I owned the original Street Beat years ago....
But it didn't see much carry time, so I traded it off.
Over the years I developed a greater appreciation for fixed blades, and came back to this model. Didn't see any of the originals in stock, so went with the lightweight version.
I'm very happy with this iteration of the Street Beat. While it doesn't have the striking, classy appearance of the micarta version, its every bit as functional, includes some new refinements, and retails for close to half the price.
Comparing the original to the current version, here are some changes I've noticed:
1. Coated VG10 and FRN VS satin VG10 and Micarta
2. The jimping on the spine extends further back into the scales like the Street Bowie.
3. The sheath design is different. It has stronger retention and less rattle.
4. The tang area between the index choil and cutting edge has been rounded.
5. I'm going from memory here, but the handle feels like it has slightly more 3D depth to the palm swell. Could be wrong though.
I think these small touches improve on the design, especially the updated sheath. While the micarta scales looked better, the FRN scales provide better grip. The lightweight version makes a great user.
I really like the handle design on the Street Beat. Looking at photos I was always worried about how straight the overall shape was; I tend to prefer a more negative angle. Once I held it the first time my concerns ceased. It's very ergonomic and secure, working well in a wide variety of grips. In fact I prefer its handle to the Street Bowie, and I usually go for larger handles on my knives.
I like pairing mine with a multitool.
Any other Street Beat fans out there?