MES+AMNPS vs Bradley

Discussion in 'Electric Smokers' started by mtdon, Apr 2, 2012.

  1. mtdon

    mtdon Newbie

    I am researching to buy a electric smoker and only want to do this once. Seems like folks are adding the AMNPS to their MES 30 or 40 to get enough smoke. So why not get the Bradley that produces tons of smoke. Also, it sounds like the MES has element issues and that they are difficult to obtain when they burn out. The Bradley's element seems easier to replace and readily available.

    The more I research, the more unconfused I think I am getting until I read more and get more confused. Confused?

    Thanx for the help. I would like to buy a smoker this week.

  2. handsonfire

    handsonfire Fire Starter


    Am no where near an expert. But do have a MES30 and AMNPS. From my experience; I purchased the AMNPS because I was getting too much smoke and it was uncontrollable over several hours plus (only speaking to the AMNPS portion).

    My MES30 digital with a 3/4 full chip tray can put out smoke to no end. The AMNPS gives me (with more experience) a way to generate the thin blue smoke consistently. How that helps a wee bit..

    Am quite sure the pitmasters here can elaborate further..
  3. biteme7951

    biteme7951 Meat Mopper

    I have owned both a Bradley and a MES40 but have since sold my Bradley. Yes, you get a ton of smoke with the Bradley but it is the white billowy smoke and not the thin blue smoke I was looking for. The pucks were expensive at about 40 cents each retail which only gave you 20 minutes of smoke. so a 10 hr smoke would cost you $12 in pucks if you had smoke on it the whole time. A 10hr run of  the AMNS or AMNPS would cost you about $1.50 so it did not take long to pay for the tray. The Bradley has a smaller element and longer startup and recovery time and is difficult to keep at temp with a full load of meat in it. The Bradley also has a greater "hot sport across the entire back of the unit where the MES has a hot spot only in the right rear corner which is easier to deal with. There were a lot of complaints early on in the MES's life about the elements and controls,  but for as many as there are out there now......very few complaints on this site, and Masterbuilt stands behind them 100%. I have tried chunks of wood in the MES tray and they worked OK but did not last long. Nothing I have found compares to the AMNS or AMNPS for a nice, thin, slow smoke generation....and Todd's customer service cannot be beat.

    Hope this helps

  4. nepas

    nepas Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator Group Lead OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Works great for me.

  5. badbob

    badbob Smoke Blower

    I have a MES 40 and the AMNPS and really like them. I've only been smoking meat and making sausage for about 6 months and with that equipment and the Maverick thermometer I have yet to turn out anything that I was disappointed with. Add that to the great support that you get from the folks on this site you can't go wrong. 
  6. As has been said, the Bradley's are expensive to run.
    IMHO, smoke quality is far more important than quantity.
    The A-Maze-N smokers produce some wonderful smoke, I think the quality of the sawdust smoke is a bit better than the pellet, but they're both great.
  7. mtdon

    mtdon Newbie

    Thanx all for your help. I made up my mind and ordered the MES 40 and the AMNPS today. Now the long wait because the MES 40 w/ remote is back ordered on Amazon. Shucks.

    Thanx again.

  8. da maxx

    da maxx Fire Starter

    MtDon, Good choice. Another feature the AMNPS will provide is the ability to cold smoke with the MES smokers.
  9. The reason the AMNPS is important in an electric smoker is that electric smokers have a tendency to smolder the wood (due to a lack of adequate oxygen supply), rather than combusting (but not igniting) it, creating acrid flavors.  The AMNPS facilitates the controlled combustion of hardwood pellets, keeping the smoke in the temperature "sweet spot."

    It's not a matter of quantity of smoke that's lacking on electric smokers, it's quality.  The AMNPS is an elegant solution to the problem.

    This is from Modernist Cuisine, and applies perfectly here:

  10. thoseguys26

    thoseguys26 Master of the Pit

    Last edited: Apr 3, 2012
  11. thoseguys26

    thoseguys26 Master of the Pit

    My Amzns smoker has been producing TBS as blue as the CO bird blue! I will comment the three times I didn't microwave the dust, I found it went out on me after a half hour or so. Pretty bummed I was cooking, not smoking but not a hard fix. I don't know if the pellets are more forgiving in that sense but I'd be interested to hear your thoughts.
  12. We really need to quash that rumor...  The 2012 models have been confirmed to have 1200w elements.

    As far as the pellets go, both times I've smoked something in the MES 40, the AMNPS has still been lit and smoking after the food was done, and I did pork shoulder for roughly 12 hours.  Properly shield it from falling juices, and make sure it's lit well, and pellets will give you nothing but carefree smoking, and delicious food.
  13. deltadude

    deltadude Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    If this testimony from a former Bradley owner is convincing when comparing the MES 40 to a Bradley, I don't know what is?

    You do NOT need an AMNS or AMNPS to get TBS out of a MES.  The older MES with the original chip tray had no problem producing TBS, the new MES with the smaller trays and extra piece of metal had some problem but mods or the retro kit to the original tray fixes those problems.  The problem with a stock MES is you have to keep loading fresh wood chips every 20-30 minutes.  That is where the AMNS or AMNPS comes in, and solves that problem, with continuous for 3-6 hours, that makes the MES a true "set it" and "forget it" smoker.

    There has been some minor quality control issues with the MES, but when you consider that the MES has gone from Sam's club and Bass Pro shops, to all kinds of DIY stores, in other Big Box stores, and now hundreds of thousands of MES are in use, with high marks from most owners, year by year product improvements, and still outstanding bang for buck product and performance, that is an outstanding record.

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