REVIEW SNAPSHOT®

by PowerReviews
NikonAF-S NIKKOR 300mm f/4D IF-ED Lens
 
4.7

(based on 214 reviews)

Ratings Distribution

  • 5 Stars

     

    (161)

  • 4 Stars

     

    (47)

  • 3 Stars

     

    (3)

  • 2 Stars

     

    (3)

  • 1 Stars

     

    (0)

99%

of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

Pros

  • Fast / accurate auto-focus (164)
  • Strong construction (136)
  • Consistent output (126)
  • Durable (112)
  • Rugged (96)

Cons

  • Heavy (42)
  • Poor in low light (19)
  • Slow focus (10)
  • No VR (6)
  • Difficult to clean (4)

Best Uses

  • Wildlife photos (154)
  • Sports/action (109)
  • Landscape/scenery (61)
  • Macro photography (33)
  • Wildlife (25)
    • Reviewer Profile:
    • Photo enthusiast (102), Semi-pro photographer (51), Pro photographer (20), Enthusiast (19), Casual photographer (7)
    • Was this a gift?:
    • No (158), Yes (7)

Most Liked Positive Review

 

Game Changer

I have been a nature photographer for over 10 years (since around age 11), and I have always had the desire to shoot wildlife. Before owning this lens, I settled for budget...Read complete review

I have been a nature photographer for over 10 years (since around age 11), and I have always had the desire to shoot wildlife. Before owning this lens, I settled for budget pieces of glass like the 70-300 f/4-5.6 VR, but I was never satisfied with the results. After buying this lens and shooting birds with it, I can say with confidence that if you are shooting on a DX body, this is as close as you can possibly get to the 500mm f/4 without spending $. The lens has fast and accurate AF (although it hunts occasionally), it's spooky sharp, and it's light enough to hand hold if there is enough light. The absolute biggest downside is the tripod collar, which is pretty much useless. It is worth it to buy the replacement collar made by Kirk, as it makes for much sharper images when shooting on a tripod. If you are like me, and you want to make crisp wildlife images without spending the price of a good used car, buy this lens. Check out some images that I have shot with this lens below to see for yourself!

VS

Most Liked Negative Review

 

Sharp images, but Autofocus is too slow

Once it focuses, this lens produces a nice, sharp image. However, if you plan on using this lens to follow wildlife or athletes, you may have more success using manual focus than...Read complete review

Once it focuses, this lens produces a nice, sharp image. However, if you plan on using this lens to follow wildlife or athletes, you may have more success using manual focus than relying on the auto. The autofocus system in this lens relegates the use of this lens to taking shots of my 7 year old's football games or my 4 year old playing in the back yard. For stationary or relatively easy subjects to track, this lens is excellent. For quick tracking, you will need a faster autofocus.

Reviewed by 214 customers

Displaying reviews 1-20

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5.0

Excellent Build and Sharpness

By K

from Tennessee

About Me Semi-pro Photographer

Verified Buyer

Pros

  • Durable
  • Fast / accurate auto-focus
  • Nice Bokeh
  • Rugged
  • Strong Construction

Cons

    Best Uses

    • Landscape/Scenery
    • Macro Photography
    • Night Photography
    • Sports/Action
    • Weddings/Events
    • Wildlife Photos

    Comments about Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 300mm f/4D IF-ED Lens:

    Build quality is superb. This is a heavy lens but can be hand-held by gripping the tripod mount in hand. Flare and ghosting can be an issue if shooting directly into say, headlights or spotlights, but this issue may have more to do with the 300mm telephoto length rather than the design of this particular lens.

    • Was this a gift?:
    • No

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    (4 of 4 customers found this review helpful)

     
    5.0

    In the Middle of the Pack

    By Photor

    from Presto, PA

    About Me Semi-pro Photographer

    Verified Buyer

    Pros

    • Consistent Output
    • Rugged
    • Strong Construction

    Cons

    • Heavy

    Best Uses

    • Landscape/Scenery
    • Wildlife Photos

    Comments about Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 300mm f/4D IF-ED Lens:

    After purchasing a 1.7x teleconverter for my Nikkor 80-200mm 1:2.8D I was disappointed to find that the new teleconverters do not work with the older lenses. What to do? Sell the old lens? I can never sell them for what they fetch!! SO I decided to buy the new 300mm and I was not disappointed. This is probably the highest focal range Nikkor you can by before getting into the stratospheric prices of the big lenses and I have thoroughly enjoyed it and its performance. Its tack sharp, even with the teleconverter. Focus with wildlife has not been great but also not bad and the picture quality has been excellent. Next time I need to do a little more research before buying equipment but at least, this time, Im enjoying my mistake.

    • Was this a gift?:
    • No

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    (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

     
    5.0

    EXCELENTE ..UN LENTE PARA ENTENDIDOS

    By HORACIO JOSE PATRONE

    from ARGENTINA

    About Me Pro Photographer

    Verified Reviewer

    Pros

    • Consistent Output
    • Durable
    • Easily Interchangeable
    • Fast / accurate auto-focus
    • Lightweight
    • Nice Bokeh
    • Rugged
    • Strong Construction

    Cons

      Best Uses

      • Landscape/Scenery
      • Macro Photography
      • Sports/Action
      • Wildlife Photos

      Comments about Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 300mm f/4D IF-ED Lens:

      - 40 AÑOS EN LA PROFESION DE FOTOGRAFIA SOCIALES Y SIEMPRE USANDO NIKON., ESTOS ULTIMOS 3 AÑOS DEDICADO A FOTOGRAFIA NATURALEZA..USABA EL ZOOM 70 300 VR Y ESTE FUE UN CAMBIO MARAVILLOSO.!SI QUIERES DEFINICION CORTANTE Y AGUDA ESTE ES EL LENTE..SUPERA EN 300 MM A CUALQUIER ZOOM. INCLUIDO AL 80 400 MM VR Y AL NUEVO 200 500 MM ., SORPRENDE QUE CON EL CONVERSOR TC -14E II NO PIERDES CALIDAD ..SON VIDRIOS DE SUPER CALIDAD Y LOGRAS UN 420 MM QUE EN DX ES 630MM QUE MAS.? QUE NO TIENE VR.¿? QUE IMPORTA SI HOY SE MANEJAN ISO ALTOS Y CON BUENA CALIDAD DE RUIDO.- EL SOPORTE ANILLO PARA TRIODE NO ME PARECE PARA NADA QUE SEA DEBIL..SUPER RECOMENDABLE.

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      5.0

      Awesome period

      By Troy

      from Peoria Illinois

      Comments about Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 300mm f/4D IF-ED Lens:

      I received this lens from B&H and the very next morning I got message from B&H saying the new version with vr was up for preorder. I almost sent it back but decided not to. So glad I didn't this Lens is so sharp it focuses fairly fast and it's color rendition is so nice. The price has come down to where if there is no doubt if I didn't have one I'd be grabbing one up

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      (0 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

       
      5.0

      Very Impressed

      By Hawkeye

      from New Jersey

      About Me Pro Photographer

      Pros

      • Fast / accurate auto-focus
      • Nice Bokeh

      Cons

        Best Uses

        • Landscape/Scenery
        • Wildlife Photos

        Comments about Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 300mm f/4D IF-ED Lens:

        Use for wildlife photography - able to handhold - not difficult - optics surprisingly good - worth the money!

        • Was this a gift?:
        • No

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        (6 of 6 customers found this review helpful)

         
        5.0

        No frills, but great glass

        By Waz

        from California, Maryland

        About Me Photo Enthusiast

        Verified Reviewer

        Pros

        • Durable
        • Rugged

        Cons

          Best Uses

          • Wildlife Photos

          Comments about Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 300mm f/4D IF-ED Lens:

          I've now used this lens for over 12 months so feel I can now make reasonable comments on its performance. Prior to deciding to purchase this lens I did my research and was initially after a 300mm lens with VR. However, my budget couldn't stretch to that so with some minor reservations I opted to by this lens that clearly has no VR.
          I use this lens exclusively for shooting wild life, specifically birds and usually BIF, and I should say that I pair it up with a Nikon 1.4 teleconverter, which gives me a FL of 420mm.
          Overall, this has proved to be a great lens, it can produce some very sharp images, though due to the lack of VR, you have to ensure a fast shutter speed to prevent any blur. I've found that for BIF shooting at 1000th sec, though usually 1250th sec works out best. I've tried shooting on a tripod and also Hand held, and HH gives just as good results as the tripod. This is a large piece of glass, though IMO it's not too heavy to HH for long periods of time. As far as focusing goes, well mixed results. I've tried all the different auto focusing modes that my camera has to offer (D750 + D7100), (which are way to many!) and have found that for BIF it can be a tad slow at times,though other times it will be super fast. I will leave it in AF and accept that I will loose some shots, though when it does focus it is super sharp.
          So, in summary, a great lens that gives you great results for a fraction of the cost of some other glass. Just because this may not be the latest piece of gear you shouldn't overlook it.

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          • No

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          (1 of 5 customers found this review helpful)

           
          5.0

          This lens delivers

          By Leucadia Bob

          from Encinitas, CA

          About Me Semi-pro Photographer

          Verified Buyer

          Pros

          • Consistent Output
          • Durable
          • Easily Interchangeable
          • Fast / accurate auto-focus
          • Rugged

          Cons

          • Heavy

          Best Uses

          • Indoors/Low Light
          • Night Photography

          Comments about Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 300mm f/4D IF-ED Lens:

          I have been using the old DX 70-300 for years, and then when a Full Frame fixed 300mm lens was available, I just had to try it out. I had a suspicion that the FX format would render much clearer results, and sure enough this was the case. I mainly shoot concerts, but I have also been dabbling a bit with nature and this lens is definitely a welcome addition to my arsenal.

          • Was this a gift?:
          • No

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          4.0

          Great lens, reasonable price

          By Wally

          from New Jersey

          About Me Photo Enthusiast

          Verified Buyer

          Pros

          • Durable
          • Fast / accurate auto-focus
          • Rugged

          Cons

          • Heavy

          Best Uses

          • Wildlife Photos

          Comments about Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 300mm f/4D IF-ED Lens:

          product use: nature photography. Good speed for focal length. Very handhold-able but need to use use with tripod in low light, no VR, like the old days. Fine lens.

          • Was this a gift?:
          • No

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          (9 of 9 customers found this review helpful)

           
          5.0

          Great lens

          By WaltB

          from Santiago de Chile, Chile

          About Me Pro Photographer

          Verified Buyer

          Pros

          • Consistent Output
          • Easily Interchangeable
          • Fast / accurate auto-focus
          • Lightweight
          • Nice Bokeh
          • Rugged
          • Strong Construction

          Cons

            Best Uses

            • Video
            • Wildlife Photos

            Comments about Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 300mm f/4D IF-ED Lens:

            I was looking for a medium lens to complete the range for bird photography.
            Reading many technical reviews about the new Nikon AF-S 300 mm f/4E PF ED VR I was very disillusioned, besides for the price, twice than Nikon AF-S 300 mm f/4D IF-ED. Even though the old one has no VR I consider that's no essential for bird hand held photography.

            • Was this a gift?:
            • No

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            (8 of 8 customers found this review helpful)

             
            5.0

            Amazing

            By Eagle Photographer

            from Wisconsin Rapids WI.

            About Me Semi-pro Photographer

            Verified Reviewer

            Pros

            • Fast / accurate auto-focus

            Cons

              Best Uses

              • Wildlife Photos

              Comments about Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 300mm f/4D IF-ED Lens:

              Purchased this lens from B&H a few months ago so I have had time to put this lens through a work out. My first real glass lens and it shows with its fast response. The fact that it is not VR is not a problem for me. I use it on a D7000 and just love it.

              • Was this a gift?:
              • No

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              (3 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

               
              5.0

              Awesome Lens

              By WV Video guy

              from WV

              About Me Pro Photographer

              Verified Buyer

              Pros

              • Consistent Output
              • Durable
              • Easily Interchangeable
              • Nice Bokeh

              Cons

                Best Uses

                • Landscape/Scenery
                • Macro Photography
                • Sports/Action
                • Video
                • Wildlife Photos

                Comments about Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 300mm f/4D IF-ED Lens:

                I have the Nikon D810 specifically for use in video production. DSLR is new to me having come from a long line of Sony broadcast cameras. I am in awe of the color and texture, as well as the clarity. The 300mm lens was an addition to my video production package. Well worth the investment. Sharp reproduction and very cinematic look.

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                • No

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                (11 of 11 customers found this review helpful)

                 
                5.0

                Advanced at Retired & I love Photography

                By Bob

                from Goshen Indiana

                About Me Photo Enthusiast

                Verified Reviewer

                Pros

                • Consistent Output
                • Rugged
                • Strong Construction

                Cons

                • Tough To Attach

                Best Uses

                • Sports/Action
                • Wildlife Photos

                Comments about Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 300mm f/4D IF-ED Lens:

                This is my first prime telephoto lens. The difference between this lens and my older zoom lenses is really obvious. I am not well versed in all of the technical aspects of lenses, but I can tell you that the difference in sharpness and clarity is well worth every penny. A year ago I was able to purchase prime lenses in 50mm f1.4 105mm macro and 300mm. I have not had a zoom lens on my D7100 since these lenses arrived. I have used the lens for some really spectacular (by my standards) wildlife photos. I am very, very pleased.
                Bob H

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                • No

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                (3 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

                 
                5.0

                Better than expected

                By Surfotter

                from Trinidad, California

                About Me Semi-pro Photographer

                Verified Buyer

                Pros

                • Consistent Output
                • Durable
                • Easily Interchangeable
                • Rugged

                Cons

                • Heavy

                Best Uses

                • Landscape/Scenery
                • Sports/Action
                • Wildlife Photos

                Comments about Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 300mm f/4D IF-ED Lens:

                Research suggested that the 300mm f.4 was very sharp, and that proved to be the case. I also learned that the autofocus was quite slow, but it turned out to be faster than the 80-400 I had been using for telephoto applications. It would be nice to have VR, but that's not really necessary with a steady hand or a steadier tripod.

                • Was this a gift?:
                • No

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                (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

                 
                5.0

                Better than expected

                By Donntbrook

                from Northwest US

                About Me Semi-pro Photographer

                Verified Buyer

                Pros

                • Durable
                • Fast / accurate auto-focus
                • Nice Bokeh
                • Rugged

                Cons

                  Best Uses

                  • Sports/Action
                  • Wildlife Photos

                  Comments about Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 300mm f/4D IF-ED Lens:

                  Studied reviews and this lens lives up to its reputation

                  • Was this a gift?:
                  • No

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                  (16 of 19 customers found this review helpful)

                   
                  5.0

                  Seasoned Pro

                  By David-eye

                  from Texas ill Country

                  About Me Photo Enthusiast

                  Verified Buyer

                  Pros

                  • Stellar Iq

                  Cons

                  • Heavy

                  Best Uses

                  • Portraits
                  • Wildlife Photos

                  Comments about Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 300mm f/4D IF-ED Lens:

                  This stellar lens has stood the test of time and even though the design is 15 years old and it has been up-dated (at twice the price), in terms of sheer image quality it remains as a contender. Even considering the formidable size and weight of this beauty, it handles quite nicely on my D600 and D7100 bodies and the built-in hood and the tripod mount are welcome features. I have included a rather mundane image (I know you would rather see a photo of my dog or my grandkids) to illustrate the I.Q., color rendering and the creamy bokeh of the lens mounted on a D7100 body at ISO 100, f4, 1/800, with a real-world crop in the second image. A monopod is a welcome addition for walk-around use.

                  • Was this a gift?:
                  • No

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                  (5 of 5 customers found this review helpful)

                   
                  5.0

                  Excellent for astrophotography

                  By ECC

                  from Chicago IL

                  About Me Photo Enthusiast

                  Verified Buyer

                  Pros

                  • Consistent Output
                  • Durable
                  • Easily Interchangeable

                  Cons

                  • Heavy

                  Best Uses

                    Comments about Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 300mm f/4D IF-ED Lens:

                    I have the Nikon 18-300mm zoom and have been unhappy with shots of the stars taken at 300 mm. Get color fringing and fuzzy stars, especially in the corners.
                    The 300 mm DX lens is great - round stars throughout the whole frame, and no color fringing.
                    The lens is big and heavy but for my use (on telescope mount or tripod) I don't care.
                    I only wish I had bought this a year ago.

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                    • No

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                    (9 of 10 customers found this review helpful)

                     
                    5.0

                    Great product! Great Price!

                    By RR photographer

                    from Davis, CA

                    About Me Photo Enthusiast

                    Verified Buyer

                    Pros

                    • Consistent Output
                    • Durable
                    • Fast / accurate auto-focus
                    • Lightweight
                    • Nice Bokeh
                    • Rugged
                    • Strong Construction

                    Cons

                    • Tough To Attach

                    Best Uses

                    • Landscape/Scenery

                    Comments about Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 300mm f/4D IF-ED Lens:

                    Disclaimer - I've only used this lens three different times in the 2 weeks I have owned it. Having said that......this is a MUST have if you are looking for some reach. Not knowing any better, I originally bought a 2x teleconverter. The images were soft and the teleconverter basically amounted to me paying $ to degrade image quality. I returned it in exchange for this lens and man am I glad I did! When used properly, great images can be had. What I mean by that is the negative reviews all seem to be due to the lack of VR. However it would be a much more expensive lens if it had VR. And honestly, why pay the money for that, as shooting handheld at 1/150th of a second in low light with this lens would just be asking for a crummy image, even with VR, so why complain that it doesn't have VR? The other negative reviews all seem to be on focus time. I shoot trains at speed predominately and this is really an issue with any lens, given the bright headlights on a train tending to make a lens "freak out" trying to focus. Having said that, this one focuses just as well as my 70-200/2.8 and all my other lenses. Autofocus is simply not an issue with this lens at all. Just a great bargain and I have nothing bad to say about it at this point.My ONLY complaint is it is a tad difficult to find the white line on the base of the lens for where to attach and rotate it (other nikon lenses seem to be more conspicuous with their white dot placement). Once you get the hang of it though, even this is not an issue.

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                    • No

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                    (31 of 34 customers found this review helpful)

                     
                    5.0

                    Game Changer

                    By L33_0h

                    from Corvallis, OR

                    About Me Semi-pro Photographer

                    Verified Reviewer

                    Pros

                    • Consistent Output
                    • Durable
                    • Easily Interchangeable
                    • Fast / accurate auto-focus
                    • Lightweight
                    • Nice Bokeh
                    • Rugged
                    • Sharp
                    • Strong Construction

                    Cons

                      Best Uses

                      • Wildlife Photos

                      Comments about Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 300mm f/4D IF-ED Lens:

                      I have been a nature photographer for over 10 years (since around age 11), and I have always had the desire to shoot wildlife. Before owning this lens, I settled for budget pieces of glass like the 70-300 f/4-5.6 VR, but I was never satisfied with the results. After buying this lens and shooting birds with it, I can say with confidence that if you are shooting on a DX body, this is as close as you can possibly get to the 500mm f/4 without spending $. The lens has fast and accurate AF (although it hunts occasionally), it's spooky sharp, and it's light enough to hand hold if there is enough light. The absolute biggest downside is the tripod collar, which is pretty much useless. It is worth it to buy the replacement collar made by Kirk, as it makes for much sharper images when shooting on a tripod. If you are like me, and you want to make crisp wildlife images without spending the price of a good used car, buy this lens. Check out some images that I have shot with this lens below to see for yourself!

                      • Was this a gift?:
                      • No

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                      (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

                       
                      4.0

                      Best of the Nikkor 300's I have used.

                      By NikonHaole

                      from San Diego, Ca.

                      About Me Photo Enthusiast

                      Verified Buyer

                      Pros

                      • Close Focus
                      • Close focusing
                      • Consistent Output
                      • Durable
                      • Easily Interchangeable
                      • Fast / accurate auto-focus
                      • Nice Bokeh
                      • Sharp and contrasty
                      • Strong Construction

                      Cons

                      • Maybe The Lac Of Vr

                      Best Uses

                      • Sports/Action
                      • Wildlife Photos

                      Comments about Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 300mm f/4D IF-ED Lens:

                      The AF-S Nikkor's impressive image quality, accurate, quick auto focus and professional build make an excellent photographic tool. Performance at closest focus is very high and the lens can be successfully used for portraits, although I use it primarily for sports. With the Nikkor TC-1.4E converter attached, auto focus speed and IQ remain high enough that the AF-S is useable for wild life at moderate distances.

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                      • No

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                      (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

                       
                      5.0

                      Excellent results AF-S Nikkor 300mm

                      By Tim in Colorado

                      from Denver, CO

                      About Me Photo Enthusiast

                      Verified Buyer

                      Pros

                      • Consistent Output
                      • Durable
                      • Easily Interchangeable
                      • Fast / accurate auto-focus
                      • Rugged
                      • Sharp pictures

                      Cons

                      • Heavy
                      • No VR

                      Best Uses

                      • Landscape/Scenery
                      • Wildlife Photos

                      Comments about Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 300mm f/4D IF-ED Lens:

                      I had been looking for a lens that would provide sharper pictures, especially in low light, than my current lens, the Nikkor 80-400mm zoom. The Nikkor 300 mm F/4D IF-ED lens that I recently purchased has provided the opportunity for me to take very sharp pictures, even in lower light. I do have some learning to do with my new lens, but I am quite excited to continue taking photos with the combination of my Nikon 7100 with the 300mm lens. If I could make a wish that it had one more feature, it would be for it to have VR - admittedly if it did have VR the increase in cost would have to be considered.

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                      • No

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