Originally Posted by ewrd
the size is going to be 240mm gyuto
so the knives are
Masamoto VG or possibly HC but not sure
Kikuichi TKC or Kagayaki carbonext
if there are other knives you guys suggest please let me know, I would like to buy this ASAP.
my price range is about 200$ and I know a couple of these knives are above it.
and for the handle I think I prefer western style but that's because I've never tried the Japanese one.
Well, I guess I'll be the dissenter, here. My CarboNext is my most-used knife on the the line during service. It's much tougher than most of my knives.
All of the knives you list are good ones. I'm a big fan of both the TKC and the CarboNext. They take a good edge and hold it well. The CN is definitely not all that stainless. It took awhile but I'm getting a lot of patina. It doesn't really want to rust though. These knives are not lasers by any means but not all that thick, either. F'n'F is ranges from just okay to pretty nice. The CN doesn't really have a very good edge OOTB, though.
The Konosuke HD is a really nice knife. Very very thin (by my standards) and very light. Great if you want a Wa but not as robust as some.
The Hattori HD is just okay, IMOHO. A bit overpriced if you ask me. I'm basically "over" VG-10, although this is a good example of that steel. I'm not impressed by the edge retention nor the maximum level of sharpness.
The Hiromoto AS is a very nice knife. The Aogami core will take a very good edge and the knife is attractive. F'n'F ranges from average to very good. The AS is a bit thick and heavy, especially compared to the Konosukes. It's a bit heavier than either the TKC or the CN.
Over the last couple years I sold my TKC and my Hiro AS's. I loved the TKC but the CN is virtually (although not absolutely) the same, and I was able to sell the TKC for full retail to fund another knife purchase. Mine was an "original", not the Kikuichi version, though. As for the Hiro AS, it was a nice knife but I prefer Moritakas. They're thinner and I personally think they take a better edge.
Currently my Moritaka KS is the knife I use the most (alongside my Nubatama). I'm not sure I'd recommend Moritaka to a relative nOOb, though, as there can be some minor issues with them. Richmond knives are really good for the money IMOHO.
Of the ones you list I think the Kagayaki CN is about your best bet. It's a great blade. It's forgiving enough if you don't baby it yet it's good enough that you won't outgrow it. But BDL is right- you'll have to address sharpening sooner rather than later.