Sorry for the very long delayed reply, I just came back to see this! You'd have to use them side by side. The difference is rather astounding. The 850SAT can accomdate eight crystal filters, and came with five (three are options); four in each of two IFs. It has IF slope tuning in two directions, so if you use those controls properly, you can narrow the IF passband down to "nothing." It also has a real (manual) IF notch filter, the ability to turn the RX AGC completely "off" (which opens a whole new world of weak signal listening that's virtually impossible if you can't), and CW REVerse mode which allows you to select either SSB injection (high or low) to tune in CW signals from top down or bottom up. It also has true RF speech processing, full QSK, a MONItor function that actually demodulates the SSB signal, quick band switching by pushing a BAND button; an internal CW memory keyer and internal DVR (digital voice recorder) to prerecord and play back CQs and such (handy for contesting, etc). The 480SAT is a nice rig but at the "low end" for Kenwood. The 850SAT is the second best "high end" rig they ever designed, bettered only by the TS-950SDX which actually had a few more features. Then, if you compare "prices," the 480's a very good deal at under $1K. My 850SAT with its optional filters and so forth was about $2K back in 1990...equivalent to probably $3K today, adjusting for dollar shrinkage. Anybody who's a Kenwood fan fervently wishes they would "bring back" the leading edge technology employed in rigs like the 850S and 950SDX. Hopefully, that will happen!