LF gives you the advantage of controlling each negative individually. The overall result, to reiterate what David said, is more consistant negatives, thereby reducing the constrast varaible from neg to neg.

That leads to more consistant printing results. Slight changes in contrast can be gained by varying the developer and the time in developer, maybe up to but not quite a full grade.

But, papers vary from brand to brand, even for graded papers. A grade 2 Ilford is not necessarily the same as a grade 2 Seagull. I've tried several papers over the last year and have wound up with a bunch of odds and ends. So, I've decided to finish off all the odds and ends an settle down to one paper and one developer.

My suggestion is to pick a particular paper brand, by a package of grade 2 and grade 3, pick a developer, and go to it. Stick with that combination for a while until you see something that you think may be better. My most recent discovery is Agfa Neutol WA developer. It does the same job that the Dektol/Selectol Soft combo does but better. IMO, its just about as good as amidol is.

Bottom line; picking papers and developers is just as rhetorical as films and their developers. But, its fun.