After much consternation, re-reading lots of workout/protein related stuff including Lyle's series (the book looks interesting too):
I've come to the conclusion -- not novel -- that most of the detailed discussion on specific types of protein is so overblown as to be comical. Sam noted that TP has two blends that seem to be baseline and economical ("Team Skip" $10/lb and "Fast Recovery" $7/lb). This is better than "marketed" products that I encountered. I'm not sure how it compares to, say, GNC. You can also "hand mix" these on your own for a slight savings. Sam also mentioned the recession special protein.