Comic Book Grading Guidelines
Near Mint is the highest grade we apply to comics not CGC Graded.
New releases are brand new, Near Mint condition unless otherwise graded in the comics description.
All comics in store graded Near Mint should be considered Near Mint or better.
GEM MINT, MINT GRADES – CGC Graded only
GEM MINT: 10.0
MINT : 9.9
- The best possible existing condition of a comic book.
- It is very rare especially in older comic books pre-1990 to discover a comic in either Mint or Gem Mint condition.
- Books in this condition pre-1980 are virtually non-existent.
- An extremely exceptional comic with only very minute printing or bindery defects.
- The books cover is flat and without surface wear.
- No autographs or writing is allowed on either the cover or interior pages.
- Cover inks are exceptionally bright with high gloss.
- The books corners are perfectly square and sharp.
- Interior pages must me white in colour and supple to the touch.
NEAR MINT / MINT, NEAR MINT+ GRADES – CGC Graded only
NEAR MINT / MINT : 9.8
NEAR MINT+ : 9.6
- A slight stress line by the staples.
- The staples themselves are generally centred clean with no rust.
- The cover is flat with no surface wear; inks are bright with high reflectivity and very little fading.
- Corners are cut square and sharp with ever so slight blunting permitted.
- This comic looks as new as the day it was printed.
- All stress marks should be almost invisible and bindery tears must be less than 2mm.
- Only the most subtle binding and/or printing defects allowed.
- Cover is fairly well centred and firmly secured to interior pages.
- Paper is supple and like new.
- Spine is tight and flat.
- Unobtrusive date stamps or arrival dates in pencil or ink are acceptable.
NEAR MINT, NEAR MINT- GRADES
NEAR MINT : 9.4
NEAR MINT- : 9.2
- Vibrant and clean with supple pages.
- The spine may have a couple of very small stress lines at the most 6mm, the surface colour around the line must not be noticeably broken.
- The spine is almost completely flat.
- The cover is relatively flat with almost no surface wear and the cover inks are generally bright with medium to high reflectivity.
- The staples may show some discolouration, but it’s not too noticeable.
- The inside pages and covers usually will be off-white to white, but can be creamy or slightly yellowish.
VERY FINE / NEAR MINT GRADE
VERY FINE/NEAR MINT : 9.0
- Slightly better condition than VERY FINE+: 8.5
VERY FINE+, VERY FINE, VERY FINE- GRADES
VERY FINE+ : 8.5
VERY FINE : 8.0
VERY FINE- : 7.5
- Some of the above defects along with a small fold or crease in the cover.
- Very few stress marks on spine.
- A few small chips on the cover
- The cover has some slight surface wear but still has its original gloss and there is nothing major wrong with it. Overall an exceptional, very collectible comic book.
FINE / VERY FINE GRADE
FINE/VERY FINE : 7.0
- Slightly better condition than FINE+: 6.5
FINE+, FINE, FINE- GRADES
FINE+ : 6.5
FINE- : 5.5
- This could have one major defect like a larger piece out of the cover (3 mm-6 mm) or a 2.5 cm plus tear.
- It has stress lines around the staples and creases from the opening and closing of the cover.
- The whiteness of the pages has been changed from off-white to yellowish colour.
- This could have a reading or subscription crease or a rolled spine, but is not damaged enough to reduce eye appeal dramatically.
- Some discolouration, fading in colours and even minor soiling is allowed.
- The cover and / or inside pages could have minor tears and / or folds
- Cover can be loose from one staple, but cover cannot be completely detached from interior.
- Pages and inside covers could be brown but not brittle.
- Tape – Depending on the grade of the copy certain amounts are available in this grade. A book that looks 8.0 with a piece of tape on the interior cover is acceptable in this grade.