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(1) 準備{じゅんび}は 前々 から万端{ばんたん}だった。
(2) 準備は から万端だった。

What is the difference in meaning / usage between #1 and #2?
Why choose one instead of the other?

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(1) 準備{じゅんび}は 前々 から万端{ばんたん}だった。
(2) 準備は から万端だった。

「前々{まえまえ}から」 would generally express a shorter time span than 「昔{むかし}から」 would.

We would tend to use 「前々から」 to mean "since a few weeks ago" or "since a few months ago" depending on the context.

「昔から」, however, would often mean "since several years ago", "since many years ago" or even "since many decades ago".

This is why your sentence #2 could sound exaggerated or even comical depending on what one has been prepared for.

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