Thinking on this a bit, and I honestly hate the existing "sorting solutions". So, I had the idea of something that might work better. It would still require a bit of extra redstone to work well, but the idea is either to detect passing items, like in an item stream, or, maybe better, be a "pass through" block, kind of like a hopper+dropper. In the latter case an item would enter it on one side, be compared to an inventory, to see if there is a match, and then fired back out the other side (or passed to another detector, if there is one next to it). The "detect as they pass by" version could output a signal based on number in the stack that is passing, but.. I don't see this as being all that practical for sorting. But, there are probably ways you could use a trap door, piston, etc, with a dropper, to fire out more than one item, into a stream, then "detect" the number of them, but.. honestly, the "pick up and item, compare, then drop it out the other side.", version seems more practical.
In any case, the redstone signal, what ever sort it may be, that is output could then be used to fire pistons, open trap doors, lock/unlock hoppers, etc., to make the items go to where every you intend them to be sorted to.
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