Yes, that's correct. Fixed ND filters would be preferred.
The issue with variable ND filters is consistency. As they are polarizers by nature, the amount of light attenuation changes with respect to the incident angle from the light source. To make matters worse, different light sources may have different polarization and can be altered yet again if diffusers, reflectors, and the likes are introduced. Not impossible to deal with, just more unnecessary fiddling in my opinion.
This, by the way, is also the reason why markings on variable ND filters are just that, markings (no hard numbers). The actual values change for the reasons described above.