Buying a Japanese 360?

I should probably post this on the shmups forum, but there seems to be some member overlap here…

Has anyone in the US purchased a Japanese 360? I have a US Jasper system right now and I’m starting to get anxious to play the new Cave shooters.

Is there anywhere stateside that sells these without a huge markup or shipping costs? The eBay auctions I saw wanted $100 to ship one from Japan.

I looked at the region lock list and it looks like GTA IV was the only game I have that I’d be prevented from playing. Are there any other ‘big ticket’ US releases that are region locked?

Does that save game/profile transfer tool work between two consoles from different regions?

Any other considerations?

Thanks in advance.