Coin Grade Guide

//Coin Grade Guide
Coin Grade Guide 2017-04-07T23:18:53+00:00

Whether you’re new to coin collecting or a seasoned collector, it’s always helpful to know the basic Coin Grades and what they mean. Below is a table containing the most used Coin Grades. While a description is helpful grading Uncirculated coins is a bit more difficult.

Grade

Description

Proof

PR

A specifically made coin distinguished by sharpness of detail and usually with a brilliant mirror-like surfaces.  Proof refers to the method of manufacture and is not a condition or quality of a coin.  Pre-1968 proofs were made only at the Philadelphia Mint except in a few rare instances in which presentation pieces were struck at branch mints.  Current Proofs are made at the San Francisco and West Point Mints.

Mint State

MS

The term Mint State (MS) can be interchanged with uncirculated (UNC) to describe “new” coins showing no trace of wear.

Poor

PO-1

Identifiable date and type

Fair

FR-2

Mostly worn, though some detail is visible

About Good

AG-3

Worn rims but most lettering is readable though worn

Good

G-4

Slightly worn rims, flat detail, peripheral lettering nearly full

Good

G-6

Rims complete with flat detail, peripheral lettering full

Very Good

VG-8

Design worn with slight detail

Very Good

VG-10

Design worn with slight detail, slightly clearer

Fine

F-12

Some deeply recessed areas with detail, all lettering sharp

Fine

F-15

Slightly more detail in the recessed areas, all lettering sharp

Very Fine

VF-20

Some definition of detail, all lettering full and sharp

Very Fine

VF-25

Slightly more definition in the detail and lettering

Choice Very Fine

VF-30

Almost complete detail with flat areas

Choice Very Fine

VF-35

Detail is complete but worn with high points flat

Extremely Fine

EF-40

Detail is complete with most high points slightly flat

Choice Extremely Fine

EF-45

Detail is complete with some high points flat

Choice Extremely Fine

EF-45+

Detail is complete with a few high points flat. Superior eye appeal.

About Uncirculated

AU-50

Full detail with friction over most of the surface, slight flatness on high points

About Uncirculated

AU-50+

Full detail with friction over most of the surface, very slight flatness on high points. Good eye appeal.

About Uncirculated

AU-53

Full detail with friction over 1/2 or more of surface, very slight flatness on high points.

About Uncirculated

AU-53+

Full detail with friction on only 1/2 of surface, extremely slight flatness on high points. Positive eye appeal.

Choice About Uncirculated

AU-55

Full detail with friction on less than 1/2 surface, mainly on high points

Choice About Uncirculated

AU-55+

Full detail with slight friction on less than 1/2 of surface, on high points. Eye appeal is good.

Borderline Uncirculated

AU-58

Full detail with only slight friction on the high points

Borderline Uncirculated

AU-58+

Full detail with the barest trace of friction on the highest points. Superior eye appeal.

Mint State / Proof

MS/PR-60

No wear. May have many heavy marks/hairlines, strike may not be full

Mint State / Proof

MS/PR-61

No wear. Multiple heavy marks/hairlines, strike may not be full

Mint State / Proof

MS/PR-62

No wear. Slightly less marks/hairlines, strike may not be full

Mint State / Proof

MS/PR-62+

No wear. Still slightly above number of marks/hairlines, strike may not be full. Attractive eye appeal for grade.

Mint State / Proof

MS/PR-63

Moderate number/size marks/hairlines, strike may not be full

Mint State / Proof

MS/PR-63+

Average number of marks/hairlines, strike will be close to average. Good eye appeal for grade.

Mint State / Proof

MS/PR-64

Few marks/hairlines or a couple of severe ones, strike should be average or above

Mint State / Proof

MS/PR-64+

Very few marks/hairlines or a couple of heavier ones, strike should be average or above. Superior eye appeal.

Mint State / Proof

MS/PR-65

Minor marks/hairlines though none in focal areas, above average strike

Mint State / Proof

MS/PR-65+

Very minor marks/hairlines though none in focal areas, above average strike and eye appeal

Mint State / Proof

MS/PR-66

Few minor marks/hairlines not in focal areas, good strike

Mint State / Proof

MS/PR-66+

Very few minor marks/hairlines not in focal areas, very good strike with superior eye appeal

Mint State / Proof

MS/PR-67

Virtually as struck with minor imperfections, very well struck

Mint State / Proof

MS/PR-67+

Virtually as struck with very minor imperfections, very well struck with attractive eye appeal

Mint State / Proof

MS/PR-68

Virtually as struck with slight imperfections, slightest weakness of strike allowed

Mint State / Proof

MS/PR-68+

Virtually as struck with very slight imperfections, the strike must be virtually full. Eye appeal must be very good.

Mint State / Proof

MS/PR-69

Virtually as struck with minuscule imperfections, near full strike necessary

Mint State / Proof

MS/PR-70

As struck, with full strike

Proofs are graded the same as Mint State coins, 60 through 70. Proof-60, Proof-61 etc. an impaired or rubbed Proof can be assigned a lower grade, such as Proof-50 or Proof-58.

More Information on Coin Grading Scales

ngc logo

To find out more information on NGC grading scale click HERE

cac logo

 To find out more information on CAC grading scale click HERE

PNG

To find out more information on PNG grading scale click HERE

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