NGC vs PCGS slabs

Discussion in 'US Coins Forum' started by WingedLiberty, Apr 29, 2011.

  1. WingedLiberty

    WingedLiberty Well-Known Member

    NGC has won me over completely with their new format slabs.

    I used to be a pro-PCGS slab guy, but I have to say, now I greatly prefer the NGC slabs (they make the PCGS slabs look positively archaic).

    Also I get the impression that there are more counterfeit PCGS slabs and coins around -- I would think that an NGC slab would be harder to counterfeit since it's more complicated.

    My only complaint with the new NGC slab is a tiny bit of the rim and coin is obscurred by the prongs, which makes making a clean (complete) photo of the coin in the slab difficult. This certainly is a bigger problem on very small coins, as a larger percentage of the coin is obscurred in that case.

    Just curious, how do most of you guys vote on this subject? Do you prefer PCGS or NGC slabs? And how do you like the newer NGC modifications?

    I recently saw this promotion and learned a few things about the new slabs. Just thought I would share.

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  3. WingedLiberty

    WingedLiberty Well-Known Member

    By the way, in case any newbie that reads this thread hasn't seen a PCGS slab, this is their newest iteration -- called "PCGS Secure" I believe. Just wanted to show that for comparitive purposes.

  4. Panzerslayer

    Panzerslayer New Member

    My girlfriend saw one of my NGC pronged slabs and thought it was a part from the new bookshelf I was putting together. She thought it was some bracket where you had to punch out the middle. Then she realized it was a coin. Finally she saw the NGC logo and said "ew!"

    She made the comment it may have been cool if the slab and prongs were clear plastic instead of solid white. That would give it a kind of floating effect

    Personally I look at the coin and not the holder
  5. kidkayt

    kidkayt Senior Member

    My coins are strictly in OGP - I care for neither of those hyped up services / associations
  6. lkeigwin

    lkeigwin Well-Known Member

    I dislike the NGC prongs that obscure parts of the rim and ruin photographs. I prefer a clear background to a white one.

    The NGC slab is more difficult to crack open due to its softer plastic. Gotta hammer around the edge instead of one snip with a bolt cutter.

    Too bad NGC coins won't fit in PCGS boxes (just a tad tall).

    Some NGC slabs are scratch-proof. Nice, except that any scratches that make it through are impossible to polish out.

    Neither slab is a problem for serious counterfeiters.

    Over all, same coin in either slab, I'll take PCGS for its appearance. And, of course, its greater market value, generally.
  7. WingedLiberty

    WingedLiberty Well-Known Member

    interesting comments so far. why do you think PCGS coins bring higher premiums? are they stricter with grading?
  8. flyers10

    flyers10 Collector of US Coinage

    Nice job on this thread and very imformative. I really think the Registry craze helps PCGS bring in the higher premiums. If PCGS allowed NGC coins in their Registry Sets I think you would see that premium go away. Of course that will never happen.
  9. CamaroDMD

    CamaroDMD [Insert Clever Title]

    I agree. It's all the registry craze. The grading quality of both companies is very similar. As for the holder, I prefer PCGS because I don't care for the prongs on NGC holders. But, I prefer NGC for grading.
  10. flyers10

    flyers10 Collector of US Coinage

    I really like the new NGC slabs. Panzerslayer made a good suggestion about making those prongs in clear plastic.
  11. CamaroDMD

    CamaroDMD [Insert Clever Title]

    I agree, clear would be wonderful.
  12. WingedLiberty

    WingedLiberty Well-Known Member

    Here are two MS65 coins in my collection, one NGC and one PCGS,
    I just think the NGC slab looks more striking and professional.


    Here is my comparitive analysis of all the major elements of a slab:


    No comparison here. I think the NGC label with the gold bar on the bottom color the gold scale graphic is much better looking than the simple old-style text-only PCGS label that even i could print out on my printer.

    Slab Color (White vs. Clear):

    The clear is nice, no real complaints about it ... but I think the white looks more museum-quality.
    The clear color reminds me a bit of the old 2x2 plastic holders I used to buy back in the 1960's.
    So the white seems a bit more professional and modern (to my eye at least).

    Prongs vs Direct Fit:

    I like the way the PCGS holder does not obscure the coin front or back at all. (positive for PCGS).

    However, in the alternative, I like the way the NGC holder shows most of the coin edge (positive for NGC).
    Showing this so called "3rd side" comes in handy on a coin that has a lettered edge; and also helps in
    detecting counterfeit coin/slab pairs with fused halfs of coins in the case of a rare mintmark.

    To me, the prong style has more of the look of the way something might be displayed in a museum.
    The coin is really set off with the prongs -- making the coin look more expensive or rare in a subtle way.

    However I dislike the way the prongs do obscure a tiny bit of the rim and sometimes the face of the coin,
    so you cannot take a complete unobstructed photo.

    Slab Size:

    The NGC is slightly thicker and very slightly longer.
    Nice for display, but a negative if you are storing thousands of coins.

    Slab Feel:

    If you pick up the slabs, the NGC feels heavier and more substantial.
    The PCGS slab feels a bit cheap by comparison.

    Scratch Resistance:

    I think that the new NGC slabs use a scratch resistant plastic.
    Not sure about PCGS.

    Counterfeiting Issue:

    I don't have hard numbers on this, but I think that PCGS slabs are counterfeited a lot more than NGC slabs -- probably due to the fact that the PCGS slabs are cleaper (and easier) to make and the simple PCGS labels are easier to duplicate. Also if it's true that PCGS coins have a slight premium due to registry, then I can see why counterfeiters prefer those.

    One thing that I LOVE about the new NGC slabing process is all new coins graded by NGC are digitally imaged, and if you are an NGC member, then you can look at the digital image of the coin online. This is a huge positive in avoiding counterfeits as you can compare small details on the digital image with the coin you are buying. Big positive for NGC.
  13. Vroomer2

    Vroomer2 Active Member

    Do not like the prongs at all.
  14. Merc Crazy

    Merc Crazy Bumbling numismatic fool

    Pure slab aesthetics? PCGS. It has a cleaner look to me.
  15. Conder101

    Conder101 Numismatist

    Have you ever really looked closely at the PCGS slab? On a great many coin the clear "rubber" insert wraps over the rim and obscures MOST of it. It gets very frustrating on some 19th century coins where whether or not it is a proof or a business strike is important so you try a check out the rims to see if they are squared off and you cant SEE the rims because they are covered by that rubber insert. I've seen coins that were described as having unlisted rim cuds which when you see a good picture the "cuds" are actually that rubber insert.
  16. Vroomer2

    Vroomer2 Active Member

    Old PCGS slabs are snapped together holders. Where they come together around the coin, it looks like the coin has a nick or dent in it. Not a fan of the old holders because of that. Still like them better than prongs.
  17. mark_h

    mark_h Somewhere over the rainbow

    What about the edge view or halo slabs? Anybody have one of those to post? Personally I like PCGS slabs over NGC slabs, but not only because of the slabs - just a personal preference. I could not find a edge view or halo view picture. I dislike the prongs and solid white slabs. Nothing wrong with eithers grading either.
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