Long time lurker first time posting. Really interested in smoking my own meat, looking to get something to get started. I need something either electric, pellet or propane since I live in an apartment complex where they do not allow charcoal or wood bbqs. I also like the convience of the above just being honest.
I have seen a lot if people own MES 30 or MES 40s and while I like the cost I also see so many threads with issues. I would probably get AMNPS with it as well if i went this route. I would like to spend up to $500 and get something reliable. Electric seems like a good option, does anybody have some other good suggestions? I have seen smoken-it and smoken-tex units but not sure whether they are worth it either.
Pellet grills intuige me since you get that wood fire taste but the ease of use from an electric smoker. The Rec-Tec mini is right at the top of my price range so that has been given serious consideration as well. Only thing I have heard is that smoking wise it needs additional help with a smoke tube which adds some more complexity.
Propane also seems nice since its also set and forget but my biggest concern is blowing through tanks of propane with each long smoke. I have a regular gas grill and thinking about filling a propane tank after 2-3 smokes sounds expensive and a pain overall.
What are your guys recommendations? Gas, pellet or electric, $500 or less, and really just looking at it for smoking not grilling as I have another grill for that. Cost per use is a factor and so is the overall flavor you get.