How much are you going to use the cooker you choose? As you can see from my signature, I own quite a few different cooking utensils. I have used them all with great success. If you are just learning to smoke I would go with the Akorn to start. This will give you an idea if you want to continue. Most people start with low cost equipment. If you continue with this hobby, you may want a bigger smoker than an BGE or KJ. I have an Akorn, and am using it at the restaurant. I cooked a brisket over night and it came out great. Then I turned around later that night and cooked a couple pizzas for our Christmas party. I was looking at a ceramic grill for the restaurant, but went with the Akorn because of the features on it. The best feature is the clean out, you remove the bottom and dump it. All the seals are just like the material used on oven doors. I may buy a couple more to get me through the winter. I am honestly surprised by the quality of the Akorn. I was expecting some on the order of their offset grills and smokers. This is constructed of better material and easy to assemble. This is just my opinion.
Team: Pyle's BBQ; Good-One "Trail Boss" 60T; Homemade rig; 22" Weber Kettle w/rotisserie ring; Big A$$ Rotisserie; BGE-Small; Weber Kettle Gold, Weber OTS, New Braunfels offset smoker.
Saddles BBQ Bistro