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post #1 of 27 Old 04-12-2015, 01:36 PM - Thread Starter
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Design Phase-Looking for suggestions

I am building a house and I have mapped out how I would like for my AV setup to look and operate from a physical perspective. Any suggestions(brand) for my 8x8 Video HDMI matrix? I am also looking for a way to control my system that will play nice with the video matrix? I would like for the system to be scalable so I can add lights and cameras in the near future. Crestron and Control 4 have been recommended, but is there any other solution out there if I decide to DIY? I have a .pdf for you to review however it is too large to upload to the forum, if you would like to review it please let me know and I will email it to you. Thanks!
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post #2 of 27 Old 04-12-2015, 05:42 PM
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You sure you need an 8x8 matrix? What are you distributing, source-wise?

With the whole-house DVR solutions these days, in most cases you're better off using the set-top boxes in most rooms, perhaps combining infrequently-used spaces onto a splitter / HDMI extender arrangement. That will likely give you a better and much cheaper solution. Especially if you have both AVR/surround and "TV only" zones in the mix.

Just host your PDF on dropbox or other public cloud storage site and post a link here...

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post #3 of 27 Old 04-12-2015, 06:12 PM - Thread Starter
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@Jeff

Yeah I believe I would need the 8x8 HDMI splitter, because I have (3) Direct TV DVR's, (2) Apple TV's, BluRay DVD, Media Player (type is undecided). I know Direct TV has the Genie solution, however I still want the option to view other sources in multiple rooms. I want to try to keep the look as clean as possible in the rooms and have all cables home ran back to the AV closet in the basement. I also plan on building out a media room in the basement but that probably wont be right away (scalability). I have uploaded my .pdf to dropbox for you to review. Let me know what you think? Thanks!

AVSForum says I have to have 5 posts or greater before I can post any links...
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post #4 of 27 Old 04-12-2015, 08:21 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tbrown_82 View Post
Yeah I believe I would need the 8x8 HDMI splitter, because I have (3) Direct TV DVR's, (2) Apple TV's, BluRay DVD, Media Player (type is undecided).
Spending $1000's to distribute $69 streaming boxes - make sure you really need to do this... If you can reduce that to a 4x4 or even a pair of 4x4's, you'll save quite a bit.

Quote:
I know Direct TV has the Genie solution, however I still want the option to view other sources in multiple rooms.
Are you going to go to a closet to put a BD in a player for another room?

Quote:
I want to try to keep the look as clean as possible in the rooms and have all cables home ran back to the AV closet in the basement.
There's a big difference between centralizing / remotely operating AV equipment and using a matrix solution. Placing equipment in a remote closet is relatively inexpensive and doesn't run into all the problems that a matrix switch introduces.

Jeff

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post #5 of 27 Old 04-13-2015, 05:45 AM - Thread Starter
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Spending $1000's to distribute $69 streaming boxes - make sure you really need to do this... If you can reduce that to a 4x4 or even a pair of 4x4's, you'll save quite a bit.



If I use (2) 4x4's how would I manage the switching between sources? For instance, if I am in my bedroom and I am watching Direct TV and I want to switch over to Apple TV, or play music from a Media Server?
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post #6 of 27 Old 04-13-2015, 05:46 AM - Thread Starter
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Are you going to go to a closet to put a BD in a player for another room?


I very rarely play BD, so this would be rare occasions if someone had something they wanted me to see or an occasional trip to Red Box.
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post #7 of 27 Old 04-13-2015, 05:47 AM - Thread Starter
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There's a big difference between centralizing / remotely operating AV equipment and using a matrix solution. Placing equipment in a remote closet is relatively inexpensive and doesn't run into all the problems that a matrix switch introduces.

I guess my biggest question would be, if I have all my equipment located in a remote closet, what would be the best solution to avoid a matrix? And if so, how to control it? I want to make this as pain-free as possible.
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post #8 of 27 Old 04-13-2015, 05:47 AM - Thread Starter
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Please review my proposed drawing:


https://www.dropbox.com/s/5k34mbyc6m...=e&n=410803701
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post #9 of 27 Old 04-13-2015, 05:47 AM - Thread Starter
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Please review my proposed drawing:


https://www.dropbox.com/s/5k34mbyc6m...=e&n=410803701
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post #10 of 27 Old 04-13-2015, 12:22 PM
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Tbrown - I went the Control4 route and for a IP Video switch vs a fixed 8x8 switch. It allowed more flexibility, you can add source inputs 1-2 at a time and add outputs (baluns behind the TV) 1 at a time. You can have a 6x4, 7x2, 4x9, etc, whatever configuration you can think of, you can do.

Control4 is not 100% DIY, but once the hardware is entered into the project, you can program it on your own. It was enough of a compromise for me. It had dealer support if I was stumped, 10,000's of products work in its ecosystem with C4 or 3rd party drivers, but if I wanted to sit down and program I have the ability.

I do agree that a fixed matrix or IP Matrix are expensive, so just make sure it makes sense in your case.
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post #11 of 27 Old 04-13-2015, 12:48 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ezlotogura View Post
Tbrown - I went the Control4 route and for a IP Video switch vs a fixed 8x8 switch. It allowed more flexibility, you can add source inputs 1-2 at a time and add outputs (baluns behind the TV) 1 at a time. You can have a 6x4, 7x2, 4x9, etc, whatever configuration you can think of, you can do.

Control4 is not 100% DIY, but once the hardware is entered into the project, you can program it on your own. It was enough of a compromise for me. It had dealer support if I was stumped, 10,000's of products work in its ecosystem with C4 or 3rd party drivers, but if I wanted to sit down and program I have the ability.

I do agree that a fixed matrix or IP Matrix are expensive, so just make sure it makes sense in your case.
Thanks for the info. Do you have a specific brand that you used for your IP Video Switch? That route seems like it allows for more flexibility instead of being locked in to a specific 8x8 video matrix.
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post #12 of 27 Old 04-13-2015, 12:56 PM
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Just Add Power - JAP - is the largest IP Matrix I know of. I went with Netplay by Video Storm. It is a bit newer on the block, maybe a year or so old, but Video Storm has been around much longer.

There were 1-2 features I liked from JAP but another 3-4 I liked from VS that I weighed more heavily, so I went with VS. I dont know anyone who has either that complains about them.
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post #13 of 27 Old 04-13-2015, 04:02 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tbrown_82 View Post
If I use (2) 4x4's how would I manage the switching between sources? For instance, if I am in my bedroom and I am watching Direct TV and I want to switch over to Apple TV, or play music from a Media Server?
Split the server so it feeds two matrix units. And then you group and place duplicate sources on each matrix. So a minimum of one DirecTV box, one AppleTV and a split/shared server feed per matrix. Only downside is if you wanted to have multiple rooms in sync that lived on separate matrix units - but you can minimize that by intelligently grouping them... Cuts down the cost considerably and also can help avoid some of the HDMI common denominator issues by grouping "like" display setups together - for example, putting all "2-channel TV speaker" zones on one matrix so they don't force the sources to downshift to stereo and lose 5.1 surround...

Jeff

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post #14 of 27 Old 04-13-2015, 05:47 PM - Thread Starter
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@Jeff ,

Makes lots of sense, I have been reading where people have had issues of downscaling for 2 channel audio. I could definitely come up with a way to divide the sources. What do you suggest for control? I am strongly leaning towards C4, any other suggestions?
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post #15 of 27 Old 04-13-2015, 05:52 PM - Thread Starter
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@ezlotogura

Thanks for the recomendation on the IP Matrixes I will read up on them ASAP. Have you had any issues with audio over your Netplay?
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post #16 of 27 Old 04-14-2015, 05:35 AM
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I had some HDMI Handshake issues out of the box. My dealer called VS, gave them my model AVR and told them the issues. Within 5-6 days they released a firmware update. Been rock solid since. The Handshake issue impacted audio and video, but nothing since the update has impacted either video or audio.

You can also watch the same thing in various rooms, but if one room is 5.1 and the others are just using the TV for audio that is fine. It controls audio at each location.
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post #17 of 27 Old 04-14-2015, 05:49 AM
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Do you have 8 screens or fewer?
How many live in this home?
Ages?
What do they watch?
How many screens are multi channel audio?
Is direct tv the only video provider or can you cable or fios?
Do you have any desire for 4k today or in the next 2-3 year's?
How often do you 're-watch shows?
What is your budget?
What is your control4/Crestron objection?
What is the objection to genie? Either in a deep box behind tv or remote?

Any multi channel audio zone should have its own sources imho.

You want to distribute DVD/BD then comment this is a rare source so spending $$$$ to distribute or $20 to own on VUDU / Apple in digital form.

I read this as a solution looking for a problem.

My thought, like Jeff

AVR zone with dedicated sources (x AVR zones)

Deep box in drywall behind each tv with atv / genie (or TiVo mini) / media decoder all hooked to tv. Cat6 drops to these.

Decide which additional tv's must have bd and bake in solution.

Run a cat6 shielded to each tv location from the closet and an HDMI to those under 50 linear feet and if the proposal above does not work. Go install a matrix.

Last edited by SMHarman; 04-14-2015 at 06:16 AM.
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post #18 of 27 Old 04-14-2015, 05:53 AM - Thread Starter
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@ezlotogura


EXCELLENT!!! Sounds like you have a solid solution on your hands. What is the specific model Net Play that you are using? I went on their website last night to do some reading and they have quite a few options.
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post #19 of 27 Old 04-14-2015, 06:09 AM
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VTX100 goes in your central AV Rack and sources go into this switch
http://www.video-storm.com/proddetail.asp?prod=VTX100

You can get 2 or 4 inputs in a 1 RU model. I have 4 inputs in a 1 RU model. I have cable boxes, blu ray and a Control4 controller plugged in all centrally located in my AV Rack.

VRX010 goes behind the TV - takes the ethernet in and its HDMI out to the TV (or in 1 case for me, an AVR)
http://www.video-storm.com/proddetail.asp?prod=VRX010

They have a full distributed audio solution too - those are the NBX products. That said, the VRX models have all the features of the NBX plus the tv function. For the audio stuff you can stream and play these various services: http://www.video-storm.com/proddetail.asp?prod=NBX100

I liked how with JAP you could add anything located anywhere to your matrix since they have small 1 input type devices that can sit anywhere in the house, so all your stuff did not have to be centrally located. With VS I liked the text and picture options upon actions (if someone rings a doorbell I can have a front camera image pop up on screen with text saying front door) and I liked how IP cameras can be added as sources without using up any inputs. So with my control4, should it be after 10pm at night and before 7am (usual sleeping times) if my alarm goes off, my bedroom TV will turn on and all my security cameras will tile and show on the screen. Another feature (coming soon) is the ability to have "sling like" technology where VS will allow you to watch your content on mobile devices. To me that would be icing on the cake. NEVER buy something for a "coming soon" feature, I know, but there were enough other positives to swing me in the VS direction.
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post #20 of 27 Old 04-14-2015, 06:35 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ezlotogura View Post
VTX100 goes in your central AV Rack and sources go into this switch
http://www.video-storm.com/proddetail.asp?prod=VTX100

You can get 2 or 4 inputs in a 1 RU model. I have 4 inputs in a 1 RU model. I have cable boxes, blu ray and a Control4 controller plugged in all centrally located in my AV Rack.

VRX010 goes behind the TV - takes the ethernet in and its HDMI out to the TV (or in 1 case for me, an AVR)
http://www.video-storm.com/proddetail.asp?prod=VRX010

They have a full distributed audio solution too - those are the NBX products. That said, the VRX models have all the features of the NBX plus the tv function. For the audio stuff you can stream and play these various services: http://www.video-storm.com/proddetail.asp?prod=NBX100

I liked how with JAP you could add anything located anywhere to your matrix since they have small 1 input type devices that can sit anywhere in the house, so all your stuff did not have to be centrally located. With VS I liked the text and picture options upon actions (if someone rings a doorbell I can have a front camera image pop up on screen with text saying front door) and I liked how IP cameras can be added as sources without using up any inputs. So with my control4, should it be after 10pm at night and before 7am (usual sleeping times) if my alarm goes off, my bedroom TV will turn on and all my security cameras will tile and show on the screen. Another feature (coming soon) is the ability to have "sling like" technology where VS will allow you to watch your content on mobile devices. To me that would be icing on the cake. NEVER buy something for a "coming soon" feature, I know, but there were enough other positives to swing me in the VS direction.
@ezlotogura
Thanks for the feedback, sounds like you really did your homework. My plan is to have everything centrally located for aesthetics. I like the option to have the IP cameras interface with the system without having to use inputs (VS). Looks like VS would be a good fit. I see that C4 gets another plus by allowing you to program the cameras from 10pm-7am to display on the bedroom TV if the alarm goes off. I will continue to do my homework so I can make sure I have a clear understanding. I cant reply to any PM's until I have 15 posts, but yes I would love to get that information from you.
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post #21 of 27 Old 04-14-2015, 06:42 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tbrown_82 View Post
@ezlotogura
Thanks for the feedback, sounds like you really did your homework. My plan is to have everything centrally located for aesthetics. I like the option to have the IP cameras interface with the system without having to use inputs (VS). Looks like VS would be a good fit. I see that C4 gets another plus by allowing you to program the cameras from 10pm-7am to display on the bedroom TV if the alarm goes off. I will continue to do my homework so I can make sure I have a clear understanding. I cant reply to any PM's until I have 15 posts, but yes I would love to get that information from you.
you can program away using Video Storm and C4. You can press a button and get 4 inputs at once on your TV (actually up to 6 inputs in a 3x2 format) so you can watch a few ball games at once on your TV. I gave you some security/camera ideas. When I hit a button on my remote, it puts the "room" into "sleep" mode, aka in 90 mins the tv will turn off. So now when I hit that button, I get a 90 minute sleep message that pops up on the tv, just to confirm the button was pressed. Not VS related, but C4 related, when I hit that sleep button, if my bedroom light is on, it turns off too so I do not have to get out of bed to turn on the light. Another big selling feature for VS to me over JAP was that it had XBMC built in to each VRX. I have a NAS with 100's of movies. I can now access them (not using up a VRX input) to watch movies on any TV. I can also show pictures on the TVs. Its a nice feature.

I'd rather not post that person's contact info publicly but he comes to these forums sometimes, so I'll send him the link, or when you get to 15 posts just IM Me at that point.
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post #22 of 27 Old 04-14-2015, 06:50 AM - Thread Starter
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Do you have 8 screens or fewer? Currently (6) with (2) more coming
How many live in this home? (3)
Ages? 2 Adults 1 Teenager
What do they watch? Direct TV, Apple TV for Netflix and movies
How many screens are multi channel audio? 1 for now 5.1, I will add a media room once I build out the basement 7.1 or 11.1 audio.
Is direct tv the only video provider or can you cable or fios? Direct TV for now (NFL Sunday Ticket)
Do you have any desire for 4k today or in the next 2-3 year's? No need for 4K
How often do you 're-watch shows? Not too often, after we watch something on the DVR I delete it.
What is your budget? 10k
What is your control4/Crestron objection? No objection to the technology, price is a concern.
What is the objection to genie? Either in a deep box behind tv or remote? I would have to check my contract with DTV to see when I am up for a equipment refresh but I am not opposed to it.

Any multi channel audio zone should have its own sources imho.

You want to distribute DVD/BD then comment this is a rare source so spending $$$$ to distribute or $20 to own on VUDU / Apple in digital form.

I read this as a solution looking for a problem.

My thought, like Jeff

AVR zone with dedicated sources (x AVR zones)

Deep box in drywall behind each tv with atv / genie (or TiVo mini) / media decoder all hooked to tv. Cat6 drops to these.

Decide which additional tv's must have bd and bake in solution.

Run a cat6 shielded to each tv location from the closet and an HDMI to those under 50 linear feet and if the proposal above does not work. Go install a matrix.
See above answers to your questions.
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post #23 of 27 Old 04-14-2015, 07:07 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ezlotogura View Post
you can program away using Video Storm and C4. You can press a button and get 4 inputs at once on your TV (actually up to 6 inputs in a 3x2 format) so you can watch a few ball games at once on your TV. I gave you some security/camera ideas. When I hit a button on my remote, it puts the "room" into "sleep" mode, aka in 90 mins the tv will turn off. So now when I hit that button, I get a 90 minute sleep message that pops up on the tv, just to confirm the button was pressed. Not VS related, but C4 related, when I hit that sleep button, if my bedroom light is on, it turns off too so I do not have to get out of bed to turn on the light. Another big selling feature for VS to me over JAP was that it had XBMC built in to each VRX. I have a NAS with 100's of movies. I can now access them (not using up a VRX input) to watch movies on any TV. I can also show pictures on the TVs. Its a nice feature.

I'd rather not post that person's contact info publicly but he comes to these forums sometimes, so I'll send him the link, or when you get to 15 posts just IM Me at that point.
Sounds good. I can respect that. I will IM you once I get my 15 posts. Thanks again for your feedback
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tbrown_82 View Post
See above answers to your questions.
So next. How many of these tv's with use their own speakers?

Seems that the 10k can be better deployed.

String 4 cat and a rg6 to each tv.

Put a genie behind the tv. You can Velcro it yo the tv. Put an atv behind each tv.

Control4 can control both of those by IP.

This covers 7/8 tv's.

The teenager likely does not care much for BD.

On the 5.1 zone rack all the sources and AVR. HDMI or Balun to the TV.

But then you mentioned cameras. Now the tv's with a control4 source would be able to display that through the control4 interface or touch screens / iDevices / Android.
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post #25 of 27 Old 04-14-2015, 09:19 AM - Thread Starter
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So next. How many of these tv's with use their own speakers? All the TV's will use their own speakers with the exception of the Family Room where I will have 5.1.

Seems that the 10k can be better deployed. I hope so...

String 4 cat and a rg6 to each tv. (4) cat to each tv??? Please explain

Put a genie behind the tv. You can Velcro it yo the tv. Put an atv behind each tv. atv?

Control4 can control both of those by IP.

This covers 7/8 tv's.

The teenager likely does not care much for BD. Probably not

On the 5.1 zone rack all the sources and AVR. HDMI or Balun to the TV. Got it

But then you mentioned cameras. Now the tv's with a control4 source would be able to display that through the control4 interface or touch screens / iDevices / Android.
Got it!


This is my original drawing, looks like I might need to adjust a little.


https://www.dropbox.com/s/5k34mbyc6m...=e&n=410803701
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post #26 of 27 Old 04-14-2015, 09:25 AM
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4 Cat 6 to each tv location. From the central closet.
1 for genie
1 for atv
1 for tv or Balun if you matrix in the future
1 foe signalling e.g. IR signals from control4.
1 RG6 for if a future home owner wasn't a traditional CATV type arrangement and boxes at each tv.

Atv = Apple t.v.

So for each tv that is a SR260 at $200. A $69 ATV and a Genie rental (ongoing monthly)

Then an HC800 $1400 and maybe a HC250 $750 for the cinema room. Should give enough IR support.

Plus programming.

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post #27 of 27 Old 04-14-2015, 11:27 AM - Thread Starter
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4 Cat 6 to each tv location. From the central closet.
1 for genie
1 for atv
1 for tv or Balun if you matrix in the future
1 foe signalling e.g. IR signals from control4.
1 RG6 for if a future home owner wasn't a traditional CATV type arrangement and boxes at each tv.

Atv = Apple t.v.

So for each tv that is a SR260 at $200. A $69 ATV and a Genie rental (ongoing monthly)

Then an HC800 $1400 and maybe a HC250 $750 for the cinema room. Should give enough IR support.

Plus programming.
Thanks for the feedback. I am going back to the drawing board.
SMHarman likes this.
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