Yeah, I use the JP by Korsteel bits too. They are nice quality and inexpensive. As for the cheeks, I have the loose ring, D-ring, and eggbutt. Again, it's personal preference (what your horse goes in best) that matters. I find the D-ring and eggbutt are pretty equivalent (I just use D-ring for hunter & eggbutt for Dressage). My horse wasn't as responsive in a loose ring plus I was afraid I would pull it through his mouth if I needed to do an emergency 1-rein stop or something. However, some horses do BETTER in a loose ring because they get that momentary warning before the cue (when the ring slides to adjust to a change in contact).
I too agree that the plastic/rubber covered bits are not all that glamorous. They get chewed, plus they always seem to be kind of bulky (the inside of your horse's mouth isn't all that big).
Monte - 15 year old Paint/TB
Auric - 13 year old Arab