Originally Posted by JMSetzler
You are going to get a 50/50 answer on this one probably.... Those smokers, like the WSM, are sorta designed to be used with a water pan. If you want easy temperature control at temps between 225-275, I would use the water pan with water. If you want to cook at temps above 275, You will probably need to nix the water.
Yep, you won't get a 100-percent definitive answer on this question.
I use water in my water bowl in my WSM. Others will tell you to use sand, or a clay pot, or rocks, or whatever. And, we all get good BBQ from our setups.
IMO, there is no "right" answer to your question -- just preferences.