I like Campy wheels very much...
Apart from Campy wheels, which are real factory wheels, it seems to me that other italian wheels are not as well designed as US wheels.
I mean, US wheels seem to born under a single project, while italian wheels seem to be an assembly of rim+hubs+spokes.
And don't forget that I pay less for a couple of AC (e.g.) here in Italy than you in US !!!!
Even Campy just gets spokes from Sapim (nothing wrong with that) and picks the model used based on the wheel and it's position (both of the model and where the spoke is used in the wheel - bigger on the cassette side). Velomax get their spokes from Wheelsmith and CN Spoke (Taiwan) without the different guages depending on the placement. In Italy I think it's because the other larger wheel companies make rims first, so they work from that inwards (FiR and Ambrosio) and don't make their own hubs but rebadge existing products. The smaller innovative hub guys spend all their production to make the hubs, so they go to special rim manufacturers - it's expensive for machinery to make rims. But I think it's better, because they choose parts to combine with their hubs into wheels with freedom, and it's harder to make a good hub. If they choose parts correctly, the final product is as good as any competitors, and they can even custom design something for you. Velomax just started as a spoke/hub interface design, and moved from there. They outsource the hubs and pick rims from different manufacturers to suit based upon the wheel model they wish to create, I don't think there is any big difference to what the smaller Italian guys do, except in Italy there is more rim choices and knowledge.