Sanyo PLV-Z3 - General Performance
The PLV-Z3's menus are well laid out, but they navigate a bit differently than most other brands. Not a big deal, you'll figure it out in a few seconds, but for those of us constantly playing with different projectors menus, it does cause me to occasionally push the wrong button.
Not much to report here. As you can see from the image, the remote is very straightforward, laid out well, and backlit. Image modes, and other items that you might want to change on occasion, mostly have their own buttons, saving you the trouble of having to navigate through menu layers.
Quiet! Very Quiet! One or two of the modes do make more noise, perhaps 32db, but for the most part, the projector operates in the "20s" and that is all you can ask for. At two feet away in most modes the unit is as close to silent as you could hope for.
The Sanyo Z3 has the definite advantage over the competition, with more inputs than any of the comparably priced projectors. In fact, it is one of the few projectors, that really did put enough choices to meet most peoples needs.
There is an HDMI input for digital (compatible with DVI cables and DVI outputs from cable/satellite, and DVD players, and there are 2, right TWO, component inputs, which makes the engineers at Sanyo brilliant, or everyone else, not too clever. Not everyone has an AV receiver with component video switching, which means that one component isn't enough if you need to bring component from your cable/satellite receiver AND your DVD player. Also the current generation of game machines like X-box and Playstation 2 can (optionally) output component for best quality image. You get the idea.
End result, the Z3 has 2 components, one digital (HDMI), and one computer input!!! By comparison, its major competition the Panasonic AE700u has one component, one HDMI, and one computer. My own BenQ 8700+ at over twice the price, has one component (interlaced only), one component (with BNC connectors) and one DVI-I. That means both the Panasonic and BenQ come up short by comparison.
Of course there is the usual composite input and S-Video.
If you have lots of devices, the Z3 has the edge on the competition!