Sharp XV-Z30000 Home Theater Projector Review

Sharp XV-Z30000 Projector - Appearance

Certainly the semi-circular front of the Sharp XV-Z30000 is its most unique physical trait.  This all black finished projector, offers a center mounted, recessed lens, with a snap on protective cover.

The recessed zoom lens itself has very close to a 2:1 zoom ratio (just a tiny bit less than that, actually, per the manual’s spec page, but based on Sharp’s throw chart, it should be just slightly more than 2:1).

The XV-Z30000 projector has its front infra-red (IR) sensor just to the left of the lens (when facing the projector).  Below the lens, on the bottom, is a single, screw thread adjustable front foot.  I’ll note at this point, that there are also two rear feet, the right one being screw thread style adjustable, and the left one fixed.  Few, I expect, are planning to set this Sharp XV-Z30000 home theater projector on a table top, but for those who are…a three point stance is really easy to make stable.  That said, better if the back left leg was adjustable like the other two.

Vents are to the sides of the lens, pointing off angle.  More are in the back.  I will mention here (and elsewhere), that there is a surprising amount of light leaking out of this projector from the front left vent.  It’s not pointing near the screen, but it is more than we expect for projectors in this price range.

All the inputs are in the back, and are discussed below.   The XV-Z30000 control panel – next on our agenda, is located on the left side (looking from the front).

XV-Z30000 Control Panel

As you can see from the image of the XV-Z30000 projector’s control panel, it consists of a long row of small buttons.  The control panel is complemented with three indicator lights that, instead, are located on the top of the projector (more universally visible if you ceiling mount.

No real surprises with the control panel options, so we’ll start at the back of the side with the Power button (press once for on, twice to power down).  Moving toward the front, the next button brings up the Lens menu, allowing control of zoom, focus, and lens shift (each of which have their own buttons on the remote control).

Next come buttons relating to navigation, with Return, and Enter, followed by four navigation arrow buttons: Down, Up, Left and Right.

When you are not in the menu system, however, the Up and Down arrow buttons move you (up or down) through the input choices.

Further to the right, next comes the obviously important Menu button.  That’s followed by one for Keystone correction (which you hopefully won’t need, considering the vertical and horizontal lens shift offered.  After that, the last two buttons are to toggle 3D, and Resize, which is for when working with analog computer inputs.

That’s it.  Not as easy to “navigate” the control panel as  more traditional ones, ones not restricted to a straight line of buttons, but it is adequate, especially since you’ve got a good remote control.   Most of us would prefer a more two dimensional layout, such as the arrow keys in a diamond configuration, with the Enter button in the middle.

Ultimately, no problems with using the control panel.

XV-Z30000 Projector - Input/Output

Let’s move to the back of the Z30000 projector to check out the selection of inputs and connectors.

There really aren’t any surprises here, except perhaps the lack of the usual RCA jack for a composite video source.  You’ll also note that the projector does not have an S-Video input, but that’s becoming less and less surprising, as a number of home theater projectors have dropped S-video.

What you do get for your money, is a pair of HDMI 1.4 inputs, plus a standard analog computer input that can alternately handle a Component Video feed. A set of three color coded RCA jacks sit in between the HDMI inputs and the analog computer input.  Basically, you have support for two component video feeds if you aren’t needing the analog computer input.

A 3D connector for the external emitter is also found on the back.

When it comes to communicating with the world, you will find that the Sharp XV-Z30000 comes equipped with both an ethernet style LAN connector (RJ45, of course), and also an RS232 serial port for command and control.  In other words, this projector should be able to talk to almost all room and home control systems, via one, or the other.

Let’s not forget, there is one 12 volt screen trigger for those needing.  Also on the back, there’s the usual Kensington lock (I think every projector has one), and, of course, the power receptacle.

Sharp sells the XV-Z30000 internationally, providing the right power cord needed for your location.

As always, I would prefer to see a 3rd HDMI input, but few offer it.  (The Panasonic PT-AE7000 is an exception, and does).

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