The Fujifilm FP-Z8000 costs more than other laser-based UST models of similar brightness, but its innovative lens gives it extraordinary positioning flexibility, making it the obvious choice for applications where the competition would find it hard, if not impossible, to physically fit.
- Innovative ultra-short throw lens rotates in two axes, allowing six lens orientations in each of two projector orientations
- Powered focus, zoom, and lens shift; auto lens shift position memory for each lens orientation
- 1.1x zoom; +/-70% vertical lens shift; +/-35% horizontal lens shift
- Bright, 8,000 ANSI lumen rating
- Laser-phosphor light source; 20,000 hour lifetime
- Native 1920x1200 (WUXGA) resolution; accepts up to 3840x2160/60 Hz input
- Less-than-perfect brightness uniformity at the most extreme vertical shift position
- No HDR support
To borrow a tag line from the Bloomingdale's department store chain, the Fujifilm FP-Z8000 is like no other projector in the world—with the arguable exception of the Fujifilm FP-Z5000 that ProjectorCentral reviewed last year. What makes both models different from everything else is a lens that's unique to Fujifilm and an impressive technical achievement. It allows extreme flexibility for projector positioning both by being able to rotate in two axes and by offering a 1.1x zoom and industry-leading lens shift. (More on the lens shortly.)
What makes the FP-Z8000 different from the FP-Z5000, in part, is that it's brighter, rated at 8,000 ANSI lumens rather than 5,000, which is said to make it more suitable for a wider variety of ambient-light installations. It is heavier than its predecessor (40.6 pounds rather than 27.6), and offers WUXGA (1920x1200) resolution instead of 1080p. It's also a lot more expensive. Fujifilm says it can't give a firm price, because it will be sold primarily through VARs, and the price will vary depending on the individual VAR. However, the company expects it to be in the neighborhood of $20,000.
For context, that's more than the starting price for a 2021 Honda Fit. But it's also a little less than the slightly brighter Panasonic PT-RZ970 paired with an ET-DLE020 UST lens. So while the FP-Z8000 is too expensive to even consider if you don't absolutely need an 8,000 lumen UST projector, it's in the same price range as its most direct competition, and it has an advantage in placement flexibility thanks to its larger lens shift range. Note too that it's available in either black or white, as the FP-Z8000-B or FP-Z8000-W.
The FP-Z8000 is built around a 0.67-inch 1920x1200 DLP chip and a laser-phosphor light source with a rated 20,000-hour life. Unlike most manufacturers, Fujifilm doesn't use the long life to claim that the projector is virtually maintenance-free, but it should still translate to needing little maintenance compared to lamp-based models.
The 6.4 x 18.1 x 20.1-inch (HWD) size makes the FP-Z8000 compact enough to bring along for temporary setups to provide, say, background visual effects for a rock band or fashion show. It is among the most compact UST solutions in the 8,000-lumen laser class, where other options typically involve a somewhat larger chassis (in at least one dimension) and a larger protrusion for a separate UST lens. The 40.6 pounds weight (including the integrated lens) also makes it lighter than others and relatively easy to handle, though it's enough that you'll want to pair it with a rollable hard shell case for transport, which Fujifilm sells as an accessory. But the projector's defining feature is its lens.
According to Fujifilm the folded lens, with the ability to rotate in two axes, is essentially identical to the lens in the FP-Z5000, as described in more detail in our FP-Z5000 review. More precisely, the optics are identical according to Fujifilm, but the mechanics are slightly modified, based on the company's conclusion that the FP-Z8000 would offer the same flexibility for projector positioning even with fewer possible positions for the lens. So while the FP-Z5000 offers 11 lens positions, the FP-Z8000 offers six for each orientation.
The two points of rotation are at different spots in the lens array. When the lens is in shipping position, and the projector is in its horizontal orientation, the overall shape of the projector is the same as a large rectangular box, and the lens is rotated down in what I'll call its nesting position.
If you rotate the arm of the lens 90 degrees to its only other lockable position, perpendicular to the bottom of the projector, the final lens element will be just above the projector's top, in its own segment of the lens array. You can then rotate that second segment to lock into any of four positions. Each one aligns the front of the lens parallel to one side of the projector.
When the arm is down, two of those four positions would direct light toward the inside or bottom of the nest, making them unusable for projection. But the other two positions—with the lens pointed forward, as with most projectors, or pointed straight up—add two more possibilities, for a total of six. Those same six positions are also available if you mount the projector vertically on a wall, doubling the number of possible setup positions by Fujifilm's count to 12.
Beyond that you can mount the FP-Z8000 inverted in a ceiling mount in a horizontal position, but Fujifilm doesn't add those variations to the count. Three IR sensors—one on each of three sides—ensure it will respond to the remote easily in most combinations of projector orientation and lens position.
All this is hard to visualize from a verbal description. If you want to get a better feel for the lens and what it can do, you can visit Fujifilm's FP-Z8000 projection simulator. Ignore the wizard questions and just keep choosing next until you get to the simulator. Adjust the settings for mount rotation (0 and 90 degrees) and lens rotation (0, 90, 180, and 270), and a diagram in the upper right corner of the simulator will show you how the projector looks with the lens in that position. Another right next to it will show you the orientation of the image in that position. You can also access resources to explore the projector's unique applications and view case studies at Fujifilm's dedicated projector website.
When the FP-Z8000's arm is straight up and down, two of the lens positions throw a horizontal image, and two throw a vertical image. For each orientation, one position is right side up and one is upside down, but menu settings let you flip the image 180 degrees, so you can have the top and bottom oriented the way you want them. With the arm down and lens pointed straight ahead, the image is horizontal. When it's pointed at the ceiling (or floor), you can rotate the projector to whatever orientation you need.
In addition to six choices for lens positions and support for both vertical and horizontal orientation for the projector itself, the 1.1x zoom and substantial lens shift add still more flexibility for positioning. But there are some limitations on the lens shift.
The FP-Z8000 offers exceptionally wide +/-70% vertical shift and +/-35% horizontal shift. Near the most extreme settings, however, the projector's brightness uniformity suffered somewhat. At 70% vertical shift up, for example, the image was brightest at the left side and gradually dimmed going to the right. Fortunately, this won't be an issue for many applications where you either don't need the full limit of the shift or won't be displaying critical content that makes this difference in brightness obvious. The difference between left and right sides was enough to be easily visible with a solid white screen, but not otherwise. Arguably more important is that even at the most extreme shift, the image was still sharp and free of any distortion on my 130-inch screen.
Note that the menus have a setting for Full or Limited lens shift. In theory, choosing Limited should keep the shift within a smaller range that avoids any obvious issues. In my tests, however, the Limited range in both directions was only a few tenths of a percent smaller than the Full range. Fujifilm says this has since been addressed in final production firmware.
A more significant limit on shift range is that in three of the lens positions, the lens is pointed over the projector, so if you go beyond a given level of shift, the projector body itself will block part of the image. The other three positions let you take advantage of the full shift. (The Fujifilm simulator includes a section that shows the shadowed area as well.)
Another minor limitation is that to take advantage of the vertical projector orientation, you have to mount the FP-Z8000 on a wall. One of the two intake vents is on the side that would be facing the floor, and it needs at least a 15.75-inch clearance for air flow, as do the two adjacent sides, which include a second intake vent on one and the exhaust vent on the other.
Adding flexibility for more creative setups are a warping feature for curved surfaces and edge blending to allow use of up to four projectors for a single image. Neither is fully built in, but Fujifilm offers a free Windows app for downloading that will let you set up either or both features. The projector will remember the settings when you're finished, so you can disconnect the computer. Note that this feature is exclusive to the newer FP-Z8000 and is not available for the FP-Z5000.
The FP-Z8000 also offers a wider variety of digital video inputs than the FP-Z5000 does. In addition to HDMI 2.0a (with HDCP 2.2), HDMI 1.4a (with HDCP 1.4, but without audio support), and DisplayPort 1.2 (with HDCP 1.3), it also has an HDBaseT port, which can support video, audio, and control over a single Cat 6 or better cable as long as 328 feet, and a BNC connector for 3G-SDI. (SDI is commonly used in television facilities, 3G-SDI being suitable for up to 1080p/60 Hz.)
One other feature that earns special mention is the auto lens memory. It works differently than the lens memory in other projectors, in that it won't let you manually store and retrieve multiple settings. However, it can be particularly useful for applications that require repeated setups, like background imaging for a touring rock concert.
The FP-Z8000's lens memory automatically remembers the shift position you last used for each of the six lens positions. Focus and zoom are not associated with the memorized shift position but will return to the setting you last used. Still, for a repeat setup in different locations, you only need to place the projector in the same spot relative to the rest of your setup, put the lens in the right position, and then potentially make some minor adjustments. Also highly welcome for quick setup is that the projector reaches full power in less than 20 seconds.
Here's a more complete list of the Fujifilm FP-Z8000 key features:
- 8,000 ANSI lumen rating; measured at 7,947 ANSI lumens
- 1920x1200 native resolution using 0.67-inch DLP chip; accepts and downconverts up to 3840x2160/60 Hz input
- 12,000:1 rated contrast ratio (full on/full off)
- Laser-phosphor light source; rated at 20,000 hours
- Fujifilm's unique, ultra-short throw, folded lens; rotatable in two axes; 0.34-0.37 throw ratio
- Powered focus, zoom, and lens shift
- Lens shift allows zero-offset projection
- 1.1x zoom, +/-70% vertical shift, +/-35% horizontal shift
- Built in +/-5 degree vertical and horizontal keystone correction and corner correction
- Edge blending and warping for curved services; available through Fujifilm's free downloadable Windows app
- Recommended 70-to-300 inch image size at native 16:10 aspect ratio
- Settings for color temperature; RGB gain and offset; and hue, saturation, and gain for red, green, blue, cyan, yellow, and magenta
- DICOM Sim mode for applications requiring medical imaging
- Normal and Eco power modes, plus a custom slider with settings from roughly 20-to-100 percent of full power
- Digital video inputs include HDMI 2.0, HDMI 1.4, DisplayPort, HDBaseT, and SDI
- Onboard 10-watt mono speaker; connects to external audio systems using 3.5mm stereo analog output
- Supports PJ Link and Crestron Roomview
- 3-year warranty on projector; 20,000-hour warranty on light source
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Color Modes. The FP-Z8000 offers four preset color modes: Bright, Standard, sRGB, and DICOM Sim—which is fewer than most commercial projectors today but probably as many as most users will need. Except for DICOM Sim, which is designed for viewing x-rays and other medical imaging for non-diagnostic purposes, all of the modes are quite watchable for at least some types of images—graphics, photorealistic, or both—with default settings. However, not all are good choices for both types, and I also saw differences in the way each mode handles images from a computer versus a video source. This isn't unusual. Many projectors recognize which type of source they're connected to and display the same image differently based on the source.
In addition to looking at images from both a computer and from a Blu-Ray player, connected to the one HDMI 2.0 port in each case, I also used Calman color calibration software from portrait Displays, a Murideo Six-G signal generator, and an X-Rite i1Pro2 photospectrometer to get objective measurements for the default setting for each mode. Note that because of the differences between how the projector handles computer input and video source input, the measurements are more relevant for images from the video source than from the computer.
As with many laser-phosphor projectors, the FP-Z8000's Bright mode was highly watchable. When using a computer as a source, it delivered nicely saturated, vibrant color for graphics with default settings. However, colors were less accurate overall than in Standard or sRGB modes. Red was a bit dark for example, orange was brownish, and yellow just a touch green-shifted. But if you need the extra brightness, most people will consider Bright mode's color accuracy good enough for most applications that need to show graphics from a computer.
Color shifts for photorealistic images were more of a problem in Bright mode. In some cases I noticed the shifts only because I'm familiar with the images. But in others, most notably skin tone in some cases and a cut open lemon that looked more like a grapefruit in one image, the color error was impossible to miss. Whether these color shifts will be a problem, depends on the particular images you're including.
When using a Blu-ray player as a source, colors in graphics weren't as saturated for any of the modes as they were for the same images when using a computer as the source. In Bright mode colors were also noticeably darker than they should be, which gave a muddy look to most colors other than pastels. The color shifts in photorealistic images in Bright mode were also too obvious to ignore, shifting skin tones toward a greenish blue in some images and magenta in others, as well as adding tinges of green to oranges in a fruit bowl.
Standard mode earns second place—after sRGB—for graphics images from a computer or video source, thanks largely to its offering the second best color accuracy from either type of source—better than Bright mode, but not as accurate as sRGB mode. As with Bright mode, red was a little dark, orange a little brownish, and yellow slightly green-shifted, but the shifts weren't as obvious as in Bright mode.
For photorealistic images, alone or in combination with graphics, Standard is the mode of choice. Using a computer as a source, it delivered natural looking skin tones in my tests as well as memory colors—from blue sky to oranges and other fruits—that were all within a realistic looking range. It also delivered good contrast, and it did the best job of all the modes handling the subtle gradations that give rounded objects, like close ups of faces, a three dimensional look.
Using the Blu-ray player for photorealistic images, Standard mode was again in second place for color accuracy, behind sRGB, but not by enough to notice in most images. It also scored a close second in contrast, behind Bright. And although none of the modes delivered particularly good shadow detail, Standard mode offered the best. All of which made it my preferred choice for photorealistic images from either computers or video sources.
The sRGB mode came in as first choice among the three for graphics from either a computer or video source. When showing images from a computer, it delivered nicely saturated color combined with the best color accuracy of the three. Orange in particular stood out as being closer to what it should look like rather than the brownish orange in Bright and Standard modes. When viewing the same images using a Blu-ray player, color saturation was lower but still good enough, while the advantage in accuracy remained.
Unfortunately, sRGB is not as good a choice if you're including photorealistic images. In my tests using a computer, skin tones were yellow shifted to the point where people looked jaundiced in some images, and contrast was low enough to give a soft focus effect from edges not standing out well. When using a Blu-ray player, the yellow-shift and the low contrast wasn't as obvious, but was still there.The Calman measurements were consistent with most of these subjective observations. They show a greenish blue bias in Bright mode through most grayscale levels, which most people consider more acceptable than the green bias typical of most projectors' brightest modes. They also show a blue bias in Standard mode, which is usually even less of an issue, and an excess of both red and green for sRGB mode, which translates to yellow, and explains the yellow bias I saw in that mode.
The results also showed larger color errors in every mode for the six primary and secondary colors than a videophile would want in a home theater. In all three, most Delta Es for the colors—the measurement of how far each color is from the target—were well above the desirable level of 3 or less, where any color difference is considered negligible.
In Bright mode, only two Delta Es for the six primary and secondary colors were below 15, and none were below 8.5. Standard mode did much better with a range of 7.1 to 12.4. And consistent with my observation that sRGB had the best color accuracy of the three overall—at least in images where the yellow bias wasn't obvious—the Delta Es for sRGB ranged from 3 to 10.6 for five of the six primary and secondary colors, with one outlier at 19.3.
If you want to improve the color accuracy or need to match colors between projectors when using edge blending, the menus offer Red, Green, and Blue gain and offset controls to adjust RGB balance for improved grayscale, and a 7Colors Tuning [sic] option for setting hue, saturation, and gain individually for red, green, blue, cyan, yellow, and magenta, plus setting red, green, and blue gain for White.
Note that Fujifilm says it overhauled the color design for the FP-Z8000 to give it a greater gamut than the FP-Z5000 and make it more suitable for color-critical installations, and indeed it succeeded. Using Calman's color volume analysis workflow, I measured the color volume at 67.6% of the Rec.709 standard in Bright mode, 88.2% in Standard mode, 72.7% in sRGB mode, and 97.5% in DICOM Sim mode. The FP-Z5000 was measured at only 58% Rec.709 with the same software and meter for our review.
1080p/SDR Viewing. Although the list of most likely applications for the FP-Z8000 does not include watching full length movies it does include projecting film and video on walls, floors and ceilings, which makes our usual viewing tests relevant. The best mode for viewing video with default settings is necessarily a compromise. Bright offers the best contrast, Standard the best shadow detail, and sRGB the best color accuracy, despite the yellow bias. To choose between them, I adjusted contrast and brightness for all three modes and took a preliminary look at each.
I quickly settled on Standard mode, thanks to it offering the best shadow detail and the best balance overall of contrast, shadow detail, and color accuracy. I could spot an occasional color that was off by enough for a critical eye to notice even without being familiar with the scene, but not often. And even those colors weren't clearly outside of a realistic range for the way the scene was lit.
The image quality is best described as highly watchable, both in a dark room and with lights on. Color accuracy—as well as contrast and shadow detail—weren't what a serious enthusiast would insist on for a home theater, but all were easily in the range of acceptable or better for the kinds of applications the FP-Z8000 is meant for.
Viewing with 4K HDR material. Because the FP-Z8000 supports 4K UHD (3840x2160) input, which it downcoverts to 1080p, I also tested it with 4K UHD HDR discs. In my tests, the Blu-ray player recognized the lack of HDR support in the signal negotiation, put a message on screen saying that for best image quality I should connect to a display that supported HDR, and its info screen indicated that it connected in SDR mode.
With 4K UHD HDR discs, none of the modes stood up to ambient light as well as with the 1080p versions of the same movies, but shadow detail for Bright and sRGB was better than for the 1080p versions, as well as better than in Standard mode for the 4K versions.
My preferred mode for 4K UHD HDR input is Bright. Along with being tied for first for shadow detail for 4K input, it also offered the best contrast of the three modes. Even better, its color accuracy was good enough that the only color errors I noticed were in my go to test material, which I'm familiar enough with to know what the color should look like.
The Fujifilm FP-Z8000 clearly deserves kudos for it its multiple-position lens as an impressive technological achievement. But what makes it worth considering is the innovative setups the positioning flexibility allows.
You can, for example, mount one or more projectors vertically on a wall to paint an entire ceiling with an image, right up to where the ceiling and wall join, thanks to the lens shift, or mount it on the ceiling to cover an entire wall. More important, you can position the projector in either case where people would be hardpressed to find a spot that would let them cast a shadow. Light up both the walls and ceiling, and potentially the floor as well, and you can create an immersive experience in applications ranging from museum and planetarium exhibits to halls and lobbies, indoor events, and amusement areas.
You can use the same mounting positions for digital signage. Hide the projector above a drop ceiling or behind a false wall and only the lens will show, making it no more obtrusive than a mini spotlight. That makes the FP-Z8000 the ideal choice for signage in locations like showrooms, tony retail shops, or anywhere else that a projector would look out of place. Still other possibilities include painting images in light on backdrops for theater, rock concerts, fashion shows, or the like.
More generally, if you need high brightness, shadows are unacceptable, and other projectors would be hard to position where they wouldn't cast shadows, the Fujifilm FP-Z8000 may well be the projector you're looking for.
Brightness. I measured the brightest mode at 7,947 ANSI lumens, essentially matching the 8,000 lumen rating. For each picture mode the brightness measurements in Normal and Eco power modes were as follows:
Fujifilm FP-Z8000 ANSI Lumens
Eco and Custom Modes. The Eco mode was 67 percent as bright as Normal mode. In addition, as with many laser projectors, there's a custom brightness slider, with settings in this case from 20 to 100, in steps of 10. Each setting is roughly equivalent to its percentage of maximum brightness. In my tests, a setting of 20 delivered 16 percent of full brightness for example. A setting of 50 delivered 56 percent of full brightness.
Color Brightness: The color brightness varied from Bright mode's low of 40 percent of the white brightness to a tight range of 56 to 66 percent of white brightness for the other three modes. As is common for DLP projectors, the difference is enough to deliver a bit lower brightness for color images than you would expect strictly from the white brightness.
Brightness Uniformity (maximum wide angle): 75%
Brightness Uniformity (maximum telephoto): 74%
Zoom Lens Light Loss: With a standard lens, the 1.1x zoom would be too little to have much effect on brightness. However, with the FP-Z8000's UST lens we measured the maximum telephoto setting at 6,156 ANSI lumens, a 23% reduction compared with the maximum wide angle setting.
Rainbow Artifacts: Most laser projectors show fewer and less obvious rainbow artifacts than most lamp-based projectors, but with the FP-Z8000, I saw them often enough that I would find them annoying for watching a full length movie. That said, I see these artifacts more easily than many people. And even those who see them easily will probably not find them annoying for many of the applications the FP-Z8000 is meant for. Since there are sure to be some people in almost any venue who will see rainbow artifacts easily, however, you'll have to consider whether the artifacts will be an issue for any particular application you have in mind.
Lowest Measured Input Lag: 32.8 ms at 1080p/60 Hz
Fan Noise: Fujifilm rates the fan noise for the FP-Z8000 at 43 dB in Normal mode and 40 dB in Eco mode. Either one would be annoyingly loud in a quiet room, but neither should be an issue in the applications the FP-Z8000 is meant for, even with the still higher volume High Altitude mode. In applications where the fan noise could be a problem, the ability to mount the projector inside a cabinet or above a drop ceiling, with just the lens emerging from a soundproofed area, should still keep fan noise from being an issue.
- HDMI 2.0a (HDCP 2.2)
- HDMI 1.4a (HDCP 1.4; for warping/edge blending; Audio input not supported)
- DisplayPort 1.2 (HDCP 1.3 compatible)
- SDI using BNC connector (3G/HD/SD SDI input)
- HDBaseT (video, audio, control)
- 3.5mm Audio in
- 3.5mm Audio out
- LAN (RJ-45; for control only)
- USB Type A (2); one for maintenance and power; one for warping/edge blending setup
- RS-232C (control)
For more detailed specifications and connections, check out our Fujifilm FP-Z8000-B projector page.