The Art of Home Theater Projectors

March Madness: Sanyo PLV-Z3000 Scores with Another Rebate

Greetings!  (this has been updated on 3/10/09)

While it’s most difficult for me to keep track of selling prices of dozens of home theater projectors, every once in a while something price related comes to my attention that’s worth reporting (I previously noted Epson’s increased rebate on the Home Cinema 6500UB).

For the next three weeks, Sanyo’s competition may well be crying foul.

I can’t say that Sanyo just scored with a slam-dunk, but let’s say that they just tilted the playing field in their favor, at least through the end of March.

Sanyo announced today, a new rebate program!  There are now a total of $400 in rebates on the PLV-Z3000. As many of you know, many home theater projector manufacturers just love rebates (that’s because you guys like saving money, so it gets your attention).

Up until now, The Sanyo PLV-Z3000 has been the least expensive of what I call the ultra high contrast projectors.  With a long running $200 rebate, the PLV-Z3000 has been selling in the low $2000 range, typically about $300 less than the Panasonic PT-AE3000, and also (thanks to Epson’s recent, rebate increase), the Home Cinema 6500UB.

Update:  Well, Sanyo changed the play!  Below I tell of two separate $200 rebates for the $400 total.  Sanyo just emailed to say, “nevermind” we’ve cancelled the old $200, and just replaced it with a single $400 rebate thru March month end.  I guess my March Madness title proves itself valid.

What Sanyo has just done is added a second mail-in rebate.  This rebate, however, ends on March 31st, while the first one continues at least into April.

This new second rebate is $200, so the PLV-Z3000 now has 2 $200 rebates.  They tell me it’s simpler (and probably legally smarter) to do it this way, than to cancel the existing $200 rebate, and replace it with a $400 rebate.

The bottom line, though, is that the PLV-Z3000 is now, with the two rebates, going to have a street price about $400 – $500 lower than their primary competition, the Epson Home Cinema 6500UB, and the Panasonic PT-AE3000.  That makes it about 20% less than the closest competition.

Also worth noting, the combined rebates bring the price of the PLV-Z3000 within $200 of Epson’s lower priced Home Cinema 6100, which, while significantly brighter, is no match for the Z3000 in black levels.

The Sanyo PLV-Z3000 may or may not be the best projector for your setup, but, if it’s already on your short list, I think this new rebate will add to Sanyo’s score.

OK, those of you sitting on the sidelines, this may be your best chance to get into the game with a projector with great black level performance, for a rock bottom price.

And you never know, that extra $200 savings may score points with the wife!

So, you’ve been warned, Sanyo’s March Madness ends at the end of March (unlike the basketball playoffs).  You’ve got 21 days left before all the time runs off the clock.

Be the ball!  -art

News And Comments

  • Nabi

    Hardly our ‘last chance’ in this economy. But, if Sanyo and the others don’t get real, it may be the industry’s last chance. The industry seems to be sailing along majestically like the Titanic. The situation calls to mind an old song: ‘Only The Beginning’. Lemme know when I can get it for about 1M, okay? ’til then I’m outta here.

    P.S. Make that 1M Cdn or, better yet, Zimbo.


    Greetings Nabi,

    Scammed! Hardly. (you should look up the term: A fraudulent business scheme; a swindle) We’ll see you in a year or so. No scam involved. Look, everyone knows that prices keep falling, and products keep improving in the tech world. I can’t restate the obvious constantly. Still there are market dynamics that can be “read”. One of those things, for example, is “year end deals” – when the next generation hits, there are normally great deals on “last year’s” models. Unless the manufacturer timed it well, so that their dealers run out of stock pretty much simultaneously with the first of the new shipments.

    The other thing, which I mentioned, is the impact of Fiscal Year ends. When there’s budget money to spend, before a manufacturer’s year ends, then sometimes you’ll see an advertising blitz, or a bigger rebate, or whatever they feel is the best use for that money. I believe, in the case of the Sanyo, that, that is the case. The whole rebate was put together in a very short time, this month.

    Could Sanyo decide to start their new FY off with the same rebate? Sure, but will they? Probably not. Could I be wrong? Yes. However, I figure Sanyo will be working with all new budgets and corporate directives, all affected by the tighter economy, especially in light of their being purchased by “Panasonic” (Matsushita), a few months back. So you never can tell.

    Of course next year, if a projector like this is down close to $1000, I suspect you’ll be looking at projectors comparable to the higher end models (ie. JVC RS10, RS20, Sony – VW70, etc.) and saying “I’m outa here until they come down to $1000. We always want better for less, and the nice thing about home theater projectors, is that the price performance curve is very steep. Consider what you would have paid 30 months ago, for a projector that performs like this one. And guess what, nothing around 2.5+ years ago, could touch the Z3000′s black levels. They wouldn’t support 24fps, HDMI 1.3 for Deep Color, etc. But, don’t worry, prices will fall.

    Meantime, I’m sure that old Sony Trinitron of yours will hang in another few years, with your digital converter box, so you can still watch TV.

    I like to tell a story, that goes back a bit. Back then I had a good friend, looking to buy his first computer. (timeline about 1987-8). Back then I was everyone (of my friends) computer expert, having entered the “PC” market in ’78 managing the first computer store in Philadelphia, for several years. Anyway, I suggested he buy a Mac back then. My friend, however said something like this. “Too expensive, and all I keep reading about is how each year they get better and cost less. I’ll wait until prices stop falling.” Well, my particular friend has always been technology challenged. He waited, and waited. Didn’t buy his first computer for about 6 more years. His first was a Windows 3.0 if I recall. Well, my buddy, started with Prodigy, back then, eventually switched to AOL, and has probably been online every day since. (He’s still technologically challenged, but how hard is it to surf the internet, just don’t show him a spreadsheet). The point is, there is always something better and less expensive down the road. Meantime, don’t miss out on all the fun!

    So, anyway, I hope you already have a projector, because, if not, you don’t really know what you are missing. My best guess is that you won’t find the Sanyo for less than it is now, until right before, (or after) Sanyo releases it’s replacement (Sept. or Oct.)! Time will tell!

    Last thought! Best I can tell, the home theater projector market is doing pretty well, considering the recession. People may be cutting back on a lot of things, but this is supposed to be (under normal economic times) a fast growing segment. Best I can tell, it is still growing, though slowly. I base that on feedback I get from dealers, and manufacturers, traffic to my site, clicks outbound, and that our advertising revenues are growing. All of my dealer advertisers are still spending what they did a year ago, or spending more. In other words, I believe that home theater projector unit sales will be up this year. Oh, not the 20-30% of previous years, but enough for smart manufacturers, to plan production wisely, and move product through the channels. By the way, my money is on the economy bottoming out before year end. But, what the hell do I know.

    I’ve been self employed most of my life, and count this as the fifth recession I’ve had to deal with, and lost one business to one of the recessions, so I pay attention. I don’t think this one will be worse than the one Carter left us with, back in ’82. Forget the “depression talk” junk out there. That’s all leftover from the presidential campaign. Notice the folks in power have spent the last two weeks talking about how “fundamentally sound” the economy is, the same folks that said just 4 months ago. “Failed policies, we are headed into a major depression.”

    We shall see. Anyway, see you in a year. Best of luck, with what you are watching content with these days. -art
    PS. that was fun!