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Re: Kawai CA98 : "boxy" sound or not ? [Re: olivier du nord] #2706398
01/19/18 09:28 AM
01/19/18 09:28 AM
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Sofia, Bulgaria
CyberGene Offline
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^ Mark, thanks for this answer, yes, it makes perfect sense. So, I think I can summarize it like: if one doesn't need to perform on various pianos, the best way is to choose the piano he likes best from first touch. Otherwise, he might want to choose a piano that is rather challenging (not the best word perhaps) to allow for better variety when switching between (real) pianos.


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Re: Kawai CA98 : "boxy" sound or not ? [Re: CyberGene] #2706415
01/19/18 10:19 AM
01/19/18 10:19 AM
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Originally Posted by CyberGene
^ Mark, thanks for this answer, yes, it makes perfect sense. So, I think I can summarize it like: if one doesn't need to perform on various pianos, the best way is to choose the piano he likes best from first touch. Otherwise, he might want to choose a piano that is rather challenging (not the best word perhaps) to allow for better variety when switching between (real) pianos.

Perfect summary! smile

Re: Kawai CA98 : "boxy" sound or not ? [Re: CyberGene] #2706449
01/19/18 12:14 PM
01/19/18 12:14 PM
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Originally Posted by CyberGene
I am wondering why it is so important to have a piano that is "hard" to play and thus helps you switch more easily to other grands? Of course, if you are a concert pianist that plays on multiple acoustic grands and needs a workout machine that would allow you to switch between pianos, it's certainly a crucial point and the best approach.

However it is very often that I see people saying their piano is hard to play but that helps them switch more easily to their teacher's piano and find this a good thing. I am not criticizing this point, just trying to make sense of it and wondering if that's probably an established myth.

I would personally prefer a piano that I can immediately feel is great and is VERY EASY to play. I play for my own enjoyment and I like being able to play music rather than working out.


Here's one data point.

A "famous" concert pianist purposefully practiced on rather poorly regulated-tuned "home pianos". They didn't say if home pianos were "hard" or "easy" which might be slightly different. Idea was that all concert hall pianos would play and sound better than home pianos and so could just focus on music performance. Added benefit was removing a lot of stress from the touring and recording for everyone.

Eventually, to prevent any public scandals, friends and colleagues finally convinced the musician to install more "suitable" equipment at home. This was not a money issue. Still not an equipment snob and still happy to play on junk pianos.

Re: Kawai CA98 : "boxy" sound or not ? [Re: MarkH13] #2706482
01/19/18 01:11 PM
01/19/18 01:11 PM
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Originally Posted by MarkH13
Originally Posted by Cosi
Originally Posted by MarkH13
[quote=Osho]
I am now finding my Steinway incredibly easy to play when I come to it from my NU1X. (I think this is a good thing!)


This is a good thing because you can also play a Steinway when you want...not so good when you have only one DP and don't have the opportunity to play an "easier" grand regularly.

Yes, that's exactly it... If I didn't have access to a nice acoustic, I probably wouldn't have gone for the NU1X.

You are fortunate to have access to Steinway and Avantgrand! Most people buying Avantgrand do not have any convenient access to grand. I play grand for <15 minutes a week at 30 minute piano lessons.

For most of us without convenient grand access, I think N1/N2/N1X/N2X/NV10 may make more sense than NU1X.

Osho


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Re: Kawai CA98 : "boxy" sound or not ? [Re: CyberGene] #2706567
01/19/18 05:59 PM
01/19/18 05:59 PM
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Originally Posted by CyberGene
I am wondering why it is so important to have a piano that is "hard" to play and thus helps you switch more easily to other grands?


In my case it was hindering my progress as the action on my teachers Steinway grand was so different (heavy) compared to what I was playing at home. It was particularly noticeable when I couldn't pull off dynamics correctly or do trills during my lesson, where I could execute them with no problem at home. I noted in another thread that after just a week with a heavier action at home my teacher, without prompting, noticed how much better I was playing. And indeed, where before, I'd go to my lesson and it felt totally alien and needed huge adjustments, now I go and it's like I'm playing almost the same keyboard. Also, when I go back to lighter action instruments like my old DP or the Yamaha grand in our recital hall, I find it easy to adapt, where it was hard to adapt to a heavier touch, if that makes sense.


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Re: Kawai CA98 : "boxy" sound or not ? [Re: olivier du nord] #2706575
01/19/18 06:31 PM
01/19/18 06:31 PM
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Well, as you say, you could play properly on your action but was having difficulties on your teacher's piano. It's not that the heavier action makes you play better, it's just that you lacked the needed force to play properly on the heavier action. All else being equal (dynamic expression), a lighter action would put less strain on your fingers, wrists and forearms. But once again, if one needs to perform well on many pianos, he should work out on the heaviest one, rather than the other way around.

What I wanted to point out is that very often there's this myth how heavier actions are always better and more realistic. I don't think it's the case. There are real grands with very light and lively actions too.

And since we're on a CA98 thread, I really like how GF-actions are lighter than the RM3 and than Yamaha digital actions. But it might be true that Yamaha digital actions are probably similar in perceived heaviness to the average grand piano actions that are rather heavy and stiff.


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Re: Kawai CA98 : "boxy" sound or not ? [Re: CyberGene] #2706599
01/19/18 08:23 PM
01/19/18 08:23 PM
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Originally Posted by CyberGene


What I wanted to point out is that very often there's this myth how heavier actions are always better and more realistic. I don't think it's the case. There are real grands with very light and lively actions too.

And since we're on a CA98 thread, I really like how GF-actions are lighter than the RM3 and than Yamaha digital actions. But it might be true that Yamaha digital actions are probably similar in perceived heaviness to the average grand piano actions that are rather heavy and stiff.



I often wonder where the evidence is that a heavier action makes one a better player in the long run, to a point at least, as long as the action is heavy enough within reason , even if in a moment it may seem playing a lighter action seems easier afterwards. I have never seen a compelling argument as to the benefit in the long run, as long as one is using the right technique. You could have a lighter action and play an exercise at a higher tempo versus a heavy piano at a lower tempo. Which one is a better workout to strengthen the player in the long run ? I don't know, I am open to answers, but I strongly question the heavy argument.

Piano is hard enough as it is, why subject one self to such extra hindrance at the expense of playing well on a piano one likes, unless you are of concert calibre and need that to cope with anything. Most of us here are not, and even then I've heard plenty to support the opposite from players at concert level, so clearly opinions vary.

In all sports I have taken part in like cycling at quite a serious level during my youth, and I've been given plenty coaching, I have always been told faster repetitions with less resistance is better, less likely to lead to knee/tendon problems in the long run. Pushing heavy gears is bad for the tendons and knees in the long run, indeed I fell foul of that in my youth and had knee problems for a while. Switching to a higher repetition scheme with lower gears and less resistance sorted that out. I would draw the analogy, though an exaggeration, piano players are not aiming to be body builders, they need to be agile, fast and flexible, it is not like heavy weight lifting and strength building. I've always been on the fence about the theory that playing the most heavy unforgiving action as a good thing, especially for people getting older who are not aiming to be at concert level, I rather stay injury free.

As Cybergene said, there are plenty lower inertia actions available for hobbyist that want an acoustic who are never going to be playing 9 ft grand anyway with heavy actions , so why bother preparing for that. Pianos I recall and tried like the newer Feurich series follow this philosophy more so, who see it as a good thing to reduce inertia for extra control ... so they say. If you want something more Inertia laden, go Kawai millennium or something like that, plenty choices for the buyer in the acoustic market.

Last edited by Alexander Borro; 01/19/18 08:25 PM.

Selftaught since June 2014.
Books: Barratt classic piano course bk 1,2,3. Humphries Piano handbook, various...
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Re: Kawai CA98 : "boxy" sound or not ? [Re: Alexander Borro] #2706605
01/19/18 08:42 PM
01/19/18 08:42 PM
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Though I'm not a concert pianist, this post did give me some clarity on my choice:
http://forum.pianoworld.com/ubbthre...o-gp-300-what-to-choose.html#Post2694398

It's hard to imagine the difference in weight (a few grams) will impact my arm/hand/finger health any more than the fact that I pluck at a computer keyboard 8+ hours a day for my job. But that's just speculation, I'm not a kinesiologist.

Last edited by squidbot; 01/19/18 08:45 PM.

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Re: Kawai CA98 : "boxy" sound or not ? [Re: olivier du nord] #2706610
01/19/18 09:13 PM
01/19/18 09:13 PM
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Originally Posted by squidbot
Though I'm not a concert pianist, this post did give me some clarity on my choice:
http://forum.pianoworld.com/ubbthre...o-gp-300-what-to-choose.html#Post2694398


I recall reading that review, it was a great read, his demos were great and the control he showed in soft playing in one of the Chopin preludes I thought were super, it clearly suits him.

Regardless of level, it is only one opinion. l also know of another concert level pianist who hates the Clavinova actions and claims they are totally unrealistic with the initial excessive touch weight, ( no I am not talking Mr Praskins reviews ) but he doesn't post here, he says Kawai is the only way to go pretty much in the non hybrid actions and the Casio GP series, and then one has to ask what acoustic piano is one comparing to, there is a lot of variation.

What we do know in terms of measurement, the static touch weight on yamahas CLP series is known to be to far higher compared to acoustics, and I would say also, with my limited skill and all that, the escapement simulation is very weak too, kawai GF 2 is more realistic in the amount of resistance offered at the ( simulated) escapement point. Also, you can trigger a note from just at the escapement point pressing a key, something the 5 series fail to do, I don't know if they addressed that with the 6 series, GF 1 also failed in that test mind you but improved with GF 2.

In the end does it matter, if one likes the actions that's all that matters. I recall before I tried any acoustics in earnest I much preferred the CLP 5 NWX actions over the Kawai GF2 coming form my Casio, I never tried the the new grand touch yet. The high static touch weight didn't bother me much, and it just felt nice to play, more precise to me than GF 2, but over time trying more acoustics across the board I realised that, on average, for me, Kawai GF 2 is closer to the real thing, and I could adapt over time to liking it with just 4 to 5 sessions on a shop model .

Last edited by Alexander Borro; 01/19/18 09:14 PM.

Selftaught since June 2014.
Books: Barratt classic piano course bk 1,2,3. Humphries Piano handbook, various...
Kawai CA78, Casio AP450 & software pianos.
[Linked Image] 12x ABF recitals.
My struggles: https://soundcloud.com/alexander-borro
Re: Kawai CA98 : "boxy" sound or not ? [Re: Chrispy] #2706614
01/19/18 09:30 PM
01/19/18 09:30 PM
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Originally Posted by squidbot

It's hard to imagine the difference in weight (a few grams) will impact my arm/hand/finger health any more than the fact that I pluck at a computer keyboard 8+ hours a day for my job. But that's just speculation, I'm not a kinesiologist.


Initial down weight can vary a lot, from 45 to 65 gr on middle C is a realistic range encountered. As a guide, anything below 50 would be considered very light, Horowitz Steinway was in the low 40s, pretty extreme. Getting into the higher sixties according to some teachers is dangerous, but the friction and inertia play a bigger role I suspect, and this can vary a lot from one instrument to the next too in acoustics. The highest level concert pianos are constantly striving to reduce friction as much as possible I've often been told, that makes sense to me when there is already so much mass to move around in 9 ft grands.
.


Selftaught since June 2014.
Books: Barratt classic piano course bk 1,2,3. Humphries Piano handbook, various...
Kawai CA78, Casio AP450 & software pianos.
[Linked Image] 12x ABF recitals.
My struggles: https://soundcloud.com/alexander-borro
Re: Kawai CA98 : "boxy" sound or not ? [Re: Alexander Borro] #2707354
01/22/18 08:58 AM
01/22/18 08:58 AM
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Originally Posted by Alexander Borro


What I wanted to point out is that very often there's this myth how heavier actions are always better and more realistic. I don't think it's the case. There are real grands with very light and lively actions too.

I often wonder where the evidence is that a heavier action makes one a better player in the long run, to a point at least, as long as the action is heavy enough within reason , even if in a moment it may seem playing a lighter action seems easier afterwards. I have never seen a compelling argument as to the benefit in the long run, as long as one is using the right technique. You could have a lighter action and play an exercise at a higher tempo versus a heavy piano at a lower tempo. Which one is a better workout to strengthen the player in the long run ? I don't know, I am open to answers, but I strongly question the heavy argument.

Piano is hard enough as it is, why subject one self to such extra hindrance at the expense of playing well on a piano one likes, unless you are of concert calibre and need that to cope with anything. Most of us here are not, and even then I've heard plenty to support the opposite from players at concert level, so clearly opinions vary.

In all sports I have taken part in like cycling at quite a serious level during my youth, and I've been given plenty coaching, I have always been told faster repetitions with less resistance is better, less likely to lead to knee/tendon problems in the long run. Pushing heavy gears is bad for the tendons and knees in the long run, indeed I fell foul of that in my youth and had knee problems for a while. Switching to a higher repetition scheme with lower gears and less resistance sorted that out. I would draw the analogy, though an exaggeration, piano players are not aiming to be body builders, they need to be agile, fast and flexible, it is not like heavy weight lifting and strength building. I've always been on the fence about the theory that playing the most heavy unforgiving action as a good thing, especially for people getting older who are not aiming to be at concert level, I rather stay injury free.

As Cybergene said, there are plenty lower inertia actions available for hobbyist that want an acoustic who are never going to be playing 9 ft grand anyway with heavy actions , so why bother preparing for that.

Some interesting points, thank you.

If you're a pianist who generally plays only his/her piano, then it makes perfect sense to go for the action you like best - be that light, heavy, or somewhere in-between.

However, the point being made by a few posters here is that if you're someone who plays/performs regularly on different pianos (as I do - and I'm not a concert pianist), then a heavier/less forgiving action has certain advantages.

If you practise on an instrument with a heavier action, it's relatively easy to adjust to a lighter action. Going from a lighter action to a heavier one (be that a 9ft grand, or an upright with a heavy action) is much harder though - particularly for trills, fast passage work, and very quiet sections.

That's the reason I chose a piano with a heavier action, and so far it is working really well. I'm finding I need to be much more precise with my technique to make the right sounds, and that really helps when I move to a piano with a lighter/more forgiving action.

Whether practising on a heavier action makes one a better player in the long term, I'm not sure (I suspect it probably helps in some ways, hinders in others), but I do think it makes the transition to other pianos easier - which is a significant benefit for some pianists.

Your point about injuries is also a good one - it's easy to over-do things and end up with problems, and it makes sense that more care is needed on a heavier action where you're working that bit harder.

Incidentally, I'm not sure that faster/less resistance is always necessarily better - surely it depends on the sport? For example in swimming, high resistance training is very effective at increasing performance:
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/2373582

Re: Kawai CA98 : "boxy" sound or not ? [Re: olivier du nord] #2707392
01/22/18 10:51 AM
01/22/18 10:51 AM
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I looked in a german forum (https://www.kawai.de/forum)
Some people are very happy with the EQ update of the CA98 :
Quote

Juhuuuu !! Vielen Dank. Wau das Update ist grossartig. Hรคtte mir nicht gedacht, dass SO ein Unterschied noch mรถglich ist. Der Klang ist jetzt noch authentischer!!!!!! Super gemacht Kawai. Danke Danke Danke!

which means, thanks to Google Translation :
Quote

Juhuuuu !! Many Thanks. Wow the update is great. I did not think that such a difference is still possible. The sound is even more authentic !!!!!! Great made Kawai. Thank you thank you thank you!

Does anyone here confirm it make such an amazing difference with speaker rendering ?


Yamaha YUS1 Transacoustic TA2
Re: Kawai CA98 : "boxy" sound or not ? [Re: olivier du nord] #2707417
01/22/18 12:11 PM
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It's interesting to see repeated here how concert/9ft grand actions are somewhat expected to be heavy and firm. I've found pretty much the opposite in my (limited) experience--the larger and more maintained grands tend to have the most delicate, smooth, and light actions I've tried.

I've only played on a 9ft for a few minutes (a Bose 280VC) and it had an amazingly balanced and not-at-all-heavy action. It felt very much like the action on the 214cm Bosendorfer grand I frequently get to play, and also like a Shigeru Kawai SK-6 that I tried a couple of times (which I believe is also 214cm). It's kind of become my expectation that a larger, well-kept grand would feel more or less like all of these three.

On the other side, I do get to play a lot of smaller grands. And the Yamaha C3Xs, Kawai GL-10s and GX-1s whether brand new in showroom or well-used and well-upkept, seem to have a tighter, higher-weight (friction?) action across the board, when compared to the large grands.

I don't have much of a sample size to draw my conclusions, but my own experience is at odds with what a lot of people are saying here, so I wonder if it's just an anomaly, or more of a case of people comparing familiar *digital* actions to that of acoustics?


Yamaha P-85, P-105, CP50, Kawai MP11 || Kawai NV-10
Re: Kawai CA98 : "boxy" sound or not ? [Re: olivier du nord] #2707485
01/22/18 02:59 PM
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Originally Posted by olivier du nord

Does anyone here confirm it make such an amazing difference with speaker rendering ?


I didn't experienced much difference after the EQ Update.


Current: Yamaha NU1X | Roland FP-30 with Garritan CFX Lite & Pianoteq 6
Past: Yamaha: P-115, YDP-163, CLP-545, CLP-685 | Kawai: CA-98, Novus NV10
Re: Kawai CA98 : "boxy" sound or not ? [Re: olivier du nord] #2707529
01/22/18 05:38 PM
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Originally Posted by Tyr
Originally Posted by olivier du nord

Does anyone here confirm it make such an amazing difference with speaker rendering ?

I didn't experienced much difference after the EQ Update.


I agree with that. I would say this EQ update is just an optimization of the speaker output. The impact of the EQ update was much less noticeable than making small changes to the sound settings. But this update may indeed have changed frequency responses that were noticeable to some users.

Originally Posted by olivier du nord

My question is more about : why is this intrument sounding so much different with speaker than with headphone ? If they want to make a blurry sound, why only with speakers ? So for me, it looks like it is not deliberate but a speaker limitation. This shop will have a CA 98 soon, I will try it again, so with different room configuration ...


Back to Oliver's original question about the "boxy" sound. First, most digital instruments and hi-fi/audio systems will sound quite differently when the sound is reproduced via speakers or headphones. In my case I find the CA98 to be more pleasing to play through the speakers than through headphones. This is a first for me since I had always the opposite experience in all my previous DPs when playing acoustic piano sounds through speakers. I still have my old Casio PX-560 sitting close to the CA98. The sound from the speakers of the 560 (or from the monitors speakers I have it also connected to) do produce a "wider" and "stereo" image of the acoustic piano sounds. But the issue is that this "wide" and "stereo" piano sound is not what I hear when I play on a real acoustic grand or upright. The type of sound reproduction I get from the speakers of the CA98 is closer to that. So, maybe you are expecting the CA98 to sound with a different type of imaging. If you have the chance to test the CA98 again, then please try its pads, e-pianos and clavs on "sound mode". This will likely demonstrate you that the speakers are not "blurry" and "boxy". And you will likely have to adjust the settings of the acoustic piano sound to match your expectations. Also note that the position of the DP (especially the distance of the back to to the wall) has a significant impact on the sound coming from the soundboard. But, I would say that the speaker setup of the CA98 will not be a concern.

Re: Kawai CA98 : "boxy" sound or not ? [Re: arc7urus] #2707725
01/23/18 11:39 AM
01/23/18 11:39 AM
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In fact, I've not tried other sounds but I wish I would have, it is too late (I'm still waiting this instrument comes in my town to test it again ...)
I understand what you say about the fact that a DP should be calibrated to give you the impression you are in front of a piano : you don't have a wide and spatialized sound and that is normal : this wide sound is what people should hear when they are away from the piano, for instance while listening to you.
I agree with that and that is not the impression a had in the shop : I really had the impression of a sound coming through a small speaker in a closed box.
As I said, the CA98 was sticked to a wall, didn't have any patch installed, and there was an annoying sound of climatisation : so I'm very disapointed by this parisian shop which don't make any justice to the instruments they are selling...

that is why I really need to make another test to this instrument


Yamaha YUS1 Transacoustic TA2
Re: Kawai CA98 : "boxy" sound or not ? [Re: olivier du nord] #2707739
01/23/18 12:34 PM
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cocoherz  Offline
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Do you know when the Ca 98 is coming in your town?

Re: Kawai CA98 : "boxy" sound or not ? [Re: cocoherz] #2707748
01/23/18 01:00 PM
01/23/18 01:00 PM
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olivier du nord Offline OP
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olivier du nord  Offline OP
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I don't know.
The salesman told me there was a change in the distribution of Kawai in France (previously made by Hohner, but not any more) which can explain the slowness of the distribution today.
the situation should become normal in a few months I hope.


Yamaha YUS1 Transacoustic TA2
Re: Kawai CA98 : "boxy" sound or not ? [Re: olivier du nord] #2707754
01/23/18 01:20 PM
01/23/18 01:20 PM
Joined: Dec 2017
Posts: 58
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cocoherz Offline
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yes, I have heard of it too, since January of this year there is a new Kawai France SAS, which belongs to Kawai europe GmbH. But "in a few month"???? WTF! I orderd one a few weeks ago (in December ) and the seller told me that in January i will get it.

Re: Kawai CA98 : "boxy" sound or not ? [Re: cocoherz] #2707768
01/23/18 01:36 PM
01/23/18 01:36 PM
Joined: Jan 2018
Posts: 47
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olivier du nord Offline OP
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olivier du nord  Offline OP
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"a few months" : in fact I don't know anything about it ... I said that at random ...
I hope you will get your instrument in January !

Where are you living ?


Yamaha YUS1 Transacoustic TA2
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