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Panasonic LX5 vs Sony H300

The Panasonic Lumix DMC-LX5 and the Sony Cyber-shot DSC-H300 are two digital cameras that were announced, respectively, in July 2010 and February 2014. Both the LX5 and the H300 are fixed lens compact cameras that are based on a 1/1.7-inch (LX5) and a 1/2.3-inch (H300) sensor. The Panasonic has a resolution of 10 megapixels, whereas the Sony provides 19.9 MP.

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

Headline Specifications
Panasonic LX5 versus Sony H300
Panasonic LX5 Sony H300
Fixed lens compact camera Fixed lens compact camera
24-90mm f/2.0-3.3 25-875mm f/3.4-6.5
10 MP, 1/1.7" Sensor 19.9 MP, 1/2.3" Sensor
720/60p Video 720/30p Video
ISO 80-3,200 (80 - 12,800) ISO 80-3,200
Viewfinder optional No viewfinder, LCD framing
3.0 LCD, 460k dots 3.0 LCD, 460k dots
Fixed screen (not touch-sensitive) Fixed screen (not touch-sensitive)
2.5 shutter flaps per second 0.8 shutter flaps per second
400 shots per battery charge350 shots per battery charge
110 x 65 x 43 mm, 271 g 128 x 89 x 92 mm, 590 g

Going beyond this snapshot of core features and characteristics, what are the differences between the Panasonic Lumix DMC-LX5 and the Sony Cyber-shot DSC-H300? 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 physical size and weight of the Panasonic LX5 and the Sony H300 are illustrated in the side-by-side display below. The two cameras are presented according to their relative size. Three consecutive perspectives from the front, the top, and the back are available. All width, height and depth dimensions are rounded to the nearest millimeter.

The LX5 can be obtained in two different colors (black, white), while the H300 is only available in black.

Size Panasonic LX5 vs Sony H300
Compare LX5 versus H300 top
Comparison LX5 or H300 rear

If the front view area (width x height) of the cameras is taken as an aggregate measure of their size, the Sony H300 is considerably larger (59 percent) than the Panasonic LX5. Moreover, the H300 is substantially heavier (118 percent) than the LX5. In this context, it is worth noting that neither the LX5 nor the H300 are weather-sealed.

The following table provides a synthesis of the main physical specifications of the two cameras and other similar ones. If you want to switch the focus of the display and review another camera pair, just select a new right or left comparator from among the camera models in the table. Alternatively, you can also move across to the CAM-parator tool and choose from the broad selection of possible camera comparisons there.

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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
 
Panasonic LX5 110 mm 65 mm 43 mm 271 g 400 n Jul 2010 499i
 
Sony H300 128 mm 89 mm 92 mm 590 g 350 n Feb 2014 219 i
 
Canon G12 112 mm 76 mm 48 mm 401 g 370 n Sep 2010 499i
 
Fujifilm X10 117 mm 70 mm 57 mm 350 g 270 n Sep 2011 599i
 
Leica Q Typ 116 130 mm 80 mm 93 mm 640 g 300 n Jun 2015 4,249i
 
Olympus XZ-1 111 mm 65 mm 42 mm 275 g 320 n Jan 2011 499i
 
Panasonic TZ90 112 mm 67 mm 41 mm 322 g 380 n Apr 2017 449i
 
Panasonic FZ330 132 mm 92 mm 117 mm 691 g 380 Y Jul 2015 599 i
 
Panasonic FZ200 125 mm 87 mm 110 mm 588 g 540 n Jul 2012 599i
 
Panasonic LX7 111 mm 68 mm 46 mm 298 g 330 n Jul 2012 499i
 
Panasonic FZ150 124 mm 82 mm 92 mm 528 g 410 n Aug 2011 499i
 
Panasonic GF3 108 mm 67 mm 32 mm 264 g 300 n Jun 2011 549i
 
Panasonic GF2 113 mm 68 mm 33 mm 310 g 300 n Nov 2010 549i
 
Sony RX100 IV 102 mm 58 mm 41 mm 298 g 280 n Jun 2015 999i
 
Sony HX400V 130 mm 93 mm 103 mm 660 g 300 n Feb 2014 499 i
 
Sony H400 130 mm 95 mm 122 mm 628 g 300 n Feb 2014 319 i
 
Sony H200 123 mm 83 mm 87 mm 530 g 240 n Jan 2013 249 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 retail prices at the time of the camera’s release place the model in the market relative to other models in the producer’s line-up and the competition. The H300 was launched at a markedly lower price (by 56 percent) than the LX5, which puts it into a different market segment. Normally, street prices remain initially close to the MSRP, but after a couple of months, the first discounts appear. 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 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. Furthermore, a large sensor camera will give the photographer more possibilities to use shallow depth-of-field in order to 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 LX5 features a 1/1.7-inch sensor and the Sony H300 a 1/2.3-inch sensor. The sensor area in the H300 is 39 percent smaller. As a result of these sensor size differences, the cameras have a format factor of, respectively, 4.4 and 5.6. Both cameras feature a native aspect ratio (sensor width to sensor height) of 4:3. The LX5 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 LX5 and Sony H300 sensor measures

Despite having a smaller sensor, the H300 offers a higher resolution of 19.9 megapixels, compared with 10 MP of the LX5. This megapixels advantage comes at the cost of a higher pixel density and a smaller size of the individual pixel (with a pixel pitch of 1.19μm versus 2.14μm for the LX5). However, it should be noted that the H300 is much more recent (by 3 years and 6 months) than the LX5, and its sensor will have benefitted from technological advances during this time that make it possible to gather light more efficiently. Coming back to sensor resolution, it should be mentioned that the H300 has no anti-alias filter installed, so that it can capture all the detail its sensor resolves.

The resolution advantage of the Sony H300 implies greater flexibility for cropping images or the possibility to print larger pictures. The maximum print size of the H300 for good quality output (200 dots per inch) amounts to 25.8 x 19.3 inches or 65.4 x 49.1 cm, for very good quality (250 dpi) 20.6 x 15.5 inches or 52.3 x 39.3 cm, and for excellent quality (300 dpi) 17.2 x 12.9 inches or 43.6 x 32.7 cm. The corresponding values for the Panasonic LX5 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-LX5 has a native sensitivity range from ISO 80 to ISO 3200, which can be extended to ISO 80-12800. The corresponding ISO settings for the Sony Cyber-shot DSC-H300 are ISO 80 to ISO 3200 (no boost).

LX5 versus H300 MP

For many cameras, data on sensor performance has been reported by DXO Mark. This service assesses and scores the color depth ("DXO Portrait"), dynamic range ("DXO Landscape"), and low-light sensitivity ("DXO Sports") of camera sensors, and also publishes an overall camera score. The adjacent table reports on the physical sensor characteristics and the outcomes of the DXO sensor quality tests for a sample of comparator-cameras.

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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 LX5 1/1.7 10.0 3648 2736720/60p19.610.813241
 
Sony H300 1/2.3 19.9 5152 3864720/30p........
 
Canon G12 1/1.7 10.0 3648 2736720/24p20.411.216147
 
Fujifilm X10 2/3 12.0 4000 30001080/30p20.511.324550
 
Leica Q Typ 116 Full Frame 24.0 6000 40001080/60p24.312.7222185
 
Olympus XZ-1 1/1.7 10.1 3664 2752720/30p18.810.411734
 
Panasonic TZ90 1/2.3 20.2 5184 38884K/30p19.110.610636
 
Panasonic FZ330 1/2.3 12.0 4000 30004K/30p19.311.09738
 
Panasonic FZ200 1/2.3 12.0 4000 30001080/60p19.110.811437
 
Panasonic LX7 1/1.7 10.0 3648 27361080/60p20.711.714750
 
Panasonic FZ150 1/2.3 12.0 4000 30001080/60p19.410.913240
 
Panasonic GF3 Four Thirds 12.0 4000 30001080/60i20.610.045849
 
Panasonic GF2 Four Thirds 12.0 4000 30001080/60i21.210.350654
 
Sony RX100 IV 1-inch 20.0 5472 36484K/30p22.812.659170
 
Sony HX400V 1/2.3 20.2 5184 38881080/60p........
 
Sony H400 1/2.3 19.9 5152 3864720/30p........
 
Sony H200 1/2.3 15.2 5184 2930720/30p........

Many modern cameras are not only capable of taking still images, but can also record movies. Both cameras under consideration have a sensor with sufficiently fast read-out times for moving pictures, but the LX5 provides a higher frame rate than the H300. It can shoot video footage at 720/60p, while the Sony is limited to 720/30p.

Feature comparison

Beyond body and sensor, cameras can and do differ across a range of features. The LX5 and the H300 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. That said, the LX5 can be equipped with an optional viewfinder – the DMW-LVF1. The following table reports on some other key feature differences and similarities of the Panasonic LX5, the Sony H300, 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 LX5optional n 3.0 460 fixed n 1/4000s 2.5 Y Y
 
Sony H300none n 3.0 460 fixed n 1/1500s 0.8 Y Y
 
Canon G12optical n 2.8 461 swivel n 1/4000s 1.1 Y Y
 
Fujifilm X10optical n 2.8 460 fixed n 1/4000s 10.0 Y Y
 
Leica Q Typ 1163680 n 3.0 1040 fixed Y 1/2000s 10.0 n Y
 
Olympus XZ-1optional n 3.0 614 fixed n 1/2000s 2.0 Y Y
 
Panasonic TZ901166 n 3.0 1040 tilting Y 1/2000s 10.0 Y Y
 
Panasonic FZ3301440 n 3.0 1040 swivel Y 1/4000s 12.0 Y Y
 
Panasonic FZ2001312 n 3.0 460 swivel n 1/4000s 12.0 Y Y
 
Panasonic LX7optional n 3.0 920 fixed n 1/4000s 11.0 Y Y
 
Panasonic FZ150202 n 3.0 460 swivel n 1/2000s 12.0 Y Y
 
Panasonic GF3none n 3.0 460 fixed Y 1/4000s 3.2 Y n
 
Panasonic GF2optional n 3.0 460 fixed Y 1/4000s 2.6 Y n
 
Sony RX100 IV2359 n 3.0 1228 tilting n 1/2000s 16.0 Y Y
 
Sony HX400V210 n 3.0 921 tilting n 1/4000s 10.0 Y Y
 
Sony H400210 n 3.0 460 fixed n 1/2000s 0.7 Y Y
 
Sony H200none n 3.0 460 fixed n 1/1500s 0.8 Y Y

Both the LX5 and the H300 have zoom lenses built in. The LX5 has a 24-90mm f/2.0-3.3 optic and the H300 offers a 25-875mm f/3.4-6.5 (focal lengths in full frame equivalent terms). Hence, the Panasonic provides a wider angle of view at the short end than the Sony, but less tele-photo reach at the long end. The LX5 offers the faster maximum aperture.

The LX5 writes its imaging data to SDXC cards, while the H300 uses SDXC or Memory Stick PRO Duo cards.

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-LX5 and Sony Cyber-shot DSC-H300 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 LX5Ymonomono--mini2.0---
 
Sony H300-monomono--micro2.0Y--
 
Canon G12Ystereomono--mini2.0---
 
Fujifilm X10Ystereomono--mini2.0---
 
Leica Q Typ 116Ystereomono--micro2.0YY-
 
Olympus XZ-1Ymono---mini2.0---
 
Panasonic TZ90-stereomono--micro2.0Y--
 
Panasonic FZ330YstereomonoY-mini2.0Y--
 
Panasonic FZ200YstereomonoY-mini2.0---
 
Panasonic LX7Ystereomono--mini2.0---
 
Panasonic FZ150Ystereo---mini2.0---
 
Panasonic GF3-stereomono--mini2.0---
 
Panasonic GF2Ystereomono--mini2.0---
 
Sony RX100 IV-stereomono--micro2.0YY-
 
Sony HX400VYstereomono--micro2.0YY-
 
Sony H400-monomono--micro2.0Y--
 
Sony H200-monomono---2.0---

It is notable that the LX5 has a hotshoe, while the H300 does not. This socket makes it possible to easily attach optional accessories, such as an external flash gun.

The H300 is a recent model that features in the current product line-up of Sony. In contrast, the LX5 has been discontinued (but can be found pre-owned on eBay). As a replacement in the same line of cameras, the LX5 was succeeded by the Panasonic LX7. Further information on the two cameras (e.g. user guides, manuals), as well as related accessories, can be found on the official Panasonic and Sony websites.

Review summary

So what conclusions can be drawn? Which of the two cameras – the Panasonic LX5 or the Sony H300 – has the upper hand? Is one clearly better than the other? A synthesis of the relative strong points of each of the models is listed below.

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Arguments in favor of the Panasonic Lumix DMC-LX5:

  • Better moiré control: Has an anti-alias filter to avoid artificial patterns to appear in images.
  • Flexible image proportions: Has a multi-aspect sensor that allows for alternative image shapes.
  • Better video: Provides higher movie framerates (720/60p versus 720/30p).
  • More framing options: Can be equipped with a hotshoe-mounted accessory-viewfinder.
  • Faster shutter: Has higher mechanical shutter speed (1/4000s vs 1/1500s) to freeze action.
  • Faster burst: Shoots at higher frequency (2.5 vs 0.8 flaps/sec) to capture the decisive moment.
  • Better light gathering: Has a lens with a wider maximum aperture (f/2.0 vs f/3.4).
  • Wider view: Has a wider-angle lens that facilitates landscape or interior shots.
  • More compact: Is smaller (110x65mm vs 128x89mm) and thus needs less room in the bag.
  • Less heavy: Is lighter (by 319g or 54 percent) and hence easier to carry around.
  • Longer lasting: Can take more shots (400 versus 350) on a single battery charge.
  • Better lighting: Features a hotshoe and can thus hold and trigger an external flash gun.
  • More heavily discounted: Has been available for much longer (launched in July 2010).

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Reasons to prefer the Sony Cyber-shot DSC-H300:

  • More detail: Has more megapixels (19.9 vs 10MP), which boosts linear resolution by 41%.
  • Maximized detail: Lacks an anti-alias filter to exploit the sensor's full resolution potential.
  • More tele-reach: Has a longer tele-lens for perspective compression and subject magnification.
  • Easier file upload: Has wifi built in for automatic backup or image transfer to the web.
  • More affordable: Was introduced into a lower priced category (56 percent cheaper at launch).
  • More modern: Reflects 3 years and 6 months of technical progress since the LX5 launch.

If the number of relative strengths (bullet points above) is taken as a guide, the LX5 is the clear winner of the match-up (13 : 6 points). However, the relevance of individual strengths will vary across photographers, so that you might want to apply your own weighing scheme to the summary points when reflecting and deciding on a new camera. A professional wedding photographer will view the differences between cameras in a way that diverges from the perspective of a travel photog, and a person interested in cityscapes has distinct needs from a macro shooter. Hence, the decision which camera is best and worth buying is often a very personal one.

LX5 13:06 H300

How about other alternatives? Do the specifications of the Panasonic LX5 and the Sony H300 place the cameras among the top in their class? Find out in the latest Best Travel-Zoom Camera and Best Superzoom Camera listings whether the two cameras rank among the cream of the crop.

In any case, while the comparison of technical specifications can provide a useful overview of the capabilities of different cameras, it says little about, for example, the shooting experience and imaging performance of the LX5 and the H300 in practical situations. 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 expert reviews 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 LX5+73/1004.5/55/54.5/5 Jul 2010 499i
 
Sony H300+..4.5/5..4/5 Feb 2014 219 i
 
Canon G12+73/1004.5/54.5/54.5/5 Sep 2010 499i
 
Fujifilm X10..76/1004/53.5/54.5/5 Sep 2011 599i
 
Leica Q Typ 116..80/1004.5/5..4.5/5 Jun 2015 4,249i
 
Olympus XZ-1..74/1004.5/54.5/54.5/5 Jan 2011 499i
 
Panasonic TZ90+ +..4/5..4/5 Apr 2017 449i
 
Panasonic FZ330+ +..4.5/54.5/54.5/5 Jul 2015 599 i
 
Panasonic FZ200+ +80/1004.5/54.5/54.5/5 Jul 2012 599i
 
Panasonic LX7+ +75/1004/55/54.5/5 Jul 2012 499i
 
Panasonic FZ150+ +76/1004/55/54.5/5 Aug 2011 499i
 
Panasonic GF382/10071/1004.5/54.5/54/5 Jun 2011 549i
 
Panasonic GF282/10070/1004.5/54.5/54.5/5 Nov 2010 549i
 
Sony RX100 IV+ +85/1004/54.5/54.5/5 Jun 2015 999i
 
Sony HX400V+ +..4/5..4/5 Feb 2014 499 i
 
Sony H400o..3.5/5..3.5/5 Feb 2014 319 i
 
Sony H200....3.5/5..3.5/5 Jan 2013 249 i
Notes: (+ +) highly recommended; (+) recommended; (o) reviewed; (..) not available.

The review scores listed above should be treated with care, though. The ratings were established in reference to similarly priced cameras that were available in the market at the time of the review. Thus, a score needs to be put into the context of the launch date and the launch price of the camera, 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.

Panasonic LX5:
Check Ebay offers
Sony H300:
Check Amazon price

Other camera comparisons

Did this review help to inform your camera decision process? If you would like to see a different side-by-side camera review, just use the search menu below. Alternatively, you can follow any of the listed hyperlinks for comparisons that others found interesting.

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    Specifications: Panasonic LX5 vs Sony H300

    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 LX5 Sony H300
    Camera Type Fixed lens compact camera Fixed lens compact camera
    Camera Lens 24-90mm f/2.0-3.3 25-875mm f/3.4-6.5
    Launch Date July 2010 February 2014
    Launch Price USD 499 USD 219
    Sensor Specs Panasonic LX5 Sony H300
    Sensor Technology CCD CCD
    Sensor Format 1/1.7" Sensor 1/2.3" Sensor
    Sensor Size 7.85 x 5.89 mm 6.17 x 4.55 mm
    Sensor Area 46.2365 mm2 28.0735 mm2
    Sensor Diagonal 9.8 mm 7.7 mm
    Crop Factor 4.4x 5.6x
    Sensor Resolution 10 Megapixels 19.9 Megapixels
    Image Resolution 3648 x 2736 pixels 5152 x 3864 pixels
    Pixel Pitch 2.14 μm 1.19 μm
    Pixel Density 21.59 MP/cm2 70.91 MP/cm2
    Moiré control Anti-Alias filter no AA filter
    Movie Capability 720/60p Video 720/30p Video
    ISO Setting 80 - 3,200 ISO 80 - 3,200 ISO
    ISO Boost 80 - 12,800 ISO no Enhancement
    Image Processor Venus FHD BIONZ
    DXO Sensor Quality (score) 41 ..
    DXO Color Depth (bits) 19.6 ..
    DXO Dynamic Range (EV) 10.8 ..
    DXO Low Light (ISO) 132 ..
    Screen Specs Panasonic LX5 Sony H300
    Viewfinder Type Viewfinder optional no viewfinder
    Viewfinder Magnification
    LCD Framing Live View Live View
    Rear LCD Size 3.0inch 3.0inch
    LCD Resolution 460k dots 460k dots
    LCD Attachment Fixed screen Fixed screen
    Shooting Specs Panasonic LX5 Sony H300
    Focus System Contrast-detect AF Contrast-detect AF
    Continuous Shooting 2.5 shutter flaps/s 0.8 shutter flaps/s
    Fill Flash Build-in Flash Build-in Flash
    Storage Medium SDXC cards MS or SDXC cards
    Second Storage Option Single card slot Single card slot
    UHS card support no no
    Connectivity Specs Panasonic LX5 Sony H300
    External Flash Hotshoe no Hotshoe
    USB Connector USB 2.0 USB 2.0
    HDMI Port mini HDMI micro HDMI
    Wifi Support no Wifi Wifi built-in
    Body Specs Panasonic LX5 Sony H300
    Battery Type DMW-BCJ13 4xAA
    Battery Life (CIPA)400 shots per charge350 shots per charge
    Body Dimensions 110 x 65 x 43 mm
    (4.3 x 2.6 x 1.7 in)
    128 x 89 x 92 mm
    (5.0 x 3.5 x 3.6 in)
    Camera Weight 271 g (9.6 oz) 590 g (20.8 oz)

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