After reading many messages in this Forum, I would like to share my experience and want to ask one question at the end of my post.
I bought a Zinwell 970A on Dec. 20 and noticed that the packaging box (in color blue) was different from what I saw in August (in color yellow). I hooked up this converter box with both RF and A/V lines to my old VCR and old TV (bought in 1999). I also found that the picture quality of the signal from the RF output is worse than the quality of the signal from the A/V lines. This is consistent with the manual and comments from System2000.
With my setup, when I need to watch the analog TV programs, I will press the "digital/analog" button on the 970A remote control and turn off my VCR. (From the 970A menu posted on the web, I see that this button is not available on the remote of the previous version of 970A.) Then I choose the channel I want to watch. Basically two or three buttons are involved (rather than going through 9 buttons from the old menu page of Zinwell 970A).
Originally Posted by dattier
A rep named Jessica confirmed that when the box is turned back on, RF Output does revert from RF Through to channel 3. I didn't ask her why but did explain why it's not such a great design choice.
I tested the question posted by Dattier. My answer is: no, my Zinwell 970A does not revert from RF-through to channel 3. I need to be specific here. First, if the antenna signals are from the A/V lines, the choice of channel 3, channel 4, or RF-through from the 970A menu does nothing to me. This is because my VCR manual stated that when the A/V lines are used, there is no difference whether I set my VCR to be channel 3 or channel 4. (However in this case I am watch channel 3.) Second, if the antenna signals are from the RF cable, then I purposely choose channel 4 as my TV display channel. Then from the 970A menu, I switch from channel 4 to RF-through. Then I turn off 970A (with the red light on). Then I turn on the 970A and let the digital signals through the RF cable. I still see the digital programs displayed on channel 4, rather than channel 3. In my area, channel 4 is actually occupied so I have my VCR set to channel 3 in the above testing.
My 970A also displays the present time when I want to set up the timer to record programs. There is no need for me to set up the time. The timer has AM and PM options.
The channel that I want to record can be renamed to the channel number rather than the name of the station.
Originally Posted by dattier
RF Through is never entirely shut off, but if the box is on and RF Output is set to channel 3 or channel 4, the box's RF output kills the VHF-low channels; even then, RF passthrough for VHF-high and UHF channels comes through very well.* If you need RF throughput only for channels 7-69, no workaround is necessary.
I actually need the analog RF pass through feature to watch three VHF-high and UHF channels in my area. However, I find that the analog signals of those three channels through the 970A are worse than the analog signals without the 970A. On the other hand, the analog signals of other UHF channels which also offer digital signals are as good as digital signals. I am quite disappointed by this fact and believe that the problem is due to some kind of RF interference. (I have followed the 970A menu instructions so I let the RF through with the converter box on.) The whole point of RF-through is to let us watch programs from those small TV stations rather than those stations which will broadcast digital in 54 days.
In fact, I had a model 1030D of AccessHD which also allows RF through. I found that the analog signals of those three stations through the AccessHD 1030D were actually improved; i.e., the quality of those signals was almost as good as digital signals.
Is there any cheap way that I can improve the quality of analog signals through Zinwell 970A? I understand that I can hook up one antenna to my VCR (through the RF cable) and one antenna to 970A (which outputs digital signals through A/V lines to my VCR) to solve my problem. However, is there a better way to do it? (I have also tried to adjust the direction of my antenna but it does not help a lot.)