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Does the Roth 401k vs Traditional 401k assessment rely on the assumption that you would be using the difference achieved upfront with a 401k to invest in non-tax advantaged fund (I.e, a regular min retirement account)

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Yes, from what I’ve seen there is typically the assumption that you reinvest your tax savings. I use a calc and even with this reassessment, Roth comes out ahead. https://www.bankrate.com/retirement/calculators/roth-traditional-ira-calculator/

Yes - anything else dramatically undervalues traditional in a manner that makes no sense (I.e, eliminates the tax benefit completely). Unless you are projecting a much higher rate in retirement, almost always going to be better off going traditional and investing the savings in after tax —> in service Roth conversion/rollover (assuming your firm has that option).

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