I have found a block or set of knives to be somewhat useless. Purchasing knife separates for a particular task has worked out much better. For instance in "set A" you may not like the boning knife, and for this reason I would not stick with one brand only because you want all the handles to look the same in the kitchen.

A knife for chopping vege's & knife to carve meat again are two different things. Personal taste of weight and size also have a say. I used to use a 14" Chef knife for almost everything but when the Ceramic's arrived on the scene, I bought a Nikiri style ceramic for veges and prep work, and really like this knife.

The ceramic is always sharp and cuts through hardest of root veges easily. The downside is if you drop it or hit the blade on something hard enough it could crack. The light weight and effortless cutting makes prep work very fast and easy.

The necessary basics can do anything :::
~ 14" chef knife (one carbon steel) and (one stainless steel)
~ 8" ceramic nikiri
~ 5" utility
~ 3" paring
~ meat cleaver (used rarely)
~ bread knife
~ fillet knife (used rarely)

One thing to know is that a Carbon Steel knife responds very well to sharpening / honing and can consistently have a razor sharp edge. While there are so many stainless steel knives in the shops they do not hold an edge like a Carbon Steel knife.

Agree that SOGO in CWB has the best one stop selection I have seen of knives. There are some smaller shops that carry one or two nice brands.