Vinyl & CD Grading and Condition Guide
We use goldmine standards for grading and most items are visually graded except where noted.
Mint describes an absolutely perfect record, CD or cassette. We RARELY use this grade with exception to SEALED CDs.
*please note we do not include jewel cases in grading of CD/cassettes.
NEAR MINT (NM/NM-)
- VINYL RECORDS - This is generally the highest grade we will give any record. This includes a new or sealed record that has never been played. The record jacket/sleeve will be free of any imperfections or noticeable wear and will include all inserts in same condition. The vinyl will be unplayed or appear unplayed.
- CDS/CASSETTES – This grade typically describes a new item or lightly used copy that shows no signs of use from a prior owner. J-card/tray-card and booklets will show no obvious signs of wear and will appear new.
VERY GOOD PLUS (VG+)
- VINYL RECORDS – The most common grade, VG+ describes a great shape, used record that may have some visible blemishes (e.g. light scratches or a minor warp that does not affect play). You may experience some light surface noise at quieter passes. The jacket/sleeve may show some signs of wear including a price sticker, creased/cut corners, light ring wear, seam split, seam wear, or small tear. We generally will denote the above defects in descriptions, but we always encourage you to message us first if, for example, a “Cut corner” is a deal breaker.
- CD/CASSETTE – A great shape item, VG+ plays without issue but will show some signs of use including light scratches, lightly handled booklets, a punch hole, etc.
VERY GOOD (VG)
- VINYL - A very good record still plays from start to finish but has more pronounced wear than VG+. The vinyl may include a combination of defects such as groove wear, scratches (with one deep enough to feel), more prominent surface noise or light pops. The jacket/ sleeve may have a few flaws such as a price sticker, creased/cut corners, ring wear, a seam split, seam wear, small tears, etc.
- CD/CASSETTE – A CD with this grade will show more signs of use such as markings to the top side or heavier scratches, but it will still play without issue. Cassettes may have faded writing and sound may have become slightly degraded. Booklets and J-cards may have moderate handling wear, price stickers, small tears or creasing.
GOOD PLUS (G+)
- VINYL – Lower quality than VG, good plus shows heavy signs of wear all around. We generally do not deal with records that grade this low unless it is especially rare or sought after.
- CD/CASSETTE – Lower quality than VG, good plus shows heavy signs of wear all around. We generally do no deal with CD/cassettes that grade this low unless it is especially rare of sought after.
Worse than G+, we almost never deal with media this bad. In those rare instances, expect a detailed description of all the defects along with a description of how well it plays.