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Sharp again - part numbers confuse me

I am shopping for Sharp distance sensors like the one used in "Start Here". My local mail order supplier charges €26 and I am boycotting them for that reason alone.

So I am searching for other suppliers and I find confusing part numbers. I understand the difference between Analogue and Digital sensors. I want the Analogue kind. And I want to measure distances up to 11.8" (30cm).

Are these parts all that different? 


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Acroname has a good comparison of the Sharps based on part number. I'd like to try the GP2Y0A700K sometime, but it pulls some heavy current in ranging as far as it does.

I remember seeing that table before. Neither my brain nor my browser had a good bookmark on it.

It does not explain the extra XJ00F in the name. I am going to assume that it is only extra info about the production batch. 

That monster ranger you mention has absolutely no idea about whatever is right in his face. The minimum range outreaches the max on all the other sensors!

The website active-robots.com writes about GP2Y0A21YK: "Wider-angle infrared distance measuring sensor. Approximately twice the beam width of the Sharp GP2D12". Those are both 80 cm sensors.

Could this also be the difference between the 30 cm sensors GP2D120 and the one width the even more complex name?

A more specific comparison of the 2 from Acroname reads :

"The detection diameter at 1/2 the range is 12 cm for the 0A21, compared with 6 cm for the GP2D12." 

Meaning at 40 cm I'd guess, to know what these 2 sensors are covering. I think most of the others will have a narrow beam unless specified in their datasheets. The GP2D120 just has a shorter range. 

I just found one difference myself. The GP2D12 (without the trailing zero) has a different range: up to 80 cm.