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Sanyo PLC-XP21N User Reviews

Sanyo PLC-XP21N Projector

Sanyo PLC-XP21N

XGA (1024x768), 2500 ANSI Lumens,
15.2 lbs, $5,995 (MSRP)
View Specs
4.4 out of 5
16 User Ratings
Image Quality 4.6
Features 4.8
Construction 4.7
Ease of Use 3.9
Reliability 4.4
Value for Money 4.3

User Reviews

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Review by Pharper

I have had this projector for 1 1/2 years. The picture is excellent on every video source. I watch lots of DTV and DVD's. I recently purchased a Hughes HDTV DTV Receiver for this projector. This provides an even better picture over 480. In fact, some of the digital local channels coming from the antenna in my attic are better quality than DTV. HDTV broadcasts on this projector are impressive. All my guests have nothing but positive comments to make on the quality of the image.

Any Problems: None. I've put in lots of hours on this bulb and it looks just as good from day one.

Review by John C.

Impressive clear and bright images from DVD, computer, and digital cable TV. I am also using D-VHS for HDTV with very impressive results.

Any Problems: Fan is a little too noisy. I wish Sanyo sold a baffling kit as I am reluctant to baffle myself and cause overheading. Switching between video sources is awkward as I have both component progressive and interlaced inputs and changing is many step operation

Review by Warr

over-priced compared to Panasonic model. Once was a great projector. A little too bulky compared to other brands

Any Problems: Lamp problems over 1000 hours of use

Review by S.Dale Sacramento CA

I concur with Tony from NYC (nice post by the way). "The remote stinks." My unit is ceiling mounted behind the seats. I have to lean backwards and point directly at the unit to get any response. Can't have everything I guess.

Review by Tony from NYC

I received my Sanyo back in Feburary as a replacement of an old Sharp projector I had for 5 years. I hooked it up to my system which includes a PC, DVD player and Time Warner Digital cable. I am projecting on a Da-lite Cosmopoliton Electrol Hi-gain screen at 8' by 6'. First off, This thing is BRIGHT! No doubt the Hi-gain screen helps but even on a wall its very bright. I actually projected an image out my window onto the building across the street one night and was able to view it on the building! Colors are great. Out of the box, green seems too hot, I turned it down and it was fine. Contrast was very high, blacks were much darker than my old projector, but not as dark as they could be. My screen gain is wat to high for this projector, A grey screen with less than 1.0 gain should be used (my da-lite is a 1.3 white screen). Turning down the brightness helped a little, but that reduces contrast too. The NTSC images from cable looked good, but flaws in the broadcast show up immediately and can be annoying, something I never noticed on my old projector. Interlaced DVD looks very good, but progressive DVD looks excellent. Computer graphics are bright, clear and excellent at 1024X768. Text documents are readable (the old Sharp blurred text and was unreadable). Web surfing is quite an experience at 8 x 6 feet. Now here is where the projector shines. I received a HDTV box from Time Warner cable a few weeks ago. I ran my coax and was ready to experience HDTV. In a word, Spectacular! Channel 713 (PBS) shows a tape loop which includes a tour of some cities and sporting events, not exciting stuff, but you can't take your eyes off it! Breathtaking. I watched Hollow Man on HBOHD, and yes, the difference between DVD and HDTV is enormous. The resolution is noticibly higher, but it was the colors that made the difference. Much "redder" reds, more saturated colors. On NBCHD they show Jay Leno. Great broadcast, brightly displayed beautiful color.(Jay wears way too much coverup powder on his face, you can't tell this at all on 480I). The few other HDTV shows I watched blew away their 480I counterparts. Overall, this is a great projector for the money. Highly recommended.

Any Problems: Ok there are some issues with this product, none of them have to do with the image quality, fortunately. 1. The remote is alwful and MUST be redesigned. Here's the problem. When watching 480I material, you have to enter an on screen menu mode select your video source from composite, S video, component interlaced or component progressive. Then you have to go to another menu to select NTSC, PAL, SECAM and others. Then you have to go to a third menu to select normal or widescreen mode. Once you set all of these, your all set. Now change your scource to an anamorphic DVD. Go into menu mode and change your source to component. Go to the mode menu and change your mode to widescreen. Now fo to your format menu and change to 480P exit your menus. Now reverse those procedures to go back to 480I fullscreen. Now change your source to 1080I Hi Def. Go to menu mode and set your source to component. Go into your format and and select 1080I. (It sets to widescreen automatically). Reverse to back to 480I. Having to do this through on-screen menus is ridiculous. There should be a toggle button on the remote which steps through mode, format and input. Sanyo, Please re-design this, it is horrible. I'm the only person that can change sources on my system. None of my friends can figure it out. 2. When I received the projector, it had a large green spot in the top left of the picture. I called Projector People (who I bought it from), and they wouldn't take a return, and advised me I have to go to Sanyo directly for a repair/replace. I thought this was unusual, but PP advised that all vendors of this product service it this way. I didn't really buy that but PP wouldn't budge, so I did in fact return it to Sanyo. They cleaned the green LCD and returned it back within 72 hours. Point here, check with who you buy this from if you insist on dealer support, PP didn't offer it, perhaps other dealers do, but I don't know. 3. Finally, the lamp is rated at 2000 hrs and cost around $450 to replace. Mine went before 2000 hours (not much before but it did). I replaced my first lamp last week. (very easy to replace, by the way). If I need 2 lamps a year, this is some cost. My old Sharp lamps lasted an average of 1 year.

Review by bigcat

displays dvd images with brilliant, film-like clarity. great picture even in a well lit room. Satalite video look razor sharp. local broadcast good but could use improvment from good line doubler.

Any Problems: none yet.

Review by paul

Used the Sanyo for 2 months. Brilliant, intense picture. As good or better than any I've seen regardless of price.

Any Problems: I am having difficulty adjusting the color even though using both recommended DVD's. Any suggestions would be appreciated. Paul.

Review by twopatels

excellent, superb picture with progressive scan even on bare wall, great nwf (neighbor wow factor). slight grain when using regular dvd player but still a good picture. noise noticeable sometimes. very user friendly, you will not be sorry!!!

Any Problems: big box

Review by Karen Creveling

We've owned this system for 1 year+. It is fabulous and has provided nothing but viewing pleasure in a home theatre. It's wonderful.

Review by Mark

I have owned the Sanyo for 4 months. I bought it based solely on the professional review at projector central and user reviews. I haven't seen any other projectors. The brightness is great even in an undarkened room. The color and contrast are beautiful. The sharpness is very good with progressive scan DVD. The quality of the picture really varies with broadcast and satellite TV. VHS is so grainy I don't even want to watch it. The medium is to blame here. Progressive DVD is where this unit shines! It is really like watching a movie in a theater! Bulkiness doesn't matter to me because the only time I move it is to clean the filter. 15 pounds isn't too heavy to turn on its side. As far as reliability is concerned, if it continues to work in the future as well as now, I highly recommend the Sanyo!

Any Problems: The lamp is $400 but I knew that before I bought. Also, the fan isn't whisper quiet but I don't notice it when watching TV.

Review by Stephen Dale

This review may be somewhat premature due to the fact that it is based upon an unfair set of circumstances. I say unfair because any accurate opinion should be based upon the sum of all system components working in tandem: Projector, source, screen, etc, etc. In my case the 21N is operating in less than optimal conditions because the DVD is not progressive, there is no screen (only bare textured wall), TV is NTSC satellite video, there is no external line doubler, so-on and so-on. However, beneath it all lies the potential for truly superb video. Given these shortcoming, I find the 21N to be performing wonderfully – although the painful sudden realization that my other components suck, came as a bit of a shock! Color is vivid, and accurate. I do not see any artifact given to skin tone and blotchiness that John Chandler spoke of. Contrast and brightness bring a level of improvement to the overall quality of any broadcast video or DVD. (My neighbor loves it and jokingly mentioned camping outside on his front lawn one evening to watch Phantom Menace.) One off note however. Image clarity is disappointing. But I know the 21N is better capable of delivering a sharper image, because when one focuses the unit, the word “Focus” appears in the lower left corner and is razor sharp. I attribute my problem to the lack of a screen and the interlaced source signal(s) feeding the unit. I do concur with one other post in that the manual leaves a lot to be desired. Not a lot of detail, only brief instructions. (But who REALLY read these things anyways). I also seem to experience frequent remote problems, which requires me to aim up and behind to hit the IR sensor (my unit is ceiling mounted). Overall, I am very pleased with the performance of the 21N and would recommend it to anyone looking to buy a projector. I will also rewrite this review once my screen arrives – and after my wife lets me buy more toys to go along the projector.

Review by paulmeister

A great projector for home theater use for under $5,000. We needed the higher lumen output because of ambient light from windows & it works perfectly. The case is larger than I would like, but the performance has been great.

Any Problems: Doesn't automatically switch from S-video input from VCR to DVD component input. Not a big deal, but would be nice if the "auto" switch function was truly auto.

Review by Ian Fawn-Meade

Fabulous projector! Giant screen with HDTV HBO is extraordinairy..and with the high-end Sony DVD I get a better than cinema experience. And I am a professional film producer!

Any Problems: Lamp warranty went from 90 to 30 days without notice. I think Philips crank out these UHP lamps in Belgium for around $100!!Too much mark up!Cannot find ceiling mount rig.

Review by Paul Martin

Add unit 3 months, excellent,color,etc,I dont where the other two reviewers got their unit or what they projected it on, I just have reg matte white screen,what a picture.Cant understand what went wrong with the first two reviewers??Recommend highly, I got my unit for less $5000.

Any Problems: The only suggestion, is fan motor a bit loud, Iam not use to it, due to I had CRT,liquid cooled before I bought this unit.

Review by John Chandler

I spent four full days testing this machine for movie suitability side by side, using several high quality dvds, as a possible purchase to replace my HOME THEATRE Infocus LS700 which has given me much pleasure since it was introduced over two years ago. I decided not to buy the Sanyo. which ever way I tweaked the controls (very complete as they were), the color was not at all realistic and the image was harsh (especially skin tones which were blotchy and made the subject look as if he had been drinking, had high blood pressure or had been sunbathing - or all three!)and overall it was exhausting on the eyes. Better contrast, brighter, yes, but overall I found my old Infocus, despite it's many shortcomings, produced much better skin tones and a far less tiring image. Surprisingly it was also much sharper than the Sanyo which exhibited poor resolution and even shimmered quite noticably on bright parts. RGB was slightly better than YS cable but both (direct from a Sony 7700 dvd player), were unsatisfactory. I was very disappointed in view of the excellent review given by Projector Central. I really wondered if I was looking at the same machine. My sample was on loan from my friendly store and had had only limited use as a demonstration model. It seemed in as new condition. The store could not explain the shortcomings other than to say they offered this model for computor use (where I felt the performance was QUITE SUPERB), rather than home theatre.

Review by Expert Presenter

It is too bulky and the manual is not user friendly.

Any Problems: Unclear lens