Sharp XV-Z15000 Projector Review

The XV-Z15000 is, over all, pretty average, in brightness. It’s just a little less bright in its “best” mode than average, but substantially brighter than the dimmest competitors, a couple of which are in the mid-two hundreds while the Sharp is around 350 lumens.

I viewed the projector with Bright Boost on for most of my Movie 2 viewing. Movie 2 is the one we define as our choice for “best” mode, although Movie 1 is virtually the same brightness. Bright Boost seems to be their name for TI’s Brilliant Color, or so it would seem from its behavior.

Sharp XV-Z15000 Brightness

The XV-Z15000 is, over all, pretty average, in brightness. It’s just a little less bright in its “best” mode than average, but substantially brighter than the dimmest competitors, a couple of which are in the mid-two hundreds while the Sharp is around 350 lumens.

I viewed the projector with Bright Boost on for most of my Movie 2 viewing. Movie 2 is the one we define as our choice for “best” mode, although Movie 1 is virtually the same brightness. Bright Boost seems to be their name for TI’s Brilliant Color, or so it would seem from its behavior.

Here are the uncalibrated measurements for the XV-Z15000 in the different preset modes, both lumens, and the measured color temperature for white (100 IRE). 6500K is the ideal temperature. Unless otherwise noted, all measurements are taken with the projector lens at full wide angle (largest image). The limited zoom range naturally doesn’t affect brightness too much, so we skipped the mid-point. The rest of the settings (Brightness, Color Saturation, Iris settings, etc.) are listed in the Calibration section:

Post calibration, Movie 2 mode measured 355 lumens @6478K.

Switching to low lamp, brightness drops a whopping 48.5%. That would hold in any mode.

As you can see from the numbers above, Dynamic mode, is pretty good, with almost 1100 lumens. That actually makes it the brightest of the “average” projectors in brightness in its price range but still down a good 30% in lumens from the brightest (the Epsons).

Going from full wide-angle to full telephoto (it’s really not far to go), drops the brightness by just less than 10%. In other words – not much.

When comparing the brightness of the Z15000 with most of the 3LCD projector competition with their mostly 2:1 zooms remember we measured those at the mid-point of the zoom. With those projectors, their placement range is about the same as the Z15000′s when they are in full wide angle. Based on that, projectors like the PT-AE3000, Epson 6500UB, Sanyo Z3000, Mitsubishi HC6500, etc., are all going to be brighter than the mid-point numbers we publish. They will have about 15 to 20% more brightness than those mid-point numbers, when placed at the same distance from the same screen as the Sharp.

Pre-calibration, we measured these color temperatures (target is 6500K) over the grayscale range, for Natural and Dynamic modes:

Standard = 1055 @ 6849
Natural = 861 @ 6757
Dynamic = 1099 @ 6834 ” brightest “
Movie 1 = 305 @ 5909
Movie 2 = 312 @ 5807 “best” (after calibration )
Game = 1099 @ 6784
                                          Natural mode                       Dynamic mode
30 IRE - 6626 6707
50 IRE - 6693 6753
80 IRE - 6741 6791
100 IRE - 6757 6777

Now that’s an extremely tight range, but in both cases a touch cool (shift to blue).

Movie 2 mode – our “best” mode, however isn’t anywhere near as accurate as either of those, with 100 IRE (white) down at 5807K uncalibrated. I’ve commented that this Sharp projector has good color out of the box, but in this case, it’s because it does have several modes that are very good, just not the one with the best blacks.

As you see, Dynamic mode is the brightest, and it turns out to look very good for a bright mode. Even better, if you will sacrifice about 18% of the 1099 lumens by switching to Natural mode, you will find a better picture still.

Reminder, you’ll find a lot more gory details in the calibration section.

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