Sanyo PLV-Z2000 Home Theater Projector Review: Overview
11-1-2007 - Art Feierman
Check out how the Sanyo PLV-Z2000 fared in our comparison report.
Click to read the head-to-head Sanyo PLV-Z2000 vs. Mitsubishi HC4900 projector comparison.
Click to read the head-to-head Sanyo PLV-Z2000 vs. Panasonic PT-AE2000U projector comparison.
View annual winners.
For the first look at the upcoming Sanyo PLV-Z3000, check out our blog. Scheduled to ship in December 2008.
Sanyo PLV-Z2000 Projector Highlights:
- Lowest cost 1080p projector shipping, or announced (11/07)
- Below average brightness for 1080p projector
- Very film-like, especially for an LCD based home projector
- Good out of the box color
- Not a good choice for screens larger than 110" diagonal
- Wide range zoom lens, plus lens shift for easy placement
- Slightly sharper than average for 1080p projectors
- Initial pricing $2495 less $300 rebate
- Excellent price performance
Well, it's about time. The PLV-Z2000 is about a year late, compared to the competition. Just about everyone else in the home theater projector game has had a projector out since last fall, or winter. Sanyo has finally decided to join the party. This first attempt at an affordable 1080p home cinema projector, turns out to be a very good one. I should note, however, that Sanyo, like Sony, seems consistent, in that their projectors tend to be less bright than almost all of the competition. Also, as is typical with LCD projectors, they give up more lumens to get their best picture, relative to their brightest, than do competing DLP projectors.
PLV-Z2000 - All considered, a most enjoyable projector to watch
We'll get into the details throughout the review, but perhaps most importantly (along with the low price point), is the watchability of the PLV-Z2000. I logged over 40 hours of viewing, including a couple hours of watching it side by side with the Optoma HD8000 (essentially, the same as their HD80). Most impressive. The Sanyo is just one well rounded projector, easy to watch and enjoy, and that, along with the price, is why it deserves our Hot Product Award.
Editor's note: Look out for our 1080p comparison summary, in January '08, once we have 4 additional 1080p projector reviews finished. That piece should feature 8 1080p projectors between $2000+ and $7000.
Sanyo PLV-Z2000 Projector: Basic Specs
Native Resolution: 1080p (1920x1080)
Brightness: 1200 lumens
Zoom Lens ratio: 2:1
Lens shift: Vertical and horizontal (manual)
Lamp life: Sanyo doesn't provide info. We assume about 2000 hours
Weight: 16.0 lbs. (7.1kg)
Warranty: 3 Years Parts and Labor
Click here for more complete Sanyo PLV-Z2000 specifications and brochure.
OK, time to get things started.
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Sanyo PLV-Z2000 Home Theater Projector: Physical Tour
The Z2000 comes in a slightly boxy, but all white, matte finish. With rounded edges, and a door that automatically closes to hide the lens (and keep it clean) when not in use, the PLV-Z2000 is good looking, in a utilitarian way. (If you want highly sculpted - not that it should matter - look to Epson.)
Facing the Sanyo Z2000, the 2:1 manual zoom lens is mounted slightly off center, to the right. Measured from the front of the lens, the Z2000 can be as close to a 100" diagonal screen, as 9 feet 10 inches, and as far back as 20 feet. Focus and zoom are achieved by rotating the trim rings around the recessed lens. An infra-red sensor for the remote control is further to the right. The front screw thread adjustable feet are on the bottom just behind the front of the projector.
Next we move to the right side (still looking from the front). Here are found the vertical and horiztonal lens shift dials, and a lens lock to lock in those adjustments.
The control panel is located on the top of the PLV-Z2000. It is your classic control panel, consisting of nine buttons and 3 indicator lights. The indicator lights are for Power, Temperature, and Lamp. Looking from the back of the projector, the nine buttons are laid out as follows:
Three rows of three. The top row has Power (press once for on, twice for off), on the top right, and the Menu button on the top left. The bottom left is Input select, and the bottom right is an Info button. The other buttons (top center, 2nd row left and right, and bottom center), are the usual four arrow keys for menu navigation, and the center (center row) button is the Enter button.
The right side (from the rear) is mostly exhaust fan venting. And that takes us to the rear of the Sanyo PLV-Z2000. This Sanyo is fairly well equipped, although not extensively so. There are two HDMI inputs (I wish everyone would offer 3, but almost no one does), and two Component video inputs. In addition, there are the obligatory S-video and composite video inputs, and a computer input - the traditional analog HD15 connector. Lastly, there's also a service port. The power receptacle and "hard" power switch are also on the rear of the Z2000.
That pretty much covers the physical aspects of the projector. As I said, the Sanyo PLV-Z2000 is an extremly watchable projector. Time to substantiate that opinion in our next section on image quality.