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We do not know whether X will have an effect on element Y as opposed to others.
We do not know whether X will have an effect on element Y rather than on others.

The first version is the first one I wrote, but it doesn't convince me at all. The second one should be more correct, but it doesn't sound too natural. Is one preferred over the other?

Is there another way to express the same thing?

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closed as not a real question by FumbleFingers, Kris, tchrist, kiamlaluno, MετάEd Oct 31 '12 at 2:10

It's difficult to tell what is being asked here. This question is ambiguous, vague, incomplete, overly broad, or rhetorical and cannot be reasonably answered in its current form. For help clarifying this question so that it can be reopened, visit the help center.If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

General Reference. They're both perfectly valid, and it would be hair-splitting to claim any difference in meaning. Use whichever you like, as a stylistic choice. – FumbleFingers Oct 30 '12 at 3:40
To me they do not seem to mean the same thing. They are both grammatically correct, though. The choice, therefore, depends on what really you want to say. – Kris Oct 30 '12 at 4:20
up vote 1 down vote accepted

I prefer the second one, because I might not know in the first one if you mean X (as opposed to others) or Y as opposed to on others.


"We do not know whether X will have an effect on element Y or on other elements"

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I think rather than shows the preference of one over the other and in case of as opposed to , it's saying opposite to something. Although both are being used for comparison But you can feel the difference.

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