The weight of opinion seems to favour using custom post types instead of custom post formats.
I have several custom post types that I want to style in 4 different formats in a way that is not public ie not a category, tag or custom taxonomy.
Custom post formats would seem to provide an ideal solution for this - they're built-in functionality, easily implemented, come with handy meta box, easily applied with conditional statements etc.
The major draw back being they are not readily customisable - I could rename them for the sake of clarity.
So given the prevailing thought, what would be a better approach to creating the same functionality.