Product Review (December 2003) - Zinwell
BriteView DVI Video Deinterlacer/Scaler

We first reviewed the Brite-View video scaler late last year and were pleasantly surprised at the performance of this low priced unit ($599). The deinterlacing and scaling were exceptionally good, and for consumers who have displays with poor video processing, the product offered an economical solution to achieving a high quality picture.

Unfortunately, some of the older displays with built-in deinterlacers have limitations, making an external video processor desirable. However, the cost of external processors prevented many from making such a purchase. Taiwan-based Zinwell Corporation recently introduced the new Brite-View DVI deinterlacer/scaler which appears to have all the great attribute of the previous model with the addition of a DVI output. The unit supports both RGB and YPbPr modes, yet resolutions are specific for the color space setting. The RGB mode supports 640x480 (60Hz), 800x600 (60Hz/75Hz), 1024x768 (60Hz/75Hz) and 1280x1024 (60Hz) modes, geared for VESA display compatibility typically with 4:3 screens. The YPrPb mode supports 480p, 720p and 1080i resolutions and is ideal for 16:9 displays. Priced at $599, the unit is marketed to entice videophiles on a budget while providing them with quality video processing.

The Brite-View DVI is built in the same sturdy housing as its predecessor with only a blue light on the front panel. Also behind the small window in the front lies the IR detector for the remote control. No front panel controls are available to the user, so the remote is essential for operating the unit. The unit defaults to the 480p mode when the color space switch is set to YPrPb and the 1024x768 (75Hz) mode when the switch is set on RGB. The remote appears to be unchanged from the previous design with dedicated buttons for Contrast, Brightness, Color, Tint and Sharpness. The Resolution button selects between the different scan rates depending on the position of the Color Space switch at the back of the unit. The Format button selects between 4:3 or 16:9 in the RGB mode only. The YPrPb mode assumes the video uses 16:9 content. The Language button selects English, German or French. Two buttons for increasing and decreasing the selected mode are also provided. Finally, three Input Source buttons select from the Composite, S-Video or Component inputs.

The rear panel of the new Brite-View DVI has the additional DVI interface not found in the earlier model. The same power switch and color space switch is located in the back. Input connectors are provided for composite, s-video and component video sources. Analog video is sent out via a high density 15-pin connector (VGA style). Digital video uses the standard Molex-style DVI-D connector. The power adapter included with the unit is a switching power supply capable of sourcing over one amp at 12 volts DC.

The Brite-View DVI uses the same highly integrated Trident DPTV™ -3D scan-conversion chip found in the previous model. We were quite impressed with the performance of this video processor. This powerful chip features 10-bit analog-to-digital converters with a full motion adaptive 3-D comb filter for Y/C separation for the composite input. In addition, the internal input multiplexer accommodates composite, s-video and component inputs. The chip uses four 16 Mbit (16-bit x 1MB) SDRAMs to handle motion-adaptive video processing algorithms. As a result of using this device, the circuit design is greatly simplified because video decoding and scan-conversion takes place on the same chip. Finally, the 10-bit digital-to-analog converters are also integrated on the same chip. The complexity of the design results in a substantial amount of power being dissipated from the 208-pin package and therefore requires a heat-sink mounted on the top for cooling. This insures long term reliability by minimizing thermal stress. However, all of this is hidden inside of the box.

Performance
Video performance on the new Brite-View DVI is once again exceptionally good given its price tag. We tested the RGB modes (640x480, 800x600, 1024x768 and 1280x1024) using a high-resolution 21" ViewSonic G810 computer display with the analog VGA connection. This monitor allowed us to observe fine edge detail of the deinterlaced and scaled picture. Our source material came from our Sony DVP-NS900V DVD player using the component video inputs running in interlaced mode. We carefully looked at the curved edges of moving images and came to the conclusion that this processor does a fabulous job of deinterlacing and scaling. Switching between 640x480 and 1024x768 revealed how good the scaler worked in the processor. Using the Avia disc, we did see a small amount of Y/C delay and there was no way to adjust this on the unit. However, it didn't appear to be a problem with the content we watched. Some better DVD players do have adjustments for this which may help. Artifacts were not easy to see, which is absolutely amazing given the price of this product. The quality of the 3-D motion adaptive comb filter was pretty good with high quality composite source material. We used the composite output from the same Sony DVP-NS900V DVD player for our tests. We did see a shimmering effect that appeared to be caused by cross color artifacts using the Star Trek Insurrection torture-test scene. The kids jumping through the hay as the camera pans across the scene showed a slight weakness in the processing. When the picture was paused on the DVD player, the shimmering artifacts completely disappeared. In general, 3-D comb filters have to work in two different modes. The 2-D comb filter processes successive scan lines within a single video field (intra-field comb filtering), whereas the 3-D comb filter processes the same scan lines taken from successive video frames (inter-frame comb filtering). The problem is the motion detection algorithms that determine the comb filter mode must be good enough to make a decision based on the field-to-field differences. This complex process is not trivial and almost always results in some artifacts. This is only an issue when using the composite input.

Next we moved to our Optoma DLP projector with an XGA (1024x768) native resolution. We connected the EzPro 757 using the DVI connection. After all, this is the big improvement made to the Brite-View DVI processor. The image was projected onto our Stewart FireHawk reference filmscreen. Setting the unit to RGB mode and matching the DLP projector's native resolution resulted in a great picture with exceptional deinterlacing. Even though this projector is geared more for business presentation purposes, it worked well as a test projector when used with the Brite-View DVI, especially when watching high resolution DVD content.

The on-screen display shows the scan rate in the upper right corner of the video for a few seconds when the user changes the setting. However, this is not very useful if the display cannot synchronize to the video scan rate. There are no indicators on the front panel to let the user know what mode the processor is set to and this can leave the user guessing. Indicators on the front panel would be a value-added feature that would improve upon the current design.

Conclusion
The Brite-View DVI deinterlacer/scaler is an exceptionally nice unit for the money. Not only does this product deinterlace, but it also scales to many common resolutions. This is particularly important for those using fixed pixel displays. Video looked clean and free of objectionable artifacts in the modes we tested. Taking advantage of today's latest chip technology and video processing algorithms, this DVI capable deinterlacer/scaler makes high quality video performance affordable. The output resolutions offered by the Brite-View will ultimately drive your decision for a possible match with your display. If cost-no-object performance and features is your goal, then you have several high-end manufacturers to choose from. However, if you are on a budget and want a quality scaler/deinterlacer that is capable of converting 480i material to one of the supported resolutions, then the Brite-View is certainly an excellent candidate.

- Kevin Nakano


Review System

Display: ViewSonic G810 21" High Resolution Monitor
Screen: Stewart Filmscreen 100" Luxus Deluxe FireHawk Screenwall
Projector: Optoma EzPro 757 High-Performance XGA DLP™ Projector
Preamplifier/Processor: Parasound AVC-2500U THX-Ultra DTS/DD Preamp/Processor
Amplification: Parasound HCA-2205AT THX-Ultra Five Channel Amplifier
Bass Management: Miller & Kreisel BMC Mini 5.1 Bass Management Controller
Front Speakers: Miller & Kreisel S-150THX (L+R) and S-150AC (Center) Speakers
Rear Speakers: Miller & Kreisel SS-250 Tripole® Surround Speakers
Subwoofer: Two Miller & Kreisel MX-350THX MkII THX-Ultra Push-pull Subwoofers
Room Treatments: Echo Buster panels and Bass Buster towers
Set-top Box #1: Samsung SIR-T165 Terrestrial HDTV Receiver with DVI
Set-top Box #2: RCA DTC100 HDTV/DSS Satellite Receiver
A/V Cables: Ultralink Platinum and Advanced Performance Series Cables
DVI Cable: Transparent Audio DVI-D Cable
Power Conditioning: Panamax MAX® 5500 ACRegenerator
Video Generator: Sencore VP300 SDTV/HDTV Video Pattern Generator
Color Analyzer #1: Sencore CP5000 ISF Certified All-Display Color Analyzer
Color Analyzer #2: GretagMacbeth Eye-One Pro Colorphotometer with ColorFacts Software


Review at a glance

Zinwell: Brite-View DVI Video Deinterlacer/Scaler

Features

  • Advanced frame buffer technology
  • Double scan conversion
  • Supports up to SXGA (1,280x1,024 resolution) for RGB output
  • Supports 480p, 720p, 1080i for YPbPr output
  • 3:2/2:2 pulldown auto detection and correction
  • Brightness, Colour, Contrast, Sharpness and Tint adjustments
  • Friendly IR Control with smart hot keys
  • The highest video quality at the most reasonable price
  • Dynamic format 4:3 or 16:9 for RGB output
  • 3D comb filter for composite input

    Specifications

    Input Connectors

  • Composite Video: RCA
  • S-Video: 4 pin, mini DIN
  • YCbCr: 3 x RCA

    Output Signal

  • Hardware switch selectable between RGB and YPbPr
  • RGB Mode: 640 x 480 (VGA), 800 x 600 (SVGA), 1024 x 768 (XGA) and 1280 x 1024 (SXGA)
  • YPbPr Mode: 480p, 720p, 1080i

    Output Connector

  • D-sub 15pin, Female type (RGB/YPbPr by switching selction)
  • DVI Output (VGA, SVGA, XGA and SXGA modes)

    Scan Rates:
  • RGB - VGA: 31.5KHz, SVGA: 37.9KHz, XGA: 48.4KHz, SXGA: 64KHz
  • YPrPb - 480p: 31.54KHz, 720p: 45.00KHz, 1080i: 33.75KHz


    Company Information
    Zinwell Corporation
    7F No. 512, Yuan San Road, Chung Ho City,
    Taipei Hsien, Taiwan, R.O.C.

    Climax Teknologies
    17706 Bay St.
    Fountain Valley, CA-92708

    Source: Manufacturer loan
    MSRP: $599
    Dimensions: 206 (L) x 157 (W) x 45 (H) mm
    Weight: 1100 grams
    Warranty: 1 year parts and labor

    URL: www.climaxtek.com
    E-mail: info@climaxtek.com

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