Ancients- Do you digitally catalog your collection?

Discussion in 'Ancient Coins' started by CoinBlazer, Nov 18, 2019.

  1. CoinBlazer

    CoinBlazer Numismatic Enthusiast

    Do you use a website or type of software?
    Why or why not?
    If you can, show us!
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  3. Clonecommanderavgvsvs

    Clonecommanderavgvsvs Well-Known Member

    I use photoshop, simply take a pic of your coins and cut them out and paste them to a background and viola!
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  4. Evan Saltis

    Evan Saltis Teen Collector is what I use. There's a selection of coins and if one isn't there, you can add it yourself. I haven't had an issue. The only problem is that not every reverse is available as a specific type, so I typically add a "comment" stating the inscription. I only have 5 ancients, but here they are and how I marked them. Screen Shot 2019-11-18 at 9.18.51 PM.png
  5. dougsmit

    dougsmit Member Supporter

    I keep mine on an Open Office spreadsheet having moved it there from a sequence of earlier programs. Included in the 26 fields are coded numbers that allow sorting the coins in the order as I wish.
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  6. SeptimusT

    SeptimusT Well-Known Member

    Maybe it's old fashioned, but I just have a folder for different emperors (for Roman coins), moneyers (Roman Republic), and cities/states (everything else). I keep photos there. I also have digital versions of all of my typed flip labels in a Word file, and although it's not really organized, it's easy to find anything with a search. I envy Doug's spreadsheet, but I'm too lazy for that.
    Last edited: Nov 18, 2019
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  7. Bing

    Bing Illegitimi non carborundum Supporter

    I use Excel spreadsheet which also has a column where I keep images with the description of the coin. I record the full attribution, dates of the ruler. mint, image, date acquired, Acquisition source, notes regarding coin and provenance, and price paid and or price sold.

    I also keep a gallery of my coins at FAC.
  8. Severus Alexander

    Severus Alexander Blame my mother. Supporter

    I find spreadsheet apps to be too slow & clunky when dealing with photos (and I like to be able to browse my photos). A dedicated database app is better. I'm on a Mac and used to use Bento, which was great, but was discontinued. Now I'm using Tap Forms and I'm happy with it. It's not as pretty as Bento, but very functional. Here's a screenshot:

    Screen Shot 2019-11-18 at 8.13.57 PM.jpg
  9. Ken Dorney

    Ken Dorney Yea, I'm Cool That Way...

    I keep my collection small, under a few hundred. I keep everything on a Word document, formatted to my preference. My intent is when I dispose of my collection (or when I am done) I will print a copy and have it hardbound up for old times sake:

    Screen Shot 2019-11-18 at 8.57.23 PM.png
  10. Yorkshire

    Yorkshire Well-Known Member

    Just on FAC at the moment, post on Instagram/Reddit also
  11. akeady

    akeady Well-Known Member

    I store mine on Tantalus - I started work on my own database about 10 years ago, but have yet to make much progress... In the meantime, I have put some order on some of my Tantalus coins by listing the RR ones - and a start on Greek coins -,13.84545565625001&z=8 (the pins mark mints from which I've got coins, but most links not operational - Syracuse works)

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  12. TIF

    TIF Well that didn't last long :D Supporter

    I began using FilemakerPro in ~2013. The customizable layout was very nice and I also made a database of watched coins. The latter grew extremely time-consuming and eventually I became very behind in digital cataloging too. My website hasn't been updated in three years.

    Recently my Filemaker Pro stopped working because I hadn't updated to the latest editions. Mine was so out of date that they were forcing me to buy an entirely new version and it was very expensive. Since I hadn't been using it regularly anyway, I let it lapse and retrieved my data in various formats before my account was closed. The various formats saved will all require some manual tweaking to make the information useful and well-organized.

    Now I'm in digital limbo, waiting for life to settle down so I resume my digital organization, hopefully in early 2020 but it will be a long process.

    The trouble with Filemaker Pro illustrates a potential problem will all forms of digital storage: obsolescence, data loss, business closure, etc. Websites are not forever... just look at the number of dead links on many old CoinTalk threads.

    I haven't decided which digital format to use when I resume but it will likely be a spreadsheet. Perhaps I should also create an index card system or other hard copy file at the same time.
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  13. dougsmit

    dougsmit Member Supporter

    I started 3x5 file cards 35 years ago. I still make out one as soon as I get a coin and use it when entering data into the spreadsheet. My 3400 cards fit in one drawer of my computer punch card cabinet (other drawers have stereo cards and other junk - that 'built-like-a-tank cabinet was the best thing I bought when punch cards were first obsolete). I refer to them as often as I do the computer files.
    I also keep digital photos separate from the spreadsheet. They can be put on slideshow and watch random coins go by.
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  14. gsimonel

    gsimonel Supporter! Supporter

    I have about 1/2 my "permanent" collection posted online under two different collections:
    Bronze Coins of Constantine the Great and
    Coins of the Roman Empire

    Now that I am beginning to branch out into Greek bronzes, I will probably need to put together some new pages once I decide how I want to organize the collection.

    These web pages are the only digital record that I keep of the coins.
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  15. ancient coin hunter

    ancient coin hunter Khnum-Hotep

    I'm rather simplistic. I keep my coins in their flips or envelopes and don't have any kind of master inventory or database. So I don't really do anything different than when I started out collecting. I do have photos of each coin which I keep locally on my laptop as well as in the cloud (Google photos). I can see the benefit of a catalog system if for example one were liquidating their collection or bequeathing it to other folks.
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  16. Terence Cheesman

    Terence Cheesman Supporter! Supporter

    I use a system that is divide into two parts the first part looks like this ( This is just a sample) IMG_5176.JPG
    The basic coin is listed to the left along with my accession number then comes the date of purchase followed by a color bar denoting the decade of purchase 2010-2019 light grey. The term Good and the mid brown color bar denote. a coin with a single known provenance that can be proven and the Red bar with WH denotes who did the photo. The light green bar denotes the month I have used this photo on Coin Talk. Light green denotes November 2019 The provenance follows as does any other info eg being a plate coin AD 30 denotes the number on the second list which is placed on the flip which goes with the coin. The coin illustrated above
    Demetrios Polioketes Ar Tetradrachm Amphipolis 290-289/8 B.C. HGC 1014b 17.09 grms 31 mm demetriospoli3.jpg
    Last edited: Nov 19, 2019
  17. Sulla80

    Sulla80 one coin at a time Supporter

    I have a simple system - similar to @Bing. An excel spreadsheet - with images in one column - I have 15 attributes for each coin weight, ruler, denomination, metal, description, source, date acquired, price....Excel is a bit clunky with images but has improved quite a bit in recent versions. File folders of images - organized by major types i.e. Greek, RR, Parthian, Roman Imperial, Other. Description has all of the info I share often on obverse, reverse and references. I also keep relevant reference links to auctions, die matches, a bit klunky but functional. A weakness of the system is the link back to paper which accumulates in a file cabinet (tags, receipts, catalogs, other provenance) - the spreadsheet has accession numbers that I have not applied back to beginning of time.

    I like the idea of an online catalog, do any have easy ways to upload a collection from a data file? An export capability would also be nice to avoid losing curated data.
    Deacon Ray likes this.
  18. gsimonel

    gsimonel Supporter! Supporter

    If you have a gmail/Google account you could upload everything to a Google spreadsheet.
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  19. Justin Lee

    Justin Lee I learn by doing Supporter

    I use a WordPress blog to catalog my coins (, with a post for each coin in my collection. I just started in March/April. It allows me to tag and categorize each post/coin, is entirely searchable, and allows me to easily share with others and copy-and-paste from there into CoinTalk posts.
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  20. Broucheion

    Broucheion Well-Known Member

    Hi All,

    Sorry, this may be a bit too long for some.

    I'm no expert at the programming end of things. I started over 20 years ago with freeware that very soon became obsolete (but before that point it started to strain with what I needed it to do). I next went to spread sheets, which were fine, really, but photos were tricky to handle (but it can be done). About 20 years ago I settled on MS Access because I also used it at work. I set up my various coin databases then, when it was all new, fresh (and easier to assimilate). Since I collect several very specific areas I wanted a separate database for each. I've only tweaked things since then, betraying my laziness and inability to keep up with all the bells and whistles added to the program.

    I first needed to set up the fields describing the coin, its seller, and various notes and comments. My database has about 50 (yes, overkill) fields. Some of that large structure is shown below.


    Next, I needed a template to add the info into the database. Here is what I use.

    Design view & user's view.

    upload_2019-11-19_14-31-45.jpg upload_2019-11-19_14-31-45.jpg

    All my various 'reports' (database outputs) were set up as 'full info' or with no price shown ('priceless') format so I can trade data to the extent I see fit. I have three main types of outputs:

    1. flips,
    2. label view (using an MS label template I created a condensed view of multiple coins. This as a printout is useful. It’s small enough to carry around to coin shows.
    3. A single page per coin output view. One day I'll print that out and bind it. Now it's a rather large PDF, but it is very easy to word search and view on my iPad. I sometimes take screenshots from these for my list posts. Here are some sample views.

    Flips (I cut & fold as needed and insert into plastic flips)

    Label view

    Output View

    Again, sorry for the long post but I felt it might be instructive for the newcomers to cataloging. What you see is the result of many years of fine tuning so newbies should not be intimidated. You'll get there (and past there), I'm sure.

    - Broucheion
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  21. Carausius

    Carausius Brother, can you spare a sestertius?

    I started with a database in Lotus Organizer. When Lotus went defunct, I exported to a Windows Excel spreadsheet. When I got tired of duplicating efforts between entry into Excel and printed tags in MSWord, I designed my own database using MSAccess. The Access database creates filp tags and tray tags which I can print, saving lots of time.
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