LOCATION What country are you in? USA STONE TYPE What type of stone are you interested in: Synthetic or Natural? Synthetic Splash and go or soaker? No strong preference, but I would probably not be able to easily store wet stones. What grit range are you looking for? TBD. Full range? What stone are you replacing if any? My current stones are cheapo combo stones purchased from Amazon. Sharp Pebble 400-1000 and CWINDY 3000-8000. What stones do you currently use in your lineup? Above two are my only stones. What is your absolute maximum budget for your stone? Around 200-250 or less. I am new and not afraid to buy new stuff in the future as my ability improves and knives change. STONE USE Do you primarily intend to use this knife at home or a professional environment? Home What type of knives will you be sharpening? (Traditional Japanese: yanagi, usuba, deba or Western style gyuto, petty etc) Blue steel Nakiri (B2 maybe?) Toyama 240 gyuto (first big purchase!) What type of steel will you be sharpening? Both Blue 2 for now but will likely add some stainless in the future too. STONE MAINTENANCE Do you use or have a flattening plate (Yes or no.) No If not, are you interested in learning how to flatten your stone? (Yes or no.) Potentially. What are the advantages of flattening? SPECIAL REQUESTS/COMMENTS Hello all. I'm new posting but I've been reading a lot the last couple months. I selected my current stones because they were highly rated on Amazon, which I suppose isn't the best choice as I'm getting into J-knives. What makes the Amazon stones different/worse than the stones commonly suggested here (King, Sharpton, Atoma, Gesshin, etc)? Also, how does my knife collection affect the stone choice? For example, does stainless typically use a lower grit numbers or a higher hardness abrasive?