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In a thin magnetic film memory, an easy axis field due to the conducting surrounding of the cell is to be taken into account in order to evaluate the sense signal corresponding to a word pulse in the hard axis. For a simplified switching model, diagrams demonstrate the influence of the easy axis field on the sense pulse amplitude and width and the signal-to-word-noise ratios. Optimum word pulses yielding maximum signal-to-noise ratios are given. Finally, the calculated and measured sense pulse amplitudes are compared.