Re:Good starter smoker?
I'd suggest both an electric smoker and an offset smoker.
I have an offset smoker and while it works well, you have to tend to it for too long. When I was doing pork butts/briskets, I'd be up at 4am, and would be ready by 8pm. I was so sick of looking at the meat for that long, I'd have to wait a few days to eat it.
This way, you can let the electric smoker do more of the work (even overnight), and finish them on the grill.
A good website is amazingribs.com