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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am checking out the Sharp XV-Z9000U tonight. I have a list of things I want to check out. If there is anything in particular that I should look for, please let me know by 4:30pm PST. Thanks.
 

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I hope you have all night most of the evening with uninterrupted access.


I would like to get a good feeling of the various deinterlacing/scaling capabilities of this machine since it uses Sharp's chip instead of the Faroudja. So testing the unit with different sources would be great.


1. Performance with NTSC 480i input on composite input.

2. Performance with DVD 480i component input.

3. Performance with DVD 480p component input.

4. Performance with HD on 1080i/720p source.


5. Compare internal/external scaler(eg, Faroudja NRS)


Thanks.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I auditioned the Sharp last PM for about 2.5 hours. Here are the details without mincing words.


Setup:

Sharp on a gray hawk perf screen 84" horizontal with the 250Watt bulb.

No audio. I did not even connect the audio out from any sources.

Sharp calibrated using video essentials.

Pitch dark room. The only light that came in was from the LED displays of the components and/or the remotes.


Sources:

HTPC with Radeon AIW and PowerStrip.

Marantz DVD player (interlaced out only).

Could not get a HD source.


Tests:

1. Sequential video test patterns from the Avia DVD.

First impression, the internal scaler was darn good. Very little jaggies on the AVIA menu.

2. The picture was over scanned by 5%. Now that I think about it, I should have switched DVD players to figure out if it was the player or the Sharp. Actually it was the Projector because the HTPC picture had the same overscan on input 5.

3. There was a fair amount of banding on the continuous gray scale pattern. At least it was uniform in both the light and the dark areas. This was an important test for me because on displays that had a problem with this pattern, the smoke inside the sub in U571 looked more like a artificial fractal than like natural smoke puffs.


Movie clips:

4. Black level no where close to a direct view CRT. Lot closer to FP CRT. I can't quantify that.

5. Lot more detail on the Sharp while watching Chicken Run than the Runco 7 CRT. The skin texture had greater detail. Not sure if it was because the Sharp was brighter than the Runco.

6. The black levels are really an issue when watching inherently dark clips from movies like the Matrix and Dark City.

7. Again scaler is darn good.


HTPC:

8. support Sucks. Either that or I could not figure out how to get the Sharp to natively do [email protected] The scaler would (un)intelligently compress the picture to the point where text was unreadable. The manual does not list 1280x720 as a display mode. Of the many, the closest it comes is 1280x960. Thinking for a minute, all the resolutions listed in the manual for the D15 VGA were 4:3.

9. The Sharp does not auto detect and switch film mode to video mode.


In General:

- This piece is noisy. Not quite a wind tunnel but I could hear it 3 meters away. (Remember there was no audio at all. For reference, my DVL-90 noise bothers me during soft passages.) 600/800 lumen switch did not affect the fan noise. It was the same.

- This sucker was hot. I swear you can toast a slice of bread on its vents.

- This proj pushes reds. After calib, the red control was at -8 and the blue was at 0.

- Remote and the menu system is good. Actually the OSD text was crisp. Wish the HTPC input looked like that.

- 600/800 lumen switch did not really affect the black level for the Matrix

- I got to see an HD feed on this set during an event. It was 1080i and then 720p from a HDD on one of the component inputs. Stunning! No visible artifacts.

- I couldn't do 480i on composite or 480p on component.

- Could not A/B compare the scaler with NRS


Wish list:

- more light output

- lower noise

- scaler bypass

- even better blacks

- DV and DVI
 

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We need to sort this native HTPC support issue. I want to buy the Sharp but the native 1280x720 PC support is vital for me.


Jeff
 

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Great review John - the best I have seen up until now.


Did you play around with the sharpness setting in an attempt to reduce the posterization/solarization/banding effect? Could the effect have been source related?


Red push..darn it! http://www.avsforum.com/ubb/mad.gif Well, not bad for a UHP lamp though... http://www.avsforum.com/ubb/smile.gif


Did you have to delve into the service menu to be able to reduce red separately? And no offense, just for clarification, you did not reduce red gain, altering the color temperature, did you, but rather you calibrated the color decoder's axis and gain?


What was your subjective impression of red (richness and saturation) after calibration?


What was your subjective impressions of punch and depth, and could you relate these to the PJs perceived black level and brightness?


For reference, could you compare the black level to a digital projector rather than a CRT?


Also for reference, could you compare the fan nosie to, say, a 10HT? What was the pitch like?


Thanks again for a thorough and informative review!


[This message has been edited by NiToNi (edited 09-25-2001).]
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Thanks NiToNi.


I did not play around with the sharpness control to reduce the banding. I thought they were errors in mapping gray scale values to the analog domain. Does not look like the banding is source related because direct view TV and computer monitors don't show this effect.


I did not delve into the service menu but the red was reduced by calibrating the color decoder axis and gain.


The reds were natural after calibration. Not pale and not oversaturated. I think the picture lacked some (tiny bit) punch and depth. Possible reasons, light leak through the perforations, .95 gain screen. Blacks were backer than the 10HT and 11HT (engineering sample) that I saw. But then again I don't know if these were calibrated.


Don't remember how noisy the 10/11HTs were I checked them out over 2 months ago. Also, a Runco DLP was in a hush box so I couldn't compare the two. A friend of mine who owns a JVC D-ILA called the Sharp a hushpuppy compared to his wind tunnel. I can't describe the pitch of the fan noise. It was like the PS fans on PC server boxes. Maybe not that loud. Wish I had my SPL on me.


To quote a colleague:

<snip>

However, the picture clarity was great - one of the best I have seen for a DLP projector (actually, about the best I have seen). The blacks were very good, and it handled grey scale very well. The color spectrum on the reds during the U571 opening sequence looked very true to red lighting. Definitely can handle a wide spectrum of color, and adopt to color changes quickly.

<snip>


Spizz, which one of the problems are you refering to?


 

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Great review John. I would have to disagree with you on the noise level though. I went and auditioned a Z9000 before purchasing it, and thought the noise level was very acceptable. I also shut off all audio signals to see if the Z9000's noise level was bothersome and it wasn't. I guess everyone's opinion will differ, so I guess I people should go and listen for themselves if possible. Apparently a Sharp representative told the salesman that one of the reasons the Z9000 is so big was to reduce noise levels, and I believe it worked. You are right on when you say the projector runs hot, the vents are like a mini blow dryer.
 

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I also want to comment on the noise level on different modes, it drops a bit on the theater standard mode (the other mode is theater bright).


Cam
 

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So can anyone else comment on HTPC usage with the Sharp? It would seem amazing to me that a 1280x720 digital projector wouldn't be able to accept at 1280x720 signal from a PC. I (like JeffY) am very interested in the Sharp but using a HTPC with it is very important to me.

Thanks
 

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As far as the gray banding, its found in a lot of fixed panel digital display devices.. The Sanyo plv60 has this as well.

 

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The Sharp fan noise is rated at 32db which is the same as the Sony 11HT which I recently heard. If it is therefore the same, and going by others it seems it may well be, that will be more than acceptable for me. Great to see your mate loved the projector-

Quote:
one of the best I have seen for a DLP projector (actually, about the best I have seen
Spero D.


[This message has been edited by Spizz (edited 09-26-2001).]
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by cam:
Ba,


I have tried and the VGA input can definitely accept 1280 x 720 source.


Cam
Cam,


Can you confirm that the desktop/text was very sharp (no pun intended) and that there was no funny conpression going on, also can you confirm how this was achieved (Sharp CD, Powerstrip 3 or other) and if it was using Powerstrip 3 can you post the timmings as this is probably key.


Thanks,


Jeff
 

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Jeff,


Sorry I am not using HTPC, I just use VGA output from my Faroudja NRS (1280 x 720) to Sharp's VGA input.


Cam
 

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Quote:
9. The Sharp does not auto detect and switch film mode to video mode.
So this has to be done manually via the remote? Can you expand on this please?


Spero D.
 

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JohnScott,


Where did you audition the Sharp? Definitive Audio or somewhere else? I wouldn't mind taking a look.


Thanks,



------------------

Jim Lauritzen
 

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Quote:
So this has to be done manually via the remote? Can you expand on this please?
I'd like to know too. I saw the sharp about a week ago and although it's film-3-2 was stellar, it clearly combed with any video-based sources. Perhaps it was because it wouldn't auto-switch to video mode?


Can I ask what's the point of having a 3-2 detector that you have to manually adjust? I mean "duh".


-dave
 
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