It's not just a price issue in my mind. Honestly, I think you should probably see if you can rent some guns / or maybe ask your buddies if you can shoot some of their tactical shotguns at your local range. Actually shooting some of these guns - may be the only way you can really evaluate them / so you can decide if you even want one or not.
In a fixed breech gun ( and I'm a pretty big guy at 6'5" and 290 lbs ) but a fixed breech gun(like a pump) with heavy slugs or OO Buck in them - can be a little on the "Unpleasant Recoil" side of things...after you're fired 40 or 50 rounds..../ when I was younger it wasn't that big a deal ...but I sure as heck don't want to run 50 rds thru them today if I don't have to.
So in general terms....I'd want the heaviest pump gun I could get that was still well balanced ( every lb you add to a shotgun for a given shell / will reduce the recoil 15-20% ). Obviously at some point - too heavy is too much / but I'd rather shoot a 8 1/2lb gun over a 7 lb gun in a 3 day class or whatever...in a pump.
Some pump guns ...like Benelli Nova tactical ...some models have the Comfort Tech system in them too ....and it'll help a little as well to absorb some recoil.
Then there is the gas operated options - like the M-4 Benelli above --- or the M-2 Inertia operated with Comfort Tech in it...as well.
Wilson Combat and other companies out there ...will take a stock Rem 870 and tune it up ....so its a little smoother, some rail options or whatever you want as well.
So you do have some options out there....or just go with a stock 870 or whatever and see what you think of it.
Last edited by BigJimP; November 7, 2012 at 08:08 PM.