Mike, I'm biased after owning the 817 and 857. I wasn't impressed with the audio quality of these units and both do require purchase of optional filters to make the audio that much better. As Mike said, the 817 is a sensitive unit but for the money you have to invest initially, I think it can be spent better elsewhere.Thanks guys. I'll look for some used equipment after I save some money. I'm looking at the Yaesu 160M-70CM transceivers. Anyone have any thoughts on these?