A Little Science: PF1500 duet @ 200 inches, 3300 hours - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #1 of 11 Old 03-21-2019, 10:13 PM - Thread Starter
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A Little Science: PF1500 duet @ 200 inches, 3300 hours

A little science can go a long way. I took a few pictures using an old Samsung digital camera to give a sense of what I see with a pair of my PF1500 projectors. The pictures do not do justice to the sheer scale, saturation and beauty of the images.

The most stunning effect occurs during documentaries. The effect is like watching Imax in my living room. On 2:35 movies, simply keeping the same ratio and filling the screen gives the same Imax effect.

I have read a lot of academic speculation about lumens needed to get a picture this size. Well, they clearly do not appear to apply. I am using maximum power savings. I never intended to explore this image size but the limitations of the projectors and my desire to hide them in plain sight caused me to investigate placing them alongside an existing light fixture. They aren’t there yet because I am still in the planning stage.

Suffice it to say, I am seriously impressed. How can I not be since my analysis shows this to be a far better bang for the buck than I could have imagined. I’ll bet that most lamp based projectors would come up far short in even attempting this at anywhere near the cost especially when you consider that at this size and hours of usage the light output would require a new expensive lamp.

The little science reference is based on what is and what is not important in the viewing experience. For example, in order to layer both projectors a couple of tricky focusing tricks were required where the center of image is uniformly in sharp focus but the edges are slightly out of focus. It can be annoying with text but it is rarely noticed in video. The center is the area where the action is accomplished. I used three tools to focus: a grid of white lines on a black background, a sharpness image with various tools on it and a full screen page of the letter “a” repeated to get the images focused. I won’t go into a lengthy post as I usually do because I have written so much in the past…

I will note that it donned on me that just one more PF1500w offers me a few exciting options: True 4K (tiled of course) and quartering the projection distance for a half the image size and four times the brightness output i.e. a 100 inch image at 5 feet and 5600 lumen equivalent output with which to work. I am hesitant because of the pesky border bars and the soon to be release AAXA 4k1 1500 lumen projector. I know what 1500 (LED class) lumen output looks like and that projector, should it perform well, will give LG some intense competition.
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post #2 of 11 Old 03-22-2019, 10:17 AM
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That looks really good, but it clearly isn't for everyone.

I think a big issue is the focus and I'm not sure how much work has to go into getting that setup right. That's well beyond what most people are willing to go through to get an image that looks good.

The idea that you can't do this with lamp based models is off, for sure, as the Epson 3700 will produce similar brightness and can do 200 inches quite well and while it does need a new lamp every few thousands hours or so, it's cost is $100. So, $1,300 for the projector and a couple hundred in lamps to get 10,000+ hours of use with a sharp image from corner to corner, lens shift, lots of zoom range, etc.

I can't imaging that people are lining up to drop $700+ per projector to get an image that ends up soft in the corners and requires some serious setup effort.

But, it does look really good the way you have it setup and there is a lot of pop to that image by the photos.

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post #3 of 11 Old 03-23-2019, 11:20 AM - Thread Starter
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Missing the Point

Quote:
Originally Posted by AV_Integrated View Post
That looks really good, but it clearly isn't for everyone.

I think a big issue is the focus and I'm not sure how much work has to go into getting that setup right. That's well beyond what most people are willing to go through to get an image that looks good.

The idea that you can't do this with lamp based models is off, for sure, as the Epson 3700 will produce similar brightness and can do 200 inches quite well and while it does need a new lamp every few thousands hours or so, it's cost is $100. So, $1,300 for the projector and a couple hundred in lamps to get 10,000+ hours of use with a sharp image from corner to corner, lens shift, lots of zoom range, etc.

I can't imaging that people are lining up to drop $700+ per projector to get an image that ends up soft in the corners and requires some serious setup effort.

But, it does look really good the way you have it setup and there is a lot of pop to that image by the photos.

You missed the point entirely. I am constantly reading academic speculation about the amount of light needed to provide a certain level of brightness in a given situation. This combo exceeds the speculation you provided about the Epson at the specified number of hours.

Your imagination aside, the same level of softness exists in projectors. I highlighted it to make a point. In older reviews the showed the smallest clear font viewed. The softness of which I spoke referred to that standard.


I maintain that the loss of output on the Epson 3700 at 3300 hours will NOT allow it to provide a 200 inch image at that level of brightness or saturation.

The fundamental flaw of so many posts on this site is that quoting lumens fail to account for the rapid rate of decline in output. Human perception compensates to a great degree for that loss but it is still substantial. The tests provided by many reviews (if not all) only deal with the initial (maximum) output. It is commonly accepted that the output will decline by a quarter at 500 hours.

Focusing takes seconds and then its done. Once I realized that the focusing system used tandem elements I was able to find a focal point that balances the screen. More importantly, it is simply not an issue while watching any video.

As for setup, it takes a few minutes more than setting up one projector. And by a few, I mean less than five minutes. It requires no complex analysis or reasoning skills. It process is infinitely simpler than installing a screen and provides a far greater return on time and money.


It was my purchase of a pair of Epsons that caused me to critically analyze the lumen hype of lamp based projectors. My second projector lost a substantial amount of output after a couple hundred hours.

Sadly, a lot of people will read your speculation without any proof and accept it.

I was prompted to post because I recently read a review about a (lamp based) projector that interested me. In the review, the poster showed a photo of the new projector and the output of his 4000 lumen projector as proof of how superior the new projector was. He bought the hype!

Please provide me some proof that the rated output of lamp based projectors maintains its output for any specified period of time i.e. a 2000 lumen lamp provides that output for how much of its rated life. Because as I read it (and experienced it) the output could drop within a couple hundred hour by a quarter to half and still be within acceptable industry standards.

I am speculating that virturally nobody measures the output of their lamp in the first couple hundred hours and human perception allows that loss to be ignored. It was only because I had a second projector as a standard that I became aware of the issue.


Oh, lets not forget the heat, noise, projector size, and the acceptable "exploding" lamp" issues.
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post #4 of 11 Old 03-23-2019, 12:58 PM
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I have been talking about human perception for the last 10 years and no one seems overly interested as compared to talking about lumens as if they were a fixed commodity. One f-stop is a doubling of light and most people barely perceive it. Half an f-stop no one notices. It is even true within a single image but as our eyes scan from the center of a constant image to the dimmer edges our perception follows along.

As a long time photographer in the days of manual exposure you always learned to trust your meter and never trust your eyes. To your eyes a cloud passing in front of the sun hardly changed the light level but to the meter it might be 2 f-stops 2x2 or 4 times the light loss. All that happens is our eyes adjust the same 2 f-stops in the opposite direction.

The feeling is always with ambient light is to throw more lumens at the problem. So you have an image that is too bright because of the addition of ambient so we add more light to solve the problem, when we are really needing a deeper black reference point.

I run a .5 gain gray screen with double the lumens effectively giving me the same brightness of white but dispatching half the ambient in the process. Thus a lower black floor to my way of thinking.

Brightness helps with perception no doubt about it but at the same time hurts in other ways. It is like a cat chasing its tail.

All the things ALR and playing with brightness can improve on what you are getting but will never best simple controls on the environment IMO.

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post #5 of 11 Old 03-24-2019, 01:32 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by obscuro View Post
You missed the point entirely. I am constantly reading academic speculation about the amount of light needed to provide a certain level of brightness in a given situation. This combo exceeds the speculation you provided about the Epson at the specified number of hours.

Your imagination aside, the same level of softness exists in projectors. I highlighted it to make a point. In older reviews the showed the smallest clear font viewed. The softness of which I spoke referred to that standard.


I maintain that the loss of output on the Epson 3700 at 3300 hours will NOT allow it to provide a 200 inch image at that level of brightness or saturation.

The fundamental flaw of so many posts on this site is that quoting lumens fail to account for the rapid rate of decline in output. Human perception compensates to a great degree for that loss but it is still substantial. The tests provided by many reviews (if not all) only deal with the initial (maximum) output. It is commonly accepted that the output will decline by a quarter at 500 hours.

Focusing takes seconds and then its done. Once I realized that the focusing system used tandem elements I was able to find a focal point that balances the screen. More importantly, it is simply not an issue while watching any video.

As for setup, it takes a few minutes more than setting up one projector. And by a few, I mean less than five minutes. It requires no complex analysis or reasoning skills. It process is infinitely simpler than installing a screen and provides a far greater return on time and money.


It was my purchase of a pair of Epsons that caused me to critically analyze the lumen hype of lamp based projectors. My second projector lost a substantial amount of output after a couple hundred hours.

Sadly, a lot of people will read your speculation without any proof and accept it.

I was prompted to post because I recently read a review about a (lamp based) projector that interested me. In the review, the poster showed a photo of the new projector and the output of his 4000 lumen projector as proof of how superior the new projector was. He bought the hype!

Please provide me some proof that the rated output of lamp based projectors maintains its output for any specified period of time i.e. a 2000 lumen lamp provides that output for how much of its rated life. Because as I read it (and experienced it) the output could drop within a couple hundred hour by a quarter to half and still be within acceptable industry standards.

I am speculating that virturally nobody measures the output of their lamp in the first couple hundred hours and human perception allows that loss to be ignored. It was only because I had a second projector as a standard that I became aware of the issue.


Oh, lets not forget the heat, noise, projector size, and the acceptable "exploding" lamp" issues.
As a Epson HC3700 owner, I've got to say it works well for me. Back in September 2017 I opened the box, placed the projector on a shelf, dialed in the settings with a calibration disk and haven't touched it since then. At 3600 hours on the lamp, I haven't really noticed any drop in the lumens on my small 151.5" 16:9 image. I did run the disk at about 3000 hours and bumped up the brigthness settings closer to what they were out of the box. I run it on eco/cinema in a less than perfect room and it would easily do 200" on eco/cinema right now.

Now as the the pesky lamps, I have one still in the box ready to go on my $1,124 projector along with a filter. Well worth the effort replacing a lamp when the time comes for a bright uniformly focused image. At the end of the day, the lens shift is what makes the projector a real winner.

I have four projectors (no lamp explosions so far) and can and have easily done a 200" image on my second floor, but if your statement was about one of my Epson HC2000s at 1800 lumens, I would agree. The projector just doesn't have the horse power to keep a nice bright large 200" image without cranking up the lamp/fan settings and it has a real drop in lumens at around the 3500 mark (still bright enough for a little 151.5" image up to 5000 hours but it struggles on the lowest lamp setting) , but I haven't ran into that with the much brighter HC3700...yet, and if I do it is a $99 lamp replacement to get all the lumens back.

The HC3700 is fairly quiet and heat really has never been an issue in a large room. I'll give you the projector size is large, but for the features...sharpness/lens shift/zoom range/3D/etc., I can live with the size. I've averaged 2500 plus hours a year on my lamps (4 projectors) since 2013 and no lamp explosions so far.

...but I like simple, set it on a shelf, dial it in and leave it alone for 3000-5000 hours or so with the occasional calibration via disk every 2 or 3 thousand hours. . After lens shift, I'll never go back to a projector without it.
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https://www.avsforum.com/forum/15-ge...eap-build.html
Epson HC3700/HC2000; Screen - 151.5" 16:9/TV or 143.5" 2.35:1/HT at a seating distance of 12-15 feet; Yamaha RXV675 for 7.4; Speakers - Infinity Primus; Subs - 3 Polk PSW10s, 1 BIC F12; Headphones - 5 JVC wireless; Sony 3D Blu-ray player/six pairs 3D glasses.

Last edited by steve1106; 03-25-2019 at 10:14 AM.
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post #6 of 11 Old 03-31-2019, 08:11 AM - Thread Starter
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LG PF1500 in 2019... LG HF60LA-NA

And now with a tripod!

These are sunrise and night shots to give a better image impression.

The PF1500w can also do these images solo at 200 inches but you must use the maximum light output. That will shorten the life of the projector so you will not come close to 30,000 hours of use. That is why I chose to use two projectors. They produce images that dramatically change the very nature of the manufacture’s basic product.

A little science knowledge can overcome many technical shortcomings of a device just like a chef can transform a meal into a gourmet experience with ordinary kitchen ingredients. And a lot of knowledge can transform a basic projector into a powerful imaging device with just a little effort.

As you know, there is a 2019 version of the venerable PF1500: the LG HF60LA-NA. Its UST sibling is the LG HF65LA-NA. They have the same 1400 lumen output rating. Oops, no not the same as the original PF1500. They are ANSI lumens. Thus, they like the PF1500w will be perceived as brighter than their same ANSI rated bulb counterparts. In some cases they can be perceived as twice as bright!

LG maintains the same 120 inch recommendation for the HF60LA-NA as for the original PF1500. That encourages using the projector with maximum power savings. And that increases the chance the projector will have a 30,000 hour lifespan.

Very few in this community probably have the space to project a 200 inch image which requires at least a nine foot ceiling. However, once you experience one, you will want as large of an image as you can physically obtain if you can get anywhere near the quality of my duet image.

Consider the following:
1. The seemingly smaller pixels (on the duet because they now function as sub-pixels) provide a more engaging experience so you don’t have to worry about the screen door effect at a couple meters,
2. The light canon effect of dual projectors to sear the sharp and saturated images into your brain even with some ambient light.
3. Not accepting exploding lamps as normal.
4. A five fold slower rate of loss of light.
5. The built-in tuner means watching any sport is a “being right there” experience. Shrink the screen to 170 inches or even 150 inches, cover the windows with drapes or shades and make every sporting game an event. Don’t even consider this with a solo bulb projector without a spare.
6. Poor man’s pop! The tuner offers a smart mode picture setting which adjusts the picture for optimum viewing. But now with two projectors working as one you can mix and match picture modes and power settings for the best viewing in your environment BEFORE even considering proper calibration with extremely good results.
7. Simple setup. Stacking projectors is not complicated or difficult as it is quite common at concerts. I don’t prefer the term because it conjures the requirement to physically place one projector atop the other. My PF1500 projectors sit side by side and they could easily be mounted side by side.
8. To maximize my investment, I pair the PF1500w with the legacy PF1500. The biggest advantage is the ease of making adjustments because the legacy PF1500 is compatible with my LG HW-300T remote control. The HW-300T has a superior remote because it is better ergonomically designed.

My posts are for the people who are not solely pursuing a home theatre or a professional gaming rig. They are for tinkerers like me with a strong science and technology background who don’t mind making adjustments on the fly if something doesn’t look or sound right.

Once you understand that things like color and sound are perceived and that perception is an acquired skill; it changes your expectations in AV equipment and allows you to target your resources and money more efficiently. Let’s face it, there is a reason why new models appear almost every year.


End of Rant!
@ bud16415: Two Words: Thank You! A photography background is an invaluable skill and tool in helping make knowledgeable and informed decisions in the AV world.

@ steve1106: There as so many questions that I have but “I've got to say it works well for me” is the best answer one can expect.
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post #7 of 11 Old 03-31-2019, 01:22 PM - Thread Starter
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Well done

@ steve1106:
Well, well, well, you offer a most impressive presentation - one that I initially read at least five times.

First, I owe you an apology. My comment implied that the 3700 merely worked for you when any objective analysis shows that: it simply works and works well!

Second, my foray in to the Epson recent projectors did not end well. The 2045 was a presentation projector masquerading as a home entertainment projector. It was received quite well in this community, so much so that I bought one. To say that I was disappointed would be an understatement. I have issues with bulb life, heat, noise, dust, etc and there are ways to minimize the importance of those issues. However, I could not tolerate the abysmal black level. It had to go back. I felt like I was experiencing “the Emperor’ New Clothes” and rejected Epson from that point forward.

Third, at 150 inches you have crossed the threshold from watching a Big TV to experiencing a video event. That tremendously enhances your post.

As I said, I do have questions but hands down if you don’t already have a PF1500 then you do have a superior solution.
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post #8 of 11 Old 03-31-2019, 04:29 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by obscuro View Post
@ steve1106:
Well, well, well, you offer a most impressive presentation - one that I initially read at least five times.

First, I owe you an apology. My comment implied that the 3700 merely worked for you when any objective analysis shows that: it simply works and works well!

Second, my foray in to the Epson recent projectors did not end well. The 2045 was a presentation projector masquerading as a home entertainment projector. It was received quite well in this community, so much so that I bought one. To say that I was disappointed would be an understatement. I have issues with bulb life, heat, noise, dust, etc and there are ways to minimize the importance of those issues. However, I could not tolerate the abysmal black level. It had to go back. I felt like I was experiencing “the Emperor’ New Clothes” and rejected Epson from that point forward.

Third, at 150 inches you have crossed the threshold from watching a Big TV to experiencing a video event. That tremendously enhances your post.

As I said, I do have questions but hands down if you don’t already have a PF1500 then you do have a superior solution.
No... you were right about the lamps losing brightness over time and I experienced it with both my HC2000s. While they can do a 190" up image with 1800 lumens, the projector would have to be on a higher fan/lamp setting and the lamps would probably need replacing at around the 2000 hour mark.

Years ago I tried to sell the wife on giving me the family room for "modification" for a much larger image with no success. (first two thumbs are 190" image and last two are 16 feet wide) I even stacked them once for my 151.5" to see how hard it was and I could never dial the image in to my satisfaction.

...but the HC3700 just starts with a much higher lamp brightness and even on the eco setting the modes range between 2120 to 1365 vs the HC2000's 1299 to 887. (Numbers based on professional review numbers and are approximate.) Given the additional brightness the lamp dimming hasn't been a noticeable factor so far unlike my previous projectors.

Not having to bother with lamps would be nice, but it hasn't been a pain with the Epsons given the lamp life and replacement costs. Still 30000 hours would be nice. I just don't keep or use a projector long enough to benefit from the hours. (The wife claims I never want to leave the basement now and that is at 2500 hours a year.)

Edit: I think the point to remember is that you are talking about a 200" image and that is impressive for the amount of money you have in your projectors along with the added benefit of "it works for you".
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https://www.avsforum.com/forum/15-ge...eap-build.html
Epson HC3700/HC2000; Screen - 151.5" 16:9/TV or 143.5" 2.35:1/HT at a seating distance of 12-15 feet; Yamaha RXV675 for 7.4; Speakers - Infinity Primus; Subs - 3 Polk PSW10s, 1 BIC F12; Headphones - 5 JVC wireless; Sony 3D Blu-ray player/six pairs 3D glasses.

Last edited by steve1106; 04-01-2019 at 03:07 PM. Reason: additional statement
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post #9 of 11 Old 04-01-2019, 09:30 AM
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It's human nature that whenever we find a new concept that works well for us we want to share it with others. In this case after many posts over several years about the dual PF1500 setup it seems the concept hasn't caught on with anyone else. Doesn't mean it's a bad concept but just one that for various reasons no one seems interested in trying to replicate.
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post #10 of 11 Old 04-02-2019, 07:02 PM - Thread Starter
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@steve1106 :I kinda think like your wife.

As @Dave in Green indicated, “no one seems interested in trying to replicate” has always puzzled me because of the sheer simplicity and its main appeal (to me) “virtually invisible in any décor”.

The only reason I keep posting is that I felt that there has to be a spouse like yours who will simply not allow a large projector to interfere with the décor or someone whose living space simply won’t accommodate a larger projector and who desires a massive image.

Not only that but I have felt that so many untrue comments from forum members have been a deterrent, most of which were based on the first generation PF1500 which BTW is about to get another overhaul with the LG HF60LA-NA.

Anyway, when I read the review in Projector Central, they used a key word “substantial” to describe the black level in the 3700. That is the way I described the PF1500w when I bought it. So the idea that the LG HF60LA-NA will output the equivalent of over 2500 perceived lumens I still think will wow people who want a big picture from a tiny package.

As an aside, I am still absolutely stunned at HDR video on the PF1500w and I cannot imagine how HDR video looks on your 3700. I did not realize just how three dimensional images would appear.

So not only does the 3700 appear to be an amazing machine but the review I read in Projector Central was over two years ago and in searching for negatives I found none. I must also confess that I found no negatives on the 2045 but the search period was much shorter.

The two things I looked for dealt with marathon use. Are the imagers organic or inorganic and how dust resistant is the projector? In that two year period, no one complained about image degradation or trapped dust.

As far as human perception, @ bud16415 is absolutely right about how are eyes compensate for brightness. The reason for my bold assertions about the PF1500 the diffuse light from bulbs doesn’t retain their color saturation at the same ANSI lumen output as LED or Lasers. And more importantly, I only noticed the light loss in both my bulb and LED projectors because I had a 2nd projector as a reference. My speculation was that most people only have one projector setup at a time. The irony of having dual projectors (2 HC720, 4 HW300T, 2 PH300s, 5 PF1500… etc) is that I realized that the greatest marketed advantage of the LED projectors so far is also their greatest disadvantage: once the lamps go (as in two of my HW300Ts) you cannot easily replace them.

Finally, @JackB in the AAXA thread: thx for removing the AAXA K1 from consideration because of its potential black level. So if Fry’s gives a good intro price on yet a new generation of the PF1500 (LG HF60LA-NA) I’ll buy it just “because”. But the only way to sate my curiosity is to buy a 3700 which with bulb will cost a few hundred more than my duet PF1500w and compare it. After all, if I don’t like the size I can use it to replace the two HC720 projectors that I keep stored as a reminder not to buy a bulb projector while now having the option of using a superior projection solution.
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post #11 of 11 Old 04-03-2019, 08:35 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by obscuro View Post
… So the idea that the LG HF60LA-NA will output the equivalent of over 2500 perceived lumens I still think will wow people who want a big picture from a tiny package. …
Just to be clear, you mean that two HF60LAs together will output the equivalent of over 2,500 perceived lumens. LG rates each HF60LA at the same 1,400 perceived lumens as the PF1500 and PF1500W even though they all actually measure less on a light meter. Projectorcentral.com's independent testing has verified that the Helmholtz–Kohlrausch (HK) effect does make RGB LED projectors appear at least slightly brighter to the human eye than to a light meter due to superior color saturation.

Source: projectorcentral.com/Meter-and-Perceived-Brightness-Test.htm

As far as the "tiny package" goes, two of the LGs together occupy .68 cu. ft. vs. .69 cu. ft. occupied by a single Epson HC 3700, so no real space advantage there.

Quote:
Originally Posted by obscuro View Post
… The two things I looked for dealt with marathon use. Are the imagers organic or inorganic and how dust resistant is the projector? In that two year period, no one complained about image degradation or trapped dust. …
The projector industry moved from organic to inorganic imagers more than 10 years ago.
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