There are a lot of ways to get a straight razor sharp enough to shave with. Well hydrated beard hair isn't the toughest stuff known to mankind, and it doesn't take a hyper keen edge to give you a comfortable shave. There are lots of natural stones that will give you a good to excellent shaving edge, the trick is to find which stone suits the way you hone so that you end up with a good edge. Some stones are easier to use than others, but there are lots of ways to get there The technique used to hone a razor is going to have a very large effect on the comfort and perceived sharpness of an edge, especially if the edge is slightly convexed for the same reason slightly convex edges work very will in kitchen knives -- less friction. DE blades are ground and honed stropped with power equipment and hence have extremely accurate honing angles and finish. I would expect them to be sharper, more evenly honed, and far more consistent blade to blade than anything hand honed, just the nature of the beast so to speak. I assume the angles are similar, I don't think DE blades have obtuse angles or they would be very uncomfortable from the drag, just like a very obtuse angle straight (as in too much tape or too much bevel wear). As far as and 8k edge being "finished", probably so if done correctly - the issue is the polish on the bevel and the size of the scratches and hence "raggedness" of the apex, and if you use shaving lather or something similar with light pressure to "float" the bevel to get very fine, shallow scratches, the edge will be similar to that from a finer grit stone without the lather, etc. A matter of practice, and millions of men got perfectly acceptable shaves from straights honed on a barber hone. Which reminds me, I need to recondition that Panama hone I have and see how it works someday. Grandpa ended up with a couple, plus another barber hone of some sort that need to be re-surfaced (some scratches and gouges, it's pretty battered). No idea why he had them, as he went to the barber until after WWII and the only only razor I ever saw him use was a DE of some sort when he was in the nursing home.