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Pentax smc DA 50 mm f/1.8 review

Pentax smc DA 50 mm f/1.8 review | Photography Gear News | Scoop.it

Currently Pentax has as many as four lenses with a focal length near 50 mm on its offer. We tested smc FA 50 mm f/1.4, and smc DA* 55 mm f/1.4 SDM models long ago. Now the time has come for the Pentax smc DA 50 mm f/1.8. Enjoy our review!


"Although the Pentax company doesn’t offer a full frame digital reflex camera they evidently have a soft spot for classic fixed-focus lenses with a focal length near 50 mm, which can be considered as standard instruments only on full frame; on an APS-C/DX sensor they can qualify as rather a casual portrait lens. Currently Pentax has as many as four such lenses on its offer: the oldest, full frame Pentax smc FA 50 mm f/1.4, an equally old Pentax smc D FA 50 mm f/2.8 Macro, the Pentax smc DA* 55 mm f/1.4 SDM, launched in 2008, and the newest one, the Pentax smc DA 50 mm f/1.8..."

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Philippe Gassmann's comment, December 25, 2012 5:06 AM
Salut Alcofribas. Non, je ne suis pas tombé du lit: j'ai posté hier soir (vive le "scheduling"). Meilleurs voeux. Philippe.
Alcofribas's comment, December 25, 2012 5:38 AM
Ah boon ? T'es pas réel, alors ? c'est tout de l'automatique. Je suis déçu... Alco
Philippe Gassmann's comment, December 25, 2012 5:52 AM
eh eh ;) bien sur que je suis réel !
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Pentax Ricoh announces Pentax K-5 II DSLR and K-5 IIs with no low-pass filter: Digital Photography Review

Pentax Ricoh announces Pentax K-5 II DSLR and K-5 IIs with no low-pass filter: Digital Photography Review | Photography Gear News | Scoop.it

Pentax Ricoh has announced its latest flagship DSLRs - the K-5 II and K-5IIs. The 's' version, which costs $100 more, comes without an anti-aliasing filter, to offer higher resolution at the risk of more prominent moiré interference patterns. Both cameras feature 16MP sensors and the weather-sealed magnesium alloy build of the original K-5.

The biggest difference is the latest, SAFOX X, autofocus sensor. This is designed to work in lower light than any of its rivals (down to -3EV) it will also provide greater accuracy when working with F2.8 and fast lenses. The SAFOX X also features more sophisticated focus tracking, to keep focus when the subject moves off the original focus point. The K-5 II and IIs also gain rear LCD panels with no air gap between the panel and the protective glass, reducing internal reflections and improving visibility in bright light.

The K-5 II will be available from October at a cost of around $1350 with 18-55mm WR kit zoom. The K-5 IIs will be available, body-only for around $1300 - a $100 premium over the standard version.

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Pentax launches smc DA 50mm F1.8 for APS-C cameras

Pentax launches smc DA 50mm F1.8 for APS-C cameras | Photography Gear News | Scoop.it
Pentax has announced the DA 50mm f/1.8, an affordable telephoto prime lens for APS-C interchangeable lens cameras. The lens offers a 76.5mm equivalent field of view on the company's DSLRs or K-01 cameras.
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Just Posted: Pentax K-01 Hands-on Preview

Just Posted: Pentax K-01 Hands-on Preview | Photography Gear News | Scoop.it

"The advent of mirrorless has offered camera makers the chance to move beyond the film-era definitions of just how a camera should look. And few have embraced this opportunity to defy convention as enthusiastically as Pentax. For a company that makes admirably no-nonsense DSLRs, its two mirrorless offerings are both interesting expressions of creative design. The Pentax Q is easily the smallest mirrorless camera on the market, with a sensor size to match while, with the K-01, Pentax also claims the crown for the largest mirrorless camera we've yet seen."

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Pentax announces K-01 K-mount APS-C mirrorless camera

Pentax announces K-01 K-mount APS-C mirrorless camera | Photography Gear News | Scoop.it

"Pentax has formally announced the K-01 K-mount mirrorless interchangable lens camera and a revised 40mm F2.8 pancake lens to match. Built around a 16MP APS-C sensor, the camera can mount most of the lenses the company has ever made. It features sensor-shift image stabilization, a 920k dot rear LCD and can shoot at up to 6 frames per second. The rather interesting design is the work of respected product designer Marc Newson and features a logo of his signature on the base of the camera. The K-01 (which the company says should be pronounced 'kay-zero-one'), will cost around $749 body-only and $899 with the 'XS' version of the 40mm lens.

Our biggest concern, based on its dependance on contrast detection autofocus, is the camera's focus speed. Most lenses designed for DSLR-style phase-detection autofocus don't lend themselves to the rapid contrast detection autofocus required by mirrorless cameras. The contrast detection AF on the K-5 works pretty quickly with some lenses but it's not up to the speed of the camera's phase detection focusing, and certainly not a match for the best mirrorless cameras on the market.

And on handling a pre-production version we noticed that, because it features a full depth K-mount, it is a pretty big camera. Below we demonstrate how its size compares to the company's flagship K-5 DSLR."

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Pentax-02 Standard Zoom 5-15mm f/2.8-4.5 (Pentax Q) - Review / Lens Test

Pentax-02 Standard Zoom 5-15mm f/2.8-4.5 (Pentax Q) - Review / Lens Test | Photography Gear News | Scoop.it

"The Pentax-02 Standard Zoom 5-15mm f/2.8-4.5 is the 2nd kit lens offered for the Pentax Q. Its focal lenght range is equivalent to a 27.5-83mm lens in full format terms. Just like in our previous Pentax Q lens review we need to point out that the max. aperture sounds attractive regarding the light gathering characteristic but if we apply the system's "crop factor" (5.5x) the limited depth-of-field potential gets rather obvious (equivalent to "f/15.4-24.7"). So unless you move very close to your subject you will basically have to live with an infinite depth-of-field even at max. aperture. For many applications such as landscape photography this is just fine though."

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Pentax smc DA 21 mm f/3.2 AL Limited Review

Pentax smc DA 21 mm f/3.2 AL Limited Review | Photography Gear News | Scoop.it

As we’ve already happened to mention before, Pentax is the only company on the market which enlarges very consistently its line-up of fixed-focal lenses designed for small sensors. We have especially in mind wide angle lenses which other systems simply lack; Pentax offers you such models as, for instance: the Pentax smc DA 14 mm f/2.8,the Pentax smc DA 15 mm f/4 ED AL Limited or the Pentax smc DA 21 mm f/3.2 AL Limited. That last instrument exactly will be the main character of our test – enjoy your reading!

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Pentax SMC DA 21mm f/3.2 AL Limited - Review / Lab Test

Pentax SMC DA 21mm f/3.2 AL Limited - Review / Lab Test | Photography Gear News | Scoop.it
The Pentax SMC-DA 21mm f/3.2 AL Limited is one of three so-called pancakes lenses in the current Pentax lens lineup. As you can observe below pancake lenses are pretty tiny beings - the DA 21mm has a length of merely 25mm. The species used to be fairly rare but we are currently experiencing a revival on the various micro-systems like Micro-Four-Thirds and Samsung NX - small is beautiful again. Pancakes have advantages and disadvantages. They're obviously as small and light-weight as it gets. Optically they're masters of back light due to the low number of lens elements (and therefore surfaces) and they tend to produce comparatively evenly sharp images. On the downside they only have a moderately fast max. aperture and the peak performance tends to be a little lower compared to conventional lenses - the theory tells that the degree of correction increases the more elements you add to the design ... assuming you do it right (there're limits to this specifically in terms of production quality). The DA 21mm f/3.2 is a dedicated APS-C lens so it can only be used on Pentax DSLRs. Its field-of-view is equivalent to about 32mm (full format) so it can be regarded as a perfect for street photography - a classic sweet spot of the Pentax system.
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Leaked Pentax document indicates that there may not be a second mirrorless camera

Leaked Pentax document indicates that there may not be a second mirrorless camera | Photography Gear News | Scoop.it
This (http://www.mediafire.com/?n2g110hucuorre1) upside down PDF document contains Q&A on the freshly released Pentax Q camera. Some of the answers indicate that there may not be a second mirrorless camera from Pentax this summer. I did express this concern in previous posts – the Pentax NC-1 and Pentax Q were probably different names for the same camera. Here is the Q&A recap from Ricehigh:


A1: “Q” stands for Queen and Quality;

A11: Body is made in Philippines, “High Performance” lenses are in Vietnam whereas the “Toy” lenses are made in Thailand.

A17: The flange focal length is 9.2mm.

A20: A brand new image processing engine is used. It is NOT a PRIME!

A21: The Q has no AA filter.

A26: There is no PEF (compressed Pentax RAW) file format supported.

A29: Whether AF is available/works under video recording mode is uncertain.

A31: The number of segments for multi-segment metering mode exposure calculation is unknown.

A34: There is only 1EV exposure compensation allowed.

A43: Number of lens aperture blades for the “high performance” lenses is 5.

A49: The size of image circle of the Q lenses cannot be told.

A52: New Q lenses are engineered by Pentax solely.

A55: There is no plan to release a K-mount mirrorless. Concentration and efforts of development will only be put into the existing three lineups, i.e., K-mount APS-C DSLRs, the 645D and the Q system.

A56: There is no plan for Full Frame camera in the foreseeable future.
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Pentax Q Hands-on Preview

Pentax Q Hands-on Preview | Photography Gear News | Scoop.it
The Pentax Q is the smallest interchangeable lens camera on the market. And, just like the company's famously diminutive Auto 110 SLR from the late 70's, it achieves this by embracing a smaller format than its peers. Being built around a 1/2.3" sensor, the Q is a fraction of the size of even the smallest existing mirrorless cameras and is the first really pocketable model (though the protruding lens still means that'll have to be the pocket of your jacket, rather than your shirt or trousers).

To make clear what the rather opaque 1/2.3" figure actually means, it equates to a surface area of around 28mm2. This is around 1/8th the size of the sensor used in Micro Four Thirds cameras and 1/13th the size of the the APS-C format sensor in Sony's NEX. The advantage of this is that the lenses for the Q mount can be made a lot smaller than those for other systems, but the downside is that the image quality is more likely to resemble that of a compact camera than a DSLR.

You can glean a lot about Pentax's approach to the Q from the lenses it has announced: a 49mm equivalent F1.9 prime lens for the enthusiasts but accompanied with a healthy dose of fun in the form of two fixed focal length 'toy' lenses (a wide-angle and a telephoto version, both sub-$100). On the fun side of things there will also be a fisheye lens or, at the more serious end, a 28-83mm equivalent standard zoom with a built-in shutter, allowing flash sync at any shutter speed.

Coupled with the 49mm equiv. prime or the standard zoom the Q, with its sturdy magnesium-alloy build, appears to be offering an alternative take on the photographers' compacts such as the Canon G12, Olympus XZ-1 and even the Ricoh GRD. However, the fact that it can take different lenses means that in a matter of seconds it can be converted into a fun little camera that should still offer a more satisfying shooting experience than a mobile phone and image processing app.

And the Q is no toy camera, despite its modest sensor size it boasts a magnesium alloy body with rubber front coating, a 460,000 dot LCD on the rear and raw output in the DNG format. Interestingly, Pentax bucks the recent trend of trying to attract point-and-shoot users by removing those intimidating buttons with all those mysterious symbols on them, and includes plenty of external controls....
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Pentax SMC-DA 18-135mm f/3.5-5.6 ED AL [IF] WR - Review / Lens Test

Pentax SMC-DA 18-135mm f/3.5-5.6 ED AL [IF] WR - Review / Lens Test | Photography Gear News | Scoop.it
The Pentax SMC-DA 18-135mm f/3.5-5.6 ED AL [IF] WR is one of the kit lens options sold with the Pentax K-5 but it's now also available as a separate option. By today's standards its 7.5x zoom ratio is longer extreme - the Tamron 18-270mm VC PZD has a whopping 15x factor for instance - but it certainly follows a "one-size-fits-all" approach. In full format terms its field-of-view is equivalent to "28-200mm" so it covers everything from moderate moderate wide-angles to fairly long tele settings - combined with a moderate max. aperture. In Europe it sells for just around 600EUR whereas you can pick it up for less than 500US$ in the US ... which makes you wonder about the global pricing policy somehow. In any case it's a comparatively expensive offer - even the now discontinued Pentax SMC-DA 18-250mm f/3.5-6.3 was quite a bit cheaper. Consequently our expectation were quite high prior of this test.
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Just posted: Pentax K-r full review

Just posted: Pentax K-r full review | Photography Gear News | Scoop.it
Just Posted: Our full review of the Pentax K-r upper entry-level DSLR. When we reviewed the Pentax K-x in December 2009 we thought it was a little cracker. The K-r builds on this by adding visible AF points, a higher ISO range and faster continuous shooting to the K-x's aklready successful feature mix but the competition has not been standing still. Click on the link to read how the Pentax K-r fared in our studio tests and how it stacks up to its latest peers in the upper entry-level bracket of the market.
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Pentax announces 18-270mm F3.5-6.3 ED SDM and HD 560mm F5.6 ED AW: Digital Photography Review

Pentax announces 18-270mm F3.5-6.3 ED SDM and HD 560mm F5.6 ED AW: Digital Photography Review | Photography Gear News | Scoop.it

Pentax Ricoh has announced the Pentax DA 18-270mm F3.5-6.3 ED SDM superzoom and a the HD Pentax DA 560mm F5.6 ED super-telephoto prime. The 18-270mm offers a 15x superzoom covering a 27.5-414mm equivalent range and is based around the company's SDM 'supersonic AF' motor. Meanwhile the 560mm F5.6 becomes the first Pentax lens to be given its 'HD' coating which, the company says, denotes high performance. The 859mm equivalent super-telephoto lens is environmentally sealed, to match the performance of the company's higher-end DSLRs. The lenses will cost around $800 and $7,000 respectively.

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Pentax K-01 Review: Digital Photography Review

Pentax K-01 Review: Digital Photography Review | Photography Gear News | Scoop.it

"The Pentax K-01 (from $749) is a mirrorless interchangeable lens camera with a most unusual design. Created by Australian designer Marc Newson of (who, admittedly, I'd never heard of before the K-01), the modern look of the K-01 will certainly turn heads (especially if you get the yellow one). Aside from its unique looks, the K-01 is also a fully-featured camera. It has a 16 Megapixel CMOS sensor, K-mount lens support with built-in (sensor-based) image stabilization, lots of manual controls, a boatload of scene modes and special effects, an HDR function, and 1080p video recording..."

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Pentax K-30 Hands-on Preview

Pentax K-30 Hands-on Preview | Photography Gear News | Scoop.it

"Pentax has officially announced the K-30 weather-sealed mid-level DSLR. It's built around the same updated 16MP sensor and processor as the K-01, so should offer impressive image quality and borrows many of the features from the more expensive K-5. It can shoot continuously at up to 6 frames per second, has a maximum shutter speed of 1/6000th of a second and can capture video at 1080p30. We've had a pre-production K-30 in the office for a couple of days and have prepared a preview looking at what it offers."

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Pentax K-01 Mirrorless CSC Full Review

Pentax K-01 Mirrorless CSC Full Review | Photography Gear News | Scoop.it

"Pentax K-01 Mirrorless CSC Review - The Pentax K-01 is the only mirrorless camera to accept the same lenses as the Pentax K mount Digital SLR series. Joshua Waller finds out how it performs in our full review."

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What were they thinking?

What were they thinking? | Photography Gear News | Scoop.it
In addition to rugged, waterproof, dustproof and shock-resistant, the new Pentax Optio WG-2 is rumored to be also sh*t proof... based on this image courtesy of Pentax Imaging.
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Pentax-03 Fisheye 3.2mm f/5.6 (Pentax Q) - Review / Test Report

Pentax-03 Fisheye 3.2mm f/5.6 (Pentax Q) - Review / Test Report | Photography Gear News | Scoop.it

"Pentax offers two different species of lenses for the Q system - mainstream and "toy" lenses. The Pentax 03 3.2mm f/5.6 Fisheye is the third mainstream lens if this classification can be applied to a Fisheye lens anyway. That said it shares a couple of aspects with the "toy" Q lens group - it has a fixed max. aperture and doesn't offer AF. We reckon that the comparatively "fast" max. aperture lifted it into the mainstream class here. A focal length of just 3.2mm will sound odd for most readers but this relates, of course, to the small sensor size of the Q system. In full format terms it is equivalent to a 17.6mm fisheye lens which also explains the comparatively moderate field of view of "just" 160 degress (vs 180 degrees on most other fisheye lenses)."

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Pentax smc FA 31 mm f/1.8 AL Review

Pentax smc FA 31 mm f/1.8 AL Review | Photography Gear News | Scoop.it

"The Pentax company hasn’t decided yet to launch digital cameras with a full frame detector and it is quite consequential in offering bodies with APS-C/DX format sensors. What’s more, their policy is professional and well thought out. The bodies are rather small and solid, often offering such possibilities which are non-existent in rival cameras offered at the same price point. If we add a series of limited lenses – small but solidly build – we get a system which differs noticeably from others, currently available on the market.
If you have a system based on a detector smaller than full frame you can offer lenses which are not so big but remain fast and very good optically. It is perhaps not easy but certainly possible as it was proven by testing say, Olympus lenses. Pentax has chosen a different way, giving its users lenses which are small but not exactly fast. If you develop a system based on “primes” it would be difficult to run away constantly from the necessity of offering a good standard lens as well which, in the case of Pentax, should have a focal length in the range of 30-35 mm.
At first glance we are spoilt for choice. You can start the list by the Pentax smc DA 35 mm f/2.4 AL, the youngest device on the market but offered for a good price and providing good image quality as well. It would be difficult to call it solidly build and fast, though. The build quality of the Pentax smc DA 35 mm f/2.8 Macro Limited is much better but that lens is even slower and certainly not cheap. Even several years ago you could buy the full frame Pentax smc FA 35 mm f/2 AL and the price tag was quite reasonable. After the launch of the Pentax smc DA 35 mm f/2.4 AL, though, these lenses started to disappear from the shelves and the price of new and second-hand specimens of that model raised very sharply.
The fastest lens which can be considered a standard is the Pentax smc FA 31 MM F/1.8 AL. It is quite an elderly construction, designed during the era when analogue photography reigned supreme. Still that lens is considered one of the best among system devices, being respected for its very good optical properties and a splendid build quality. We decided to check out whether such an opinion is truly deserved and the lens – as good as its users claim."

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Pentax SMC DA 15mm f/4 ED AL Limited Review

Pentax SMC DA 15mm f/4 ED AL Limited Review | Photography Gear News | Scoop.it

When digital cameras with sensors smaller than full frame appeared on the market they forced some changes in the offer of lenses as well. Plenty of instruments, designed for small detectors, have been launched ever since but, what is interesting, the majority of them were mainly zooms. If any fixed focal lens was launched it usually has been a standard device or an instrument with longer focal lengths. For example the Canon company has managed to produce just one “prime” for smaller sensors during last ten years – the EF-S 60 mm F/2.8 USM Macro. Not much better situation can be seen for Nikon where we are given just the equivalent of a standard lens, so the Nikkor AF-S 35 mm f/1.8 DX, a telephoto macro lens, the Nikkor AF-S DX Micro 85 mm f/3.5G ED VR or the Nikkor AF-S DX Micro40 mm f/2.8G, presented not so long ago. Sony can boast a better array but their offer concerns mainly a bottom of the range segment, of low price and very low mechanical quality. The independent producers don’t spoil us either – there are simply no wide angle “primes” designed for smaller sensors in their offers.

A nice change from that clichéd pattern gives us Pentax, though. A whole series of Limited class lenses (and not only), designed for smaller detectors, has appeared recently on the market. In fact, it is the only company which offers lenses with a really wide angle of view, the Pentax smc DA 15 mm f/4 ED AL Limited among others, which on an APS-C/DX sensor gives you an angle of almost 87 degrees. Exactly this model will be the main character of our newest test – enjoy your reading!

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Ricoh just bought Pentax for $124.2 million!

“Japanese optical glass-maker Hoya said on Friday it would sell its Pentax camera business to copier and printer maker Ricoh , in a deal the Nikkei business daily said was worth about 10 billion yen ($124.2 million).”
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The Online Photographer: The Pentax Q System

The Online Photographer: The Pentax Q System | Photography Gear News | Scoop.it
I hardly know where to begin. But, since I've gotten pretty good over the years at anticipating typical web reactions to new products, I guess I'll start by saying this isn't "the Pentax mirrorless." No. Get that idea out of your brain. What it is is a premium point-and-shoot. A wee mini-digicam. You know, like the Olympus XZ-1, the Panasonic LX-5, and the Canon S95.

But it is different. It's the first mini system digicam. It has interchangeable lenses.
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Pentax SMC DA 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 AL WR - Lab Test / Review

Pentax SMC DA 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 AL WR - Lab Test / Review | Photography Gear News | Scoop.it
The Pentax SMC DA 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 AL WR is a fairly unusual "kit" lens. Upon skin-deep inspection of its specifications it just delivers the usual focal-length- and aperture-range like its various counterparts beyond the Pentax world. However, it has a major differentiator marked by the "WR" in the lens name - it is "weather resistant" thus sealed against dust and humidity. This is something usually found in pricey professional grade lenses. From a product perspective it makes sense, of course, because it is primarily sold with the Pentax K-5 which is a weather resistant DSLR. This is certainly smarter than Canon's (EOS 7D) or Nikon's (D7000) approach - they have no weather sealed consumer grade lenses despite weather-sealed APS-C DSLRs. The DA 18-55mm AL WR is also sold separately for about 200EUR/250US$ so it is quite a bit more expensive than "usual" for such a lens. There's also a non-WR version, the Pentax SMC DA 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 AL II, to supply the budget market.
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Pentax SMC DA 35mm f/2.4 AL - Review - Photozone.de

Pentax SMC DA 35mm f/2.4 AL - Review - Photozone.de | Photography Gear News | Scoop.it
Pentax prime lenses have a fabulous reputation but especially their "Limited" series is more on the pricey side of life. There was e.g. no entry level 50mm lens which serves often as an entry path to the world of primes for interested beginners. Obviously Pentax also recognized this 'missing link' by introducing the Pentax SMC-DA 35mm f/2.4 AL. The max. aperture of f/2.4 is a bit unusual but in terms of field of view it resembles a classic 52mm standard lens. This is a similar approach like Sony's 35mm f/1.8 SAM DT for instance....
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