Hi there, I'm new to this forum and excited to hear your responses! I'm in the market for a new pellet grill and here's what I know about the ones above:
All of these grills have rave reviews. I'm going to be doing grilling and smoking, but the main reason I'm getting a new pellet grill is for the smoking!
I know the Yoder YS 480 is built like a tank. It is said to be a more smoky pellet grill which I like, but it has also been said to be higher on pellet consumption because it doesn't retain heat as well as some of the others. Not sure I understand this because the parts are the thickest and heaviest of the grills I mentioned, and I figured that would cause it to retain heat. Nonetheless, the owners of these smokers seem to be very happy with them.
People seem to have great things to say about the Mak1 as well, and it seems to be the one grill where all of the owners say, if they did it again, they'd buy the same grill. It's built like a tank and most say it's the best overall grill out of the ones I mentioned. It has some great features and it seems to have the most options of the 5 grills I'm researching. I also saw it has a release to dump pellets not used during a particular grilling or smoking session. Is this true? On the down side, I saw a comment on craigslist about the POWER COAT wearing off. Has anyone else experienced this? I was also surprised to see it only had a 3 year warranty too, when the Yoder has a 10 year for parts and a 3 year for electronics. The Rec-Tec also has a 6 year warranty and Memphis select a 5 year.
The Rec-Tec is the most affordable, and although the parts are made in China, everyone who owns one of these seems to be extremely happy with their cooking ability and with their durability as well. On Amazon.com, they have 91 user reviews with 88 of them being a 5 out of 5 stars. The one concerning review was that their Rec-Tec didn't provide a smoky flavor to their meat at all. Can anyone attest or disprove this.
I know the PG 500 is also well liked by many, but I'm not sure about the different quadrants of the grill for different types of cooking. I think I would rather use sear grates instead of having a build in section for searing. This makes me weary about the evenness of grill's cooking temperature. Does the fact that different parts of the grill are built for different types of cooking have any affect on temperature evenness, especially when slow cooking?
The Memphis select also has great reviews and seems to be a well built smoker as well as very economic with fuel consumption. Everyone seems to be happy with theirs, but some of the owners from various postings I've come across say they might have gone with the Mak 1 instead, but they're still happy with their Memphis!
Bottom line is, I could use your help and would be very appreciative for any advise you can offer. Is it really worth paying $1500.00 for the Mak 1, when there's a great pellet grill out there in the Yoder for $1100.00? Thanks so much!!