As far as toppers go, I mostly use throwaway toppers. The very worst money I have spent was on crystalite solid steel laps. From what I can tell, they are just solid laps with diamond plated on. They are wonderfully flat, but don’t last any longer than toppers.
You can get toppers very, very cheap. Don’t get adhesive backed ones, they are awful. The plain no adhesive backed ones I use run absolutely flat. Zero needle bounce. You just have to use them on a perfectly flat master lap. A completely worn out crystalite lap is a great master. A *lot* of the 2019 usfg competition stones were cut on $10 plated toppers, including mine.
As far as meets go, nobody but us cares about perfect meets, but if you aren’t going to cut precisely what’s the point? You can get stones cut really nicely in sri lanka with tight meets and good polish for a few bucks.