I'm not saying your wrong (and I don't own any Lobb) but softer and smoother doesn't equate to being better. The only real way to tell would be to own, wear (in rain as well), and clean each pair for a few years and see how they hold up. St.Crispin also has both smooth and hairy rougher suede depending on what you want.
you're exactly right . . . . softer / smoother only means what it means.
in my estimation, smooth vs hairy equates to the aesthetic (feel) you're going for