Sharp XV-Z30000 Home Theater Projector Review

The Very Bottom Line on the XV-Z30000 projector

First of all, here’s a DLP home theater projector for those of us who are rainbow sensitive. It’s rare I can watch a movie on a DLP projector and not notice rainbows from time to time.  Didn’t notice a single one last night watching Pirates of the Carribean, and it’s got plenty of darker scenes that are good for spotting those pesky rainbows.

This Sharp will slug it out with other DLP projectors like the Optoma HD8300, the brighter BenQ W7000, and the slightly less bright Mitsubishi HC7800D.  From that overall brightness standpoint, also add these to the list of most direct competitors:  The $3K – $5K LCoS projectors be they JVC or Sony.

The rest of the competition is more different – primarily those really bright 3LCD projectors:  Epson’s 5010 and 6010, and the Panasonic PT-AE7000.  Those guys have the big advantages of being able to move out into the family room with lots of lumens, but are great in theater too.  They have what the Sharp lacks – enough brightness to have a reasonably bright 3D image on a decent sized, typical screen.

All considered though, it is a fairly elegant projector.  No rough edges that I’ve noticed so far.  And don’t forget you can go wide screen, thanks to lens memory.

While this Sharp XV-Z30000 may seem very similar to a few other projectors, personally, I’d choose it over two of it’s closest competitors – the Optoma HD8300 and the Mitsubishi HC7800D, for my own use.

Sharp XV-Z30000 Projector: Pros

  • A just above average measured lumens in “best” mode, is enough for standard screens up to 110″ or a bit larger, no problem, for movie viewing in best mode. (In a proper darkened environment, of course)
  • Very good overall color, and also skin tones, DLP “look and feel”
  • Especially good dark shadow detail
  • I never saw a rainbow!  6 segment 5x color wheel! Outstanding!
  • Impressive 2:1 zoom lens, lens shift, all motorized, for placement flexibility
  • Blacks are ultra high contrast – not the best, but real good
  • The iris action was essentially unnoticeable
  • HDMI 1.4a inputs (2) allows for support for Blu-ray 3D content
  • No problem with any 720p or 1080 content from any DirecTV 3D channel
  • 2 pair of included 3D active glasses plus emitter provide plenty of range for 3D
  • Lens Memory + – that is, Two memory modes “also” remember lens settings
  • Use the Lens Memory to work with a Cinemascope wide screen
  • Lamp Life is excellent (rated 5000 hours) when running in low power mode
  • Low maintenance – no filters to change
  • Networking!
  • Lamp can be replaced without unmounting the projector
  • Excellent warranty 3 years parts and labor
  • A cool looking projector
  • Overall, a very good value proposition, especially among DLP projectors

Sharp XV-Z30000 Projector: Cons

  • Definitely could use more lumens for 3D viewing
  • Lamp life shorter than average.  Sharp rates 3000 hours in eco-mode no rating (figure 2000 hours) at full power
  • Black level performance could definitely be a bit better (though rather good)
  • Fair amount of audible noise at full power, (many other good projectors are louder including some competing DLPs and a few especially bright LCD projectors)
  • Control panel could be better laid out
  • Remote lacks backlight – soft glow is insignificant as in useless.  Buy a 3rd party remote…
  • No CFI – not a huge loss, but some folks might want it.  It’s more surprising than an issue

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