Intes Micro Alter m503


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Intes Micro Alter m503
Very affordable and versatile little scope. Well constructed and finished with very good accessories supplied. Optics are excellent and has no problem splitting close doubles. Well baffled internally. Contrast and color much better than 5" Celestron SCT. A strong Buy recommendation.

Overall Rating: 9
Optics:10 Ease of Use:9 Value:10
Weight: 1 (Unreliable Vote)
Date:
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.126.12)
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=133508


Intes Micro Alter m503
I loved my little Intes 503. Gorgeous optics, better than my Celestron 9.25 SCT which was excellent. Built like a tank, yet weighs less than 8 lbs. A great little scope. Buy a NexStar 5, sell the C5 OTA and then mount this little Mak on the Nexstar mount. You won't be sorry ...

Overall Rating: 10
Optics:9 Ease of Use:9 Value:10
Weight: 1 (Unreliable Vote)
Date:
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.102.234)
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=142541


Intes Micro Alter m503
The OTA is excellent. Very sharp images and solid construction. With a 9mm ortho and a 2.4X barlow, the view of the moon at 340X (68X/inch) was quite good. A little soft, but with significant detail. I have not used that much power on the planets yet, but at 180X the views of Jupiter and Saturn are very satisfying. Deep sky is limited by aperture, but this 5" Mak gives nice views within those limits.

The finder scope can be mounted on either side of the tube as the finder quick-release bracket and camera quick-release bracket are the same. However, switching between the two brackets requires the finder to be reversed in the solid metal rings. The focusing action is smooth and I see no evidence of shift or flop in the primary mirror. The scope is significantly smaller and lighter than a six inch Mak, although the 2" diagonal adds to the weight. Like the M603, it uses baffles along the inside of the main tube. Also at f/10, it is brighter and can be used at lower powers with specific focal length eyepieces than other 5" and 6" Maks - approximately 40X with a 32mm eyepiece.

This is the only 5" Mak that I know of that can use 2" eyepieces. The diagonal is very good. It is attached to the telescope with the same threaded mount as found on M and C companies SCTs allowing their accessories to be used. The supplied 2" to 1.25" adapter is threaded for 2" filters.

The downside? The items listed with the scope may not be supplied. The focal reducer was exchanged with a 2.4X barlow and a very bad finder scope. The finder is of so low quality that I would be embarrassed to sell it for $10. The barlow is OK. However, since I had a finder scope and a barlow, the reducer made a very attractive package. The items that replaced it seemed to lower the value of the package.

Another point that may be of concern is the level of Russian quality control. While the scope is well made, I found the interior of the OTA was dirty. Not just a little dust, but metal fillings. Why this cannot be taken care of at the factory is a mystery.

Overall, I'm very happy with the telescope. It is very portable and easy to set up. It has excellent optical performance (the most important quality in any telescope). I'm sure this scope will give me many years of good viewing.

Overall Rating: 8
Optics:9 Ease of Use:9 Value:9
Weight: 1 (Unreliable Vote)
Date:
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.250.90)
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=205166


Intes Micro Alter m503
Excellent small scope. Very good star images inside and outside focus. Circular diffraction rings and clean black sky. Optical test report says beteer than 1/6 wave and .94 Strehl ratio. Baffling is outstanding and a dew shield helps -- no, it is absolutely necessary. Otherwise the corrector fogs up in a matter of minutes, just when the scope has begun to settle down and show good images. Have not tried the focal reducer yet, but the diagonal appears excellent. Optically, there isn't anything in the price range that provides this combination of image quality, light grasp, and portability. Perfect for traveling light.

The carrying case is handy, but not specifically designed for the scope and accessories so you have to be cleaver to get everything to fit and I wouldn't put eyepieces in without some protection.

I mount it on an older Super Polaris mount (the Intes/Vixen dovetail plate fits perfectly) and it is very solid for visual use.

Overall Rating: 9
Optics:9 Ease of Use:8 Value:10
Weight: 1 (Unreliable Vote)
Date:
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.189.129)
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=216176


Intes Micro Alter m503
Purchased this one used, and only 4 months old. Gave less than good images when I first got it. It was in bad need of collimation, with the primary being way off. Once collimated the images improved but it still did not have that "snap" you get when a scope is truly diffraction limited. How could this be? The specs say 1/7th wave, with a 0.945 strehl ratio. When compared to a Tak 102, and a C8 side by side on a night with much better than average seeing and stable air temperatures, the 503 could not keep up with the 102 or the C8. Saturn never seemed to be in perfect focus at anytime. Cassini's division would never become sharp and distinct. Yes, you could make it out, but it was much sharper and blacker in the other scopes. It can best be described as slight nearsightedness. The C8 and Tak were 20-20, and the M503 was 20-30 making planetary images ever so slightly blurred. I could get more detailed with what I saw, and the procedure I used, but be satisfied to know that I used Abbe Ortho eyepieces and a Tak diagonal to make all the observations over many nights.
One last thing to note is that during the star test, the central obstruction shadow breakout was 8:1 on this particular unit. This is much worse than the minimum 2:1 recommended by Suiter. The shadow is also nearly 2.5 times the diameter on one side of focus as compared to the other when defocused the required 12 wavelengths.
Not that these are bad scopes, but I'd just like to make everyone aware that just because you paid for a premium scope, doesn't mean you can't get one that's defective. Always verify what you purchased with a star test over many nights. If it's way off what is stated in the specs, something is wrong, and the scope may need repair. Of all the 50+ scopes I've owned, only 3 were ever returned. Two were APs, and one was a Meade Apo refractor. Please remember that even luxury cars get recalled sometimes.

Overall Rating: 5
Optics:6 Ease of Use:9 Value:6
Weight: 1 (Unreliable Vote)
Date:
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.253.1)
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=326638


Intes Micro Alter m503
I've used this little scope for almost 2 years now and have been impressed by this scopes quality, both mechanically and optically. This is definately a good travel scope and performs very well considering it's apeture and large central obstruction. One of the prior comments holds true for me as well, Intes-micro delivered a 2.4X barlow in place of a 2" diagonal (not a good trade). It does take awhile to cool down as most maks do, but once there provides very sharp images.
I was a little suprised one night when the M503 split all components of Epsilon Lyrae cleanly at a lower power than my 11" SCT (yes, the SCT was collimated). I use a Vixen Custom-D alt/az mount with this scope which works great as a grab and go setup.

Overall Rating: 9
Optics:9 Mount:8 Ease of Use:9 Value:10
Weight: 1 (Unreliable Vote)
Date:
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.177.231)
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=420823


Intes Micro Alter m503
I've had my M503 for a year now. If you are leary of the flood of Chinese telescopes and questionable optics you will love this telescope. The quality and build reminds you of something out of the 60's. 99.9% metal except for daubs of plastic on the ends of the finderscope ring adjustment screws to keep from marring. The dewshield looks like something from medievel times with its inner baffling rings. The thumbscrews that hold it to the end of the tube are nylon.
I purchased and sent back an 2 Orion Maks due to severe image shift. The image shift of the 503 is almost negligible. There are two dovetails on each side of the tube. One can hold the finderscope rings and the other has a block that can hold a camera for piggyback photography. The finder scope is nice..all metal with a slide type of focusing secured with a thumbscrew. The crosshair etched into the glass is a bit hard to see at nite (although there is a port where one could screw in an illuminator).
I haven't had to collimate mine, but it appears to be rather easy if needed. There is a metal slide on dust cover and 3 internal baffles similar to the dew shield.
Optically, the performance is very impressive. Double stars are a pleasure to view at high powers..pinpoints surrounded by tiny rings. Jupiter and Saturn show nice amounts of detail.Saturn shows the Cassini Division very clearly as well as other ring structure. M42 and globular clusters are
impressive as well even with "only" 5" inches of aperture.
Bottom line..if you are looking for a fairly compact scope, I believe this one is much better than a C5 or the Chinese Maks. If you add a 2" diagonal and the metal dewshield you will add to the weight and lenght, but its still very portable and handled easily with my Orion Skyview Pro Mount.
In the age of plastics, this is one telescope that will last a lifetime and then some!

Overall Rating: 10
Optics:10 Value:9
Weight: 1 (Unreliable Vote)
Date:
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.118.53)
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=448741


Intes Micro Alter m503
Great wee scope, that I am regretting selling.
If you get a chance to get one, don't think twice.

Andy.

Overall Rating: 9
Optics:9 Ease of Use:9 Value:9
Weight: 1 (Unreliable Vote)
Date:
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.239.40)
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=577561


Intes Micro Alter m503
Outstanding optical performance. I was amazed with the first light experience of this easy to handle telescope. Get one if you can. This is definitely a keeper.

Overall Rating: 10
Optics:10 Ease of Use:10 Value:10
Weight: 1 (Unreliable Vote)
Date:
By: Anonymous (xxx.xxx.216.195)
Link to this vote: http://www.excelsis.com/1.0/displayvote.php?voteid=577671

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