As you might already know, I prefer toe-up socks over cuff down. The main reason I prefer toe-up is because it is very easy to try on the socks as you go, but also because you can keep knitting the leg until you are nearly out of yarn. When knitting cuff down it is more difficult to judge how much yarn you will have to complete the foot. It is very possible that you can knit the entire sock only to find that you are short on yarn. Or you may end up shortening the leg of the sock because you are worried about having enough yarn, only to find out you had plenty and could have made the leg longer.
I am sure there are benefits to knitting cuff down socks as well, but I just don’t know what they are, other than having a particular pattern displayed on the leg one way verses the other.
There are several different ways to cast-on for a toe-up sock. I prefer the Turkish cast-on over others. I have tried the figure 8 cast-on, but found that after the first few rows are completed it is necessary to go back and tighten up the first round of stitches, with the Turkish cast-on I haven’t had that issue.
There is also the option of using a provisional cast-on and going through the motions much like a short-row heel. I have never used this method because the Turkish cast-on works so well for me that I am very happy continuing to use it.
There are several great tutorials on the web for all of these cast-ons, so I am not going to try to reinvent them, but I will share a few links that I have found quite helpful.