What struck me rigth away about this one, was the demo - it is a different aproach from the other download managers. In fact, it is more like what you see in this Joomla! Extension Directory. You immediately get an overview of what sections and categories are available, instead of having to select each one individually.
There's one section level and one category level; each category can again be subdivided with a simple text placeholder. Phoca's demo provides a good example where this comes in handy: An area for the component files, then a text-divider and then the additional, related files (languages). And, it also keeps you from nesting files too deep into an area one rarely endeavors ;-)
All the decriptions you enter can be formatted, which a few if its competitors do not or only partially support.
The back-end is orderly and doesn't distract from what you're used to; it keeps in line with Joomla!'s style.
The front-end is super-easy to modify as well, so it integrates very well with your website. This is where it received my highest praise!
I encountered only a minor glitch during the installation of the 1.05 Beta, which was a message it was unable to copy a (non-existing, I checked) file. However, it does not interfere with operation. In fact, it worked so well right from the get-go, I was wondering why the other document managers were such a struggle to get it "just so" or even to work at all?!
And it supports outside-of-root directories, which a few other download managers "complain about". That is, you can have a fully writeable folder (777) safely outside of your public HTML folder (for example: specify "../phocadownload"). And this works with the FTP-Layer enabled.
To sum it up:
* Clean code;
* Small footprint;
* Native J1.5 (not Legacy);
* Easy to change appearance front-end;
* Familiar back-end;
* Supports outside-the-fence folders for added security, compatible with the FTP-Layer.
I'm a happy - the 4 hours of installing/uninstalling/frustration seems worth it now! I recommend this.