The datasheet for the projector lists a 1.5x powered zoom and focus system. It also shows a throw distance of 8'5"-131 for a 100" screen (in diagonal or width, don't know, but I would wager that it is diagonal based on the information below).
Unfortunately, I don't remember my source for this datasheet, but I'm sure I found it linked in these forums. I have attached it for your review.
The preliminary spec sheet that I have on file for the 12k shows that it has a 1.35x zoom, which is confirmed by the Widescreen Review review of the 12k. That spec sheet states a 13'2" - 17'9" throw for a 100" screen (which matches ProjectorCentral's calculator for a 100" diagonal screen).
From this information, it appears that the 2000 will have a shorter throw than the 12k. It does, however, put it near the same league as the BenQ 8700, which may be the model they're trying to compete against (TheFerret was on-target on this comparison).
In my case of wanting a 106" wide screen (122" diag.), that should result in a throw distance of 10'5" - 16' which isn't desirable for my room. (Did I do this calculation right?) If I placed the projector at my desired 19' distance, I'd be looking at a 125" wide screen, which is much too large for my screen wall.
For your 17' throw, you're going to need to accomodate a screen that is 113" wide (130" diag).
I was waiting around for this projector, as it seemed like a less costly alternative to the 12k (with no real basis except wishful thinking on my part), but this short throw puts it in the 2nd tier of consideration for me. Combine that with the complete lack of any tangible information on its release, availability, or further specs, and it's at the bottom of that 2nd tier.
I would have been a lot happier if they had just reduced the MSRP on the 12k down to better compete with the cheaper DLP's and the rising LCD stars (AE700 & HS51). If they had just matched the MSRP of the InFocus 7205, I'd be able to sleep at night instead of mulling throw ratios, release dates, lumen figures, and artifact trade-offs of LCD/DLP technology...
I wouldn't wait around for the Sharp 2000 if I were you. If you can see the AE700, and you're happy with it, go for it and start enjoying it!
datasheet.pdf 73.14453125k . file