Help choosing a receiver - Tsi500 setup - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 48 Old 04-16-2014, 08:25 AM - Thread Starter
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Hi,

 

Don't know where my first thread went, but here's my second attempt.

 

I'm a first time wader in the hallowed waters of the audiophile. I have little to no pertinent knowledge about audio technology, except for the weeks of research invested into my speaker purchase.

 

Below, is my intended set-up :

 

- Two tsi500's hooked up to a (stereo) receiver. Simple enough. But I'd also want to connect my TV, and add a subwoofer at some point in the near future.

 

My question pertains to the receiver. Namely, WHICH ONE should I purchase ? :)

 

My budget is $400 dollars, and I've looked at the following ( to no avail ) :

 

- HK 3490 : Ideal, but price point is a bit steep

 

- HK 3390 : Steep price point

 

- Sony STR - DH130 : Inadequate specs ?

 

- Sony STR - DH100 : Inadequate specs ? But a WONDERFUL price point.

 

- Yamaha RX-797 : Pricey

 

Given that I want to get the most out of my tsi's and intend on keeping the set-up for at least 5 years, what receiver would you recommend ?

 

Any help or feedback would be greatly appreciated.

 

Thanks a bunch !

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post #2 of 48 Old 04-16-2014, 09:46 AM
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Any of the receivers that you posted will drive fine the TSi but they like some juice like any other speaker , later you could ad a amp and remove the load out of the receiver , that said you will need a receiver with pre-outs . The choice of what is best it will follow on you . All the brands that you mention have a different sound signature and you should audition them before and decide what sounds good for you wink.gif .
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post #3 of 48 Old 04-16-2014, 11:12 AM - Thread Starter
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Thanks for the feedback.

 

I might be able to buy a used Pioneer VSX-45TX for about $250. I know it's for surround sound systems but could I make it work for my 2 speaker set up ?

 

Again, I'm looking to make purchases that I won't have to upgrade/swap later on. 

 

If the Pioneer doesn't pan out, I might go with the Sony STR-DH540 for $230.

 

Something I failed to mention in my earlier post is that I'll be looking to hook up my laptop, TV and/or PS3 to the speakers, so would I be better off with an AVR as opposed to a stereo receiver ?

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post #4 of 48 Old 04-16-2014, 11:36 AM
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This is a little over your budget but an excellent buy. With room to grow for the future of your system.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=0MJ-0022-00014&nm_mc=AFC-C8Junction&cm_mmc=AFC-C8Junction-_-na-_-na-_-na&cm_sp=&AID=10446076&PID=6155355&SID=cyu8e8a3qc4e
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post #5 of 48 Old 04-16-2014, 01:26 PM - Thread Starter
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Thanks @phantom52 . It seems monstrous. Gonna try and move some funds around so I can buy it. Any idea how long these Newegg sales normally last ?

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post #6 of 48 Old 04-16-2014, 02:23 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sheepninja View Post

Thanks @phantom52
 . It seems monstrous. Gonna try and move some funds around so I can buy it. Any idea how long these Newegg sales normally last ?

You're welcome. Those Newegg deals come and go. The prices also sometimes go down on the weekend. Right now I would assume they have a good supply of them because they put a limit of 5 per customer. So follow it for a few days and see if the price does go down Saturday afternoon. If it does buy it. If it doesn't then it's your call on whether to buy now or gamble and wait. Good luck and hope everything works out for you.
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post #7 of 48 Old 04-16-2014, 02:57 PM
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That's a nice one , also you can check the accessories4les for some great deals , they have refurbish models but carrying full warranty from the manufacturer . Another thing that i should mention is ... if you need to wait and buy something that will fit your needs and some how future proof do it .
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post #8 of 48 Old 04-16-2014, 03:13 PM
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I would consider what sources you'll be using before jumping straight in. Mainly music? Movies on Blu Ray? Do you want to stream internet radio? Do you have a bunch of content on a PC or server in your house that you want the receiver to access? Are you an Apple or an Android phone user. Lots of considerations.
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post #9 of 48 Old 04-16-2014, 09:00 PM
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Pioneer VSX-1123 is what I suggest. It was bench tested at:
Quote:
Two channels driven continuously into 8-ohm loads:
0.1% distortion at 127.7 watts
1% distortion at 146.2 watts
http://www.soundandvision.com/content/pioneer-vsx-1123-av-receiver-ht-labs-measures
And if that is not enough power it has pre-outs for the front left and right speakers to add an external amp

Don't believe manufacturer's spec's as they are not really accurate. Look towards bench testing results from places like soundandvision.com
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post #10 of 48 Old 04-17-2014, 08:32 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jontyrees View Post

I would consider what sources you'll be using before jumping straight in. Mainly music? Movies on Blu Ray? Do you want to stream internet radio? Do you have a bunch of content on a PC or server in your house that you want the receiver to access? Are you an Apple or an Android phone user. Lots of considerations.

 

70% Music, 30% Movies and TV. 

 

I have A LOT of media stored on my laptop and external harddrive that I'd like to use. Streaming's not a necessity, and I'm an Android phone user.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by crazyrob425 View Post

Pioneer VSX-1123 is what I suggest. It was bench tested at:
And if that is not enough power it has pre-outs for the front left and right speakers to add an external amp

Don't believe manufacturer's spec's as they are not really accurate. Look towards bench testing results from places like soundandvision.com

 

Thanks for the suggestion. I'm still on the lookout !

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post #11 of 48 Old 04-17-2014, 11:12 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sheepninja View Post

70% Music, 30% Movies and TV. 

I have A LOT of media stored on my laptop and external harddrive that I'd like to use. Streaming's not a necessity, and I'm an Android phone user.

I that case I'd look for those receivers that have the best Networking capabilities, and that play nice with Android phones. I have no recommendations for you, but it's another data point in your search - for any receiver you check into, eg the Yamaha 775, google it + networking, or it + android. You should find some reviews (probably here at AVSForum) that discuss it. I know a lot of recvrs are targeted toward iphone use - Pioneer for example tout that, (Airplay, etc). Some have better apps than others that allow you to use your phone as a remote, or make streaming easy.
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post #12 of 48 Old 04-17-2014, 12:07 PM - Thread Starter
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Taken into consideration. Thanks a lot !

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post #13 of 48 Old 04-17-2014, 01:03 PM
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Or you can go here and learn what owners say about the Yamaha RX-V775WA from Newegg. I think there is also a dedicated for the Pioneer.


http://www.avsforum.com/t/1465259/yamaha-rx-v-75-series-owners-thread
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post #14 of 48 Old 04-24-2014, 06:50 AM - Thread Starter
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Update : Bought the Sony STRDH540. ( Bought a refurbished piece off newegg for $170, with the intention of upgrading within a year or two. It looks like something out of Battlestar Galactica. Which is NEVER a bad thing !)

 

This is my first time setting up speakers, so I'm nervously excited . I'm entering under the apprehension that there exists a high probability that I'll hit a brick wall, give up, and return all the purchased items. Which would be tragic. So any help would be greatly appreciated. (Think of it as initiating a novice into your exclusive club of audio elitists. Everybody's gotta start somewhere)

 

My question is as follows :

 

- What speaker wires should I look to buy ? And should I also look to purchase banana plugs or other accessories ? Keeping in mind that I have no experience with this stuff, please advise accordingly. Specific links as examples would be great !

 

I'm looking to hook up my Laptop, Ps3, LG Plasma TV, and two TSi500's 

 

For now, I only have one Tsi500 - Is it unreasonable to attempt to connect just that one for now, at least for testing purposes ? Or do I absolutely need a left + right set up ?

 

Finally, I'm pretty certain my AVR doesn't have network capability - is there a physical add-on that I could buy that enables networking ? Not that important, but I'd like to know nonetheless.

 

 

Thanks for all your help ! This forum has been a God-send so far. All my friends and acquaintances are uncannily clueless about all this. 

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post #15 of 48 Old 04-24-2014, 07:58 AM
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Speaker wire.

http://www.monoprice.com/Product?c_id=102&cp_id=10239&cs_id=1023902&p_id=2791&seq=1&format=2

HDMI cables.

http://www.monoprice.com/Product?c_id=102&cp_id=10240&cs_id=1024008&p_id=3871&seq=1&format=2

Banana plugs at least 2 bags in order to have enough without re-ordering.

http://www.monoprice.com/Product?c_id=104&cp_id=10401&cs_id=1040115&p_id=9437&seq=1&format=2


Buy everything you need for your set up from Monoprice. Excellent prices for everything and great to deal with. Figure out the lengths you need and order.

Yes you need to set it up with at least two speakers. Still think you should have bought the AVR below. Much better all around with ability to upgrade system as you can afford. At this price very hard to beat and it comes with wi-fi and everything else you want. When you start buying accessories for these things thats when the price goes up.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=0MJ-0022-00014&nm_mc=AFC-C8Junction&cm_mmc=AFC-C8Junction-_-na-_-na-_-na&cm_sp=&AID=10446076&PID=6155355&SID=cyu8e8a3qc4e
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post #16 of 48 Old 04-24-2014, 08:17 AM - Thread Starter
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Thanks a bunch ! 

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post #17 of 48 Old 04-24-2014, 11:54 AM - Thread Starter
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Yes you need to set it up with at least two speakers. Still think you should have bought the AVR below. Much better all around with ability to upgrade system as you can afford. At this price very hard to beat and it comes with wi-fi and everything else you want. When you start buying accessories for these things thats when the price goes up.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=0MJ-0022-00014&nm_mc=AFC-C8Junction&cm_mmc=AFC-C8Junction-_-na-_-na-_-na&cm_sp=&AID=10446076&PID=6155355&SID=cyu8e8a3qc4e

 

That AVR was a bit out of my price-range, given that I had little expertise on the subject matter. I'm hoping to keep my current AVR for around a year, and then upgrading when I've fully gotten accustomed to using such set-ups. Your advice is genuinely appreciated :)

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post #18 of 48 Old 04-25-2014, 02:14 PM - Thread Starter
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Found a Canadian website with fair prices and next day delivery http://www.cablesalescanada.com/index.php?main_page=shopping_cart

 

Bought speaker wire, banana plugs and an hdmi cable. Might be missing a wire-stripper/cutter, but other than that, I'm ready to assemble my set-up !

 

Will keep you guys posted.

 

Thanks again for all the help.

 

Btw, I went to Bestbuy and an employee recommended an ONKYO 313 and said that my Sony STRDH540 would only be able to harness about 80% of my speakers capacity. True/ False ? ( Personally, I'm fine with the 80% given that this is my first excursion into audio elitism. Just wanted to confirm though )

 

Would the Onkyo be a MUCH better choice, or only slightly better ( it's about 100-150 dollars more expensive ) ?

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post #19 of 48 Old 04-25-2014, 02:53 PM
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IMHO, you should have a stereo receiver for a dedicated stereo setup. FWIW, H/K, Marantz, and Yamaha are really good sounding receivers...

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post #20 of 48 Old 04-25-2014, 07:51 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sheepninja View Post

Found a Canadian website with fair prices and next day delivery http://www.cablesalescanada.com/index.php?main_page=shopping_cart

Bought speaker wire, banana plugs and an hdmi cable. Might be missing a wire-stripper/cutter, but other than that, I'm ready to assemble my set-up !

Will keep you guys posted.

Thanks again for all the help.

Btw, I went to Bestbuy and an employee recommended an ONKYO 313 and said that my Sony STRDH540 would only be able to harness about 80% of my speakers capacity. True/ False ? ( Personally, I'm fine with the 80% given that this is my first excursion into audio elitism. Just wanted to confirm though )

Would the Onkyo be a MUCH better choice, or only slightly better ( it's about 100-150 dollars more expensive ) ?

Leave that Onkyo where it is. That salesman is full of garbage. Compare the backs of those two AVR's and then you determine which is the better of the two.
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post #21 of 48 Old 04-25-2014, 10:38 PM
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Leave that Onkyo where it is. That salesman is full of garbage. Compare the backs of those two AVR's and then you determine which is the better of the two.

my 6 year old has a onkyo 313 powering tsi100's that is all its good for. Stay away from Onkyo.
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post #22 of 48 Old 04-26-2014, 06:57 AM
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Onkyo amplifier> than Sony IMHO. I'd take an H/K, Marantz, Yamaha, Pioneer, or Denon over a Sony any day...

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post #23 of 48 Old 04-26-2014, 07:01 AM
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Also, FWIW, SQ on the sony will be inferior to the others I mentioned also... of course, SQ is all subjective...

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post #24 of 48 Old 04-28-2014, 02:25 PM - Thread Starter
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Ok. Just wrapped up a weekend of intense audio therapy. And I'm more than satisfied with the output generated by my ****** AVR.

 

First home theater that I ever set-up, and everything went smooth.

 

I currently have the FL speaker at +10db, and FR at -10db ( new to this, so please let me know if I'm being a moron )

 

The bass was surprisingly weak at first ( probably because of the ,aforementioned, ****** AVR ), but I was able to access the equalizer settings and set it to +5db (+10db is max, but overkill)

 

All in all. I'm extremely happy, and I'm able to listen to all my old songs with fresh passion. I'm even hearing details that I never picked up on before.

 

"Keep Talking" by Floyd pretty much raped me in every available orifice. It was glorious.

 

Thank you guys for all your help !

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post #25 of 48 Old 04-28-2014, 02:35 PM - Thread Starter
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Also,

 

Do I have to watch my speaker use over the first few weeks ? I've been keeping it steady at less than half its capability, occasionally increasing it for specific songs. Please let me know if I should be looking to mitigate potential risks, and how.

 

Thanks !

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post #26 of 48 Old 04-28-2014, 02:49 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sheepninja View Post


Btw, I went to Bestbuy and an employee recommended an ONKYO 313 and said that my Sony STRDH540 would only be able to harness about 80% of my speakers capacity. True/ False ? ( Personally, I'm fine with the 80% given that this is my first excursion into audio elitism. Just wanted to confirm though )

Would the Onkyo be a MUCH better choice, or only slightly better ( it's about 100-150 dollars more expensive ) ?
They are on the same level. I would keep the Sony, as there is little benefit for the extra $100. Best Buy is all about making you spend more money than you intended in the first place
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I currently have the FL speaker at +10db, and FR at -10db ( new to this, so please let me know if I'm being a moron )
They should both be set to 0 db. Unless you have used a SPL meter to calibrate your system.

Have you run the speaker calibration set up built into the receiver? Running the speaker calibration on the receiver will calibrate the speakers so they are on an even level.

You have a pair of TSi500's right or do you have just one?
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post #27 of 48 Old 04-30-2014, 06:43 AM - Thread Starter
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They are on the same level. I would keep the Sony, as there is little benefit for the extra $100. Best Buy is all about making you spend more money than you intended in the first place
They should both be set to 0 db. Unless you have used a SPL meter to calibrate your system.

Have you run the speaker calibration set up built into the receiver? Running the speaker calibration on the receiver will calibrate the speakers so they are on an even level.

You have a pair of TSi500's right or do you have just one?

 

Yeah I ran the auto-calibration and it set the speakers to -10db and +10db accordingly. I have it reduced to -4db and +4db at this point and it sounds great, but I'll look to run the calibration again and double check the settings, just in case.

 

And I own a glorious PAIR of TSi500's :D

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post #28 of 48 Old 04-30-2014, 08:27 AM - Thread Starter
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Question - is it absolutely necessary that I buy a Polk center speaker, or will any brand suffice ?

 

Currently considering these 2 options - 

 

Cerwin-Vega-CMX-25C 

 

Klipsch C10 

 

 

Also, which of these receivers would best power my system ? ( Two Tsi500's. I don't need networking, airplay or bluetooth. I definitely need pre-outs. )

 

Pioneer-VSX-1122 

 

Yamaha-R-S500 

 

Yamaha-RX-V475 

 

HK3390 

 

- Yamaha-RX-V375 

 

 

I'm not looking to upgrade right away, but if there's a great deal/discount, I'd be tempted.

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post #29 of 48 Old 04-30-2014, 10:19 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sheepninja View Post

Question - is it absolutely necessary that I buy a Polk center speaker, or will any brand suffice ?

Currently considering these 2 options

Also, which of these receivers would best power my system ? ( Two Tsi500's. I don't need networking, airplay or bluetooth. I definitely need pre-outs. )
Pioneer-VSX-1122 
Yamaha-R-S500 
Yamaha-RX-V475 
HK3390 
- Yamaha-RX-V375 

I'm not looking to upgrade right away, but if there's a great deal/discount, I'd be tempted.
Well you are saying multiple things that don't co-inside. Some of those receivers are just stereo receivers and some of them are surround sound.

If you want good sound quality, that is cohesive, yes a matching center is necessary. So yes I would strongly suggest and urge and not even think about recommending you either of the centers you selected. They will sound very different from your TSi500's and their will be a sonic mismatch in sound. I am a strong believer in matching centers. My room-mates set-up has a mismatched center and the difference is obvious to me

The only centers I could in good conscience recommend are(in this order too):
-Another TSi500 tower if you can fit it and afford it; if not...
-The Polk Audio CS20 center.... If not that
-Polk Audio CS2 center.... If not that
-Polk Audio CS10 Center... If not that
-Polk Audio Monitor 25c Center... If not that
-Polk Audio CS1

Look on your local craigslist, or ebay for good deals.

As for a receiver. What are you planning to do? If you just want a stereo-setup any of those receivers will do the trick. However if you are planning to build a surround sound set-up, the Yamaha R-S500 and HK3390 will not work as they are stereo only receivers. Meaning you can only have a left and right speaker. Second the other Yamaha's you mentioned have a huge power drop when you are trying to power all 5 speaker compared to just powering a left and right speaker. The Pioneer might be the best out of your selections, but honestly I don't think its worth getting a different receiver and then spend less money on a non-matching center. Keep your current Sony STR-540 and get the proper matching center.

Now you say you need pre-outs, you are aware that "deals" on external amps are even more rare than these other deals. So while they are nice to have make sure you are prepared to spend over $600+ to add an amp to your set-up in addition to a receiver that has pre-outs to support that amp.

Are you in canada or the USA?
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post #30 of 48 Old 04-30-2014, 10:34 AM
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Quote:
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Question - is it absolutely necessary that I buy a Polk center speaker, or will any brand suffice ?

 

I am with the others that recommend staying with the same brand (and series if possible) as your fronts for the center channel speaker. This allows a smooth coherent sound. For example if you bought a modestly priced Polk center like the CS-10 ($108 on Amazon), I think you will be very pleased at how this sounds with the Tsi500's. It will not sound like a separate third speaker, but rather will bring out the dialogue where you want it and compliment the Tsi500's.  

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