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post #1 of 2493 Old 03-11-2007, 06:28 AM - Thread Starter
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Format Battle General Discussion Thread II: Discuss it here!


This is a continuation of the original thread which starts here:

http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...&&#post9178015

The original thread had 212 pages/6334 posts, and nealy 150,000 views


This thread is intended for general discussions of the format battle


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post #2 of 2493 Old 03-11-2007, 06:45 AM
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The insight of some posters who tend to ignore serious short comings of one format that is pervasive is amazing. I love movies on Blu-ray but I am not blind to its disappointments. Maybe we should take a step back and list 10 things wrong with our favorite format rather than shoot down the other guys.

I'll start. I personally favor HD DVD over Blu-ray because I tend to think it has more modern implementation of software and I also like the underdogs. If I had to list 10 things wrong with HD DVD, they would be

1. Lack of studio support from Disney, Fox, Sony, and Lionsgate
2. Some poorly mastered early titles from Warner
3. Higher priced combo titles
4. Lack of artworks on combo titles
5. Lack of lossless audio on many titles
6. Slow response of 1G players
7. Lack of 1080P24 output
8. Audio pitch problems with some Studio Canal discs
9. Lack of anamorphic enhancement of 480i supplement contents
10. Poor advertising and promotion from the HD DVD group

Addicted to shiny round discs with HD content

My Home Theater
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post #3 of 2493 Old 03-11-2007, 06:52 AM
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These are just some thoughts I have.

There is considerable discussion about such things as codecs, layer changes, gb, compression, lossless audio, etc. as though they greatly impact the format battle.
Perhaps for the posters of this forum's alternate universe that's true, but for the rest of the world it isn't. It's a plug and play globe out there my friends. I would bet that most DVD players are still connected directly to tvs by composite audio/video cables ( you know those red and white and yellow ones). Toslink to most people implies some kind of breakfast sausage, and coaxial probably relates to an 18 wheeler.

All people want is to buy these devices cheaply (machines and media), plug them in and have them work reliable--pretty much every time.

They really don't care if it's called BD or HD.

The want it cheap. They want lots of disks available on the cheap. And if the machines have the funcionality problems describes herein, god help the guys behind the return counter at Wal-mart.

So price does matter. Available titles does matter. See, both sides are right. Whichever side accomplishes both of these first wins. Oversimplistic? Maybe, maybe not.

P.S.- this in no ways denigrates the enthusiast/early adopter. Without them these things would never get off the ground.
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post #4 of 2493 Old 03-11-2007, 08:07 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rto View Post


Alternatively: "Blu-ray! The longer you wait, the better it gets."

Who could argue that isn't truth in advertizing?


I see, so that must be why they set the bar so low; genius.
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post #5 of 2493 Old 03-11-2007, 08:21 AM
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From 1080please,

This just makes me pissed even more at Warners for not just getting their crap together and release those Hdi HD DVD's already, Why the heck are they waiting for this half baked format to have their product finished before we HD DVD buyers can enjoy their releases!
Too bad If the Blu-Ray crowd whine about it!, so let them wait another year along with "Batman Begins".
The HD DVD's are ready to be played so lets roll them out A.S.A.P!

I agree. It's weird, especially since it looks like BD-j might be further delayed. Can't help but wonder if there isn't an ulterior motive, here.
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post #6 of 2493 Old 03-11-2007, 08:28 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xradman View Post


1. Lack of studio support from Disney, Fox, Sony, and Weinstein
2. Some poorly mastered early titles from Warner
3. Higher priced combo titles
4. Lack of artworks on combo titles
5. Lack of lossless audio on many titles
6. Slow response of 1G players
7. Lack of 1080P24 output
8. Audio pitch problems with some Studio Canal discs
9. Lack of anamorphic enhancement of 480i supplement contents
10. Poor advertising and promotion from the HD DVD group

I guess my reaction to your list is that these are arbitrary issues not inherent to the medium itself. It's hard for me to imagine that you really favor the format if things like their ad campaigns and, artwork on combo titles, and the audio pitch of a handful of PAL converted imports are a real burr under the saddle.

Slow response on the A1 I'll give ya, quite frankly I'm amazed by those gutsy (or foolhardy) enough to buy first generation anything over $150, especially when you all knew each camp was rushing like crazy to get their piggies to market. The lossless audio? Man, there's no way I could hear a difference, it seems like more of a difference you see on the box than hear through your speakers.
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post #7 of 2493 Old 03-11-2007, 08:38 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xradman View Post

The insight of some posters who tend to ignore serious short comings of one format that is pervasive is amazing. I love movies on Blu-ray but I am not blind to its disappointments. Maybe we should take a step back and list 10 things wrong with our favorite format rather than shoot down the other guys.

I'll start. I personally favor HD DVD over Blu-ray because I tend to think it has more modern implementation of software and I also like the underdogs. If I had to list 10 things wrong with HD DVD, they would be

1. Lack of studio support from Disney, Fox, Sony, and Weinstein
2. Some poorly mastered early titles from Warner
3. Higher priced combo titles
4. Lack of artworks on combo titles
5. Lack of lossless audio on many titles
6. Slow response of 1G players
7. Lack of 1080P24 output
8. Audio pitch problems with some Studio Canal discs
9. Lack of anamorphic enhancement of 480i supplement contents
10. Poor advertising and promotion from the HD DVD group

I'm in.

Blu-ray:

1. Expensive players (better margin, smart strategy for retailers; bad for consumers)
2. Some poorly mastered early titles, period
3. No BD-j (minor to me, but a shortcoming that has halted releases)
4. PS3, SD scaling and possible 3:2 pulldown issues
5. Only one, expensive player with 1080p24
6. Lies and spin from Sony
7. Possible PS3 HDCP handshake issues
8. Too few BD50s
9. Crappy name relative to HD DVD
10. Lacking support from one studio
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post #8 of 2493 Old 03-11-2007, 08:42 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sketcha View Post

I agree. It's weird, especially since it looks like BD-j might be further delayed. Can't help but wonder if there isn't an ulterior motive, here.

I think they are still trying to grapple with the economics of "Total HD" more than they're worried about offending BD support. If that were the case they would be doing more catch-up with the current HD DVD only releases.

I think we all read way too much into the languid pace at which studios are handling all this HD stuff. Because were sweating it out, convinced that every minute that goes by is crucial to outcomes, doesn't mean that they are too; and they are the ones with the real power in this game.

Remember, they were promised a certain level of HD penetration that has not come to pass. Their initial releases were done somewhat in blind faith. Now they probably figure "both camps have 150+ titles to sell new players with, if they can't bring the numbers up, why should we bail them out?" It's no skin off their nose if it forces Sony and Toshiba have to engage in a price war that puts more players in more homes.
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post #9 of 2493 Old 03-11-2007, 08:44 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sketcha View Post

I'm in.

Blu-ray:

1. Expensive players (better margin, smart strategy for retailers; bad for consumers)
2. Some poorly mastered early titles, period
3. No BD-j (minor to me, but a shortcoming that has halted releases)
4. PS3, SD scaling and possible 3:2 pulldown issues
5. Only one, expensive player with 1080p24
6. Lies and spin from Sony
7. Possible PS3 HDCP handshake issues
8. Too few BD50s
9. Crappy name relative to HD DVD
10. Lacking support from one studio

I'm so proud of you
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post #10 of 2493 Old 03-11-2007, 08:49 AM
 
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In what alternate universe is it correct to say "Blu-Ray has no BD-J"?

Quote:
Why the heck are they waiting for this half baked format...

No, the correct question is: Why is Warner screwing over BD customers by limiting some of their BD releases to the bandwidth and capacity barriers of the lesser format?
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post #11 of 2493 Old 03-11-2007, 08:54 AM
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Originally Posted by xradman View Post

I'll start. I personally favor HD DVD over Blu-ray because I tend to think it has more modern implementation of software and I also like the underdogs.


The underdog reason is cool, but Blu-Ray has support for VC-1 and AVC is a new codec. As far as the software that the format can support, HD DVD and Blu-Ray are equal.

Maybe you're are assuming the efficiency of VC-1 is what makes VC-1 more 'modern'. When you here people say 'A' encoder is more efficient than 'B' encoder, it doesn't mean the encoder is better; it's more efficient at showing the same image at a lesser cost (size or bitrate). I know in this day and age the word 'efficient' is ubiquitous. Everybody wants more energy efficient cars, houses ,etc, etc. We don't need super efficient codecs when we have discs that can store 50 GB to 1 TB (HVD) and have max transfer rates of 48 Mbits to 1 Gbits (HVD). I understand the argument of eventually distributing these transfers over the internet and keeping sizes/bitrates near what can be handled today, but does anyone think the limiting factor of bandwidth will remain an issue forever?

I believe we'll eventually get to a internet VOD system only, but we are probably 10 years away. Everyone will have to be able to download movies in a reasonable amount of time for mass adoption. Movies consumers live in some small towns. The people with the cheapest internet connections will probably be the largest group of consumers of internet VOD.
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post #12 of 2493 Old 03-11-2007, 10:09 AM
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I guess if I'm still mostly format neutral I should rant against both sides:

1) Expensive discs
2) Expensive players
3) PC playback still very limited
4) Requires HDMI and other weird, expensive, but ineffective copy protection for assurance of future play at full rez.
5) Looming advent of ICT
6) Many discs not really mastered to get full HD detail
7) No easy inexpensive way to get full digital audio capabilities off the discs.
8) No assurance of what, if anything, will be said in final AACS agreement and how that will affect future playback.
9) No full end to end 1080p chain in most players and TV's so far.
10) Endless bickering format war mostly over IP rights and control of otherwise trivial differences has delayed and imperiled adoption.

There, I feel better now.

- Tom

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post #13 of 2493 Old 03-11-2007, 10:18 AM
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Discs prices aren't so bad except for Fox on the BD side and Combos on the HDDVD side (though for the combos I also avoid them because they're flippers ). Until the Amazon sale, that is, I had several titles I wanted that I was avoiding...

-- "No matter where you go, there you are."

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post #14 of 2493 Old 03-11-2007, 10:27 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by muchaman View Post


I believe we'll eventually get to a internet VOD system only, but we are probably 10 years away. Everyone will have to be able to download movies in a reasonable amount of time for mass adoption. Movies consumers live in some small towns. The people with the cheapest internet connections will probably be the largest group of consumers of internet VOD.

This just isn't going to trump all pressed media, because it has some major setbacks.

The biggest one is economics. I can buy a $40 DVD player, and boom I'm able to buy $8 - $15 DVDs. My yearly income can be well under middle class, yet DVD is still an affordable set-up and I'm part of your buyer base. Not so if need a computer with a butload of power, a burner, and the blanks that I'd need to download a movie. That's a middle-class, under the age of 40 investment.

If ultra cheapo labels can turn a profit on $1-$5 DVDs that tells me that production cost of pressed media must now be tremendously low, so how much of the buying public will studios be willing to shove out of the ring for the savings they pick-up on download-only sales? Besides, DVR is already providing much of this service for many.

Also how do studios market this media with no point-of-purchase sales? TV commercials cost a fortune, and the net is so vast nobody will find you unless they want to, or appreciate "spam-like" methods of advertising.

People like myself also take a rather dim view of burned media's lack of stability.

It's a cute trick for the studios to make us be millions of little factories, but as I have said before, a download doesn't look very impressive under the Christmas tree.
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post #15 of 2493 Old 03-11-2007, 10:35 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by trbarry View Post

I guess if I'm still mostly format neutral I should rant against both sides:

1) Expensive discs
2) Expensive players
3) PC playback still very limited
4) Requires HDMI and other weird, expensive, but ineffective copy protection for assurance of future play at full rez.
5) Looming advent of ICT
6) Many discs not really mastered to get full HD detail
7) No easy inexpensive way to get full digital audio capabilities off the discs.
8) No assurance of what, if anything, will be said in final AACS agreement and how that will affect future playback.
9) No full end to end 1080p chain in most players and TV's so far.
10) Endless bickering format war mostly over IP rights and control of otherwise trivial differences has delayed and imperiled adoption.

There, I feel better now.

- Tom

I don't, I'm going DVD the wave of the future!

Seriously though, I gotta wonder if the red-laser solutions were such a bad idea after-all. Would upconverted 720p look that much different than what were seeing now? Can you imagine how well an HD format who's players were $200 list out of the gate would have sold?

Just being a devil's advocate here.
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post #16 of 2493 Old 03-11-2007, 10:45 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Timothy Ramzyk View Post

I think we all read way too much into the languid pace at which studios are handling all this HD stuff. Because were sweating it out, convinced that every minute that goes by is crucial to outcomes, doesn't mean that they are too.....

This should be stickied, IMO.
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post #17 of 2493 Old 03-11-2007, 12:04 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Timothy Ramzyk View Post

I don't, I'm going DVD the wave of the future!

Seriously though, I gotta wonder if the red-laser solutions were such a bad idea after-all. Would upconverted 720p look that much different than what were seeing now? Can you imagine how well an HD format who's players were $200 list out of the gate would have sold?

Dunno. Has anyone compared the PQ of the red laser WMV/HD (not 720p) version of T2 to the BD version? That should pretty much show up if anything was lost.

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post #18 of 2493 Old 03-11-2007, 02:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by trbarry View Post

Dunno. Has anyone compared the PQ of the red laser WMV/HD (not 720p) version of T2 to the BD version? That should pretty much show up if anything was lost.

- Tom

Actually, the WMV/HD T2 version is sharper than the BR version, but it's not a surprise. The first BR titles were just awful.

The European T2 HD-DVD will be out soon, I would wager that it will easily beat the WMV/HD version, and leave the BR one in the dust.

Robert
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post #19 of 2493 Old 03-11-2007, 03:26 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rob Zuber View Post

In what alternate universe is it correct to say "Blu-Ray has no BD-J"?

No, the correct question is: Why is Warner screwing over BD customers by limiting some of their BD releases to the bandwidth and capacity barriers of the lesser format?

Good then we can account you as agreeing with me that Warner should just release all the held back HDi movies on HD DVD A.S.A.P.
I mean why should a BD fan want an "inferior" release right?
You and all BD buyers should just stop whining about Warners releasing titles than and stop buying their titles in protest.
You may also want to stop buying Fox titles as well if they don't start paying better attention to the quality of the transfers they put out, since 90% of them have been less than stellar releases.

Come on Warners get those HD DVD titles out, the BD fans said they'll wait.
"Batman Begins" and "V for Vendetta" were awesome releases!! Bring on "The Matrix"! with that great PQ, TrueHD!! and great interactive content.
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post #20 of 2493 Old 03-11-2007, 03:56 PM
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Quote:
Good then we can account you as agreeing with me that Warner should just release all the held back HDi movies on HD DVD A.S.A.P.

yes as well as BD. But I think you are wrong on why they are held back. And the reason is to sell them on HDi. It hurts the numbers doing two formats. It makes it harder to release X sold Y copies because 2y/3 are BD and y/3=HD DVD
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post #21 of 2493 Old 03-11-2007, 07:31 PM
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Originally Posted by RustyC View Post

The $599 player will be a new model with exactly the same features, plus CD playback capability.

Any word on profile capability?

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post #22 of 2493 Old 03-11-2007, 09:00 PM
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I'm so proud of you

Shut up!

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post #23 of 2493 Old 03-11-2007, 09:03 PM
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Quote:
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This should be stickied, IMO.

That was a pretty good one.
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Exactly how well do these $600-1500 BD players play the simple CDS?
I'm looking at going format neutral, but I hate my A1, it plays cds pretty well though....... any suggestions on a great BD player at even $15000.00 that plays cds well?

Thanks for the insight!!

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post #25 of 2493 Old 03-12-2007, 07:48 AM
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Originally Posted by muzz View Post

Exactly how well do these $600-1500 BD players play the simple CDS?
I'm looking at going format neutral, but I hate my A1, it plays cds pretty well though....... any suggestions on a great BD player at even $15000.00 that plays cds well?

Thanks for the insight!!

I'll sell you a BD player for $15,000.00 that plays CD's really well. Heck, for $15,000 ... I'll even swap discs for you.
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post #26 of 2493 Old 03-12-2007, 07:54 AM
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Originally Posted by Rob Zuber View Post

In what alternate universe is it correct to say "Blu-Ray has no BD-J"?

No, the correct question is: Why is Warner screwing over BD customers by limiting some of their BD releases to the bandwidth and capacity barriers of the lesser format?


Load of crud. The real question...why on earth are so many studios picking a format that is incomplete and not fully functional?

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post #27 of 2493 Old 03-12-2007, 08:16 AM
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Load of crud. The real question...why on earth are so many studios picking a format that is incomplete and not fully functional?

Easy there! That format will be complete and fully functional ... someday (well, maybe).

Blu won :(
No big deal, I don't buy movies anymore anyway. Time to move on.
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post #28 of 2493 Old 03-12-2007, 12:40 PM
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Originally Posted by FatiusJeebs View Post

Load of crud. The real question...why on earth are so many studios picking a format that is incomplete and not fully functional?

Short answer; Greed. They were promised that PS3 was going to make a mega-hit out of BD and vice-versa, along with silly claims that BD could better protect content. Electronics manufactures were promised they would have a new medium, which would put the profit back in player production.

If HD DVD dries up and blows away tomorrow, it won't change the fact that most of the studio's backing BD was and is the wrong choice for the longevity and expedient profitability of HD media. The economics of HD DVD are more sound in a market where very gradual adoption appears be in the cards.
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post #29 of 2493 Old 03-12-2007, 01:02 PM
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Originally Posted by FatiusJeebs View Post

Load of crud. The real question...why on earth are so many studios picking a format that is incomplete and not fully functional?

What?? I've watched many Blu-ray movies and have not missed a thing. Excellent picture and excellent sound. What is incomplete and not fully functional that apparently impairs on my movie watching experience? Please enligthen me!

PS. Mods: Could you "un-sticky" the old thread and "sticky" this one?

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post #30 of 2493 Old 03-12-2007, 01:49 PM
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What?? I've watched many Blu-ray movies and have not missed a thing. Excellent picture and excellent sound. What is incomplete and not fully functional that apparently impairs on my movie watching experience? Please enligthen me!

I'll give you one, lack of working PIP commentary similar to IME or U-Control on HD DVD.

While watching Constantine on HD DVD, one of the most interesting part was being able to switch to PIP comentaries on the fly on how they did the special effects, bringing comics to movies, comparison between the graphic novel and the movie characters, etc.

Current iteration of BD-J does not have this capability. Pseudo PIP that Lionsgate included in Crank and Descent is of no use unless you want to watch the entire movie with the PIP window. That's because when you are in PIP version of the movie, the menu button is disabled. You are able to chapter skip but to get to the version of the movie without PIP, you have to restart the entire movie from the beginning and chapter skip to where you were. With HD DVD, it's just a matter of turning PIP on or off.

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