What would you rather have?

Discussion in 'Coin Chat' started by Kevinfred, Mar 23, 2014.

  1. Kevinfred

    Kevinfred Junior Member

    While searching for a coin I need/want today I was left with a question... (and we're talking larger coins, Morgans, Peace, etc.)

    Would you rather have a coin with bag marks and/or scratches? (low MS)
    Or would you rather have a coin with a little rub? (high AU)

    I'm sure this is an age old question but up until recently I'd have *always* taken the low MS because it was "MS"

    Now that I've been collecting a while now, my opinion is starting to change a little...
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  3. ReaperRuler

    ReaperRuler Resident Numismatist

    High AU. I always prefer circulated stuff because it has character. If I can afford low MS, I may do it, but it depends on the coin.
  4. aubade21

    aubade21 Well-Known Member

    Boy, this is a question that is hard to answer without first saying "it depends."
    Still, if I were to select between the two, I'd probably go with the MS, too. Not to say that a high AU could not be a superior coin in certain situations, but if we are just going with two hypothetical coins, I'll take an MS with a few bag marks.
  5. wishingman42

    wishingman42 Member

    I think i would take MS, The better the coin the pretty it is to me.
  6. BooksB4Coins

    BooksB4Coins Newbieus Sempiterna

    Generally speaking, if devoid of common to low MS marks/issues, and if all that's holding the example to Ch AU is a little rub, the choice should be obvious.
  7. Kevinfred

    Kevinfred Junior Member

    Not to throw a wrench into this quasi-poll, but lately I've seen some *very* marked up coins in 60-62 holders...
  8. Endeavor

    Endeavor Well-Known Member

    I've seen grades all over the place between high-AU/low-MS. The market (in general) doesn't know any better and places value on the number inside the plastic. It is what it is.
  9. KoinJester

    KoinJester Well-Known Member

    Which has better eye appeal. Its like asking what color to paint a room white or off white.

    If the AU coin is a 64 with the slight rub then like Books said, the answer is obvious. IMO one should stay away from 60-62 coins unless its a very expensive date.
    bsowa1029 likes this.
  10. Chiefbullsit

    Chiefbullsit CRAZY HORSE

    If you can't decide get one of each...;)
    bsowa1029 likes this.
  11. I would buy a clean AU58 over a marked MS60-61 any day, and any money saved can be used to buy even more attractive coins.
  12. kanga

    kanga 65 Year Collector Supporter

    Your question is being asked and discussed more and more often.

    People I talk to generally prefer the high grade AU coin over the low grade MS coin.
    That happens to be my opinion also.

    Low grade MS coins (MS-60, -61 & -62) are now more often being looked at as "damaged" and less appealing than an AU-58 or -55.
  13. bsowa1029

    bsowa1029 Franklin Half Addict

    Really depends on the eye appeal of the particular coin. But generally speaking, if I had to choose between an AU58 and a MS60, 61, or 62 I would probably opt for the 58 almost always.
  14. mill rat41

    mill rat41 Member

    I am a sucker for luster and detail. So, I would probably go for the UNC. If the slider still had very near full luster- then I would go with an AU (if the price was significantly cheaper). High end AU coins tends to be graded and sold as UNC all too often though, making a choice AU sometime hard to find.
    Kevinfred likes this.
  15. d.t.menace

    d.t.menace Member

    In the Morgan series, there are a few coins where the difference in price between MS and AU is quite dramatic. For myself, being a budget limited collector, if I wanted say an '84S for instance. I would be more than happy to shell out $300 for a nice clean AU versus having to really dig deep for $6500 for an ugly baggy MS. I'm not going to spend the kids college fund just so I can say I have a MS.
  16. Tom B

    Tom B TomB Everywhere Else

    If forced to choose then the one that has better eye appeal and is the greater value.
  17. KSorbo

    KSorbo Well-Known Member

    For low grade MS coins it would depend on what brought the coin down to that grade. If it was a lot of smaller marks I would probably prefer it to an AU providing that it had good luster and eye appeal. However, if it was one or a few large distracting marks or rim dings bordering on damage I would go with the AU.
  18. Conder101

    Conder101 Numismatist

    I'd take a nice AU over a baggy 60 -62 any day.

    On one of my Conder tokens I actually downgraded a MS-62 to an XF-45 because I liked the eye appeal/color better.
  19. quarter-back

    quarter-back Active Member

    Good question. I'd take the MS coin since I collect without regard to possible re-sale. My preference is to look at my collection as a whole rather than coin by coin and the MS coin would probably be a better match for what I have.

    Let's go to another level. I was looking at Morgan the other day that I need for my set. When I asked for the price, the dealer said that it was about four times what I considered a reasonable price for the year/date. His rationale was that the coin was prooflike and prooflike coins from that year are rare, which is reasonable. However, despite the fact that I could see no evidence of wear, looked like it spent several years in circulation. So. the question - a beat up proof-like or a clean normal strike?
  20. Conder101

    Conder101 Numismatist

    Clean normal strike no question.
  21. Silverhouse

    Silverhouse Well-Known Member

    Right now I am collecting the Barber Quarter series and I am choosing choice AU grades, or low mint state when I can afford it. It depends on the coin though. I know there are a few key dates I won't be able to afford in AU, but I'll eventually get them in the grade I can afford.
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