Getting the best deal on a smoker (right now)

Discussion in 'Electric Smokers' started by mozzie, Feb 26, 2015.

  1. mozzie

    mozzie Newbie

    Hi guys. The last few days I've been digging around the internet for information on smokers, my gf is looking to buy me one for my birthday next week. I'm thinking an electric smoker might be best for my needs, living in the city with not a lot of room. There appears to be one particular brand on the market that seems to appeal to novice and experienced smokers (can you guess what it is?:p).

     Reading this sub-forum I feel like I may have stumbled upon the Masterbuilt unofficial fanclub! So since I'm in good hands I want to prod for some more information. I'm a pretty frugal guy and when I buy something I like to feel I'm getting a pretty damn good deal, so I've narrowed down my smoker search to these contenders:

    Masterbuilt 20070910 30-Inch Black Electric Digital Smoker, Top Controller

    K39712  Masterbuilt 4 Rack Digital Electric Smoker w/Remote, Cover & Window  (I believe this is the 20070910)

    K41147 Masterbuilt 30" 4 Rack Electric Smoker w/Cover, Recipes & Accessories  (20070312?)

    -  Masterbuilt 20070512 40-Inch Front Controller Electric Smoker with Window and RF Controller (USED $220.58)

    Each one of these units appears to be an excellent deal in it's own right. The QVC models require shipping charge but come with cover + more. Since I've only been in the market recently would you guys think these are a solid deal? What deal do you find to be the most attractive? I'd prefer to keep my purchase under $400. I want versatility but will probably be using the smoker for jerky and chicken to start.

    As far as the new bluetooth model is concerned in my opinion the current price doesn't justify the new(mostly old) features.

    I do have some concerns about the Masterbuilt brand of smokers. From reading reviews (and problems on these forums) there appears to be a lot of electronic issues on both versions of these smokers, perhaps more on version 2. There appears to be multiple outdated models, at least in version 1, throughout the years and the company website doesn't list the history of the past model smokers. Since they appear nearly identical in resemblance to current models it makes for a lot of confusion. It's hard to tell which models had improvements made due to failures and some of those older models are likely roaming wild out there on store/warehouse shelves still. The bad reviews can be on much older models but it's impossible to tell because that information is rarely specified. Then the fact that they are making alternate versions of the same smoker for different stores and skirt the difference within fine print is troublesome (800w vs 1200w).

    The counter argument to the smoker issues is that there may simply be a lot more of these products in customers homes than any other smoker, at least that's the perception I get when viewing amazon. This information can be used to explain why there are so many complaints online, because you know, people tend to be more vocal when they have issues than to praise quality products. Has anyone on these forums done any independent research- polling/analytic's to determine the extent and frequency of all these failures? If there is no direction I can be pointed to in that regard who here has the oldest Masterbuilt smoker? How long have you had it and have you needed to do any repairs?

    Maybe my biggest concern of all is learning that Masterbuilt use to offer a 1 year warranty with their products, which they reduced to a 90 day warranty. Nothing screams STAY AWAY then when a company creates stricter limitations with their support.

    Sorry for such a long post. I've just been a sponge soaking up smoker information the last few days and needed to get all this out, haha. I apologize if this post comes off as ramblings. Thank you in advance to those who made it this far and for future insight!
    Last edited: Feb 26, 2015
  2. welshrarebit

    welshrarebit Master of the Pit

    I'd go with the $149 model with free shipping and get a decent therm to check the actual temps in that bad boy!

    I'm oh so tempted to get one myself...
  3. tropics

    tropics Smoking Guru SMF Premier Member

    Maybe my biggest concern of all is learning that Masterbuilt use to offer a 1 year warranty with their products, which they reduced to a 90 day warranty. Nothing screams STAY AWAY than when a company creates stricter limitations with their support.

    If that is being sold on QVC find out about extended warranty, I have mine from Sams and it is for 3 yrs.
  4. bigd3077

    bigd3077 Meat Mopper

    I recently purchased the MES 30" and couldn't be happier. I strongly recommend a Maverick 733 digital thermometer as well. These are the key tools to successfully smoking!!
  5. mozzie

    mozzie Newbie

    Last edited: Feb 26, 2015
  6. tropics

    tropics Smoking Guru SMF Premier Member

    I have a Polder works great.
  7. jaellman

    jaellman Fire Starter

    Dad always said, when buying equipment spend the extra and buy good equipment and I'll only need to buy it once.

    Personally, I only use thermoworks thermometers these days for cooking or brewing.
  8. daricksta

    daricksta Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    I've owned this MES model and have been extremely happy with it.

    Unfortunately I paid $10 more on Amazon for mine.

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