Although not what I would consider expensive by todays standards....My very first real Japanese knife was a Moritaka 180mm AS Santoku, and it cost me more than I had paid for any other knife up to that time. It was a massive let down. Not only did it chip on everything, but it had some sort of coating that made the food taste horrible. When I finally got the coating off, the KU finish came off quite abruptly afterward. Then once I started sharpening it, a huge hole near the heel appeared. It was just one problem after another.