Sanyo PLV-Z2000 Home Theater Projector Review – General Performance

First, some comments before we get into the usual categories in this section.

The Sanyo relies on both dynamic lamp and iris to improve black levels. As is usual, little can be done to enhance an image where there is any significant amount of white or a fully bright color (such as brightest red), in a frame, but when frames are mostly dark with no very bright areas, the Sanyo is very effective.

The Sanyo projector also has a number of enhancement controls, each which impacts the basic image, and many jazz up, or make the image look more dynamic, richer, etc. Ultimately my goal is to first, identify how faithfully the projector handles content. Those other controls, including Dynamic Gamma, Auto Black Stretch, Contrast Enhancement, and Transient improvement, can do interesting things, but the trick is to start with a great, film-like picture.

That doesn’t mean that it’s bad to use these many controls. Ultimately, they are there so you can put the most enjoyable image possible on the screen. It’s like listening to music. Some sound systems have too much bass, or are too forward in the mid-ranges. You are allowed to like such things. It doesn’t make you a less wonderful person, but it does mean that you aren’t a purist. The Sanyo is just loaded with such goodies. Since use of most of them is subjective, you’ll have to play with them, and figure out what works for you

Sanyo PLV-Z2000 Menus

Sanyo’s menus are extensive. That is a good thing. The layout is okay overall, but I have a complaint in trying to navigate the menus. Most notably, the Image menu has two pages, Image adjust menu has two pages (and then there’s the Advanced menu), off the 2nd of those pages. The Setting menu, is worse, with 3 pages to scroll through to find what you are looking for. As such, I consider the menu structure to be okay, but nothing great, even though, it is very complete.

The first main menu, is the Image menu, which is very basic. It allows you to choose between the seven Preset modes (Pure Cinema…). Scoll down past them and you are on page two, where you can select from the user savable modes.


The Image Adjust, is where most of the adjustment action takes place. The first screen has the usual suspects – brightness, contrast, color (saturation), Color temperature, and separate R,G, and B controls. moving to the second page, you find some really choice goodies. Sure, Sharpness is there, and Noise reduction, but the big features are Lamp Control, Gamma control, and the Advanced Menu. From this screen,you can save settings.

The Advanced Menu is dripping with advanced controls. Here you can control the Iris, setting it to either Dynamic, or Manual, and you can adjust the manual range. Auto Black Stretch, Contrast enhancement, Transient improvement, and Dynamic Gamma, are all found here. Also, Color management

The Transient Improvement feature caught my attention. It certainly has an impact on a scene. You’ll have to be the judge as to whether it works for you. Here are two images, with just a difference of default (0), and a minimum difference set to 1, of the same frame:

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