At $449 it was a solid deal with the one potential draw back being the down tube shifters. At $299 it is a great deal!. If you were going to be doing allot of climbing I may steer clear of the down tube shifters but otherwise it woudl make an great Starter bike.
Ibex has there own forum here on RBR and a Ibex rep will address any questions directly.
Be more specific with your question if you really wnat any meaningful responses.