Another silly newbie question. Proof vs UNC

Discussion in 'Coin Chat' started by Beardigger, Jun 25, 2019.

  1. Beardigger

    Beardigger Member

    I know the answer to this is that it depends on what people collect.......but in general are proofs better then Uncirculated coins. It seems to me , that proofs are a mint fabrication and not put into circulation.....so does that make them a fad coin?
    So if I wanted to get a start with some new coins that I might be able to use as trading stock down the line......would I be better off with Uncirculated or proofs. Also Graded vs Ungraded.
    For instance I could buy a 2019 silver quarter (.999) ngc graded PF70 for about $18....I could buya 2019 Set of UNC quarters for about $18. I could buy a Silver Proof Set for about double the cost of the UNC setWhich would be better?
     
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  3. thomas mozzillo

    thomas mozzillo Well-Known Member

    Welcome to Coin Talk. IMO US coins are a very bad investment option. Especially modern coins put out by the US Mint. Proof coins are not a fad. They were produced to be sold to collectors that wanted a coin as close to perfect that you can get. Personally, I buy only Silver Proof coins in sets. I buy these only to pass down to my children/grandchildren. I hope they will pass them on to their offspring but even if they sell them they'll make a profit because it didn't cost them anything. If you look at the purchase price of US Uncirculated coin sets and the price they are going for today, there's been a significant drop in price. Coin collecting (Numismatics) is a hobby. Some invest in Bullion coins but that too is a gamble. Collecting should be fun. If you have money to invest, go to an Investment advisor. Probably others will disagree but that's my opinion on this. To answer the last part of your question just compare the Issue price of Silver Proof sets, Clad Proof sets, Uncirculated sets and the price they're selling for today. (Purchase prices are n the Red Book).
     
    Last edited: Jun 25, 2019
    Randy Abercrombie likes this.
  4. Randy Abercrombie

    Randy Abercrombie Supporter! Supporter

    Welcome to coin collecting. A lifetime addiction..... Lots of answers will be coming your way. I’ll just offer this. A proof coin is a deliberate process. They are not meant for circulation however they are still legal tender. The process a proof coin undergoes insures that the coin will be as perfect is is humanly possible. They are a joy to look at...... A business struck coin is just that. Working dies bang out millions of them. Only those that are struck early in the life of the dies are of a high enough quality that is sought after by the most scrutinizing collectors........ So, yes a proof coin is expected to be near perfect. Thus they typically do not bring strong premiums. A business struck coin is not expected to be perfect. However those few business struck coins that do achieve that near perfect status are highly collectible and quite pricey...... Hope that makes some sense.
     
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  5. Jaelus

    Jaelus The Hungarian Antiquarian Supporter

    If you want to get into something fun, try prooflike coins. These are business strikes that have an appearance close to that of a proof.
     
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  6. Dillan

    Dillan The sky is the limit !

    Personally I would be looking to buy pre 1964 90% silver coins. If you can buy them unc. at a good price that is what I would do . Find a good dealer and let them know what your wanting and they will most likely be able to get what ever it is that you want. Now for coins after 1964 I buy low mintage productions made by the various mints. Some of those have done well as far as increasing in value. I am talking about coins with a mintage of less than 100K. Not all do well but the ones that do well seem to make up for the ones that do not. There was a set of coins featuring different Birds first year I believe was 2007 , the mintage was low and the prices for those have increased very well. I also look to buy old coins , in the 1800s early 1900s . These may not increase in value but they should hold their value. As far as ancients go , well that is a whole different ball game which I am just barely familiar with . I prefer the coins made for circulation in a uncirculated condition over the proof coins . The proofs are pretty to look at but getting a high MS circulation coin I feel is just as good and seem to retain their value. These are my opinions , and take from it what you want . Others I am sure have their own ways of collecting. The main thing is only spend what you can afford , and keep it fun and take the time to learn about the coins that you purchase they will mean a lot more to you that way. Good Hunting !! Dillan
     
  7. Cheech9712

    Cheech9712 Every thing is a guess

    High end MS. 64-67 are where its at. MS 68 or higher are considered and most likely untouchable for most of us. Way early proofs yes. Most proofs dated while most people are still alive. Not so much. But a few. 65-67 proof set for example. Great circulated condition coins with good strikes. take the cake IMO
     
  8. Cheech9712

    Cheech9712 Every thing is a guess

    @Beardigger. Think randy said it better. He's the wise man
     
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  9. Randy Abercrombie

    Randy Abercrombie Supporter! Supporter

    May I tell my wife and kids that?
     
  10. green18

    green18 Sweet on Commemorative Coins Supporter

    'Proof' is a method of manufacture and not a 'condition'. Proof coins are struck from specially prepared, highly polished dies, struck with higher pressure, and struck multiple times.

    Now ya gotta ask yourself.......which one do I want to collect? Well, why not both? The sets are relatively cheap (proof and uncirculated). Especially in the aftermarket. They proliferate on ebay and at local shows........
     
    mikenoodle likes this.
  11. Beardigger

    Beardigger Member

    I have some old graded MORGANS from my dads collection. Graded byPCGS in the old style holders. 2 1880 S graded MS64 1 1882-s graded ms64 and a Morgan graded by NCG that is an 1885 MS66, I guess I need a red book to find the values,
    Dad seemed to like morgans. there are also a lot of ungraded ones in the cardboard coin sleeves seems to be a lot of O's
     
  12. green18

    green18 Sweet on Commemorative Coins Supporter

    No you don't, and those published prices are quoted way before the date the book went to press. You need something more 'up to date'. Recent auctions from ebay, Heritage, and Great Collections, might be a starting point. Even then, the assessment of value can't be confirmed.
     
  13. Randy Abercrombie

    Randy Abercrombie Supporter! Supporter

    Greenie is 100% correct. Yes you do need a Redbook. But you need it for the resource information. Do not rely on the Redbook to evaluate your collection.
     
    markr likes this.
  14. green18

    green18 Sweet on Commemorative Coins Supporter

    Mitigating factors contribute to the value of a coin.
     
  15. Beardigger

    Beardigger Member

    Here is what confuses me......while looking at dad's coins. I find several Peace dollars. 2 1926 S and a 1928 S....he has written on the cardboard cases XF/AU.... so I try doing a little research online. Seems both are sought after coins. One site says the S coins are more in demand by collectors then the P even though the P coins were a really small run. The other site said just the opposite ....that the P's were mush more sought after and the S coins are only worth about $40 in AU condition.
    Also is grading coins subjective? Would they be worth sending out for grading? They look better then the AU ones I looked at. BWDIK?
     
  16. thomas mozzillo

    thomas mozzillo Well-Known Member

    Welcome to Coin Talk @Beardigger. If you're interested in collecting coins the best thing you can do right now is buy yourself a copy of the Red Book. The official title is "A Guidebook Of United States Coins". It's loaded with so much valuable information that some consider it the Bible of US Coin books. It's not true in all cases that S minted coins are worth more than P minted coins. For Peace dollars the two most valuable coins in circulated condition are the 1921 and 1928 dollars minted at Philadelphia. (No mint mark on coin). For example; Coin World magazine has the 1926 S at $27 and 1928 S at $50. The 1921 P at $130 and 1928 P at $260 (All XF graded). It seem that the S mint Peace dollars are more expensive than P mint in high grade coins, MS65 and above.
    Personally, a coin has to be valued at $125 or more before I'd send it in to be graded. Everyone has their own standard as to whether on not to have a coin graded by a TPG.
     
  17. Randy Abercrombie

    Randy Abercrombie Supporter! Supporter

    Grading coins for protection and future posterity of family heirlooms is a worthwhile cause. Grading fairly common circulated coins in hopes of monetary gain is a way to lose money.
     
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