Step 2: Grading

Grading Scale

  • 10.0
    • Gem Mint
  • 9.9
    • Mint
  • 9.8
    • Near Mint/Mint
  • 9.6
    • Near Mint +
  • 9.4
    • Near Mint
  • 9.2
    • Near Mint -
  • 9.0
    • Very Fine/Near Mint
  • 8.5
    • Very Fine +
  • 8.0
    • Very Fine
  • 7.5
    • Very Fine -
  • 7.0
    • Fine/Very Fine
  • 6.5
    • Fine +
  • 6.0
    • Fine
  • 5.5
    • Fine -
  • 5.0
    • Very Good/Fine
  • 4.5
    • Very Good +
  • 4.0
    • Very Good
  • 3.5
    • Very Good -
  • 3.0
    • Good/Very Good
  • 2.5
    • Good +
  • 2.0
    • Good
  • 1.8
    • Good -
  • 1.5
    • Fair/Good
  • 1.0
    • Fair
  • .5
    • Poor

Once logged into the CGC processing system, magazines are placed into clear barcoded sleeves and separated from their submission invoices. This ensures complete impartiality and anonymity during grading, as all paperwork identifying the submitters has been separated from the magazines themselves.

Before any grading is performed, each magazine is examined by a CGC restoration detection professional. If any form of restoration work is detected, this information is also logged and made available to the grading team. Next, the magazine’s pages are counted and the presence of inserts and other enclosures is recorded. CGC notes inserts when present — if not noted specifically on the label, it should not be assumed that a particular insert is attached or enclosed within the encapsulated magazine. When supplemental regional or specialized feature content is included, it is noted as a variant on the certification label.

Any peculiarities or flaws that may affect a magazine’s grade are entered into the computer. Some examples of this would be "a corner crease — does not break color," "a 1/4" inch spine split" and so forth. When a grader examines a magazine, he is unable to see a previously assigned grade, so as to not to be influenced by it.

A final restoration check is performed before assigning a grade. If all grades are in agreement, the magazine will be assigned a final grade. If there is disagreement among the graders for any magazine, there will be a discussion with other graders until a final consensus is reached.

Once an entire invoice has been graded in this way, magazines are forwarded to the Encapsulation Department for sealing.

Newsstand and Subscription Editions

Graders will also note whether a magazine is a Newsstand Edition or a Subscription Edition. Subscription Editions may have mailing addresses printed directly on the magazine or will have an address label attached. In some cases, Subscription Editions may have had their labels defaced, removed or partially removed, which in turn may affect the grade assigned.

Signatures on Magazines

Signatures will only be authenticated by CGC when they are autographed in the presence of a CGC Authorized Witness or employee under the guidelines of the CGC Signature Series. Signatures that have not been witnessed may receive a Qualified designation or an appropriate Universal grade.

Step 3: Encapsulation >