To date, I haven't found a Benchmade I like more than the 940 series. Slim enough to easily slip in the pocket, and small enough so that it doesn't take up too much real-estate. Even though I often wear pants with cargo pockets, I still seem to only utilize the front two. This makes every bit of space valuable.
Some people hate when the finish wears on their knives. I think it adds character. Especially on the pocket clip! Its a sign of how much I like a knife, and how much pocket time it gets.
If you are only going to get one knife, this one is perfect for you! Here's why: 1: Steel.
S30V Steel has been around for quite some time now, being featured in many premium knives. This super steel has fantastic edge retention, while still being relatively easy to sharpen.
2: Blade Shape.
The "reverse tanto" blade shape gives an incredibly flat edge with a minor upward curve towards the tip. This allows the blade to be extremely useful for a variety of tasks, while being extremely easy to sharpen!
3: Axis Lock
The Axis Lock is one of my personal favorites, and for good reason. It is very user-friendly, and provides a solid lockup. One-hand opening and closing is a breeze with the 940!
Obviously to call this the "best Benchmade ever" would be a huge overstep, as everyone has a unique taste in knives. But to me, this IS the best Benchmade to date.
The Benchmade 940 can be found here for $187.