This is the best advise I can give you and I'm not being funny,
Write out the maximum you want to pay for a bike, now choose your route, look at the terrain you want to ride, then look at what you want to carry.
Right got that so far, that's propper research. From there go and choose 3 differnet bikes and take them for a 2 hour minimum ride, now here's the bit you will like the most, PICK the one that best fits all your needs.
So now you want bike X, go a buy the best one you can afford, now read about it on the web, once you know all about it go and do a night class to learn how to maintain it.
Once you have done ALL of that leave on your trip, and DON'T ever worry about someone else's bike X or their views on YOUR bike, because they are all different what one guy says is a bad fault another guy will know how to fix and then it isn't a problem anymore is it?
I ride a F650GS DAKAR after doing 3 months research, reading everything I could on the net looking for things that could go wrong and then getting a plan for if they ever did, so knowing how to fix most COMMON things that can go wrong and having a relevant spare. FOR ME it was the best purchase and it's not let me down yet, I feed it clean it and look after it, and in return it takes me where I want to go.
That's the BEST advise you will hear from ANYBODY on bike choice....
Ride safe and let us know what you choose in the end.