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Panasonic GX1 vs LX7

The Panasonic Lumix DMC-GX1 and the Panasonic Lumix DMC-LX7 are two digital cameras that were announced, respectively, in November 2011 and July 2012. The GX1 is a mirrorless interchangeable lens camera, while the LX7 is a fixed lens compact. The cameras are based on a Four Thirds (GX1) and a 1/1.7-inch (LX7) sensor. The GX1 has a resolution of 15.8 megapixels, whereas the LX7 provides 10 MP.

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

Headline Specifications
Panasonic GX1 versus Panasonic LX7
Panasonic GX1 Panasonic LX7
Mirrorless system camera Fixed lens compact camera
Micro Four Thirds lenses 24-90mm f/1.4-2.3
15.8 MP, Four Thirds Sensor 10 MP, 1/1.7" Sensor
1080/60p Video 1080/60p Video
ISO 160-12,800 ISO 80-6,400 (80 - 12,800)
Viewfinder optional Viewfinder optional
3.0 LCD, 460k dots 3.0 LCD, 920k dots
Fixed touchscreen Fixed screen (not touch-sensitive)
4.2 shutter flaps per second 11 shutter flaps per second
320 shots per battery charge330 shots per battery charge
116 x 68 x 39 mm, 318 g 111 x 68 x 46 mm, 298 g

Going beyond this snapshot of core features and characteristics, what are the differences between the Panasonic Lumix DMC-GX1 and the Panasonic Lumix DMC-LX7? 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

An illustration of the physical size and weight of the Panasonic GX1 and the Panasonic LX7 is provided in the side-by-side display below. The two cameras are presented according to their relative size. Three successive views from the front, the top, and the rear are shown. All width, height and depth measures are rounded to the nearest millimeter.

The LX7 can be obtained in two different colors (black, white), while the GX1 is only available in black.

Size Panasonic GX1 vs Panasonic LX7
Compare GX1 versus LX7 top
Comparison GX1 or LX7 rear

If the front view area (width x height) of the cameras is taken as an aggregate measure of their size, the Panasonic LX7 is somewhat smaller (4 percent) than the Panasonic GX1. In this context, it is worth noting that neither the GX1 nor the LX7 are weather-sealed.

The above size and weight comparisons are to some extent incomplete and possibly misleading, as the LX7 has a lens built in, whereas the GX1 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 GX1 and their specifications in the Micro Four Thirds Lens Catalog.

Concerning battery life, the GX1 gets 320 shots out of its DMW-BLD10 battery, while the LX7 can take 330 images on a single charge of its DMW-BCJ13 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, you can use the CAM-parator app to select your camera combination among a large number of options.

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Body Specifications
  Camera
Model
Camera
Width
Camera
Height
Camera
Depth
Camera
Weight
Battery
Life
Weather
Sealing
Camera
Launch
Launch
Price (USD)
Street
Price
 
Panasonic GX1 4.6 in 2.7 in 1.5 in 11.2 oz 320 n Nov 2011 699i
 
Panasonic LX7 4.4 in 2.7 in 1.8 in 10.5 oz 330 n Jul 2012 499i
 
Canon G16 4.3 in 3.0 in 1.6 in 12.6 oz 360 n Aug 2013 549 i
 
Fujifilm X10 4.6 in 2.8 in 2.2 in 12.3 oz 270 n Sep 2011 599i
 
Panasonic G6 4.8 in 3.3 in 2.8 in 13.8 oz 340 n Apr 2013 599i
 
Panasonic GM1 3.9 in 2.2 in 1.2 in 7.2 oz 230 n Oct 2013 749i
 
Panasonic G5 4.7 in 3.3 in 2.8 in 14.0 oz 320 n Jul 2012 599i
 
Panasonic GF5 4.3 in 2.6 in 1.5 in 9.4 oz 360 n Apr 2012 499i
 
Panasonic G3 4.5 in 3.3 in 1.9 in 11.9 oz 270 n May 2011 599i
 
Panasonic GF3 4.3 in 2.6 in 1.3 in 9.3 oz 300 n Jun 2011 549i
 
Panasonic G2 4.9 in 3.3 in 2.9 in 15.1 oz 360 n Mar 2010 599i
 
Panasonic GF2 4.4 in 2.7 in 1.3 in 10.9 oz 300 n Nov 2010 549i
 
Panasonic GH2 4.9 in 3.5 in 3.0 in 15.6 oz 330 n Sep 2010 899i
 
Panasonic LX5 4.3 in 2.6 in 1.7 in 9.6 oz 400 n Jul 2010 499i
 
Panasonic GF1 4.7 in 2.8 in 1.4 in 13.6 oz 380 n Sep 2009 749i
Notes: Measurements and pricing do not include easily detachable parts, such as add-on or interchangeable lenses or optional viewfinders.

Any camera decision will naturally be influenced heavily by the price. The manufacturer’s suggested retail prices give an idea on the placement of the camera in the maker’s lineup and the broader market. The LX7 was launched at a lower price than the GX1, despite having a lens built in. 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.

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Sensor comparison

The size of the sensor inside a digital camera is one of the key determinants of image quality. A large sensor will generally have larger individual pixels that offer better low-light sensitivity, provide wider dynamic range, and have 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.

Of the two cameras under consideration, the Panasonic GX1 features a Four Thirds sensor and the Panasonic LX7 a 1/1.7-inch sensor. The sensor area in the LX7 is 81 percent smaller. As a result of these sensor size differences, the cameras have a format factor of, respectively, 2.0 and 4.65. Both cameras feature a native aspect ratio (sensor width to sensor height) of 4:3. The LX7 has the particularity of featuring a switch that allows to toggle between multiple aspect ratios, while maintaining the same field of view and full image resolution.

Panasonic GX1 and Panasonic LX7 sensor measures

With 15.8MP, the GX1 offers a higher resolution than the LX7 (10MP), but the GX1 nevertheless has larger individual pixels (pixel pitch of 3.77μm versus 2.05μm for the LX7) due to its larger sensor. However, the LX7 is a somewhat more recent model (by 8 months) than the GX1, and its sensor might have benefitted from technological advances during this time that enhance the light gathering capacity of its pixels.

The resolution advantage of the Panasonic GX1 implies greater flexibility for cropping images or the possibility to print larger pictures. The maximum print size of the GX1 for good quality output (200 dots per inch) amounts to 23 x 17.2 inches or 58.3 x 43.8 cm, for very good quality (250 dpi) 18.4 x 13.8 inches or 46.7 x 35 cm, and for excellent quality (300 dpi) 15.3 x 11.5 inches or 38.9 x 29.2 cm. The corresponding values for the Panasonic LX7 are 18.2 x 13.7 inches or 46.3 x 34.7 cm for good quality, 14.6 x 10.9 inches or 37.1 x 27.8 cm for very good quality, and 12.2 x 9.1 inches or 30.9 x 23.2 cm for excellent quality prints.

The Panasonic Lumix DMC-GX1 has a native sensitivity range from ISO 160 to ISO 12800. The corresponding ISO settings for the Panasonic Lumix DMC-LX7 are ISO 80 to ISO 6400, with the possibility to increase the ISO range to 80-12800.

GX1 versus LX7 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"). Of the two cameras under review, the GX1 has a notably higher overall DXO score than the LX7 (overall score 5 points higher), which gives it an advantage in terms of imaging quality. This advantage is based on 0.1 bits higher color depth, 1.1 EV of lower dynamic range, and 2.3 stops in additional low light sensitivity. 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
 
Panasonic GX1 Four Thirds 15.8 4592 34481080/60p20.810.670355
 
Panasonic LX7 1/1.7 10.0 3648 27361080/60p20.711.714750
 
Canon G16 1/1.7 12.0 4000 30001080/60p21.011.723054
 
Fujifilm X10 2/3 12.0 4000 30001080/30p20.511.324550
 
Panasonic G6 Four Thirds 15.9 4608 34561080/60p21.311.563961
 
Panasonic GM1 Four Thirds 15.8 4592 34481080/60i22.311.766066
 
Panasonic G5 Four Thirds 15.9 4608 34561080/60p........
 
Panasonic GF5 Four Thirds 12.0 4000 30001080/60i21.411.661861
 
Panasonic G3 Four Thirds 15.8 4592 34481080/60i21.010.666756
 
Panasonic GF3 Four Thirds 12.0 4000 30001080/60i20.610.045849
 
Panasonic G2 Four Thirds 12.0 4000 3000720/30p21.210.349353
 
Panasonic GF2 Four Thirds 12.0 4000 30001080/60i21.210.350654
 
Panasonic GH2 Four Thirds 15.9 4608 34561080/60i21.211.365560
 
Panasonic LX5 1/1.7 10.0 3648 2736720/60p19.610.813241
 
Panasonic GF1 Four Thirds 12.0 4000 3000720/30p21.210.351354

Many modern cameras are not only capable of taking still images, but can also record movies. Both cameras under consideration are equipped with sensors that have a sufficiently high read-out speed for moving images, and both provide the same movie specifications (1080/60p).

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Feature comparison

Apart from body and sensor, cameras can and do differ across a range of features. The GX1 and the LX7 are similar in the sense that neither of the two has a viewfinder. The images are, thus, framed using live view on the rear LCD. However, optional viewfinders – the DMW-LVF2 for the GX1 and the DMW-LVF2 for the LX7 – are available as accessories. The following table reports on some other key feature differences and similarities of the Panasonic GX1, the Panasonic LX7, 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
 
Panasonic GX1optional n 3.0 460 fixed Y 1/4000s 4.2 Y n
 
Panasonic LX7optional n 3.0 920 fixed n 1/4000s 11.0 Y Y
 
Canon G16optical n 3.0 922 fixed n 1/4000s 2.2 Y Y
 
Fujifilm X10optical n 2.8 460 fixed n 1/4000s 10.0 Y Y
 
Panasonic G61440 n 3.0 1036 swivel Y 1/4000s 7.0 Y n
 
Panasonic GM1none n 3.0 1036 fixed Y 1/500s 5.0 Y n
 
Panasonic G51440 n 3.0 920 swivel Y 1/4000s 6.0 Y n
 
Panasonic GF5none n 3.0 920 fixed Y 1/4000s 4.0 Y n
 
Panasonic G31440 n 3.0 460 swivel Y 1/4000s 4.0 Y n
 
Panasonic GF3none n 3.0 460 fixed Y 1/4000s 3.2 Y n
 
Panasonic G21440 n 3.0 460 swivel Y 1/4000s 2.6 Y n
 
Panasonic GF2optional n 3.0 460 fixed Y 1/4000s 2.6 Y n
 
Panasonic GH21534 n 3.0 460 swivel n 1/4000s 3.0 Y n
 
Panasonic LX5optional n 3.0 460 fixed n 1/4000s 2.5 Y Y
 
Panasonic GF1optional n 3.0 460 fixed n 1/4000s 3.0 Y n

One differentiating feature between the two cameras concerns the touch sensitivity of the rear screen. The GX1 has a touchscreen, while the LX7 has a conventional panel. Touch control can be particularly helpful, for example, for setting the focus point.

The Panasonic LX7 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 GX1 and the LX7 write their files to SDXC cards. The GX1 supports UHS-I cards (Ultra High Speed data transfer of up to 104 MB/s), while the LX7 cannot take advantage of Ultra High Speed SD cards.

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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 Panasonic Lumix DMC-GX1 and Panasonic Lumix DMC-LX7 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
 
Panasonic GX1Ystereomono--mini2.0---
 
Panasonic LX7Ystereomono--mini2.0---
 
Canon G16Ystereomono--mini2.0Y--
 
Fujifilm X10Ystereomono--mini2.0---
 
Panasonic G6YstereomonoY-mini2.0YY-
 
Panasonic GM1-stereomono--micro2.0Y--
 
Panasonic G5Ystereomono--mini2.0---
 
Panasonic GF5-stereomono--mini2.0---
 
Panasonic G3Ystereomono--mini2.0---
 
Panasonic GF3-stereomono--mini2.0---
 
Panasonic G2Ystereomono--mini2.0---
 
Panasonic GF2Ystereomono--mini2.0---
 
Panasonic GH2YstereomonoY-mini2.0---
 
Panasonic LX5Ymonomono--mini2.0---
 
Panasonic GF1Ymonomono--mini2.0---

Both the GX1 and the LX7 have been discontinued, but can regularly be found used on eBay. The GX1 was replaced by the Panasonic GX7, while the LX7 was followed by the Panasonic LX10. Further information on the two cameras (e.g. user guides, manuals), as well as related accessories, can be found on the official Panasonic website.

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Review summary

So what conclusions can be drawn? Is there a clear favorite between the Panasonic GX1 and the Panasonic LX7? Which camera is better? A synthesis of the relative strong points of each of the models is listed below.


Reasons to prefer the Panasonic Lumix DMC-GX1:

  • More detail: Offers more megapixels (15.8 vs 10MP) with a 26% higher linear resolution.
  • Better image quality: Scores markedly higher (5 points) in the DXO overall assessment.
  • Better low-light sensitivity: Requires less light for good images (2.3 stops ISO advantage).
  • Fewer buttons to press: Is equipped with a touch-sensitive rear screen to facilitate handling.
  • More flexible: Accepts interchangeable lenses, so that lens characteristics can be altered.
  • Faster buffer clearing: Has an SD card interface that supports the UHS-I standard.
  • More heavily discounted: Has been on the market for longer (launched in November 2011).


Arguments in favor of the Panasonic Lumix DMC-LX7:

  • More dynamic range: Captures a broader range of light and dark details (1.1 EV of extra DR).
  • Flexible image proportions: Has a multi-aspect sensor that allows for alternative image shapes.
  • More detailed LCD: Has a higher resolution rear screen (920k vs 460k dots).
  • Faster burst: Shoots at higher frequency (11 vs 4.2 flaps/sec) to capture the decisive moment.
  • Easier time-lapse photography: Has an intervalometer built-in for low frequency shooting.
  • Ready to shoot: Has an integrated lens, whereas the GX1 necessitates an extra lens.
  • Less heavy: Has a lower weight even though it has a lens built in (unlike the GX1).
  • Sharper images: Has stabilization technology built-in to reduce the impact of hand-shake.
  • More affordable: Was introduced at a lower price, despite coming with a built-in lens.
  • More modern: Was introduced somewhat (8 months) more recently.

If the count of individual advantages (bullet points above) is taken as a guide, the LX7 emerges as the winner of the match-up (10 : 7 points). However, the relative importance of the various individual camera aspects will vary according to personal preferences and needs, so that you might like to apply corresponding weights to the particular features before making a decision on a new camera. 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.

GX1 07:10 LX7

How about other alternatives? Do the specifications of the Panasonic GX1 and the Panasonic LX7 place the cameras among the top in their class? Find out in the latest Best Mirrorless Interchangeable Lens Camera and Best Travel-Zoom Camera listings whether the two cameras rank among the cream of the crop.

In any case, while the comparison of the spec-sheets of cameras can offer a general idea of their imaging potential, it remains partial and cannot reveal, for example, the shooting experience and imaging performance when actually working with the GX1 or the LX7. User reviews, such as those found at amazon, can sometimes inform about these issues, but such feedback is often incomplete, inconsistent, and biased.

Expert reviews

This is why hands-on reviews by experts are important. The table below provides a synthesis of the camera assessments of some of the best known photo-gear 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
 
Panasonic GX1+77/1004.5/54.5/54.5/5 Nov 2011 699i
 
Panasonic LX7+ +75/1004/55/54.5/5 Jul 2012 499i
 
Canon G16+..4.5/54.5/54.5/5 Aug 2013 549 i
 
Fujifilm X10..76/1004/53.5/54.5/5 Sep 2011 599i
 
Panasonic G6+ +..5/5..4.5/5 Apr 2013 599i
 
Panasonic GM1+78/1005/54.5/54.5/5 Oct 2013 749i
 
Panasonic G5+ +..4.5/54.5/54.5/5 Jul 2012 599i
 
Panasonic GF5....4.5/54/54.5/5 Apr 2012 499i
 
Panasonic G3+ +75/1004.5/54.5/55/5 May 2011 599i
 
Panasonic GF382/10071/1004.5/54.5/54/5 Jun 2011 549i
 
Panasonic G2..72/1004/54/54.5/5 Mar 2010 599i
 
Panasonic GF282/10070/1004.5/54.5/54.5/5 Nov 2010 549i
 
Panasonic GH2+ +79/1004.5/54.5/55/5 Sep 2010 899i
 
Panasonic LX5+73/1004.5/55/54.5/5 Jul 2010 499i
 
Panasonic GF185/10069/1004.5/54.5/54.5/5 Sep 2009 749i
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. Thus, a score needs to be put into the context of the launch date and the launch price of the camera, and comparisons of ratings among very different cameras or across long time periods have little meaning. Also, kindly note that some of the listed sites have over time developped their review approaches and their reporting style.

Panasonic GX1:
Check Ebay offers
Panasonic LX7:
Check Ebay offers

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 your choice using the following search menu. There is also a set of direct links to comparison reviews that other users of the CAM-parator app explored.

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    Specifications: Panasonic GX1 vs Panasonic LX7

    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 Panasonic GX1 Panasonic LX7
    Camera Type Mirrorless system camera Fixed lens compact camera
    Camera Lens Micro Four Thirds lenses 24-90mm f/1.4-2.3
    Launch Date November 2011 July 2012
    Launch Price USD 699 USD 499
    Sensor Specs Panasonic GX1 Panasonic LX7
    Sensor Technology CMOS CMOS
    Sensor Format Four Thirds Sensor 1/1.7" Sensor
    Sensor Size 17.3 x 13.0 mm 7.44 x 5.58 mm
    Sensor Area 224.9 mm2 41.5152 mm2
    Sensor Diagonal 21.6 mm 9.3 mm
    Crop Factor 2.0x 4.65x
    Sensor Resolution 15.8 Megapixels 10 Megapixels
    Image Resolution 4592 x 3448 pixels 3648 x 2736 pixels
    Pixel Pitch 3.77 μm 2.05 μm
    Pixel Density 7.04 MP/cm2 24.04 MP/cm2
    Moiré control Anti-Alias filter Anti-Alias filter
    Movie Capability 1080/60p Video 1080/60p Video
    ISO Setting 160 - 12,800 ISO 80 - 6,400 ISO
    ISO Boost no Enhancement 80 - 12,800 ISO
    Image Processor Venus FHD Venus
    DXO Sensor Quality (score) 55 50
    DXO Color Depth (bits) 20.8 20.7
    DXO Dynamic Range (EV) 10.6 11.7
    DXO Low Light (ISO) 703 147
    Screen Specs Panasonic GX1 Panasonic LX7
    Viewfinder Type Viewfinder optional Viewfinder optional
    Viewfinder Magnification
    LCD Framing Live View Live View
    Rear LCD Size 3.0inch 3.0inch
    LCD Resolution 460k dots 920k dots
    LCD Attachment Fixed screen Fixed screen
    Touch Input Touchscreen no Touchscreen
    Shooting Specs Panasonic GX1 Panasonic LX7
    Focus System Contrast-detect AF Contrast-detect AF
    Manual Focusing AidFocus Peakingno Peaking Feature
    Continuous Shooting 4.2 shutter flaps/s 11 shutter flaps/s
    Time-Lapse Photographyno IntervalometerIntervalometer built-in
    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 no
    Connectivity Specs Panasonic GX1 Panasonic LX7
    External Flash Hotshoe Hotshoe
    USB Connector USB 2.0 USB 2.0
    HDMI Port mini HDMI mini HDMI
    Wifi Support no Wifi no Wifi
    Body Specs Panasonic GX1 Panasonic LX7
    Battery Type DMW-BLD10 DMW-BCJ13
    Battery Life (CIPA)320 shots per charge330 shots per charge
    Body Dimensions 116 x 68 x 39 mm
    (4.6 x 2.7 x 1.5 in)
    111 x 68 x 46 mm
    (4.4 x 2.7 x 1.8 in)
    Camera Weight 318 g (11.2 oz) 298 g (10.5 oz)

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