Cannons and turrets are better, imo, for escorts, but you sure can give a beam escort a go if you'd like to try that out. The cannons will give a much better overall DPS, though, as you are not a cruiser broadsiding.
I can offer my opinion, but I'll note that just 'cause other captains like a ship doesn't mean you might like it as much.
I have the MVAE on my engineer, and I love being able to slot Lt. Commander science skills (e.g. gravity well). It still does strong DPS, and being able to use the console to split the ship up is highly entertaining even if negligibly useful. It's manueverable, it packs a punch, and it brings neat CC or annoyance skills to both PvP and PvE.
My alt tac that I am leveling will be flying the fleet. I did not have the dilithium for it on my main (though I had Cpoints already, hence the MVAE purchase), but I was drawn to this fleet's boff layout. Sure, I can't play with neat science toys, but you can set the fleet up to do heavy damage and have the ability to slot more self-heals and/or engineering buffs (power to weapons, for example, or RSP, etc.). A friend/fleetmate of mine has one and never loses aggro to anyone in STFs, for example. I think it's a fine ship, but at the moment I cannot speak from direct piloting of it -- just what I plan to do with it.
To be trite about it, look at what officers you want to slot and how the different bridge layouts may complement your play style. Either is definitely viable and good, imo. Given that, if you are considering paying real money vs. just using in-game resources, I'd recommend the latter, if that helps narrow it down for you.