Sanyo PLV-Z2000


posted 8/11/2008 by Dan Keener
other articles by Dan Keener
One Page Platforms: AV
Gameplay Tests
I pulled out the Playstation 3 to switch up the games that I have been reviewing the projectors with. First on tap was Resistance: Fall of Man. I played the Burning Bridges section and the projector really showed off the contrasting textures around the town. From the brick facades to the burned out buildings and rubble, the Sanyo did a nice job of replicating the game area. There is a lot of action going on in this game both up close and in the background, so I was pleasantly surprised at how well the PLV-Z2000 handled these varying levels of activity on the screen. They were clean, detailed and easily discernable. After playing Resistance on a normal 720p LCD, it was quite an upgrade to play it utilizing the 1080p output to maximize the image quality.

I also played quite a bit of Rachet and Clank: Future Tools of Destruction with the PS3. I was specifically looking for how the Sanyo rendered the brightly lit and colorful environment as well as getting a good gauge on how the projector would handle a lot of activity on the screen at one time. As I worked my way deeper into the opening levels of the game, two things really stood out. The first was the texture of Ratchet’s fur and Clanks metal skin. I wasn’t specifically looking at this, but it was detailed enough that it caught my eye despite this game being a colorful menagerie of robots, plants, bombs and boxes that were also drawing my attention. These items in the environment lead me to the second thing that caught my eye, which was how well everything worked together on screen. Much like Resistance: Fall of Man, there is always something going on somewhere in your view. There is always a nasty robot working their way toward you, little fur balls trying to blow you up or stuff just getting scattered around in both the background and foreground. Just like my results with Resistance, The Sanyo projector displayed Rachet and Clank as very detailed and clean looking, while the beautiful and vibrant landscape stayed true no matter how many things were getting blown up on the screen.

While everyone on the face of the Earth was playing Grand Theft Auto IV, I was getting messages on Xbox Live from friends asking me if I was sick or crazy. This was due the last game I tested being The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion on the Xbox 360, which has become my preferred benchmark for video device tests. I spent a good long time playing through various levels of Oblivion primarily to get a feel for how the projector handled various lighting situations. Anyone familiar with the game knows that the environment is quite dynamic, so the weather changes constantly and as the sun rises and sets the image reacts accordingly. All these variables create a gaming atmosphere on screen that changes constantly, meaning your video output needs to be able to keep up with extreme brightness, darkness and everything in between. Again, the Sanyo was nearly flawless producing a fabulous gaming image and experience.

The overall gaming performance of the Sanyo PLV-Z2000 was excellent, providing me every detail and image I expected to see, and a few that I had not seen before (a good thing). Despite the unit not having any specific mode or circuitry to eliminate lag from the console, the LCD-based projo never felt like it was falling behind or getting out of sequence while playing. While reviewing the Sanyo, I had some of my all-time best gaming experiences to date.

Miscellaneous Items of Note
• The PLV-Z2000 has a large chassis that will require an extended shelf space.
• It includes a three-year, limited part and labor warranty and a 90-day lamp warranty.
• Capable of a varied screen size for both short and long throw distances.
• Replacement lamp costs around $300-$400.
• Requires large size ceiling mount.
• Low heat and whisper quiet fan technology.

Pros Cons
Motorized Lens Cover Large Size
Excellent Image Unique Mounting Pattern
Whisper Quiet Manual control dials "sloppy"
Great Value  
Lots of Inputs  

Testing Methodology
Items utilized in the testing of the Sanyo PLV-Z2000 included, but not limited to:

Xbox 360 Elite, Xbox 360 HD-DVD drive, Sony PlayStation 3, Sony Blu-Ray drive (PS3), amplified Off-air antenna, DirecTV Satellite feed, and a 92” 16:9 Da-Lite fixed screen.

Testing was done at a throw distance of 11’ 5” from a 92” 16:9 screen with a bookshelf mount location (approx six feet off the floor.) Seating was at a distance of nine feet from the screen.

The Conclusion
The Sanyo PLV-Z2000 is a fantastic looking Home Theater projector that delivers excellent picture quality for gaming as well as normal and HD TV viewing. The large size of the chassis, sloppy dial construction and inability to mount it with most universal mounts are negatives, but not enough to override the excellent picture it produces. For anyone that does not have space limitations and is looking for maximum flexibility in the size of the projected image, the PLV-Z2000 is an ideal solution at $2,499.

A special thanks to Automated Visions/AV Homes here in Hilliard, Ohio for the use of a 92” fixed Da-Lite screen.

The Sanyo PLV-Z2000 is a big box that delivers an even bigger picture. Images were crisp, set-up was easy and the gaming and TV viewing fantastic. Despite the size issue, it is one of the best performing projectors on the market under $2500.

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