It was my impression that (a) the new Konosuke was flatter than the old Kono which I own; (b) the old Kono is flatter than my Sabatiers; and (c) my Sabatiers are the same as the Masamoto KS. It's possible that I'm wrong about the new Kono and/or that there's a newer new Konosuke.
My knife skills "training" (if you want to call it that) was with Sabatier chef's knives in the early seventies. A few years later, I started a catering business and replaced my carbon knives with some stainless Henckels because I thought they'd be easier to maintain. Almost a decade later I rediscovered my old Sabs and realized how much more I liked them -- partly for their French profile. The Henckels altered my action in a way appropriate to their shape, but the Sab profile suited my old, trained action so much better. The Sab action, which is kind of in between "rock chop" and "push cut" was more comfortable, and more agile. It didn't rock so much that I felt like I was pumping the handle, and wasn't so flat that it made a bunch of noise by tap, tap, tapping on the board.
The KS, like every other Masamoto chef's feels the same to me. It should, it's cloned from a Sabatier. My original Konosuke HD was sufficiently similar that it didn't ask me to adapt -- at least not enough enough to notice.
If you don't already have an established chopping action and aren't too lazy (guilty) or too unambitious (guilty) to change it, bear in mind that any good knife will impose its own efficient and comfortable action, if -- like adapting to any new tool -- you "listen" to what the knife tells you. There is no best. My suggestion though is that you go for a knife with a reasonably middle of the road French profile; i.e., nothing too flat and nothing too German.
For some reason, guys who get seriously into Japanese knives often obsess about very flat profiles. If you're more interested in cooking than the knives themselves and not interested in developing a particularly Japanese skill set, that's probably not a good idea. Flat edges make too much noise, I hate them. But as always, one BDL is more than enough. I'm not encouraging you to do what I do, only to examine all your options.
As to sharpening:
I've got four complete sharpening sets, oil stone; synthetic water stone; EP with Chosera stones; and strop.
I usually use my water stone set to sharpen my Konosukes. The set currently consists of a Beston 400, Bester 1200, Chosera 3000 and a Gesshin 8000. I got the Gesshin recently and am too excited about it not to use it. In the past, when my old Naniwa SS 8000 was the polishing stone, I'd sometimes skip it in favor of loaded, balsa strops after the 3K, with 2u boro and 0.25u diamond (both from Hand American). Both edges are awesome, and both are vast overkill.
If I were putting together a new, ultimate water stone kit, it would be Gesshin 400, Gesshin 2000 and Gesshin 8000. I wouldn't recommend that though unless you were both seriously interested in sharpening and didn't mind dropping a lot of change. Your best choices for a set are going to depend not only on what you want to do with your new whatever, but with your other knives as well.
As a sort of blanket recommendation for someone with good knives and a reasonable budget: Beston 400; Bester 1200; Takenoko 6000; non-skid pad instead of a holder; drywall screen -- or if you can afford it, a DMT XXC -- for flattening; and an Idahone fine ceramic hone, plus either a wine cork or a felt block for deburring.
Edited by boar_d_laze - 7/28/12 at 2:44pm