How perfect does NM have to be?

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worldmusic
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How perfect does NM have to be?

Post by worldmusic » Wed Dec 16, 2009 4:46 pm

Evidently I'm a strict grader due to buyers feedback, but I'm a little confused about a pink floyd album the wall, which I bought from the store, and am labeling it nm. I know it plays flawlessly, but due to the way it was made, there are what I would call cirrus clouds, little visible blemishes under strong light. If I was the buyer, I wouldn't care as long as it sounded good. Is a record NM if these blemishes are from how the lp was made, rather than what the owner did?

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RE: How perfect does NM have to be?

Post by Pacey » Wed Dec 16, 2009 6:03 pm

For Internet auctions I grade visually as well as aurally - if it *sounds* NM then say so. But also grade it visually, you have what is probably light bagrash which although it doesn't affect the audio, it can put off the 'mint only' buyers. I recently sold a beautiful LOOKING Sgt Pepper for more than a VG one that sounded cleaner (stated as such in the auctions.) Some people buy for visuals so it's best to cater for both particularly when you're selling discs by collectable artists like PF.

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RE: How perfect does NM have to be?

Post by ChadFromCanada » Wed Dec 16, 2009 6:26 pm

Note the visible scuffs but state that it doesn't affect play if in fact it is like that. I agree that I wouldn't care if it had blemishes but sounded fine.
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RE: How perfect does NM have to be?

Post by rnb » Sun Jan 24, 2010 1:05 pm

Perhaps it is just me but I would not grade a record that has chemical stains or other obvious visual flaws as NM.

You might consider both visual and aural grading.

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Post by ShadySam » Sun Jan 24, 2010 1:58 pm

those 'clouds' you mention don't bother me as much as those little raised 'pimples' I sometimes
encounter (on an otherwise NM disc)... those 'lil suckers can play havoc on your stylus... :x

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Post by hrtshpdbox » Sun Jan 24, 2010 4:40 pm

Clouds, scuffs, pimples, anything - just drop it to VG + + and feel comfortable that there's no way you'll be accused of "over-grading". If you put up a sound clip with the auction then potential buyers have a lot more information to work with, and you've provided more disclosure.

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Post by CactusCowboy » Sun Jan 24, 2010 5:19 pm

IMO "Near Mint" is exactly what it means, NEAR mint. With experience in manufacturing, I know that producing something that's perfect (Mint) is virtually impossible. That's why tolerances are specified for manufactured parts and products and standards (with a range of acceptable variances) are in place for quality control purposes.

Most of us have bought enough new records to know that superficial scuffs and very minor warps are not uncommon. As long as such minor flaws on a used record do not audibly affect playback, I see no reason to not grade "NM."

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Post by hrtshpdbox » Sun Jan 24, 2010 6:23 pm

CactusCowboy wrote: Most of us have bought enough new records to know that superficial scuffs and very minor warps are not uncommon. As long as such minor flaws on a used record do not audibly affect playback, I see no reason to not grade "NM."
Can't agree, I think a seller should call a perfect record Near Mint, and call anything less than perfect something different. New records with superficial scuffs and very minor warps are VG+ or VG + +. "Minor flaws on a used record" does not sound like NM to me. Part of the grade for a record is visual, obviously, and a record with visual flaws can never be called NM regardless of how perfectly it might play; I've gotten too many records in the mail that seller's called NM that barely warrant a VG+, in my opinion.

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Post by whirlingdisc » Sun Jan 24, 2010 7:15 pm

hrtshpdbox wrote:
Can't agree, I think a seller should call a perfect record Near Mint, and call anything less than perfect something different. New records with superficial scuffs and very minor warps are VG+ or VG + +. "Minor flaws on a used record" does not sound like NM to me. Part of the grade for a record is visual, obviously, and a record with visual flaws can never be called NM regardless of how perfectly it might play; I've gotten too many records in the mail that seller's called NM that barely warrant a VG+, in my opinion.
Can't agree with this! A "perfect" record should be classified as Mint! If you're going to classify a "perfect" record as Near Mint, then what good is the "Near" part? Perfect in itself precludes the word "Near". The "N" in NM allows for miniscule flaws. I certainly agree that a record with a rim warp would never achieve that grade, but a record with a couple of light storage scuffs could easily qualify.
And I guess that's why there is so much disparity in the vinyl grading business. The best thing, in my opinion, is to accurately describe ANY flaws (visual or aural) and the buyer can make up his own mind.
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Post by hrtshpdbox » Sun Jan 24, 2010 9:13 pm

whirlingdisc wrote: The best thing, in my opinion, is to accurately describe ANY flaws (visual or aural) and the buyer can make up his own mind.
There's no way to accurately describe a flaw, ergo the grading system. "Small scratch on b-side", "light scuffs", "minor warp nap" - all of that is information, sure, and it's a plus to include it, but all of those terms (small, light, minor) are subject to interpretation on their own. If I call what looks "mint" to me "near mint", it means I've eliminated the possibility of the buyer spotting something that I might have missed. And if I think something is "near mint", "vg + +" accomplishes the same objective. So I guess I'm saying always drop a record down to a grade that it's arguably one grade better than, and include a sound clip - not only is that how a buyer really gets enough info to make up his own mind, but it virtually eliminates the possibility of complaints.

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