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What do you consider to be "High Grade"?6072

Collector Gaard private msg quote post Address this user
More and more, people are saying that their books are high grade/mid grade/low grade. If there isn't a set grade range to equal these statements, like "high Grade" is from 8.5 to 10, it seems like these kind of statements would be very subjective.

So, is there some kind of documented/accepted range, or is it simply dependent on the seller's opinion?
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Collector michaelekrupp private msg quote post Address this user
This is very subjective. Also varies by age I would think. I would definitely consider 9.0 Golden Age to be in high grade, while last month’s issue in 9.0 not so much. For me (a golden and early silver age guy). I prefer my books in the 8.5 or better range. Other collectors will differ, of course:
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Collector JustABitEvil private msg quote post Address this user
My peronal tiers go like:
1-3.x=Low
4-7.x=Mid
8-10=High
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Collector michaelekrupp private msg quote post Address this user
I would put mid grade at 5-8.
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COLLECTOR Foghorn_Sam private msg quote post Address this user
I would say once you get above 8.0-8.5, high grade is an acceptable adjective, as those books should have no major defects and have superior presentation.
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Collector VCBE private msg quote post Address this user
Silver Age Books
8.0 - 9.0 High Grades
9.2 - 9.4 Very High Grades
9.6 - 9.8 Ultra High Grades
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Collector MR_SigS private msg quote post Address this user
Quote:
Originally Posted by michaelekrupp
Also varies by age I would think. I would definitely consider 9.0 Golden Age to be in high grade, while last month’s issue in 9.0 not so much.


Pretty much how I see it.
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Collector JustABitEvil private msg quote post Address this user
Quote:
Originally Posted by michaelekrupp
I would put mid grade at 5-8.


You've seen my collection, I have low standards.
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COLLECTOR conditionfreak private msg quote post Address this user
One man's trash is another man's treasure.

In my opinion, it is based on rarity and age. A modern or copper in 9.2 is not high grade. Silver and bronze is high grade in 9.2

A golden age book in 7.5 is high grade.

Most often, it depends on if you are buying or selling.
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Collector michaelekrupp private msg quote post Address this user
Good point conditionfreak
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Collector poka private msg quote post Address this user
Quote:
Originally Posted by VCBE
Silver Age Books
8.0 - 9.0 High Grades
9.2 - 9.4 Very High Grades
9.6 - 9.8 Ultra High Grades


Lol
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Collector Redshade private msg quote post Address this user
On a numerical scale 1 to 3 is low. 4 to 6 is medium and 7 to 9 is high.

Anything higher is a Unicorn

We can all take a bunch of comics and place them in order of desirability but the subjective levels would vary.

There should be no difference in grading criteria whether the book is GA or modern.

Just saying. Others would disagree.
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COLLECTOR Foghorn_Sam private msg quote post Address this user
There are a lot of Unicorns for sale on eBay, Craigslist and such.
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Collector CatmanAmerica private msg quote post Address this user
I've collected quite a few unicorns. Alas, it's doubtful any were virgins when acquired.

It's probably a good idea to differentiate SA from GA when breaking down grade levels. There are just too many higher graded SA to modern books to not ratchet up high grade estimates to 9.0 or above.

GA is another matter. In GA, the census numbers of known books in high grade ...or lack thereof... alter the collecting dynamic. I'm not suggesting that this criteria should impact numerical grade or the methods for third party grading, just collector expectations.

So, from my perspective 8.5 and above is arguably high grade (with anything above 9.0 as exceptionally high), 7.5 & 8.0 are high mid-grades (that often appear better than grade, but usually have flaws that aren't immediately obvious), 5.0 to 7.0 are mid-grade books, 4.0 & 4.5 are typically lower mid-grades, 1.5 to 3.5 are low grades of varying degree (with rare exception, any book under 1.5 is mostly desirable as a reader copy).

Of coarse, these are merely my informed opinions. Everyone's mileage varies and what constitutes a desirable book in any grade is a matter of eye appeal and personal taste.
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Collector Gaard private msg quote post Address this user
So, basically, what everyone is saying is that high/mid/low grade mean absolutely nothing when selling or buying comics.

Buyer, "You had this comic listed as 'high grade', & it came back a 6.5, so you were wrong."
Seller, "No I wasn't, A 6.5 is high grade in my opinion."

Because there is no set standard on what constitutes high/mid/low grades, that scenario would be valid (regardless of the comic's era).
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Collector CatmanAmerica private msg quote post Address this user
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gaard
So, basically, what everyone is saying is that high/mid/low grade mean absolutely nothing when selling or buying comics.

Buyer, "You had this comic listed as 'high grade', & it came back a 6.5, so you were wrong."
Seller, "No I wasn't, A 6.5 is high grade in my opinion."

Because there is no set standard on what constitutes high/mid/low grades, that scenario would be valid (regardless of the comic's era).


I wouldn't presume speaking for anyone, but your assertion fails to take into account two conflicting paradigms that surround all grading assessments: 1) What constitutes a high grade given the available copies of a book, and 2) how intangible value parameters are applied to any assigned grade (via personal evaluation or third party grading).

Allow me to provide hypothetical examples of what I'm trying to describe...

First, let's take a random SA book with numerous copies graded 9.0 and above (for this we'll assume there are sufficient third party graded copies to provide confidence in a reasonably accurate census accounting). With this as a reference, the term "high grade" would sync-up with the established 10 point grading criteria employed by third party grading companies.

For my second example, let's consider a GA book that is both rare in certified numbers and non-existent in high grade as established by a general census of graded comics. If that book has no high grade examples, it would still have a highest graded copy status. From a numerical standpoint it would be arguably deceptive to call a mid-grade book "high grade", but not at all unfair to describe it as the highest graded copy or highest grade known to exist.

The bottom line is that the term high grade has relevance, but it will mean different things to different collectors and it's significance varies with the book being evaluated. It also becomes fair game for buyers and sellers negotiating prices and in furtherance of debates/discussions on boards such as this. That's my 2 cents (inflation adjusted).

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Collector IronMan private msg quote post Address this user
Low grade, mid grade, high grade are words, not grades. The hobby has two commonly accepted grading formats. Nomenclature (Good to Mint and all in between) and numeric 0-10

Terms like "low grade", "mid grade" and "high grade" have only a little more meaning grade wise than descriptions like "attractive", "pretty" and gorgeous". Obviously people shouldn't use "high grade" to describe a Good book nor mid grade to describe a Near Mint book.

If sellers want to use terms that imply a grade range like low, mid and high grade, they really out to instead follow the nomenclature grades and describe them in ranges. The terms below are still ranges, not exact grades. But they also actually mean something grade wise. Most people can agree what grades actually fall into the ranges below.

poor to fair range
Good range
Very Good range
Fine Range
Very Fine range
Near Mint range
Mint range

When you see low, mid and high grade terms used on eBay it is often an attempt to appear to offer some guidance on the condition of the item for sale - but to do so in such a way as to discourage returns for "item not as described".

Trying to avoid eBay returns with soft descriptions is a waste of time. 98% of the time eBay will side with the buyer with such returns. So sellers might as well "be the better person", smile and cheerfully take returns.
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Collector Logan510 private msg quote post Address this user
My favorite is when sellers state " I'm not a professional grader" as a way of trying to get out of any responsibility. How about having the courage of your convictions or just not selling comics at all if you don't know how to grade?

One does not have to be a paid professional to know how to grade properly.
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Collector doog private msg quote post Address this user
I always include a grade when selling. I shoot for 1/2 grade lower than I actually think it is. The “not a graders” are lazy. Of course plenty of people post at best a 4 and call it fine. Crappy or good pictures are a purchasers best friend.
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Collector CatmanAmerica private msg quote post Address this user
Quote:
Originally Posted by Logan510
My favorite is when sellers state " I'm not a professional grader" as a way of trying to get out of any responsibility. How about having the courage of your convictions or just not selling comics at all if you don't know how to grade?

One does not have to be a paid professional to know how to grade properly.


Disclaimers like that should be a red flag. If you're in the business of selling comics for a living professionalism comes with the turf.

The ideal business policy for a comic dealer would be to offer a fair return policy (90 days to 6 months) for sold raw books that come back in a lower grade from professional pre-screening or third party grading after purchase.

I'm sure that there are reasonable arguments why this kind of ethical policy might be too Draconian for some comic dealers, but the overall benefit to customer relations would likely outweigh any inconvenience.
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Collector KingNampa private msg quote post Address this user
When I sell Raws on eBay I always list the grade number. I also undergrade. I feel like saying mid grade or etc has too much room for misunderstandings. If I have 9.0 raw book for sale I will describe it as 8.0+. That way the customer is pleasantly surprised when they receive it and returns are a minimum. Under promise and over deliver is the key to customer satisfaction.
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Collector Logan510 private msg quote post Address this user
Quote:
Originally Posted by CatmanAmerica
Quote:
Originally Posted by Logan510
My favorite is when sellers state " I'm not a professional grader" as a way of trying to get out of any responsibility. How about having the courage of your convictions or just not selling comics at all if you don't know how to grade?

One does not have to be a paid professional to know how to grade properly.


Disclaimers like that should be a red flag. If you're in the business of selling comics for a living professionalism comes with the turf.

The ideal business policy for a comic dealer would be to offer a fair return policy (90 days to 6 months) for sold raw books that come back in a lower grade from professional pre-screening or third party grading after purchase.

I'm sure that there are reasonable arguments why this kind of ethical policy might be too Draconian for some comic dealers, but the overall benefit to customer relations would likely outweigh any inconvenience.


I could see offering a 90 day to 6 month policy if the book was graded and came back restored or something. But lets say I grade a raw book NM+ ( 9.6 ) and 6 months later the buyer tells me the book came back a 9.4? How am I supposed to know what was done to the book or how many people handled it that could potentially have caused it to drop...assuming I didn't overgrade it in the first place.
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Collector CatmanAmerica private msg quote post Address this user
Quote:
Originally Posted by Logan510
Quote:
Originally Posted by CatmanAmerica
Quote:
Originally Posted by Logan510
My favorite is when sellers state " I'm not a professional grader" as a way of trying to get out of any responsibility. How about having the courage of your convictions or just not selling comics at all if you don't know how to grade?

One does not have to be a paid professional to know how to grade properly.


Disclaimers like that should be a red flag. If you're in the business of selling comics for a living professionalism comes with the turf.

The ideal business policy for a comic dealer would be to offer a fair return policy (90 days to 6 months) for sold raw books that come back in a lower grade from professional pre-screening or third party grading after purchase.

I'm sure that there are reasonable arguments why this kind of ethical policy might be too Draconian for some comic dealers, but the overall benefit to customer relations would likely outweigh any inconvenience.


I could see offering a 90 day to 6 month policy if the book was graded and came back restored or something. But lets say I grade a raw book NM+ ( 9.6 ) and 6 months later the buyer tells me the book came back a 9.4? How am I supposed to know what was done to the book or how many people handled it that could potentially have caused it to drop...assuming I didn't overgrade it in the first place.


In situations like that perhaps a partial discount or credit might be offered in lieu of a full refund with return of the book.

Also, serious collectors don't tend to mishandle high grade books that are purchased raw. It just seems prudent for dealers to trust the integrity of their customers, unless the buyer's grading complaints become a pattern of behavior.

The best reason for extending the refund or rebate time to six months is that even with an immediate submission the turn around times can occasionally lag.

I'm not being critical here, you're raising good discussion points.
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