The reasons I picked these four:
Murray Carter - never considered these knives until a couple months ago. A coworker has 2 or 3 of them and loves them. The only thing I think I'd dislike is how thick his 240 appears to be.
Suisin - Its been on my wish list since I started getting serious about knives 6 years ago, was always afraid of the thin factor though
Masamoto - I'm a masamoto fan, what can I say.
Moritaka - CKTG had a link to it when i was checking out the masamoto KS, the profile is very similar, but it seems super thick.
I would have mentioned aritsugu (though I don't think they are the cool knives since KCMA passed) but lacking a full set of diamond stones getting one ready would be a challenge to say the least.
I need the knife to be able to handle everything from tomato, to terrines, to breaking down lobster, quartering chicken, cutting winter squash and hard cheeses like parm without wedging. If it can do all that, with minimal touch ups on a 1k-3k stone every day I'm sold.
stainless and carbon make no real difference although i love the look of an old carbon masamoto - performance is what is key here. I tend to hold my knife more often on the handle than pinch gripping but its so loose the handle is no real determining factor for me.
Please excuse the briefness of my previous posts, I made them while I was eating family meal yesterday. Hope this helps