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A Bike is Not a Cell Phone - Upgrading to "Latest and Greatest" Syndrome

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Road Cycling “It is by riding a bicycle that you learn the contours of a country best, since you have to sweat up the hills and coast down them. Thus you remember them as they actually are, while in a motor car only a high hill impresses you, and you have no such accurate remembrance of country you have driven through as you gain by riding a bicycle.” -- Ernest Hemingway

A Bike is Not a Cell Phone - Upgrading to "Latest and Greatest" Syndrome

Old 05-25-20, 11:44 AM
  #51  
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Originally Posted by PoorInRichfield View Post
Warning: This thread is pointless and is just me rambling about a thought that's been rolling around in my head for a while


Anywho... your thoughts? Are bikes that are more than a few years old worthy of the scrap heap? Is buying a brand new bike a psychological gain or a good idea? Should we all buy a new bike every two years to keep up-to-date along with our iPhones and Android phones?

Note: I currently ride a 2020 Trek Domane SL7, so I'm a little hypocritical when it comes to my argument that one doesn't need a new bike. However, in my defense, I did buy it used for substantial cost savings... I would've stuck with my 2015 Domane had the deal not come along.
My current steed is a 2015 and it can still go a lot farther faster and longer than the body that rides it. The loss of value seems to be more the rider than the machine.
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Old 05-25-20, 11:53 AM
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Originally Posted by PoorInRichfield View Post
Warning: This thread is pointless and is just me rambling about a thought that's been rolling around in my head for a while

Having just sold a handful of bikes recently, one of the most common bargaining tactics used by potential buyer's to get me to drop the price of my bikes was that the bikes were a couple of years old (ranging from 2013 to 2015 model years) and thus not worth anything. On more than one occasion, I'd get someone sending me a link to some "bicycle blue book" stating that my bikes were worthless because they weren't the latest and greatest. I learned to ignore those potential buyers and my bikes all sold for what I was asking... thanks to COVID-19

That got me thinking... are we as a society being duped into thinking that a bike that is a few years old is now a piece of outdated junk, just because we've become used to a 2 year obsolescence cycle for electronic goods? (I.e. "Moore's Law" has had a pretty big role in people buying a new mobile phone or computer every 2 years because that's about how long it takes before a new, much faster model is invented.) Unless you're planning on buying a bike with SRAM eTap, Shimano Di2, or some other electronic components group, the entire rest of the bike is not electronic and not subject to radical improvements from year to year.

I often think manufacturers just introduce new models with new marketing hype to convince us that the newer model is radically better than the old when it potentially is not. For example, I'm still wondering why Shimano created the Ultegra R8000 group set when it's hardly a departure from the 6800 group set. Both are 11 speed and both work just fine. It's my opinion that used bikes with Ultegra 6800 are a great value because they're perceived as being "yesterday's news" but work just as good as the new R8000 bikes.

While there certainly are incremental advances and improvements in bikes over the years, I personally think that one ought to really consider if you really need the latest model bike or if you just want it. There's nothing wrong with either, but if you can convince yourself that you don't need a brand new bike, you can save yourself a lot of money. Not only that, bicycles typically hold their value worse than cars do... once you ride the bike away from the LBS, you'll have a hard time selling it for anything near what you paid for it (well, excluding our current bizarro-world COVID-19 bike shortage.)

Anywho... your thoughts? Are bikes that are more than a few years old worthy of the scrap heap? Is buying a brand new bike a psychological gain or a good idea? Should we all buy a new bike every two years to keep up-to-date along with our iPhones and Android phones?

Note: I currently ride a 2020 Trek Domane SL7, so I'm a little hypocritical when it comes to my argument that one doesn't need a new bike. However, in my defense, I did buy it used for substantial cost savings... I would've stuck with my 2015 Domane had the deal not come along.
Over-consumption: one of Capitalism's pernicious effect. My short answer: I don't buy something unless it's needed. But what is a need, you will ask? According to one of the definition found on google: require (something) because it is essential or very important. What can be a need for you can be a luxury for someone else.

I change my phone when it's dead or no longer properly working. I don't spend money on a new bike if I can't justify the purchase. I don't buy a fancy house or a fancy cars even if I could afford all of that easily, because I can't justify these purchase that are useless in my opinion.
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Old 05-26-20, 08:38 AM
  #53  
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Depends on the kind of bike. The variety found at walmart and target are probably worthless as soon as they’re wheeled out of the store. Higher quality bikes without scratches, dents, and function well should be worth a lot.
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Old 05-26-20, 08:59 AM
  #54  
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I bought a new carbon bike in '99, the first among my large cycling group to go carbon. They were buying custom steel or ti, and so I was given my moniker. it's an 18.5 lb. triple, fits perfectly, fast, durable, wonderful vibration damping - why would I ever replace it with another thing that was after all, just another bicycle? And for what I do, a not-as-good bicycle. I ride it almost every day. I also have a '03 tandem, also in many ways better than what's on the market today at anything like its replacement price point. I could upgrade to a $12,000 bike which would be better but I really can't see making that investment. My wife loves that bike, 'nuff said. We'll ride it until we can't ride anymore.
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Old 05-26-20, 09:53 AM
  #55  
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I had to upgrade my cell phone a week or 2 ago. It was a Galaxy S7 and still got the job done. I left it on top of a car and took off. I backtracked and found it in the middle of the road. In the middle of a lane, not in one of the tire track areas. I quickly parked and ran back to pick it up in hopes that the Spigen Tough Armour case had worked and it survived the tumble. As I was standing on the side of the road waiting for a car to pass so I could retrieve it, I was really irritated with myself for making the mistake. The occupants of the passing car however, had a different idea. They rolled their windows down, started shouting, swerved and ran over the phone! My car was a 100 yards away, so no pursuit. I picked up the phone. It was still working, but the screen was toast.

If there was any humor taken from the incident, it was that the second the tires rolled over the phone, I was no longer angry at myself. All of the blame had been shifted to the vandals. I also got immediate closure. I got in the car and headed to the phone store. Replaced it with a Galaxy S10E. As for the new phone, it looks like the old phone, and just like the old phone, It's way more phone than I'll ever need.

The people at the Verizon store said that the Galaxy S7's OS was no longer receiving updates and security patches were only being sent out every few months. Maybe the whole incident was a blessing in disguise. The battery life was beginning to get kind of short, if I think about it. Sounds kind like the excuses for justifying a new bike purchase, doesn't it?

Last edited by seypat; 05-26-20 at 10:16 AM.
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Old 05-26-20, 10:10 AM
  #56  
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Nothing wrong with old tech.

I just bought an off lease Dell Latitude 14" laptop with a i7 processor, 16gb RAM and a 256gb SSD. It's been reloaded with Windows 10 Professional and looks brand new.. not a scratch.

I paid $450 while 3 years ago it sold for $1700 new.
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Old 05-26-20, 11:20 AM
  #57  
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I'll never exceed the capability of my 2005 S-Works Roubaix, which I bought used for 25% of its SRP. My 2014 bike has some nicer features, like Di2, but it wouldn't beat the Roubaix up the hill. And I don't see anything out there that I want to buy over these two. But, I'm OK with anyone justifying a purchase saying "I just think it's really cool and I want it." I mean, what else are you saving it for but that?
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Old 05-26-20, 05:54 PM
  #58  
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It's all highly personal, so I refuse to get dogmatic about any of it. I'm very happy with my current ride ( a 2013 vintage BMC Teammachine SLR01 equipped with a 2015 Campy Record EPS 11 speed group all on a set of self-built CF tubular wheels shod in 25mm Conti's) The frame fits me well and rides and handles as comfortably as anything else I've tried (including my 1979 Bruce Gordon custom). The shifting is wicked fast, quiet, and reliable. As of EPS V3, the ugly battery pack and external wires are gone. The range and placement of the gear ratios available with my compact 34/50 crank set and 12-29 cassette fits my pedaling style and preferred cadence quite well without duplicates or unusable combinations. Yes, it has rim brakes, but I've never been at a loss for enough braking power to make a bad situation even worse. After all, no braking system is going to make your tires "stickier" or the road less slick. My only complaint is that as I've gotten older, I could use a little more low end gearing for climbing.

So what's "new" that might get these old legs up my favorite climbs with less load on these equally old knees? 12 speed cassettes with small cogs so small they limit my choice of hubs? Puny looking crank sets? Sure, if you don't mind 3 or more ratios that are near duplicates along with another 3 I'll never use? I think not. Especially not on a comfortable but fixed income. I'm not a Luddite, just someone with enough engineering background to understand the pursuit of "perfection" often blinds people to the beauty of "good enough".

Just my 2¢ and only directly applicable to me.

Last edited by bmcer; 05-26-20 at 05:58 PM.
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Old 05-27-20, 03:52 AM
  #59  
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Stuff is worth what people will pay for it.
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Old 05-27-20, 06:15 AM
  #60  
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Originally Posted by PoorInRichfield View Post
Warning: This thread is pointless and is just me rambling about a thought that's been rolling around in my head for a while .........................That got me thinking... are we as a society being duped into thinking that a bike that is a few years old is now a piece of outdated junk, just because we've become used to a 2 year obsolescence cycle for electronic goods?.................................
NOT being duped here since updates with frames/components are meaningless AND my cell phone is a super old flip phone.
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Old 05-27-20, 06:25 AM
  #61  
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Originally Posted by Darth Lefty View Post
For a while new cell phones were obviously better than the 2yo model. That's not really happening any more. The numbers keep going up but they don't matter, screen size is just a fashion and its resolution is sufficient to the eyeball, the cameras are sharp enough, the data rate is fast enough, the software features are not dependent on the model, and so on.

This is happening with mountain bikes. A mountain bike today is obviously better than one from 10 years ago and even just 5 there's a difference. Road bikes? ehhhh... you could argue nothing important has changed since the arrival of Ergo's. Even Di2 is nearly 20 years old.
Agree on all points, here.
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Old 05-27-20, 12:43 PM
  #62  
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Originally Posted by seypat View Post
I had to upgrade my cell phone a week or 2 ago. It was a Galaxy S7 and still got the job done. I left it on top of a car and took off. I backtracked and found it in the middle of the road. In the middle of a lane, not in one of the tire track areas. I quickly parked and ran back to pick it up in hopes that the Spigen Tough Armour case had worked and it survived the tumble. As I was standing on the side of the road waiting for a car to pass so I could retrieve it, I was really irritated with myself for making the mistake. The occupants of the passing car however, had a different idea. They rolled their windows down, started shouting, swerved and ran over the phone! My car was a 100 yards away, so no pursuit. I picked up the phone. It was still working, but the screen was toast.

If there was any humor taken from the incident, it was that the second the tires rolled over the phone, I was no longer angry at myself. All of the blame had been shifted to the vandals. I also got immediate closure. I got in the car and headed to the phone store. Replaced it with a Galaxy S10E. As for the new phone, it looks like the old phone, and just like the old phone, It's way more phone than I'll ever need.

The people at the Verizon store said that the Galaxy S7's OS was no longer receiving updates and security patches were only being sent out every few months. Maybe the whole incident was a blessing in disguise. The battery life was beginning to get kind of short, if I think about it. Sounds kind like the excuses for justifying a new bike purchase, doesn't it?
Wow, what a dick move!
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Old 05-27-20, 07:47 PM
  #63  
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"I haven't bought a new bike since 1976." Is that a some sort of status symbol? I'm awesome because I spent money servicing 1976 tech? Or did I just take boat from a troll in 2020?
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Old 05-28-20, 07:26 AM
  #64  
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Originally Posted by bmcer View Post
It's all highly personal, so I refuse to get dogmatic about any of it. I'm very happy with my current ride ( a 2013 vintage BMC Teammachine SLR01 equipped with a 2015 Campy Record EPS 11 speed group all on a set of self-built CF tubular wheels shod in 25mm Conti's) The frame fits me well and rides and handles as comfortably as anything else I've tried (including my 1979 Bruce Gordon custom). The shifting is wicked fast, quiet, and reliable. As of EPS V3, the ugly battery pack and external wires are gone. The range and placement of the gear ratios available with my compact 34/50 crank set and 12-29 cassette fits my pedaling style and preferred cadence quite well without duplicates or unusable combinations. Yes, it has rim brakes, but I've never been at a loss for enough braking power to make a bad situation even worse. After all, no braking system is going to make your tires "stickier" or the road less slick. My only complaint is that as I've gotten older, I could use a little more low end gearing for climbing.

So what's "new" that might get these old legs up my favorite climbs with less load on these equally old knees? 12 speed cassettes with small cogs so small they limit my choice of hubs? Puny looking crank sets? Sure, if you don't mind 3 or more ratios that are near duplicates along with another 3 I'll never use? I think not. Especially not on a comfortable but fixed income. I'm not a Luddite, just someone with enough engineering background to understand the pursuit of "perfection" often blinds people to the beauty of "good enough".

Just my 2¢ and only directly applicable to me.
Your rant about the latest 12 speed gearing if off. As a mechanical engineer, I carefully evaluate the gear ratios before buying. If you really need a lower ratio than a 34/29, then there is the new 11-32 12 speed. That would give you a 50/11 that you may not need. The new 48/32 crank with an 11-29 provides a little more top gear and a little more low gear. The 48/16 is nearly identical to a 50/17 ratio and there is still a 1T shift at the 16-17.

The duplicate gears comment makes no sense to me. Every setup has duplicate or near duplicate gear ratios, even your current one. With the new 12 speed, every gear combination is useable, except the big/big and little/little. That has not changed.

I made the change from a 50/34 to the 48/32 last July and really like it. I need a lot more low gear, so I have the 11-34. The 11-19 sprockets are the same as the 11-29 or 11-32 cassettes. I can't complain.

Last edited by DaveSSS; 05-28-20 at 08:21 AM.
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Old 05-28-20, 10:43 AM
  #65  
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Originally Posted by DaveSSS View Post
Your rant about the latest 12 speed gearing if off. As a mechanical engineer, I carefully evaluate the gear ratios before buying. If you really need a lower ratio than a 34/29, then there is the new 11-32 12 speed. That would give you a 50/11 that you may not need. The new 48/32 crank with an 11-29 provides a little more top gear and a little more low gear. The 48/16 is nearly identical to a 50/17 ratio and there is still a 1T shift at the 16-17.

The duplicate gears comment makes no sense to me. Every setup has duplicate or near duplicate gear ratios, even your current one. With the new 12 speed, every gear combination is useable, except the big/big and little/little. That has not changed.

I made the change from a 50/34 to the 48/32 last July and really like it. I need a lot more low gear, so I have the 11-34. The 11-19 sprockets are the same as the 11-29 or 11-32 cassettes. I can't complain.
For the record, what I said hardly qualifies as a rant. It was just a expression of my opinion which was based on a comparative analysis of the SRAM 46/33 X 33/10 vs my current 50/34 X 29/12 configuration using a simple gear ration spread sheet. (I was a systems engineer before retiring.) FWIW, I'd be interested to know where you found the 48/32 X 34/11 combination you describe. I've not seen that configuration for sale.

Where I'm located, there aren't a lot of long enough steep enough descents to make gears > 112 inches particularly useful for this very cautious downhill rider. Usable, certainly; useful to me, not so much.

Last edited by bmcer; 05-28-20 at 10:48 AM.
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Old 05-28-20, 10:49 AM
  #66  
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BTW... where @trekmogul in this discussion
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Old 05-28-20, 10:57 AM
  #67  
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Originally Posted by bmcer View Post
For the record, what I said hardly qualifies as a rant. It was just a expression of my opinion ...
Yes, but you expressed a different opinion ... which qualifies it as a rant.
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Old 05-28-20, 11:14 AM
  #68  
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We recognize the value in the incremental changes as deeply involved bicycle users.

Only deeply involved iPhone fanboi users probably recognize anything different in use in the last 5+ years. I'm sure an iPhone fanboi could point out a dozen changes in 5 years that "changed their life" in using the phone also.
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Old 05-28-20, 11:27 AM
  #69  
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The response qualifies as a rant, when it includes information that is easily proven to be incorrect, like the duplicate gear comment. It suggests bad things that don't really exist. My example is for Campy's latest 12 speed Chorus group that I got last July.

SRAM did lean toward the fast and powerful riders with their initial 12 speed offerings with top gear ratios of 5/1, 4.8/1 and 4.6/1. The 4.6/1 is about the same as a 50/11. Campy went a little lower with a 4.36. With my old 50/12 top gear I spun out at about 35 mph, and with the new 48/11 I spin out at about 38. My main objective was to go from my 34/32 low gear to a 32/34. I use that gear on nearly every ride.
I don't care for the sprocket spacing on SRAM's 10-33. The larger jumps start too soon and they're a bit too small between the largest sprockets.

The price for a Force AXS group is my biggest problem. It's not worth twice the price of a chorus 12 group, IMO of course. I got two chorus 12 groups instead.

Last edited by DaveSSS; 05-28-20 at 03:10 PM.
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Old 05-28-20, 02:12 PM
  #70  
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Originally Posted by DaveSSS View Post
The response qualifies as a rant, when it includes information that is easily proven to be incorrect ...
That's an interesting definition.
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Old 05-28-20, 02:18 PM
  #71  
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Originally Posted by bmcer View Post
For the record, what I said hardly qualifies as a rant. It was just a expression of my opinion which was based on a comparative analysis of the SRAM 46/33 X 33/10 vs my current 50/34 X 29/12 configuration using a simple gear ration spread sheet. (I was a systems engineer before retiring.) FWIW, I'd be interested to know where you found the 48/32 X 34/11 combination you describe. I've not seen that configuration for sale.

Where I'm located, there aren't a lot of long enough steep enough descents to make gears > 112 inches particularly useful for this very cautious downhill rider. Usable, certainly; useful to me, not so much.
He also left off that 12sp campy fits the older 10 and 11sp hubs so no need for different hubs.
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Old 05-28-20, 02:55 PM
  #72  
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Originally Posted by burnthesheep View Post
We recognize the value in the incremental changes as deeply involved bicycle users.

Only deeply involved iPhone fanboi users probably recognize anything different in use in the last 5+ years. I'm sure an iPhone fanboi could point out a dozen changes in 5 years that "changed their life" in using the phone also.
Phone cameras have been getting better. I use Android not Apple, went out to shoot nothing photos with a friend, his S20 made images that look like they came from an SLR on a tripod. Don't know what they looked like at 100% though. But the best camera is the one you have with you.

That said, mine is 4 generations old.
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Old 05-28-20, 02:58 PM
  #73  
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Originally Posted by Seattle Forrest View Post
Phone cameras have been getting better. I use Android not Apple, went out to shoot nothing photos with a friend, his S20 made images that look like they came from an SLR on a tripod. Don't know what they looked like at 100% though. But the best camera is the one you have with you.

That said, mine is 4 generations old.
It is a fact that they're a lot better.

A FF camera with a lens the size of my calf will still clobber a cell phone camera (as should be obvious), especially when the lens has to get further and further away from "normal".
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Old 05-28-20, 04:22 PM
  #74  
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Originally Posted by Bah Humbug View Post
It is a fact that they're a lot better.

A FF camera with a lens the size of my calf will still clobber a cell phone camera (as should be obvious), especially when the lens has to get further and further away from "normal".
I shot this recently with a Canon FF body (5D3) and a 24 mm f/1.4. Sturdy tripod, cable release, the whole nine yards. Moon rise, and you can just make Rainier out in the distance. My friend was standing 30 feet away hand holding his new phone, at screen size his first reaction was "why do I carry a heavy Manfrotto around?" But I wouldn't hesitate to print this as big as I need and doubt the phone is good enough for that.

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Old 05-28-20, 04:38 PM
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Originally Posted by Seattle Forrest View Post
Phone cameras have been getting better. I use Android not Apple, went out to shoot nothing photos with a friend, his S20 made images that look like they came from an SLR on a tripod. Don't know what they looked like at 100% though. But the best camera is the one you have with you.

That said, mine is 4 generations old.
Originally Posted by Bah Humbug View Post
It is a fact that they're a lot better.

A FF camera with a lens the size of my calf will still clobber a cell phone camera (as should be obvious), especially when the lens has to get further and further away from "normal".
I get a kick out of those bike pics, and the like, that clearly fool the fake bokeh generator on phone cameras. Yeah, just lemme turn that feature off, thanks.
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