flourescent tubes Question

What's the difference between a flourescent tube of "regular" circumference and a "slim" tube with pins of the same configuration? Are they interchangeable?
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The larger diameter lamps are T-12 and use magnetic ballasts and the smaller diameter ones are T-8 and use electronic ballasts. They are not interchangeable and the electronic ones are more expensive but work much more reliably. FYI the number in a bulb i.e. T-8 refers to how many eighths of an inch in diameter the lamp is

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