In addition to having your knife performance tuned before it ships, you will received a coupon for complimentary re-sharpening of your knife (a $12-$50 value)
Hitachi White #1 can be forged to its full potential when handled by a master, and Tosho knives offer similar performance to more expensive shirogami knives.
Stainless cladding eases the maintenance requirements.
Japanese chef knives are brittle and are designed for cutting soft tissue foods. Carbon steel chef knives can rust if not kept dry.