Main Features / Overview
This "Vizio" (made by AmTran Taiwan) is a 47" LCD television with a native panel resolution of 1920 x 1080 from LG Philips. This model is priced at the cutting edge (i.e. - low-end) of the pricing spectrum and is the kind of "no-name" model which is gaining ground in the US and other markets with entry-level, cost-conscious consumers. This Vizio features removable speakers (can be mounted as "panel-only'), and also supports dual HDMI input, composite inputs, as well as standard analog / coaxial signals, and has a full contingent of multiple I/O choices (see feature list for full details).
Mainstream, entry-level flat panel TV consumers.
This 47-inch TV from Vizio was introduced to the market in the fourth quarter at the initial price tag of $1899.
Pricing and Availability
This TV was $1899 per Vizio at Costco when we bought it a few weeks before the time of this analysis (March 9, 2007), but as of today now appears to be selling for $1699. This particular brand name does not appear to be exclusively but nearly exclusively offered by Coscto and Sam's Clubs in the USA. The pricing on the Vizio website appears to correspond to the pricing offered by Costco.
The 47-inch TV from Vizio was introduced to the market in the fourth quarter. It accounted for 60% of the 47-49-inch TV shipments during that quarter. Of the total shipments for the year 2006, Vizio 47-inch TV accounted for 40% of the shipments. In 2007 and 2008, the total 47-49 inch LCD TV market in North America (the key and only market for Vizio) will add upto 437,000 units. iSuppli anticipates Vizio to at least occupy 20% of this market because of its price advantage over the competition. For the purposes of this analysis we have assumed a production volume of - 90,000 units over the course of a two-year product lifecycle.
As a reminder, volume production assumptions are meant primarily to be used for our cost analysis in terms of amortized NRE and tooling costs, especially for custom components specific to the model being analyzed (mechanical components especially).
We often remark that most devices torn down follow the 80/20 rule, in that 80 of costs are in 20% of the items, however, in this case, 80% of the material costs are in a single item - the LCD panel from LG Philips. At $950 this swamps the entire BOM cost to some extent. Beyond the LCD panel, the high power supply from Delta is also a major driver (the second largest single item) at $32. Beyond those items, of course all of the core silicon comes from MediaTek Taiwan, and dominates the Main PCB from both a design and cost perspective. Finally, and as is the case with all such televisions, mechanical components, especially given their custom nature, and the relatively low assumed production volumes (90,000 units), are always a substantial item from a BOM cost perspective.
• $950 - LG Philips - LC470WU1 - LCD Display Unit - 47" Wide UXGA LCD, 1920 x 1080 Pixels, Transmissive, 8-Bit, 16.7M Color, Brightness: 550cd/m^2, Contrast Ratio:800, 0.5415x0.5415mm Pixel Pitch, 1039.68 x 584.82mm Active Area
• $32 - Delta - DPS-475AP - Power Supply - 451W, Input AC100-240V, 50-60Hz, 6.5A, Output 5Vsb:5A, 12V:3.5A, 24VA:2.5A, 24VI:13.5A
Electronic Cost Drivers
• $14.80 - MediaTek - MT5351AG - Video Decoder - Single Chip
• $12.90 - MediaTek - MT8206AG - Audio/Video Processor
• $7.33 - Main PCB - 4-Layer - FR4, Lead-Free
• $5.70 - MediaTek - MT5112BD - ATSC Demodulator
• $4.65 - Samsung - DTVS205CH201A - Front End Module - Tuner
• $4.04 - Nanya - NT5DS16M16CS-5T - SDRAM - DDR, 256Mb, 16Mx16, 200MHz, 3-3-3
• $3.26 - ProMOS Technologies - V58C2128164SBI5 - SDRAM - DDR, 128Mbits, 4 Banks X 2Mbit X 16, 200MHz, CMOS, 2.5V
• $2.40 - MediaTek - MT8293AE - HDMI Transceiver - HDMI SIL9011Compatible
Mechanical Cost Drivers
• $19.02 - Display Faceplate (Front Bezel) - Clear Injection Molded Polycarbonate, Painted, Silkscreened
• $14.18 - Rear Cover - Stamped/Formed Paint-Loc Steel, w/ 18 Rivets, Black Texture Paint
• $7.88 - Stand Base Plate - Stamped Steel, Machined, Black Paint
• $7.47 - Evercamel Plastic - - Stand Base - Injection Molded ABS, Silver Painted
• $6.76 - Rear Mounting Panel for PCBAs - Stamped/Formed Paint-Loc Steel, w/ 19 Pressed-In Threaded Studs
Subtotal Main Cost Drivers~$1092
Total Materials Costs~$1190
Materials and Manufacturing~$1214
What Is Not Included in our Cost Analysis
The total materials and manufacturing costs reported in this analysis reflect ONLY the direct materials cost (from component vendors and assorted EMS providers), AND manufacturing and test. Not included in this analysis are costs above and beyond the material manufacture of the core device itself - cost of intellectual property, royalties and licensing fees (those not already included into the per component price), software, software loading and test, shipping, logistics marketing and other channel costs including not only EMS provider and the OEM's margin, but that of other resellers. Our cost analysis is meant to focus on those costs incurred in the manufacture of the core device and exceptionally in some circumstances the packaging and literature as well.
Function / Performance
No testing was performed on this television.
Market Sector / Performance
Because of increased consumer interest and acceptance as well as continuing panel maker and OEM commitments, the LCD-TV market is going through an explosive growth phase. This market is increasing its support for the large-screen TV market, i.e. 40-inch and larger sizes by increasing its capacity in Gen-7 and more advanced LCD fabs. OEMs are focusing on meeting the large-size needs of consumers. OEM and panel maker commitment combined with the declining prices of LCD TVs at retail has led to the increased acceptance and adoption.
Brand and channel explosion is helping these TVs gain footholds in the market. Consumer perception about the quality of the TVs and technology as well as acceptance because of declining price points will ensure steady growth of this market. Of course, the technology has improved substantially over the past few years with faster response times, deeper black levels and support for full HD or 1080p.
North America is the largest market for 47-inch LCD TVs with a compounded growth rate of 72% between 2007 and 2011. Establishing the brand and gaining stronghold on the market in its initial stages will be beneficial to Vizio but the company should expect increasing competition from other OEMs like LG Electronics, Philips, Westinghouse, Syntax-Brillian and others who are now eyeing this space as consumer interest increases, prices decline and panels become available.
For Vizio, the biggest advantage is its price point for this product and the biggest disadvantage is single channel strategy. The company needs to increase its reach to consumers using other popular channels including online stores, CE stores, other mass merchandizers and even specialty AV stores. As of now the single store policy is working in favor of the company but as other brands have their similarly sized TVs available at price clubs, the comparison and competition will be inevitable and the only way for Vizio to win will be on price basis, thus, cutting their margins further.
Country of Origin / Volume Assumptions
Country of Origin for Vizio TVs is Taiwan with the manufacturer being AmTran. Assumptions were made, however, that portions of the assembly may be made in mainland China to further reduce costs, despite final assembly, and Am Tran being based in Taiwan. We have therefore assumed that plastics, metals, etc were all performed in mainland China and that PCBAs as well as final assembly / integration was performed in Taiwan.
Country of origin assumptions relate directly to the associated cost of manufacturing, where calculated by iSuppli. In the cases of "finished" sub-assemblies (such as chargers), we do not calculate internal manufacturing costs, but rather assess the market price of the finished product in which case country of origin assumptions may or may not have a direct effect on pricing.
Design for Manufacturing / Device Complexity
The Vizio GV47L has a total component count of 2044 components - not accounting for LCD Panel subcomponents as part of this count (it is treated as a unit, as it purchased that way), making this count incomparable to previously analyzed televisions. Nonetheless, for a complex system such as a television this appears to be a relatively modest component count. We were impressed with the level of integration and simplicity in this design.
Whereas some recently analyzed TV had many separate PCBs - the core functionality of this design all takes place on the single Main PCB. In addition to that PCB there are really only two other "significant" PCBAs: the Audio Amp PCB, and the power supply. While there are other minor PCBs in the assembly, and those that were an integral part of the LCD panel (CCFL inverter boards, and the LCD driver board) are not accounted for in this analysis as they are considered a sub-system of the LCD which is sold as a fully assembled unit, like a hard drive.
Component counts have a direct bearing on the overall manufacturing cycle times and costs, and also can increase or decrease overall yields and re-work. Our calculations of manufacturing costs factor counts and more qualitative complexities in the design. Note that manual labor has a much smaller effect on auto-insertion assembly lines (for the Main PCB, for example), where manufacturing costs are much more capital equipment intensive and driven by these investment costs.
The core design is based on a practically fully autonomous turn-key 4 chip chipset from Media Tek, a fabless IC base in Taiwan. MediaTek doesn't even seem to offer, per it's website TV chipsets, but is the market leader for DVD player chipsets as well as chipsets for DVD-ROM, CD-R/RW/ROM - but no mention of televisions, yet this is clearly a near 100% use of MediaTek chipset for this application. Die photography did not reveal other logos than MediaTek.
As a result of this obfuscation by MediaTek, we cannot be certain about all of the features of each of the chips, but gathering information from our research, and based on our experience with other TV deisgns we have assumed, to some extent, the functionality of each chip.
Overall the design is super compact and strikes us as spartan. We were initially surprised at the level of integration achieved in this design, and it's overall low component count and maximum use of commoditized parts. Compared with major brands, the complexity here is much lower, and the bulk of everything in the design outside the LCD panel itself is contained all on one Main PCB.
• LG Philips - LC470WU1 - LCD Display Unit - 47" Wide UXGA LCD, 1920 x 1080 Pixels, Transmissive, 8-Bit, 16.7M Color, Brightness: 550cd/m^2, Contrast Ratio:800, 0.5415x0.5415mm Pixel Pitch, 1039.68 x 584.82mm Active Area
• Delta - DPS-475AP - Power Supply - 451W, Input AC100-240V, 50-60Hz, 6.5A, Output 5Vsb:5A, 12V:3.5A, 24VA:2.5A, 24VI:13.5A
• MediaTek - MT5351AG - Video Decoder - Single Chip
• MediaTek - MT8206AG - Audio/Video Processor
• Samsung - DTVS205CH201A - Front End Module - Tuner
I/O & Interface
• MediaTek - MT5112BD - ATSC Demodulator
• MediaTek - MT8293AE - HDMI Transceiver - HDMI SIL9011Compatible
• Pericom - PI3HDMI412FT-A - MUX/DEMUX - 4-Differential Channel, DVI/HDMI Compliant
• Wolfson Microelectronics - WM8776SEFT/V - Codec - Audio, 24-Bit, 192-kHz Stereo, Sigma-Delta ADC and DAC, 5-Channel I/P Multiplexer
• Nanya - NT5DS16M16CS-5T - SDRAM - DDR, 256Mb, 16Mx16, 200MHz, 3-3-3
• ProMOS Technologies - V58C2128164SBI5 - SDRAM - DDR, 128Mbits, 4 Banks X 2Mbit X 16, 200MHz, CMOS, 2.5V
• Eon - EN29LV320T-70TCP - Flash - Top Boot Sector, 32Mb (4096Kx8-bit / 2048Kx16-bit), 70ns, CMOS, 3.0V