ive been in the same situation as you trying to decidde what to buy, even though I dont have a 5.0 yet thats what im looking to get. Ill break it down a bit for you.
Although the LT1 out of the box is a more stout engine then the 5.0 but you have to realize its downfalls. First thing if if youve ever looked under the hood of a 93+ camaro youll realize 1/2 of the engine sits where you cant reach, making any engine work, especially headers, a chore to say the least.
Next up is a word if you have a 93-97 camaro youll become very familiar with, opti-spark. The ignition system in these camaros revolves around this and the geniouses at GM decided to put it right behind the waterpump, which is a problem area as they give it pretty often on LT1s, as soon as water hits that opti you can be sure youll be buying a new one and going through the process of replacing it. Now ofcourse there are exceptions to this, cars that have gone 100k+ without problems, and there are new solutions suck as a Deltek (I think thats the name of it) ignition system which virtually eliminates the opti problem, but its around a grand I think. The year to get would be the 95+ years in which they made an attempt to fix the opti problem by making a "vented-opti" in which there are holes for the water to drain, none the less the problem still occured, it helped a little I would say.
Next in the line is the rear-end. These cars come with a 10 bolt. The general consensus with camaro owners is that even with stock power, if you dead hook once on slicks or DR's your at risk of snapping it.
Then again every car has its downfalls, and I really do love lt1s if you can get past those then go for it, its a stout great sounding engine with a good aftermarket. To me, a struggling 16 year old who has saved for the last 3 years to save the 8k I have now, economically it doesnt make much sense as I wouldnt have any money left over to make fixes that seem to occur pretty often.
sorry for any typos, too lazy to proof read and correct errors