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J_D_Metzger
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 05/13/04
Posts: 1848
Loc: Tucson, AZ
Re: Ioptron Mini tower _ New Review is Unsettling new [Re: Peter King]
      #3021677 - 04/03/09 10:22 AM

Interesting. It seems the majority of positive comments are by owners of the mount, and the majority of negative comments are by people who have never used one...

--------------------
Clear skies,
J.D.


The Stellar Cellar Observatory


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Al Canarelli
Post Laureate


Reged: 12/06/07
Posts: 3339
Loc: Central New Jersey
Re: Ioptron Mini tower _ New Review is Unsettling new [Re: Peter King]
      #3021703 - 04/03/09 10:36 AM

As a very likely Ioptron buyer, (was planning to buy a Mini Tower or CubePro at NEAF) this thread and the recent review on CN has served as an eye opener.

While there is a solid group of people in this very thread who are very happy with the product, one can't overlook the fact that the author of the review got two "stinkers" in a row! This tells me that there is an excellent chance I would get the same if I buy one. Having been through this scene with other manufacturers and other products in the past, I'm going to avoid future complications and reserve my buying plans for a while. If you think I'm making a mistake, kindly post here or PM me.


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donsinger1
sage


Reged: 10/28/07
Posts: 307
Re: Ioptron Mini tower _ New Review is Unsettling new [Re: John Miele]
      #3021775 - 04/03/09 11:22 AM

Unfortunately, I have to agree with the review. I had one and sold it for several reasons: (1) I did notice the jerkiness and found it annoying at high power; and, (2) I found it noisy when tracking when compared to my SE setup, which is dead silent. However, maybe Steve Forbes tear down eliminates this, I do not know.

What I really liked was the accuracy of the gotos and dead on all night long tracking; however, this did not overcome my annoyance at the jerkiness and noise; but this is personal preference.

Relative to portability, I think it is a tossup between the iOptron and my 6SE..I have a great Lowpro bag that compactly fits the 6SE with OTA, and then some, so I give each a tie on that issue.

Sincerely,
Don

--------------------
Fun Stuff:)
Portland, OR


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Dave Ponder
super member


Reged: 04/12/06
Posts: 187
Loc: Greenville, SC
Re: Ioptron Mini tower _ New Review is Unsettling new [Re: Peter King]
      #3021838 - 04/03/09 11:53 AM

I tried two of them....both bounced the image so much I could not enjoy the view at all. Would love to have a good one, but zero for two is enough for me....
Dave P


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Al Canarelli
Post Laureate


Reged: 12/06/07
Posts: 3339
Loc: Central New Jersey
Re: Ioptron Mini tower _ New Review is Unsettling new [Re: Dave Ponder]
      #3021946 - 04/03/09 12:42 PM

I did some research with Trapezium and here's what I learned...

If you are planning to buy a Mini Tower, you should buy it ONLY from Trapezium! These people take each unit out and use it for a few hours. If it works satisfactorily, it goes back to the shop for tune up and custom greasing. It then goes back to the field for testing again. I am told that each unit is tested for several hours. If it works satisfactorily, it is packed and sent to the client. If not, it is rejected and sent back to Ioptron. This is called the regular tune up.

The Ultra tune up goes a little further in that the stock bearings are changed for better bearings.

Okay, so what does it cost? There seems to be NO CHARGE for the regular tune up costs as the price is $799, which is almost what all other dealers charge. Keep in mind, however, that Trapezium does not discount the mount and a few other dealers do...the lowest price I've seen is $749. Additionally, Trapezium WILL charge shipping to you, which is not the case with many other dealers. Therefore, you will be paying a real cost of $100 more for the Mini Tower with basic tune up than you would be paying from another dealer (this assumes that shipping cost is about $50.) The real price of the Mini Tower has now escalated to $899, under the circumstances, this is a bargain!

The price of the Ultra Tune Up is an extra $300, bringing the price of the Mini Tower to $1099 plus shipping.

Finally, a very important point: Trapezium will handle all warranty claims from their shop in NH, so Ioptron is kept out of the loop. (Not sure of the warranty period)


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Dr Benway
professor emeritus


Reged: 03/27/08
Posts: 540
Loc: Abilene, TX
Re: Ioptron Mini tower _ New Review is Unsettling new [Re: Al Canarelli]
      #3021955 - 04/03/09 12:48 PM

Al,

I conversed with Steve Forbes this morning and he says he will be set up at NEAF across from the iOptron booth. You can talk to him in person since you will be there.

John

--------------------
Astro-Tech AT8RC
Astro-Tech AT65EDQ
Explore Scientific ED127
Takahashi NJP
Takahashi EM-10
iOptron IEQ45 Modified
QHY8PRO OSC
QHY9M
QHY9C
QHY22
SBIG STF-8300M
Modded Canon XT

http://www.jwbozeman.com


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Mlehere
super member


Reged: 07/06/04
Posts: 188
Loc: NE Ohio
Re: Ioptron Mini tower _ New Review is Unsettling new [Re: Dr Benway]
      #3022477 - 04/03/09 05:18 PM

I talked with Steve before buying my mount. The jerkiness referred to was likely caused by the motors in early units. These have since been modified. Steve referred to this as seeing the object zig-zag in the eyepiece at higher magnification and was very bothersom. Supposedly, these early units are warranteed and will be replaced by Ioptron with the new design.
Mike

--------------------
Mike
TEC 140
Celestron 9.25 EdgeHD
APM/TMB 115f7
SV80L
SM60 Solar Scope
AP Mach1GTO
Ioptron MiniTower


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Al Canarelli
Post Laureate


Reged: 12/06/07
Posts: 3339
Loc: Central New Jersey
Re: Ioptron Mini tower _ New Review is Unsettling new [Re: Mlehere]
      #3022519 - 04/03/09 05:47 PM

Al,

I conversed with Steve Forbes this morning and he says he will be set up at NEAF across from the iOptron booth. You can talk to him in person since you will be there.

John
============================================================
Thank you, John. This is one of the first things I intend to do.

Al


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Lane
Post Laureate


Reged: 11/19/07
Posts: 3186
Loc: Frisco, Texas
Re: Ioptron Mini tower _ New Review is Unsettling new [Re: Al Canarelli]
      #3022522 - 04/03/09 05:49 PM

Right across from the iOptron booth, I wonder if it bothers them to have him sitting there as a constant reminder to them that their QA sucks.

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Rob_G
sage


Reged: 10/12/06
Posts: 247
Loc: Syracuse, NY
Re: Ioptron Mini tower _ New Review is Unsettling new [Re: Lane]
      #3022750 - 04/03/09 08:31 PM

Quote:

Right across from the iOptron booth, I wonder if it bothers them to have him sitting there as a constant reminder to them that their QA sucks.






I was thinking the same thing.

--------------------
Rob

Bausch & Lomb Legacy 10x50
Meade ETX 125-AT


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Peter King
Banned - Duplicate Account


Reged: 11/02/08
Posts: 14
Re: Ioptron Mini tower _ New Review is Unsettling new [Re: J_D_Metzger]
      #3022759 - 04/03/09 08:37 PM

Quote:

Interesting. It seems the majority of positive comments are by owners of the mount, and the majority of negative comments are by people who have never used one...




Me too, thinking the same thing.


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Al Canarelli
Post Laureate


Reged: 12/06/07
Posts: 3339
Loc: Central New Jersey
Re: Ioptron Mini tower _ New Review is Unsettling new [Re: Peter King]
      #3022881 - 04/03/09 09:51 PM

Interesting. It seems the majority of positive comments are by owners of the mount, and the majority of negative comments are by people who have never used one...
============================================================
The current review on CN was posted by an owner. I should add that he seemed to be a very reserved owner who had a right to be upset, getting 2 $800 stinkers in a row. He showed no signs of being overly upset, having posted his review to help people like you and me who are likely to soon buy one of these mounts.

Another point you should consider is that it's human nature not to admit to making a buying mistake. Personally, I purchased several dogs and it's something I don't like to talk about.


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pearlstar
Banned - Duplicate Account


Reged: 12/09/08
Posts: 8
Re: Ioptron Mini tower _ New Review is Unsettling new [Re: Al Canarelli]
      #3022919 - 04/03/09 10:15 PM

I am an astro novice. When I tried to buy a Christmas gift for my husband last year I came to look for help here at CN. A lot of people, including Steve Forbes, gave me advices and recommended IOptron. I finally bought the MiniTower from Telescopes.com. My husband was so happy and returned me a surprise of Garmin.
Besides one of the knobs was broken during the shipment, we had absolutely no problem with the MiniTower. By the way, after I contacted IOptron, they sent me the knob right away. I have learned a lot of stars and planets after I bought the MiniTower. Actually I played the MiniTower a lot with (sometimes without) my husband.
I am not up to the level to write a review; however, if I could, it got be a five star one.
I did read John's review, and am sorry for his bad experience. I just want to let others know, there are also happy customers.
Pearl


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Lane
Post Laureate


Reged: 11/19/07
Posts: 3186
Loc: Frisco, Texas
Re: Ioptron Mini tower _ New Review is Unsettling new [Re: pearlstar]
      #3022992 - 04/03/09 11:10 PM

I don't think anyone out here is saying there is anything wrong with an iOptron mount, just saying the Quality Control is not very good. If a mythical company produces 1 out 10 mounts that fail to work then that is a problem for the 1 person that got the bad mount. It doesn't matter if the other 9 people say they had no problems, 1 out of 10 would still represent terrible quality control. Now we don't really know what the percentage of bad mounts is for iOptron, but the author of the original review got two bad mounts in a row. Statistically the odds of that would have to be pretty darn low unless there is a quality control issue. Then there is the fact that the gentleman from Trapezium is making money by inspecting and repairing the iOptron mount before ever shipping it to a client. He isn't doing that for any other mounts just for the iOptron.

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Charlie HeinAdministrator
Postmaster


Reged: 11/02/03
Posts: 11211
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Re: Ioptron Mini tower _ New Review is Unsettling [Re: Lane]
      #3023021 - 04/03/09 11:29 PM

Easy folks, let's keep it friendly - like, okay?

--------------------
Weston CSC:


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Al Canarelli
Post Laureate


Reged: 12/06/07
Posts: 3339
Loc: Central New Jersey
Re: Ioptron Mini tower _ New Review is Unsettling [Re: Charlie Hein]
      #3023055 - 04/03/09 11:55 PM

Then there is the fact that the gentleman from Trapezium is making money by inspecting and repairing the iOptron mount before ever shipping it to a client. He isn't doing that for any other mounts just for the iOptron.
============================================================
Your statement is not entirely true. Trapezium is not repairing Ioptron mounts, they are testing them. Those which are found to be faulty are rejected and sent back to Ioptron. All others are tuned or super tuned. Either way the customer/client is assured of getting a Mini Tower which works out of the box and is tuned for best performance. It's a lot better (from the consumer's point of view) to buy this way than to take pot luck.


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Lane
Post Laureate


Reged: 11/19/07
Posts: 3186
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Re: Ioptron Mini tower _ New Review is Unsettling [Re: Al Canarelli]
      #3023150 - 04/04/09 12:59 AM

I agree with that AL, I just think it would better for iOptron to hire someone like this to do that same testing at their plant. Then tack on $50 a mount if they need to cover the salary. It sure beats giving themselves a bad reputation. But if I go ahead and get one of these as I had planned to do I will definitely be getting it through trapezium.

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NotThePainter
sage


Reged: 06/02/07
Posts: 391
Re: Ioptron Mini tower _ New Review is Unsettling [Re: Al Canarelli]
      #3023336 - 04/04/09 06:47 AM

Quote:

Then there is the fact that the gentleman from Trapezium is making money by inspecting and repairing the iOptron mount before ever shipping it to a client. He isn't doing that for any other mounts just for the iOptron.




I think I may be misquoting here, not sure Al said the above, sorry if that is the case.

The reason that Steve is doing this ONLY for the iOptron mounts is that those are the ONLY mounts he sells.

I know him personally and I'm quite confident that if he sold a mount from another company he would do the same. He is a man of great honor, that's why he is my friend, I initially met him buying used gear online and a good friendship has developed from that time.

And for the full disclaimer, I designed and maintained Trapezium's web site (at least the old one, the new one is coming soon!) but I've done this "pro bono" which is Latin for Steve doesn't pay me but he buys the first round when we meet up.

Paul

--------------------
60mm Swift Refractor
6 inch Edmund Scientific Reflector
8 inch Celestron SCT
Criterion RV-8 Dynascope
Celestron ASGT mount
Canon 15x50is


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NHRob
Post Laureate


Reged: 08/27/04
Posts: 4111
Loc: New Hampshire
Re: Ioptron Mini tower _ New Review is Unsettling [Re: Lane]
      #3023439 - 04/04/09 09:16 AM

They should be thankful .. his efforts help get working iOptron products in customers hands. If not, there would be more "stinkers" out there, with all the ensuing negative karma that would go with it, and damaged reputation.

Rob



Quote:

Right across from the iOptron booth, I wonder if it bothers them to have him sitting there as a constant reminder to them that their QA sucks.




--------------------
Rob ... my avatar pic is me ... on a good day!
**********************
Canon 12x36 IS binos
Spooner 6.5" f/8.6 dob w/Dobstuff mount
Past Scopes:
Starstructure 14.5", Starmaster 14.5", 10" f/6 Zambuto homemade dob
AP130EDSF, AP130EDT, Traveller, AP152 f/9, 6" AP Christen triplet,FS-102(x2),FC-100,FS-152,TOA-130,TEC-140(x2),TV-101, TV-102,TV-76,TV-85, WO Z80FD, SV105/LZOS, WOLZOS100/800, TEC-6,TEC200/15,MN56,APM130/1200/LZOS,Mewlon180, Jaegers 6" f/15 achro, Palermiti 6" f/15 achro



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Wes James
Postmaster


Reged: 04/12/06
Posts: 5477
Re: Ioptron Mini tower _ New Review is Unsettling [Re: NHRob]
      #3023497 - 04/04/09 09:55 AM

Steve is doing this with the iOptron Mini Towers in the same manner that Clay does supertunes on the Meade mounts, and that is looked at as a positive thing, not a negative thing. He does this in 2 stages, one is a going through/cleaning/degreasing/adjusting/testing, the 2nd stage is replacing the bearings with roller bearings, further upgrades.
I, for one, think this is a wonderful offering. It is not infrequent that a product is offered that is basically a very good product with some shortcomings due to production, cost considerations, labor sources, whatever. To then be able to have all the bugs taken out- and end up with a truly outstanding product I think is a great thing. Steve is to be commended for his offerings, and I have spoken to him on a couple of occasions; I hope to be purchasing one of these supertuned mounts from him in the future.
The same concept sure made a lot of money and fame for Carrol Shelby...
.. of course, we're talking inexpensive telescope mounts here, not Mustangs!

--------------------
Wes
Atlantic Beach, FL

Bino’s- Tak's, Fuji's, Nikon's, Canon IS and Garrett 20x110 Signature's,
Some telescopes from Carton & Zeiss 60mm's up through a couple of 8” reflectors… Orion 3.6" O/A- and a wonderful 4.25" Delmarva Schiefspiegler!
Some good friends, made here on C/N.
Oh- several cats and a wonderful wife!
Anyone want a cat???? :-O

"When your work speaks for itself- Don't Interrupt" -Gamble Rogers


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