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Sanyo PLV-Z5 Projector Screen Recommendations

Posted on November 2, 2006 by Art Feierman

Sanyo PLV-Z5 Projector Screen Recommendations

Screen size and ambient light, as always fit into the equation. However, since I would say the Sanyo will serve most people best with screens of 92" to 106" diagonal, and is acceptable in most rooms to 110" diagonal, that most will want a screen that maximizes brightness. Combine that with overall extremely good black levels, and screens like Stewart's Studiotek 130, Carada's Brilliant White, or similar screens from Da-lite, Draper, Grandview, and others, should serve very well. Part of the time while viewing the PLV-Z5 in my testing room, I filled my 106" Carada, and found that I had enjoyable viewing in Creative Cinema mode, while watching movies, including Phantom, and Sin City, both which are overall, pretty dark.

On the other hand, even with roughly a 110" diagonal image size projected on to my 128" Firehawk screen (light gray high contrast), and with a mid-zoom setting, I found the PLV-Z5's brightness marginal, when watching a movie in Creative Cinema. As I write this, I have college football going on ESPN HD, with a modest amount of ambient light, and the projector in Vivid mode. In this mode, I have power to spare.

Sanyo PLV-Z5 Measurements and Calibration

After viewing a number of hours of movies in the Cinema modes, as mentioned, I settled on Creative Cinema as my primary watching mode.

In the Cinema Modes, white (100 IRE) was typically cooler (higher Kelvin temperature) than the various gray levels (80 IRE - light gray, 50 IRE - medium gray, 30 IRE -dark gray). I was able to tighten up the spread in temperature with the Advanced color controls. Interestingly, with the lamp iris set for -42 (default, instead of 0), which I used, 100IRE was warmer, and much closer to 80IRE, 50IRE, etc.

The real problem with the PLV-Z5 is reproducing reds. When looking at color bars, red always came out too orangeish (too much yellow). In the course of working with the PLV-Z5, I was never able to get reds to look properly red. After discussing with Sanyo, and a professional calibrator, I learned that the reds are definitely fixable, using the color management system, which I did not play with.

Here's what things look like, out of the box, with only 100 IRE color temperature measurements for modes other than Creative Cinema. For movies optimum is 6500K. For most TV/HDTV content, around 8000K is ideal.

Creative Cinema Mode
100 IRE 7043K
80 IRE 6533K
50 IRE 6543K
30 IRE 6413
Other modes
Pure Cinema Mode 100 IRE 6056K (a little warm - too reddish)
Brilliant Cinema 100IRE 6817K
Natural 100IRE 7033K
Living 100IRE 7245
Dynamic 100IRE 9983K
Vivid 100IRE 10087K
Improved measurements (Creative Cinema)
100 IRE 6812K
80 IRE 6474K
50 IRE 6525K
30 IRE 6421K

With individual adjustments on the Advanced menu, a quick, very basic, calibration resulted in slightly

The end result was very enjoyable flesh tone handling, (although a slight shift to orange that a little more effort should have fixed).

The two brightest modes, Dynamic and Vivid with their 10,000K temperatures are a bit cool ( blue), but that is about where the lamp's native temperature is, so where you find the maximum number of lumens. If you don't need the extra 10% or so lumens, just reduce blue a bit and make it a user memory setting.

Image Noise

Overall, very good. Some slight motion artifacts on the HQV test, and background noise is fairly minimal. Image Noise should not be an issue in selecting the Sanyo PLV-Z5 home theater projector.

Warranty is next!

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