I've made a ton of house music with a MPC. They are fantastic. However, I would recommend NOT getting the 5000. It is notorious for having a number of problems. I won't bother listing them; a simple search will show you the plethora of issues associated with them.
As far as what MPC to get, that kind of depends on what other hardware you may have. If you have many modules, keyboards, etc... I would say get the 4000 if you can afford it. It is all-around the best MPC out there in terms of features, power, timing, stability, etc. They're all good, but the 4000 is the best.
The MPC 60 and MPC 3000 are arguably the best-sounding MPC's but they have floppy drives, so unless you plan on using SCSI drives or swapping out the internal drive with a memory card-based drive, you will have to deal with floppies. They also have limited sample memory compared to newer units.
In my opinion, the best "bang for your buck" MPC out there right now is the MPC 1000. The only things that I do not like about it are the lesser number of individual audio outs, only 2 midi outs, and small pads that are known to sometimes fail and need replaced. However, do not let that scare you. The individual outs are only an issue if you plan on sending samples to a lot of external effects. For the average person, 4 individual outs is plenty. Only having 2 midi outs isn't a problem either, depending on how much other midi gear you have. The pads are the only thing that I do not like about the 1000. I much prefer the bigger pads from the other units, but they aren't unusable by any means. The best thing about the MPC 1000 (and 2500) is the fact that there's a third-party OS series developed for it called JJOS. It adds a LOT of amazing features, blowing the stock Akai OS out of the water. The features JJOS2XL adds is quite simply mindblowing. The MPC 2500 is basically the exact same as the 1000, except it's larger, has bigger pads, 4 midi outs, more individual audio outs, is capable of having an internal hard drive, and maybe a couple of other features. If you have a bunch of other gear and price is not an issue, get the 2500 over the 1000. However, the 1000 can be found used for VERY reasonable prices and is great for any style of music. Both of them accept up to 128 megs of RAM, which is more than enough for almost any purpose.
The MPC series are sampling drum machines / sequencers. What this means is that you can sample sounds into them directly from an external source, or you can load up samples from a CF card... transfer samples from your computer to the card, pop the card in, and go. The drum pads are velocity-sensitive, so you can get a lot of dynamic feel when playing / sequencing. The best part of the MPC series is the fact that they are fantastic sequencers. Use MIDI cables to connect a keyboard to the MPC and you can record anything that's played... you're not recording audio, just midi data. Once it's saved, you can play it back, edit, quantize, arpeggiate, etc. MPC's are the most intuitive and easy-to-learn pieces of hardware I've ever used. Read the manual and navigate it a bit and within two days you'll feel like you have it mastered.
If you're a total beginner and don't really know what I'm talking about, you're better off just getting a midi controller and using software. It will cost you less and will be more flexible for you if you don't have other hardware. A lot of people drop serious cash on buying hardware when they don't know the first thing about it, think they made a mistake, and end up selling it. Remember that if you do not have other hardware synths/keyboards/etc the only sound that you're going to get from it is samples... whether they're recording into the unit directly or loaded from a card.
MPC 1000 w/ JJOS - Korg ESX - Korg EA-1 - Ensoniq EPS 16+ - Waldorf MicroQ - Roland Alpha Juno 2 - Yamaha TX81z - Mackie CR1604 - random rackmount and pedal effects