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A pulsed-power generator (PPG-I) with a current of 400 kA in amplitude and 100 ns in pulsewidth was constructed. The development of X-pinches and the early stages of wire-array Z-pinches were investigated by X-ray backlighting using the X-pinch driven by PPG-I as X-ray source. The plasma explosion and implosion near the cross point of the X-shape wires can be clearly seen from a series of backlighting images taken at different times of X-pinch discharge. To study the early behavior of the plasma in wire-array Z-pinches, an X-pinch installed in the place of a current-return rod was used as the X-ray source to backlight a wire-array Z-pinch installed in the center between the anode and the cathode. The plasma formation, the interwire plasma merging, and the instabilities were also clearly observed, which can provide a better understanding of the physics of Z-pinches and the basic experimental data to validate simulation models.