GRADINGS GUIDE

Gradings for vinyl and CD’s are based on those recommended on Discogs. Gradings are given as Media (Vinyl, Disc) first and Sleeve/Inserts second. Slight variation such as + or – to the below listed grades may be used. Information directly relevant to a grading will be included in the product description.

VINYL

Mint (M)

Absolutely perfect in every way. Certainly never been played, possibly even still sealed. Should be used sparingly as a grade, if at all.  

Near Mint (NM or M-)

A nearly perfect record. A NM- record has more than likely never been played or rarely played, and the vinyl will play perfectly, with no imperfections during playback. A 45 RPM or EP sleeve should have no more than the most minor defects, such as any sign of slight handling. An LP cover should have no creases, folds, seam splits, cut-out holes, or other noticeable similar defects. The same should be true of inserts, such as posters, lyric sleeves, etc.  

Very Good Plus (VG+)

Generally worth approx. 50% of the Near Mint value. A Very Good Plus record will show some signs that it was played and otherwise handled by a previous owner who took good care of it. Defects should be more of a cosmetic nature, not affecting the actual playback as a whole. Record surfaces may show some signs of wear and may have slight scuffs or very light scratches that don’t affect one’s listening experiences. Slight warps that do not affect the sound are “OK”. The label may have some ring wear or discoloration, but it should be barely noticeable. Spindle marks may be present. Picture sleeves and inner sleeves will have some slight wear, slightly turned-up corners, or a slight seam split. An LP cover may have slight signs of wear, and may be marred by a cut-out hole, indentation, or cut corner. In general, if not for a couple of minor things wrong with it, this would be Near Mint.  

Very Good (VG) 

Generally worth approx. 25% of Near Mint value. Many of the defects found in a VG+ record will be more pronounced in a VG disc. Surface noise will be evident upon playing, especially in soft passages and during a song’s intro and fade, but will not overpower the music otherwise. Groove wear will start to be noticeable, as with light scratches (deep enough to feel with a fingernail) that will affect the sound. Labels may be marred by writing, or have tape or stickers (or their residue) attached. The same will be true of picture sleeves or LP covers. However, it will not have all of these problems at the same time. 

Good (G), Good Plus (G+) 

Generally worth 10-15% of the Near Mint value. A record in Good or Good Plus condition can be played through without skipping. But it will have significant surface noise, scratches, and visible groove wear. A cover or sleeve will have seam splits, especially at the bottom or on the spine. Tape, writing, ring wear, or other defects will be present. While the record will be playable without skipping, noticeable surface noise and “ticks” will almost certainly accompany the playback.

Poor (P), Fair (F)

Generally worth 0-5% of the Near Mint price. The record is cracked, badly warped, and won’t play through without skipping or repeating. The picture sleeve is water damaged, split on all three seams and heavily marred by wear and writing. The LP cover barely keeps the LP inside it. Inner sleeves are fully split, crinkled, and written upon.

Generic

Within the context of grading items in the Discogs Marketplace, the term “generic” refers to a type of sleeve that is not specific to the release. A generic sleeve is either a plain sleeve or a company sleeve with standard company artwork. A sleeve that is graded as “generic” needs no further grading, as a generic sleeve generally adds little value to the item and can be easily replaced.

CD

Mint (M)

Perfect. No scuffs/scratches, unplayed – possibly still sealed.
Insert/Inlay/Booklet/Sleeve/Digipak: Perfect. No wear, marks, or any other imperfections – possibly still sealed. 

Near Mint (NM or M-)

Near perfect. No obvious signs of use, it may have been played – but it has been handled very carefully.
Insert/Inlay/Booklet/Sleeve/Digipak: Near Perfect. No obvious wear, it may have only the slightest of marks from handling. 

Very Good Plus (VG+)

A few minor scuffs/scratches. This has been played, but handled with good care – and certainly not abused.
Insert/Inlay/Booklet/Sleeve/Digipak: Slight wear, marks, indentations, it may possibly have a cut-out hole (or similar).

Very Good (VG) 

Quite a few light scuffs/scratches, or several more-pronounced scratches. This has obviously been played, but not handled as carefully as a VG+. 
Insert/Inlay/Booklet/Sleeve/Digipak: More wear, marks, indentations than a VG+. May have slight fading, a small tear/rip, or some writing.

Good (G), Good Plus (G+)

There are a lot of scuffs/scratches. However it will still play through without problems. This has not been handled with much care at all. 
Insert/Inlay/Booklet/Sleeve/Digipak: Well worn, marked, more obvious indentations, fading, writing, than a VG – possibly a more significant tear/rip.

Poor (P), Fair (F)

The CD (if it is included) may or may not play some or all of the tracks. See the seller’s comments for details.
Insert/Inlay/Booklet/Sleeve/Digipak: Very worn. It may have obvious writing on it, it may be ripped/torn, or significantly faded, or water damaged.

MAGAZINES, BOOKS, SHEET MUSIC, & FILM PROMOTIONAL FLYERS

Mint (M)

A new unused item in perfect condition. Very Rare to be in this cndition

Near Mint (NM or M-)

Looks New but has been read or handled. No visible damage, creasing, tears or markings. Very minimal wear. May be minimal identification marks on inner cover.

Very Good (VG)

Does not look new but is in excellent condition. No obvious cover damage, creases, markings or tears. Nothing missing. Minimal wear.
Note – Older tabloid newspaper style magazines , such as NME and Melody Maker (though carefully stored) may be graded as VG but still show normal signs of their age including foxing, creases, general wear and small edge tears. Images and description of each item will be a good indication of general condition.
 

Good (G)

Minimal damage including scuff marks. Mostly undamaged but may have some minimal wear, creasing or tearing, or pencil marks. No missing pages.

Acceptable

Obvious wear. May have cover damage but integrity intact. Possible writing, underlining or highlighting but no missing pages or anything that would compromise legibility of text.