Z Grills 1000 Series
The performance of the 1000 series isn’t that bad at all as the 10002B model we had managed to keep the temp within +/-10 of the set temperature. Almost all the meats we cooked on it turned out great. The only issue as far as performance is concerned is that it takes longer to stabilize to the target temperature after overshooting.
The build quality is decent and you get a large cooking capacity (1060 square inches) as well as an ash clean-out system which is exclusive to only the 1000 series models. Of all the Z Grills series, we would recommend considering this series if you want a larger cooking space for preparing lots of meats at once.
Z Grills 600 Series
The Z Grills 600 series offers a good mix of performance and affordability. There was very minimal temperature variance (+/- 4 to 12°F) from the set temperature and heat distribution in different parts of the cooking chamber was also pretty decent. The major highlight of this series though is the slide plate flame broiler which allows for direct flame searing to a temperature of up to 750°F.
The other highlight is the grease bucket which is positioned underneath the cooking chamber where it can’t easily get knocked off. Overall, this series is an ideal choice if you are looking for a Z Grills smoker for searing or grilling meats. We would also recommend it if you want a smoker for a medium-sized family as it offers fairly ample cooking space (573 square inches).
Z Grills Basic Series
The Z Grills basic series models seem to do relatively well with regards to performance too. They start up relatively fast and manage to keep the heat consistent within the set temp (typically within 5 to 10°F). Their total cooking area (459 to 560 square inches) and hopper capacity (15 to 16 pounds) are also pretty decent.
The series includes several upgraded models like the ZPG-450B and ZPG-450PRO which offer additional useful features like an improved PID controller, hopper clean-out system, and pellet view window. Overall, we would recommend this series if you are starting out on low and slow smoking journey. We would recommend it too if you want a more consistent temperature control, especially the ZPG-450B and ZPG-450PRO models. For searing though, it’s not the best option.