MS/PR69 OR MS/PR70~Can you tell the difference?

Discussion in 'Coin Chat' started by clembo, Feb 9, 2009.

  1. clembo

    clembo A closed mind is no mind

    How many members here think they could tell the difference between an MS70 coin and an MS69 before it was sent to a major TPG? Let's assume PCGS and NGC here.
    How many members here think they could tell the difference between a PR70 coin and a PR70 coin before it was sent to one of the aforementioned TPGS?

    I ask this question because so many are looking for those grades in modern mint issues. Be it from mint sets, proof sets, or the many products the mint now produces.

    Of course everyone is REALLY looking for the 70. Now if I were to get a 69 and a 70 of the exact same coin graded by PCGS or NGC but NOT YET in the holder would you be able to REALLY tell the difference and justify paying a hefty premium for it?
    I sincerely doubt most would.

    We send stuff in all the time at work and I often get elected to chose what to send in. Proof issues? Yes, I have seen a few that I thought merited the grade and sometimes they get that grade but I am, by no means, a professional grader.

    As for MS coins? I have YET to see one that I would grade MS70. I pick what I feel are the best and at times they come back as MS70. It makes the boss happy but I don't agree with the grade.
    Someone will pay much more for that MS70 because it reads so on the slab. What a shame IMHO.

    How about "First Strikes"? Follow the rules and you get a "first strike" designation. Same old story folks. If NOT in a piece of plastic that has been evaluated by "professionals" would you be able to tell?

    I DO feel that TPGs have an important role in protecting buyers from fraud, counterfeits, etc. especially in this day. However, I also feel they are going overboard and catering to dealers on the modern stuff.

    If I could buy a 1oz Gold Eagle in MS68 at melt or "upgrade" to an MS70 Gold Eagle for a $500 premium I'm going for the 68 every day. It's an ounce of gold and nothing more.

    Way back when I joined CoinTalk I introduced myself as someone that was not happy with what TPGs are doing to the hobby. I obviously still hold on to those feelings to an extent.

    Thoughts? Opinions?

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  3. borgovan

    borgovan Supporter**

    I would like to think I could tell the difference, but I don't know for sure. I think I would tend to be overly-harsh, and give everything a 69. I had an NGC PF-70 coin before, and I ended up returning it, because there is just no way it was a "perfect" coin. I just don't play that game anymore. By the way, PCGS is not great at this either. I had a proof lincoln cent with a copper spot on the obverse that you could see at arm's length. They gave it a PR-69. I sent it back for a review, and they wouldn't change the grade. Rapscallions all.
  4. Vess1

    Vess1 CT SP VIP

    The few 70s that I own and have studied the most, I was not able to find any type of flaws with them. The one 69 I own, I was able to find some very small marks on the rim that are probably what dropped it down. I haven't got enough experience to make a definitive answer on it, but so far, they seem to make sense with the few I have.

    I don't know how I would do selecting ones to send in. I'm sure some would be obvious to hold back.

    I really don't think it would be a lot to ask for the graders to make a note on why a coin received a 69 or lower instead of the 70. Even if it was a basic standardized format where all they had to do was select a button and a label prints out, such as "rim damage" or "hairline scratch upper obv. or lower rev.". Maybe even "weak strike". Just so you had some idea of why and to prove they're not just guessing when the grades get that high. I don't understand why they can't provide that.
  5. the_man12

    the_man12 Amateur Photographer

    I don't think I could tell the difference. I might not even be able to tell the difference between a pr67 and a pr70 to be honest.
  6. 900fine

    900fine doggone it people like me

    Can I tell the difference between PR70 and 69 ? Yes.

    First, let's draw a distinction in terms.

    There's a big difference 'twixt "a PR70 coin" and "a coin that comes back PR70".

    In the latter case, it's a crap shoot. It's all about percentages, since it's well known that a given coin submitted multiple times will not likely come back the same grade every time.

    In that regard, I definitely feel I could cherry-pick likely candidates. Give me 100 ASEs and I can pick a few which have a better chance of coming back 70.

    IOW... take 100 random 2009 ASEs and send 'em all to NGC. You'll get maybe 35 or so PR70s. Straight from the box, they have ~35% chance.

    Now... take several thousand ASEs and cherry-pick until you get 100 likely candidates for 70. Submit those 100. I think I would be around 70-75% on those (at NGC - less at PCGS).

    =~=~=~=~=~=~=~=~=~=~=~=~=~=~=~=~=~=~=~=~=~=~ for the former case... Can I tell a PR70 coin on its own merits, regardless of TPG opinion ? Yes.

    I don't wish to reopen The Great Debate about whether 70 coins actually exist. In my mind, they do.

    And I could happily pick one which is a 70 - by my personal standards, for my purposes, in my collection. I would not attempt to tell anyone else that it's a 70 for their purposes and collection.
  7. 900fine

    900fine doggone it people like me

    Which leads to another, related issue...

    Let's not be hypnotized by lofty numbers and exotic grades. A 65 coin should be a gem and have outstanding eye appeal.

    It all comes down to eye appeal, regardless of grade.
  8. 900fine

    900fine doggone it people like me

    Would I be able to tell ? No way. That's b/c there's no difference.

    The whole "First Strike" thing is targeted at entry-level folks on E-Bay.

    There's nothing wrong with being entry-level. Just don't pay extra for "First Strike" ... or 70 mystique.
  9. Harryj

    Harryj Supporter**

    No and No.

    Quite frankly MS 70 doesn't impress me. Its usually asociated with modern day coins. No big deal. I have a slabbed 1992 S cameo MS proof 70 Kennedy. Give me a MS 65 RD IHC or an older Lincoln MS 65 or 66 RD VS. a modern day MS 70!!! First strikes are another way to make $$.
  10. jazzcoins

    jazzcoins New Member

    Well can we really tell lets try just from the obverse of the coin

    here;s aPRF 70 and aPRF 69 slabbed deep cam Eagle coin

    Jazzcoins joe

    Attached Files:

  11. vincent2920

    vincent2920 Senior Member

    The only way I can tell the difference is by the "prices being paid" !!!
  12. huntsman53

    huntsman53 Supporter**

    Nothing to it, I just look on a SGS slab!:whistle:

  13. huntsman53

    huntsman53 Supporter**

    They ought to give designations to Silver Eagles like they do some other Silver coinage! The first one would have "Blast White" and the second one would have "Yellered".:goofer:

  14. jazzcoins

    jazzcoins New Member

    Do you mean YELLOOOOOOOOOOOOOOWED :crying::eek::eek: or yelllllllllllllllled :desk:FRANK

  15. huntsman53

    huntsman53 Supporter**

    I mean yellered! Being from the South and the Appalachians thats what we say when you your' teeth take on that yeller look before they turn green.

  16. 900fine

    900fine doggone it people like me

    From a life-size photo ?

    The difference 'twixt legit 69 an 70 is extremely small. Visible ONLY under a glass. If the problems are so easy to spot they're visible in a life-size photo without a loupe, then it's not a 69.
  17. green18

    green18 Sweet on Commemorative Coins Supporter

    Total agreement with you Harry. I feel the 70 designation is just another way to make a rarity out of a very common date coin.
  18. jazzcoins

    jazzcoins New Member

    I;m a little confused do you mean like this

    Alien ZEC

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  19. walterallen

    walterallen Coin Collector

    I agree with just about everything that you say Clembo.

    I feel the slab game is more about marketing then true numismatic accuracy. The only thing that would make me an advocate of TPG would be if a coin came back, lets say MS67, and it was accompanied by a report that listed reasons why. It could start at MS70 and say why the coin failed to make that grade, then go to MS69 and say why it couldn't make that grade, and so on. Otherwise there is way too much personal input, emotion and just plain subjectivity for me to be 100% about their finding. A person should have the right to know why, specifically. Specially for the money involved, both to have this done and ability to sell. Its become too much of a wheel of fortune game for my taste.

    Could I tell the difference between MS69 and MS70 or PR69 and PR70? Not today, but in time I plain to be able to. Having said that I know it will take viewing many many coins over many years to have the experience to do it.

    As a passionate lover of MS and PR coins I find slabbed coins quite unappealing. First I can't view it raw so inspection would have its limitations. And trying to suggest that the grade is wrong, even if its obvious, is like :headbang:, specially if someone, the seller, is money hungry.

    I could rattle on for days on this subject, so I stop here. Great post!

    Keep on Collecting!!!

  20. huntsman53

    huntsman53 Supporter**

    Ooooooh no! Since you are from New York State, that kind of yellering must be a result of Three Mile Island! Teeth down here, yeller with a much lower intensity than that.

    By the way, does that person's teeth glow in the dark??? If so, then they probably never have to use a flashlight!

  21. mrbrklyn

    mrbrklyn New Member

    FLAME WAR!!! :high5: :pencil:
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