I have fished exclusively with Lamson (Waterworks) and Bauer reels for the past few years. I've handled plenty of fish with the LS 3.5 and it has always performed well. The drag is smooth, the reel itself is very light, and I'm one of the people that likes the reel's appearance. The Litespeed is my 2nd favorite reel model, right behind my ULA Force. In function and performance, I have found that the reels are the same.
One of the first things I look for in a reel is the number of plastic parts in it, not only in the drag but also in the finish. This is why I have decided not to fish with many of the competing reels on the market. Honestly, I was impressed with the rating of the reel in the FFA review on LA reels a couple of years ago, and the reasonable price tag was a big factor in the decision to make the purchase.
Warranty programs for most of the high-end reels are comparable, so that's rarely a factor in my decision. The Litespeed has a lifetime warranty, so no problems there. I don't think you can go wrong with the reel. Just read the instruction sheet provided with it and don't take the spool off the housing when out in the saltwater (or do so in a protected space to prevent salt or sand from getting into the housing), and you'll be golden.