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Canon G1 X Mark III vs Nikon D3500

The Canon PowerShot G1 X Mark III and the Nikon D3500 are two digital cameras that were announced, respectively, in October 2017 and August 2018. The G1X Mark III is a fixed lens compact, while the D3500 is a DSLR. Both cameras are equipped with an APS-C sensor. Both cameras offer a resolution of 24 megapixels.

Below is an overview of the main specs of the two cameras as a starting point for the comparison.

Headline Specifications
Canon G1 X Mark III versus Nikon D3500
Canon G1 X Mark III Nikon D3500
Fixed lens compact camera Digital single lens reflex
24-72mm f/2.8-5.6 Nikon F mount lenses
24 MP, APS-C Sensor 24 MP, APS-C Sensor
1080/60p Video 1080/60p Video
ISO 100-25,600 ISO 100-25,600
Electronic viewfinder (2360k dots) Optical viewfinder
3.0 LCD, 1040k dots 3.0 LCD, 921k dots
Swivel touchscreen Fixed screen (not touch-sensitive)
9 shutter flaps per second 5 shutter flaps per second
Weathersealed bodynot weather sealed
200 shots per battery charge1550 shots per battery charge
115 x 78 x 51 mm, 399 g 124 x 97 x 70 mm, 365 g

Going beyond this snapshot of core features and characteristics, what are the differences between the Canon PowerShot G1 X Mark III and the Nikon D3500? Which one should you buy? Read on to find out how these two cameras compare with respect to their body size, their imaging sensors, their shooting features, their input-output connections, and their reception by expert reviewers.

Body comparison

The side-by-side display below illustrates the physical size and weight of the Canon G1 X Mark III and the Nikon D3500. The two cameras are presented according to their relative size. Three consecutive views from the front, the top, and the rear side are shown. All width, height and depth dimensions are rounded to the nearest millimeter.

Size Canon G1 X Mark III vs Nikon D3500
Compare G1X Mark III versus D3500 top
Comparison G1X Mark III or D3500 rear

If the front view area (width x height) of the cameras is taken as an aggregate measure of their size, the Nikon D3500 is notably larger (34 percent) than the Canon G1 X Mark III. It is worth mentioning in this context that the G1X Mark III is splash and dust resistant, while the D3500 does not feature any corresponding weather-sealing.

The above size and weight comparisons are to some extent incomplete and possibly misleading, as the G1X Mark III has a lens built in, whereas the D3500 is an interchangeable lens camera that requires a separate lens. Attaching the latter will add extra weight and bulk to the setup. You can compare the optics available for the D3500 and their specifications in the Nikon Lens Catalog.

Concerning battery life, the G1X Mark III gets 200 shots out of its NB-13L battery, while the D3500 can take 1550 images on a single charge of its EN-EL14a power pack.

The table below summarizes the key physical specs of the two cameras alongside a broader set of comparators. In case you want to display and compare another camera duo, just click on the right or left arrow next to the camera that you would like to inspect. Alternatively, you can also use the CAM-parator to select your camera combination among a larger number of options.

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Body Specifications
  Camera
Model
Camera
Width
Camera
Height
Camera
Depth
Camera
Weight
Battery
Life 1
Weather
Sealing
Camera
Launch 2
Launch
Price (USD)
Street
Price
 
Canon G1 X Mark III 115 mm 78 mm 51 mm 399 g 200 Y Oct 2017 1,299 i
 
Nikon D3500 124 mm 97 mm 70 mm 365 g 1550 n Aug 2018 429 i
 
Canon M50 116 mm 88 mm 59 mm 390 g 235 n Feb 2018 779 i
 
Canon 6D Mark II 144 mm 111 mm 75 mm 765 g 1200 Y Jun 2017 1,999 i
 
Canon 200D 122 mm 93 mm 70 mm 453 g 650 n Jun 2017 549i
 
Canon G9 X Mark II 98 mm 58 mm 31 mm 206 g 235 n Jan 2017 529 i
 
Canon M100 108 mm 67 mm 35 mm 302 g 295 n Aug 2017 499i
 
Canon SX730 110 mm 64 mm 40 mm 300 g 250 n Apr 2017 399i
 
Canon 80D 139 mm 105 mm 79 mm 730 g 960 Y Feb 2016 1,199i
 
Canon SX540 120 mm 82 mm 92 mm 442 g 205 n Jan 2016 399 i
 
Fujifilm X100V 128 mm 75 mm 53 mm 478 g 420 Y Feb 2020 1,399 i
 
Fujifilm X100F 127 mm 75 mm 52 mm 469 g 390 n Jan 2017 1,299i
 
Nikon D7500 136 mm 104 mm 73 mm 720 g 950 Y Apr 2017 1,299 i
 
Nikon D3400 124 mm 98 mm 76 mm 445 g 1200 n Aug 2016 499i
 
Nikon D5500 124 mm 97 mm 70 mm 420 g 820 n Jan 2015 899i
 
Nikon D3300 124 mm 98 mm 76 mm 430 g 700 n Jan 2014 499i
 
Sony RX10 III 133 mm 94 mm 127 mm 1051 g 420 Y Mar 2016 1,499 i
Notes: Measurements and pricing do not include easily detachable parts, such as add-on or interchangeable lenses or optional viewfinders.
(1) Number of images that can be taken on a full battery charge according to the CIPA-standard; (2) Official announcement.

Any camera decision will obviously take relative prices into account. The listed launch prices provide an indication of the market segment that the manufacturer of the cameras have been targeting. Usually, retail prices stay at first close to the launch price, but after several months, discounts become available. Later in the product cycle and, in particular, when the replacement model is about to appear, further discounting and stock clearance sales often push the camera price considerably down. Then, after the new model is out, very good deals can frequently be found on the pre-owned market.

Sensor comparison

The size of the imaging sensor is a crucial determinant of image quality. All other things equal, a large sensor will have larger individual pixel-units that offer better low-light sensitivity, wider dynamic range, and richer color-depth than smaller pixels in a sensor of the same technological generation. Moreover, a large sensor camera will give the photographer more control over depth-of-field in the image and, thus, the ability to better isolate a subject from the background. On the downside, larger sensors tend to be associated with larger, more expensive camera bodies and lenses.

Both cameras under consideration feature an APS-C sensor, but their sensors differ slightly in size. The sensor area in the D3500 is 11 percent bigger. They nevertheless have the same format factor of 1.5. Both cameras have a native aspect ratio (sensor width to sensor height) of 3:2.

Canon G1 X Mark III and Nikon D3500 sensor measures

Even though the D3500 has a larger sensor, both cameras offer the same resolution of 24 megapixels. This implies that the D3500 has a lower pixel density and larger individual pixels (with a pixel pitch of 3.91μm versus 3.72μm for the G1X Mark III), which gives it a potential advantage in terms of light gathering capacity. In addition, the D3500 is a somewhat more recent model (by 10 months) than the G1X Mark III, and its sensor might have benefitted from technological advances during this time. Coming back to sensor resolution, it should be mentioned that the D3500 has no anti-alias filter installed, so that it can capture all the detail its sensor resolves.

The G1X Mark III has on-sensor phase detect pixels, which results in fast and reliable autofocus acquisition even during live view operation.

The Canon PowerShot G1 X Mark III has a native sensitivity range from ISO 100 to ISO 25600. The Nikon D3500 offers exactly the same ISO settings.

G1X Mark III versus D3500 MP

Consistent information on actual sensor performance is available from DXO Mark for many cameras. This service is based on lab testing and assigns an overall score to each camera sensor, as well as ratings for dynamic range ("DXO Landscape"), color depth ("DXO Portrait"), and low-light sensitivity ("DXO Sports"). The following table provides an overview of the physical sensor characteristics, as well as the sensor quality measurements for a selection of comparators.

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Sensor Characteristics
  Camera
Model
Sensor
Class
Resolution
(MP)
Horiz.
Pixels
Vert.
Pixels
Video
Format
DXO
Portrait
DXO
Landscape
DXO
Sports
DXO
Overall
 
Canon G1 X Mark III APS-C 24.0 6000 40001080/60p........
 
Nikon D3500 APS-C 24.0 6000 40001080/60p........
 
Canon M50 APS-C 24.0 6000 40004K/24p........
 
Canon 6D Mark II Full Frame 26.0 6240 41601080/60p24.411.9286285
 
Canon 200D APS-C 24.0 6000 40001080/60p23.613.4104179
 
Canon G9 X Mark II 1-inch 20.0 5472 36481080/60p21.912.552265
 
Canon M100 APS-C 24.0 6000 40001080/60p23.512.9127278
 
Canon SX730 1/2.3 20.2 5184 38881080/60p........
 
Canon 80D APS-C 24.0 6000 40001080/60p23.613.2113579
 
Canon SX540 1/2.3 20.2 5184 38881080/60p........
 
Fujifilm X100V APS-C 26.0 6240 41604K/30p........
 
Fujifilm X100F APS-C 24.0 6000 40001080/60p........
 
Nikon D7500 APS-C 20.7 5568 37124K/30p24.314.0148386
 
Nikon D3400 APS-C 24.0 6000 40001080/60p24.813.9119286
 
Nikon D5500 APS-C 24.0 6000 40001080/60p24.114.0143884
 
Nikon D3300 APS-C 24.0 6000 40001080/60p24.312.8138582
 
Sony RX10 III 1-inch 20.0 5472 36484K/30p23.112.647270

Many modern cameras cannot only take still pictures, but also record videos. Both cameras under consideration have a sensor with sufficiently fast read-out times for moving pictures, and both provide the same movie specifications (1080/60p).

Feature comparison

Apart from body and sensor, cameras can and do differ across a variety of features. For example, the G1X Mark III has an electronic viewfinder (2360k dots), while the D3500 has an optical one. Both systems have their advantages, with the electronic viewfinder making it possible to project supplementary shooting information into the framing view, whereas the optical viewfinder offers lag-free viewing and a very clear framing image. The following table reports on some other key feature differences and similarities of the Canon G1 X Mark III, the Nikon D3500, and comparable cameras.

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Core Features
  Camera
Model
Viewfinder
(Type or
000 dots)
Control
Panel
(yes/no)
LCD
Size
(inch)
LCD
Resolution
(000 dots)
LCD
Attach-
ment
Touch
Screen
(yes/no)
Mech
Shutter
Speed
Shutter
Flaps
(1/sec)
Built-in
Flash
(yes/no)
Built-in
Image
Stab
 
Canon G1 X Mark III2360 n 3.0 1040 swivel Y 1/2000s 9.0 Y Y
 
Nikon D3500optical n 3.0 921 fixed n 1/4000s 5.0 Y n
 
Canon M502360 n 3.0 1040 swivel Y 1/4000s 10.0 Y n
 
Canon 6D Mark IIoptical Y 3.0 1040 swivel Y 1/4000s 6.5 n n
 
Canon 200Doptical n 3.0 1040 swivel Y 1/4000s 5.0 Y n
 
Canon G9 X Mark IInone n 3.0 1040 fixed Y 1/2000s 8.2 Y Y
 
Canon M100none n 3.0 1040 tilting Y 1/4000s 6.1 Y n
 
Canon SX730none n 3.0 922 tilting n 1/3200s 5.9 Y Y
 
Canon 80Doptical Y 3.0 1040 swivel Y 1/8000s 7.0 Y n
 
Canon SX540none n 3.0 461 fixed n 1/2000s 5.9 Y Y
 
Fujifilm X100V3690 n 3.0 1620 tilting Y 1/4000s 11.0 Y n
 
Fujifilm X100F2360 n 3.0 1040 fixed n 1/4000s 8.0 Y n
 
Nikon D7500optical Y 3.2 922 tilting Y 1/8000s 8.0 Y n
 
Nikon D3400optical n 3.0 921 fixed n 1/4000s 5.0 Y n
 
Nikon D5500optical n 3.2 1037 swivel Y 1/4000s 5.0 Y n
 
Nikon D3300optical n 3.0 921 fixed n 1/4000s 5.0 Y n
 
Sony RX10 III2359 Y 3.0 1229 tilting n 1/2000s 14.0 Y Y

One differentiating feature between the two cameras concerns the touch sensitivity of the rear screen. The G1X Mark III has a touchscreen, while the D3500 has a conventional panel. Touch control can be particularly helpful, for example, for setting the focus point.

The G1X Mark III has an articulated LCD that can be turned to be front-facing. This characteristic will be appreciated by vloggers and photographers who are interested in snapping selfies. In contrast, the D3500 does not have a selfie-screen.

The Canon G1 X Mark III has an intervalometer built-in. This enables the photographer to capture time lapse sequences, such as flower blooming, a sunset or moon rise, without purchasing an external camera trigger and related software.

Concerning the storage of imaging data, both the G1X Mark III and the D3500 write their files to SDXC cards. Both cameras can use UHS-I cards, which provide for Ultra High Speed data transfer of up to 104 MB/s.

Connectivity comparison

For some imaging applications, the extent to which a camera can communicate with its environment can be an important aspect in the camera decision process. The table below provides an overview of the connectivity of the Canon PowerShot G1 X Mark III and Nikon D3500 and, in particular, the interfaces the cameras (and selected comparators) provide for accessory control and data transfer.

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Input-Output Connections
  Camera
Model
Hotshoe
Port
Internal
Microphone
Internal
Speaker
Microphone
Port
Headphone
Port
HDMI
Port
USB
Port
WiFi
Support
NFC
Support
Bluetooth
Support
 
Canon G1 X Mark IIIYstereomono--micro2.0YYY
 
Nikon D3500Ymonomono--mini2.0--Y
 
Canon M50YstereomonoY-micro2.0YYY
 
Canon 6D Mark IIYstereomonoY-mini2.0YYY
 
Canon 200DYstereomonoY-mini2.0YYY
 
Canon G9 X Mark II-stereomono--micro2.0YYY
 
Canon M100-stereomono--mini2.0YYY
 
Canon SX730-stereomono--micro2.0YYY
 
Canon 80DYstereomonoYYmini2.0YY-
 
Canon SX540-stereomono--mini2.0YY-
 
Fujifilm X100VYstereomonoY-micro3.1Y-Y
 
Fujifilm X100FYstereomonoY-micro2.0Y--
 
Nikon D7500YstereomonoYYmini2.0Y-Y
 
Nikon D3400Ymonomono--mini2.0--Y
 
Nikon D5500YstereomonoY-mini2.0Y--
 
Nikon D3300YmonomonoY-mini2.0---
 
Sony RX10 IIIYstereomonoYYmicro2.0YY-

It is notable that the G1X Mark III offers wifi support, while the D3500 does not. Wifi can be a very convenient means to transfer image data to an off-camera location.

Both the G1X Mark III and the D3500 are recent models that are part of the current product line-up. The G1X Mark III replaced the earlier Canon G1 X Mark II, while the D3500 followed on from the Nikon D3400. Further information on the two cameras (e.g. user guides, manuals), as well as related accessories, can be found on the official Canon and Nikon websites.

Review summary

So what is the bottom line? Is the Canon G1 X Mark III better than the Nikon D3500 or vice versa? Below is a summary of the relative strengths of each of the two contestants.

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Arguments in favor of the Canon PowerShot G1 X Mark III:

  • Better moiré control: Has an anti-alias filter to avoid artificial patterns to appear in images.
  • Better live-view autofocus: Features on-sensor phase-detection for more confident autofocus.
  • More framing info: Has an electronic viewfinder that displays shooting data.
  • More detailed LCD: Has a higher resolution rear screen (1040k vs 921k dots).
  • More flexible LCD: Has a swivel screen for odd-angle shots in portrait or landscape orientation.
  • Fewer buttons to press: Is equipped with a touch-sensitive rear screen to facilitate handling.
  • More selfie-friendly: Has an articulated screen that can be turned to be front-facing.
  • Faster burst: Shoots at higher frequency (9 vs 5 flaps/sec) to capture the decisive moment.
  • Easier time-lapse photography: Has an intervalometer built-in for low frequency shooting.
  • Ready to shoot: Comes with a built-in lens, while the D3500 requires a separate lens.
  • More compact: Is smaller (115x78mm vs 124x97mm) and thus needs less room in the bag.
  • Better sealing: Is weather sealed to enable shooting in dusty or wet environments.
  • Sharper images: Has hand-shake reducing image stabilization built-in.
  • Easier file upload: Has wifi built in for automatic backup or image transfer to the web.
  • Easier device pairing: Supports NFC for fast wireless image transfer over short distances.
  • More heavily discounted: Has been on the market for longer (launched in October 2017).

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Reasons to prefer the Nikon D3500:

  • Maximized detail: Lacks an anti-alias filter to exploit the sensor's full resolution potential.
  • Brighter framing: Features an optical viewfinder for clear, lag-free composition.
  • Faster shutter: Has higher mechanical shutter speed (1/4000s vs 1/2000s) to freeze action.
  • More flexible: Makes it possible to change lenses and thus to use specialty optics.
  • Longer lasting: Gets more shots (1550 versus 200) out of a single battery charge.
  • More modern: Was introduced somewhat (10 months) more recently.

If the number of relative strengths (bullet points above) is taken as a guide, the G1X Mark III is the clear winner of the match-up (16 : 6 points). However, the pertinence of the various camera strengths will differ across photographers, so that you might want to weigh individual camera traits according to their importance for your own imaging needs before making a camera decision. A professional wildlife photographer will view the differences between cameras in a way that diverges from the perspective of a family photog, and a person interested in architecture has distinct needs from a sports shooter. Hence, the decision which camera is best and worth buying is often a very personal one.

G1X Mark III 16:06 D3500

How about other alternatives? Do the specifications of the Canon G1 X Mark III and the Nikon D3500 place the cameras among the top in their class? Find out in the latest Best Travel-Zoom Camera and Best DSLR Camera listings whether the two cameras rank among the cream of the crop.

In any case, while the specs-based evaluation of cameras can be instructive in revealing their potential as photographic tools, it remains incomplete and does no justice, for example, to the way the G1X Mark III or the D3500 perform in practice. At times, user reviews, such as those published at amazon, address these issues in a useful manner, but such feedback is on many occasions incomplete, inconsistent, and unreliable.

Expert reviews

This is why expert reviews are important. The adjacent summary-table relays the overall verdicts of several of the most popular camera review sites (cameralabs, dpreview, ephotozine, imaging-resource, and photographyblog). As can be seen, the professional reviewers agree in many cases on the quality of different cameras, but sometimes their assessments diverge, reinforcing the earlier point that a camera decision is often a very personal choice.

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Review Scores
  Camera
Model
camera
  labs  
dp
review  
ephoto
  zine  
imaging
resource
photography
  blog  
Camera
Launch
Launch
Price (USD)
Street
Price
 
Canon G1 X Mark III+79/1004.5/5..4.5/5 Oct 2017 1,299 i
 
Nikon D3500..75/1004/54.5/54.5/5 Aug 2018 429 i
 
Canon M50+79/100..4/53.5/5 Feb 2018 779 i
 
Canon 6D Mark II+80/1004.5/54/54/5 Jun 2017 1,999 i
 
Canon 200D+ +78/1004.5/54.5/54.5/5 Jun 2017 549i
 
Canon G9 X Mark II..75/1004.5/54.5/54.5/5 Jan 2017 529 i
 
Canon M100+..4/5..3.5/5 Aug 2017 499i
 
Canon SX730+..4/5..4/5 Apr 2017 399i
 
Canon 80D+ +84/1004.5/54.5/54.5/5 Feb 2016 1,199i
 
Canon SX540.......... Jan 2016 399 i
 
Fujifilm X100V+ +86/1005/5..4.5/5 Feb 2020 1,399 i
 
Fujifilm X100F+83/1004.5/5..4.5/5 Jan 2017 1,299i
 
Nikon D7500+ +86/1005/54.5/54.5/5 Apr 2017 1,299 i
 
Nikon D3400+76/1004/54.5/54.5/5 Aug 2016 499i
 
Nikon D5500+79/1004.5/55/54.5/5 Jan 2015 899i
 
Nikon D3300+77/1004.5/54.5/54.5/5 Jan 2014 499i
 
Sony RX10 III+84/1004.5/54.5/54.5/5 Mar 2016 1,499 i
Notes: (+ +) highly recommended; (+) recommended; (o) reviewed; (..) not available.

Care should be taken when interpreting the review scores above, though. The ratings are only valid when referring to cameras in the same category and of the same age. Hence, a score should always be seen in the context of the camera's market launch date and its price, and rating-comparisons among cameras that span long time periods or concern very differently equipped models make little sense. It should also be noted that some of the review sites have over time altered the way they render their verdicts.

Canon G1 X Mark III:
Check Amazon price
Nikon D3500:
Check Amazon price

Other camera comparisons

Did this review help to inform your camera decision process? In case you would like to check on the differences and similarities of other camera models, just make a corresponding selection in the search boxes below. As an alternative, you can also directly jump to any one of the listed comparisons that were previously generated by the CAM-parator tool.

~

    Specifications: Canon G1 X Mark III vs Nikon D3500

    Below is a side-by-side comparison of the specs of the two cameras to facilitate a quick review of their differences and common features.

    Camera Specifications
    Camera Model Canon G1 X Mark III Nikon D3500
    Camera Type Fixed lens compact camera Digital single lens reflex
    Camera Lens 24-72mm f/2.8-5.6 Nikon F mount lenses
    Launch Date October 2017 August 2018
    Launch Price USD 1,299 USD 429
    Sensor Specs Canon G1 X Mark III Nikon D3500
    Sensor Technology CMOS CMOS
    Sensor Format APS-C Sensor APS-C Sensor
    Sensor Size 22.3 x 14.9 mm 23.5 x 15.6 mm
    Sensor Area 332.27 mm2 366.6 mm2
    Sensor Diagonal 26.8 mm 28.2 mm
    Crop Factor 1.5x 1.5x
    Sensor Resolution 24 Megapixels 24 Megapixels
    Image Resolution 6000 x 4000 pixels 6000 x 4000 pixels
    Pixel Pitch 3.72 μm 3.91 μm
    Pixel Density 7.22 MP/cm2 6.55 MP/cm2
    Moiré control Anti-Alias filter no AA filter
    Movie Capability 1080/60p Video 1080/60p Video
    ISO Setting 100 - 25,600 ISO 100 - 25,600 ISO
    Image Processor DIGIC 7 EXPEED 4
    Screen Specs Canon G1 X Mark III Nikon D3500
    Viewfinder Type Electronic viewfinder Optical viewfinder
    Viewfinder Field of View 100% 95%
    Viewfinder Magnification 0.57x
    Viewfinder Resolution 2360k dots
    LCD Framing Live View Live View
    Rear LCD Size 3.0inch 3.0inch
    LCD Resolution 1040k dots 921k dots
    LCD Attachment Swivel screen Fixed screen
    Touch Input Touchscreen no Touchscreen
    Shooting Specs Canon G1 X Mark III Nikon D3500
    Focus System On-Sensor Phase-detect Phase-detect AF
    Manual Focusing AidFocus Peakingno Peaking Feature
    Continuous Shooting 9 shutter flaps/s 5 shutter flaps/s
    Time-Lapse PhotographyIntervalometer built-inno Intervalometer
    Fill Flash Build-in Flash Build-in Flash
    Storage Medium SDXC cards SDXC cards
    Second Storage Option Single card slot Single card slot
    UHS card support UHS-I UHS-I
    Connectivity Specs Canon G1 X Mark III Nikon D3500
    External Flash Hotshoe Hotshoe
    USB Connector USB 2.0 USB 2.0
    HDMI Port micro HDMI mini HDMI
    Wifi Support Wifi built-in no Wifi
    Near-Field Communication NFC built-in no NFC
    Bluetooth Support Bluetooth built-in Bluetooth built-in
    Body Specs Canon G1 X Mark III Nikon D3500
    Environmental SealingWeathersealed bodynot weather sealed
    Battery Type NB-13L EN-EL14a
    Battery Life (CIPA)200 shots per charge1550 shots per charge
    Body Dimensions 115 x 78 x 51 mm
    (4.5 x 3.1 x 2.0 in)
    124 x 97 x 70 mm
    (4.9 x 3.8 x 2.8 in)
    Camera Weight 399 g (14.1 oz) 365 g (12.9 oz)

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