Battle Of The Blenders

February 10, 2014

I’ve had a Vitamix for years – back in 2009 the company sent me one to review. I fell in love from day one and promptly donated my previous Cuisinart blender that always left ice chunks in my smoothies. The Vitamix has yet to disappoint and has mixed everything from salsa to soup. IMG_5940 (427x640) Nothing can puree greens quite like a Vita-mix…right?

IMG_5945 (640x427)

Recently Ninja emailed me to see if I’d like to try out the Ninja Ultima. I started to say no, that I was happy with my Vitamix, until I realized this blog platform would be a good place to battle the blenders. What if the Ninja was better? I was curious to see for myself, so I said yes. Foodblog-3858 The Ninja and the Vitamix feel very similar to me. They both feel like big high-power blenders with sturdy bases and high-volume capacity. I think the new Vitamixes fit under counters much better, but the Ninja is a lot lower than my older Vitamix. It just barely makes it under the cabinets with the lid closed. Foodblog-3859 The biggest difference off the bat is that the Ninja comes with a long stick of blades that climb up the center whereas the Vita-mix has just the standard bottom blades and a plunger (aka the tamper) that you can use to stir what you’re blending. The stick of blades is removable in the Ninja for when you want to puree. I love the versatility. Both have variable speeds (on my models) and both have nice lids. The Ninja lid has several extra layers of lock protection and a release button, which did make me feel pretty safe. Foodblog-3860 As for blending, the Ninja was impressive. It was definitely better than my old Cuisinart from college. And I think it really stood up to the Vitamix. It had no trouble pureeing this Romesco sauce for a Cook Smarts meal, including the raw almonds inside. It was quite loud and might be the loudest of all. Foodblog-3862 If I had to give a leg up on the ability to puree, I would give a slight edge to the Vitamix. I felt there were still a few tiny flecks of food in my Ninja blend. But the Ninja is only a negligible distance behind. With the price difference between the two – really the Ninja wins. The Vitamix is over $500 (unless you find it on sale) and the Ninja Ultima is $259 – but you can get it for $200 with a Bed, Bath and Beyond 20% off coupon. There is one HUUUUGE perk to the Ninja – it comes with single serve cups and blade. This bonus has won over my vote. Foodblog-3762 The Ultima comes with 3 single serve cups and a single serve blade. Foodblog-3764 Snap on the blade, blend… Foodblog-3760 And then add a to-go lid and you have a Magic Bullet and blender in one. Foodblog-3765 I can’t tell you how many times I have made smoothies for Mazen and me since we got the Ninja because all of the parts are small and dishwasher safe. If your objection to smoothies is washing the blender, this is your answer. With 3 to-go cups, we always have a clean one ready to go. The blend power isn’t quite as strong as the regular blender, but it’s pretty darn good! I love this option! Foodblog-3759

In conclusion

The Vita-mix is still royalty. But the Ninja won the crown for versatility and price. IMG_4782 (640x427)

Giveaway!

Here’s your chance to do your own battle of the blenders. Win a Ninja Ultima! image Giveaway runs for 7 days. USA only please.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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{ 71 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Lauren Paradis February 10, 2014 at 8:21 am

Thanks for the giveaway! Great review on both of them!

Just the fact that you are using a blender is great! :-D

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2 Elise @ Expeditions of Elise February 10, 2014 at 8:27 am

I love the Ninja! I bought one for my boyfriend last year as a birthday gift, but it didn’t come with the single-serve cup. This Christmas my parents upgraded their blender to a Ninja that came with the single-serve blade, and it’s such a huge difference! It’s so nice to not have to clean the entire blender when you just want to make one smoothie.

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3 Stephanie @ Whole Health Dork February 10, 2014 at 8:35 am

Thanks for posting a comparison (and for hosting a giveaway)! Great to know the differences!

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4 Liz @ Tip Top Shape February 10, 2014 at 8:44 am

I’ve seen a lot of infomercials for the Ninja and was curious how it held up to all the hype. Thanks for the review!!

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5 Andrea February 10, 2014 at 8:51 am

Wondering if you have seen this tip? It might bring some versatility back to the vita mix :-)

http://www.apartmenttherapy.com/use-a-mason-jar-as-a-mini-blen-114977

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6 KathEats February 10, 2014 at 9:35 am

Very cool! Where does one buy the single blades? Anywhere blenders are sold?

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7 Andrea Johnson February 10, 2014 at 4:06 pm

I think on most blenders you can just use the blades it came with…they’re designed to be the same size as a mason/ball jar. Not sure about vitamixes.

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8 KathEats February 10, 2014 at 4:27 pm

But they don’t come out. … Or do they?

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9 Stacy M February 10, 2014 at 9:26 pm

The blade doesn’t detach from a Vitamix blender container so a mason jar wouldn’t work. Also, I think a Vitamix is too powerful for a glass container and would probably shatter into a million pieces. I wouldn’t recommend trying it even if you could figure out a way to get a blending mechanism that would work with the Vitamix.

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10 Christine (The Raw Project) February 10, 2014 at 9:17 am

Great review, very interesting on the Ninja. I’m still a Vitamix girl too, but a promising contender.

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11 Jenna February 10, 2014 at 9:27 am

Kath, it’s like you read my mind! I am getting married in April and we registered for a Vitamix, but I think that folks may be turned off by the price tag. I was just wondering if there was a comparable blender out there and even thought specifically about the Ninja. I love the single serve guys – so perfect and easy to clean! Thanks for the review!

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12 Allison February 10, 2014 at 9:38 am

I love my ninja! Best thing in my kitchen!!!

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13 Katie February 10, 2014 at 9:54 am

I’m glad you hopped on the ninja wagon! While it is loud, I think they’ve created a really wonderful product!

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14 Ashley @ Hudson on the Potomac February 10, 2014 at 10:07 am

Oh my gosh, I need a new blender so badly!! I have my mom’s old Smoothie King and it always leaves chunks of peaches in my morning blend– even after I cut them up!! Also dishwasher safe is a life changer!

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15 Ali February 10, 2014 at 10:21 am

FYI, you do not need to pay $500+ for a Vitamix. There are lower models that work just as well. I bought mine not on sale for less than $400.

Also, if someone is just looking for the personal blender but doesn’t want to pay for a magic bullet, this one is a good one: http://www.walmart.com/ip/GE-17-Piece-Single-Serve-Rocket-Blender/17780929. It works fantastic and I’ve had mine for 3 years (use it daily along with my Vitamix).

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16 Catherine February 10, 2014 at 11:22 am

I love my Ninja! The single serve cup/blade is so convenient, as well as the blade for mixing dough. I don’t have a hand mixer so when I’m baking, I just put the dough in my Ninja, set it to the “dough” setting, and let it do the work! There was a part of me that wanted the Vitamix, but the price was way too high. I got the Ninja instead and I have never regretted it.

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17 nancy February 10, 2014 at 1:38 pm

Perfect timing for this post! We have been trying to decide between a Vitamix and a Ninja. The Vitamix seems to be the gold standard but I was choking on the price. I’m going to have to stick to a liquid/pureed diet for a period of weeks and we wanted to invest in a good blender but I was really hesitant to invest as much as a Vitamix would require. I had suggested the Ninja as an alternative but my husband was afraid it would not do what we need it to do. Based on your review it sounds like the Ninja will be perfect. My kids will love the single serving cups and the ease in clean up is making me happy. Thank you!!! :)

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18 Leslie February 10, 2014 at 1:54 pm

I hope to win one, but even if I don’t, I think you sold me on buying one when our magic bullet dies. We need to replace our 25 year old blender and it sounds like this would replace both. Does it have the heat/freeze option?

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19 Joanne February 10, 2014 at 2:14 pm

I’m SO glad you did this review! I’ve been going back and forth between the two blenders for over
6 months.

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20 mary @ minutes per mile February 10, 2014 at 2:23 pm

I actually used to have a Ninja (not sure what model, I think one or two down from what you tried), which I bought for myself because I couldn’t afford a Vitamix at the time. When I got married, we put a Vitamix on the registry and were happy to upgrade :). I was surprised, though — like you seem to be too — how comparable the two were! If buying for myself, I think I would stick with Ninja because it’s just so darn affordable for being a tiny less awesome than Vitamix.

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21 Katherine February 10, 2014 at 2:56 pm
22 Tasha February 10, 2014 at 4:18 pm

Tried the ninja (won one) and when is comes to smoothness it just cannot compete with the vitamix. I ended up giving the ninja away because I couldnt stomach the texture in something that was meant to be smooth (to me it’s like finding gristle in a pulled pork sami). As for cleaning the vitamix container, it is so simple and the fastest breakfast dishes I’ve ever had. Takes more time to put ingredients away. As for not going through the dishwasher, it’s never made me sick and I’ve been practically using it daily for almost 10 yrs so I theorize the recommended way to clean is safe. Just my opinion.

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23 Chelsea @ Designs on Dinner February 10, 2014 at 4:29 pm

I make do with my old blender, but I hate how my smoothies get stuck in the blades. The ninja looks like it would make mincemeat of my ice cubes!

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24 Julianna Foster February 10, 2014 at 5:09 pm

i have a magic bullet but have been oogling the vitamix for years– that’s so cool that this blender is like the vitamix but also a magic bullet!

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25 Marcia@Frugal Healthy Simple February 10, 2014 at 5:31 pm

Interesting results. I like that the ninja comes close to the Vitamix but for less money. I have a Blendtec. Got it for my birthday a few years ago. It was $400. Much like the Vitamix. I LOVE it and my son (only 2 months older than Mazen), LOVES to push the smoothie button!

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26 Laura February 10, 2014 at 5:32 pm

Thank you for a great review! I have the ninja kitchen system but would LOVE the smoothie cup option!!

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27 Katja February 10, 2014 at 5:38 pm

In at least OR and WA Vitamix blenders are sold in Costco for $375. Also, their 7 year warranty (with option to upgrade to 10 years for $50) is pretty tough to beat!

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28 Michelle @ A Healthy Mrs February 10, 2014 at 5:53 pm

Thanks for the info — a great option for those of us who aren’t willing to shell out the big bucks for a Vita-mix!

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29 Jeri February 10, 2014 at 6:14 pm

Kath, I have a question about adding things to smoothies. I just recently found out my doctors have me on 3 narcotics for arthritis. I read that ginger and turmeric are good natural items for anti-inflamation. Have you ever used either in a smoothie before?

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30 KathEats February 10, 2014 at 6:20 pm

I haven’t but ginger would probably be great especially in a tropical smoothie!

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31 Ali February 10, 2014 at 8:13 pm

Fresh ginger is GREAT in smoothies but be sure you have a high powered smoothie (I have a Vitamix and it grinds ginger well). Also, be careful to not add too much or the flavor will be very sharp. I make a lot of kale, ginger, and lemon smoothies (with banana and/or apple for sweetness), so good!

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32 Sheena February 10, 2014 at 10:25 pm

If I may link, here’s a drink recipe that uses turmeric: http://www.choosingraw.com/turmeric-milk-an-anti-inflammatory-dairy-free-treat/

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33 Kim February 10, 2014 at 6:35 pm

What a wonderful give-away !! I still use the same blender that was a wedding gift (39 ) years ago !!!! The Ninja would be a great !!!

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34 Madison February 10, 2014 at 6:39 pm

Hi Kath! I was just wondering if you had tried making nut butters in the Ninja yet? And if so, how does it compare to making nut butter in the vita-mix or in a food processor? I’ve heard that you can make nut butters in any of them but have never actually known someone to own all three! :D So basically you are a very valuable resource ;) Haha.

My family has been debating for awhile on getting a new blender/processor to make smoothies (as ours seriously cannot handle crushing frozen fruit or ice *whatsoever*) but I’ve also been curious on making nut butters with them as well. Thanks a bunch!

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35 KathEats February 10, 2014 at 8:31 pm

I haven’t tried yet but I haven’t made one in a while so I will soon

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36 Hillary B February 11, 2014 at 11:16 am

I have a Ninja (an older molder) from a few years ago and it can NOT do Coconut butter. I got to the super crumbly stage and then my motor overheated and it stopped working. Luckily the motor seemed fine the next day but it freaked me out and has prevented me from trying it again. It made a homemade Nutella recipe (which is basically hazelnut butter) pretty well, but it wasn’t silky smooth, it had little specks/crunch throughout. I don’t have a Vitamix so I can’t compare, but my ninja doesn’t do perfectly smooth nut butters. Maybe your newer model will!!

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37 Maggie February 10, 2014 at 7:07 pm

Thanks for doing this comparison between the two! Awesome giveaway too!

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38 Mary beth February 10, 2014 at 8:27 pm

What a great review! I have an older, less elite Ninja and love it! Would love an upgrade

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39 Katie @ Talk Less, Say More February 10, 2014 at 8:47 pm

I LOVE my Ninja! So much that I bought my parents one for Christmas. Now my sister is begging… ;)

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40 Laura February 10, 2014 at 9:11 pm

My sister-in-law asked for “a new blender” for Christmas and my father-in-law got her the Ninja. I had never heard of it before, but now that I’ve read this post, I am jealous and wish I had asked for a new blender, too!!! I had no idea it was at all in the same league as a vitamix! This is definitely going on my list for next year. =)

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41 Jessica February 10, 2014 at 9:22 pm

I’ve been DYING for a Vitamix-like blender for ages.. I’d love to win! Thanks for hosting!

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42 Elisabeth February 10, 2014 at 10:18 pm

I love that the Ninja comes with the single serve cups! I have a Vitamix, too, but those cups would be awesome to have.

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43 Kristina @ Blog About Running February 10, 2014 at 11:22 pm

I received the Ninja Ultima for Christmas and LOVE it because of the three single serve cups. I have yet to use the big blender since I only use the Ninja for making smoothies and the single serve cups are so perfect. The one downside is definitely the noise … it is incredibly LOUD. I live in a condo and I am surprised my neighbors haven’t come to complain, haha. But since they haven’t I will continue to make my smoothies. I use frozen fruit and a couple of ice cubes and never end up with any chunks :)

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44 Livi February 11, 2014 at 12:19 am

I have a Ninja {not the Ultima!} and it is pretty awesome!

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45 Kristen ECM February 11, 2014 at 7:56 am

I’d love to win one!

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46 Amanda February 11, 2014 at 10:10 am

So thankful you decided to do this review. I just cannot ever justify the price of a Vitamix. It’s too much dang money. The Ninja, however, is doable! So glad to know this!! Thank you!

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47 Kimberly February 11, 2014 at 12:10 pm

Thank you for the comparision. I love my vitamix but was wondering how the ninja was for my parents.

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48 Andrea February 11, 2014 at 2:18 pm

What kind of smoothie did you make with the single serve cup? It looks yummy!

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49 KathEats February 11, 2014 at 7:57 pm

I forget!

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50 Carey Powell February 11, 2014 at 2:49 pm

I’m wondering how the Ninja is to clean? I hate my current blender because they blade/base doesn’t come apart from the pitcher and over time little bits of crud have managed to get into the grooves and there is no way to clean it out. It grosses me out so much that I refuse to blend anything in it.

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51 KathEats February 11, 2014 at 3:03 pm

It’s pretty easy to clean and just as effective as the vitamix

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52 Kelly February 11, 2014 at 3:01 pm

I don’t have this Ninja blender but I have one with a base that comes with several blender jars. The ONLY problem I have with the ninja is the row of blades it comes with. Unless you are going to put in the dishwasher, they are very dangerous and you have to be soooo careful washing it. Since there are several blades attached to the stick of blades, it so easy to not notice your hand coming close to one blade when trying to wash another. I guess the blend water, soap in the ninja would be the safest way to wash it. Just sayin…

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53 Kelly February 11, 2014 at 3:02 pm

I’m also surprised that they didn’t come out with a blade guard, since they are so sharp. Maybe not feasible with the row of blades.

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54 RJ February 11, 2014 at 4:50 pm

Great review. I’ve been considering a VitaMix for months but haven’t pulled the trigger because of the price. Have wondered if the Ninja would be an acceptable alternative. Thanks for the info!

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55 Nicole February 11, 2014 at 7:49 pm

I’m a BlendTec girl all the way :)

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56 Jennay February 11, 2014 at 8:11 pm

Thanks for the giveaway! Great review. I’ve been trying to decide which one to purchase for awhile now. I def need more healthy smoothies in my future!

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57 esther February 12, 2014 at 9:37 am

I can’t see any new posts, last one is Monday’s. Anyone else having this problem?

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58 KathEats February 12, 2014 at 9:57 am

I changed servers recently so it might be your local provider has not updated. Can you see the blender?

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59 esther February 12, 2014 at 9:32 pm

I see the blender, I can look up new posts in the months on the left side but Monday’s post is still on top when I first click over.

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60 Ally February 13, 2014 at 12:15 pm

I also can’t see new posts.

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61 Christina W February 12, 2014 at 1:33 pm

I need a Ninja in my life! My old Magic Bullet isn’t cutting it!

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62 jen February 12, 2014 at 7:14 pm

My new Vitamix does not fit on the counter with the lid on.

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63 Bridget February 12, 2014 at 7:48 pm

Would love this!

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64 Silvia February 12, 2014 at 10:56 pm

I started with a vitamix, then saw a Blendtech demo and I was forever convinced. Blendtech is the vitamix competitor and I have never regretted my choice, just love it. Just another option for y’all!

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65 Alissa @ Eat Clean Beauty Queen February 13, 2014 at 9:00 am

I have always wanted to try a Vitamix after reading all the reviews but don’t really want to dish out the $500 to do it. This looks like a great alternative!

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66 Chand February 14, 2014 at 7:03 pm

I’m not sure how to enter. Good review.

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67 Kelsey February 14, 2014 at 9:39 pm

Just the other day I thought- I’d use my Blendtec more if it had a mini blender!!!

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68 Pam Striker February 16, 2014 at 9:56 am

I so so love our Ninja too…we bought the Mega Kitchen System and it’s the BEST! :)

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69 Deanna Martin February 22, 2014 at 2:25 pm

I have the Ninja and love it. A very interesting review. So many decisions.

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70 Dee February 23, 2014 at 1:49 pm

Vitamix is assembled in the USA with over 70% of the components made in the USA. Ninja is designed in the USA and made in China.

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71 Deanna Martin March 1, 2014 at 3:16 pm

There are so many excellent blenders, it’s hard to decide.
Great information

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