bevel work not wide bevel kasumi. JNS Aoto has a more complex edge feel. It's a mix of 3000/5000 grit (from JNS website.)
I will soon get a Gesshin Jinzo Aoto for my final kasumi finish (not ready for naturals), When i was able to try this stone it was a combination of a GREAT feel and amazingly even finish.
The Ice bear 6000 is a pleasant stone. Not too fast, but in my experience not too slow. Its my softest finishing stone so it serves its purpose.
Maybe a Nubatama pass around would liken me to try them. With the premium price, its hard to shell out the cash without being able to try them first.
Stones on my to try list:
Shapton Pro 320/2000
Suehiro Rika 5000
Suehiro Shiramine 6000
Suehiro Kouga 3000