Sharp XV-Z15000 Projector Review

All of the Sharp XV-Z15000 images below are from either Blu-ray or HDTV, with the exception of Lord of the Rings (standard DVD). Remember, by the time these Sharp XV-Z15000 projector images get to you through digital camera, software, browsers, and monitor, there are definite small color shifts, saturation differences, etc. The images are to support the commentary, but keep in mind the limitations when trying to compared images from the XV-Z15000 with other home theater projectors.

In reality, all projectors, including the XV-Z15000, always look better live than the images in our reviews.

Sharp XV-Z15000 Projector - Image Quality

All of the Sharp XV-Z15000 images below are from either Blu-ray or HDTV, with the exception of Lord of the Rings (standard DVD). Remember, by the time these Sharp XV-Z15000 projector images get to you through digital camera, software, browsers, and monitor, there are definite small color shifts, saturation differences, etc. The images are to support the commentary, but keep in mind the limitations when trying to compared images from the XV-Z15000 with other home theater projectors.

In reality, all projectors, including the XV-Z15000, always look better live than the images in our reviews.

XV-Z15000 Out of the Box Picture Quality

Click to enlarge. So close

Although we use Movie 2 mode as our “best” mode after calibration, it was definitely too warm (shift towards red), right out of the box. Despite that, I have to rate the “out of the box” picture quality as very good.

The reason is simple: If you want the best color right out of the box, we recommend the Natural mode, which really is very good. It may not produce the best black level performance (it’s a lot brighter, too), but you should like the skin tones, and overall color balance.

Click Image to Enlarge

And those two things are the primary ingredients of good “out of the box” performance.

Sharp’s Natural mode on the XV-Z15000 projector is, in terms of color accuracy, superior to most projectors’ “best” mode, out of the box. In other words, the Sharp is one of the more watchable projectors without doing a color calibration. That said, it definitely benefits from a calibration, and with one, Movie 2 becomes our “best” viewing mode. At the very least, check out our recommended settings for items like Brightness, Color, etc. on the Calibration page of this review.

Sharp XV-Z15000 Projector - Flesh Tones

Movie 2 mode on the XV-Z15000 does a very good job on skin tones once you input our calibration changes. In fact, “very good” is most likely an understatement. I’ve watched a lot of movies with this Sharp, and find little fault with its handling of a wide range of skin tones. Time to remind you -while we provide the settings Mike comes up with when he calibrates each projector, there will be differences from one unit to the next (lamp variation, for example). A professional calibrator should get you even better results, but try ours, if nothing else.

Gandalf looks great (above) and Arwen, if possible, even better. You can even spot the slight shift towards green higher on her face. The image is shot in a forest and is throwing a slight green caste on everything, including her skin tones.

Below are the usual three images of Daniel Craig, as Bond, in Casino Royale, under different lighting conditions. As I always point out, skin tones should look different under different lighting conditions. You can expect significantly different looking skin tones, when switching from bright sunlight, to nighttime, fluorescent lighting, incandescent lighting, or even lighting in the shade, or a cloudy day. Consider these three images: the first, in direct sunlight, the second is a scene with fluorescent lighting, and the third, a sunny day, but Bond is sitting in the shade – indirect lighting.

Three from Aeon Flux:

From Dogma:

Men In Black:

From the DVE-HD calibration disc (digital source material, not film):

and finally one from Quantum of Solace (Bond) – stunning!:

 

 

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