Prime grade beef makes up about 2% of all the beef produced in the United States and typically ends up exported or sold to fine restaurants. What you will normally find on the shelves at the store is choice and select. Since prime is difficult to find your best option is to purchase a choice cut. I suggest you try it because you will notice a difference. Since choice is superior to select you can buy a less desirable cut to compensate for the higher price.
Cuts of steak can be broken down into three sections. Starting on the upper back and moving down to the mid-back you have the rib, the short loin and the sirloin. The rib contains cuts such as the Rib Roast, the Rib-eye Steak and the back ribs. This is the least tender section of the three. The short loin produces the T-bone, Top Loin Steak, Tenderloin and the Porterhouse. The Sirloin gives the Sirloin Steak, and the Top Sirloin. Other steaks like the chuck, round and flank steak come from those respective areas and tend to be tough cuts of meat. Strips steaks, like the New York Steak is cut from the T-bone portion.
The tenderest cut of beef is the tenderloin. From this area you will get cuts like chateaubriand, filet mignon and tournedos. Though these cuts are tender they are less flavorful. The rib-eye, or rib steak are less tender but far more flavorful. The same holds true about the sirloin cut.