Well I was waiting to see the replys on this one too, but since
no one is comming forth, here's my idea.
I get a real nice even satin finish right before buffing by going over
my 2000 grit color sanding with a 4000 grit Abralon pad (Mirka)
This might be exactly what you're after, it's a semi-gloss look
that looks scratch free, real even and consistant.
You might want to give that a try on a test panel and see.
(just my 2 cents worth)