CGC Comics Books
(Certified Guaranty Company) was created in 2000 as a way to
help bring stability and integrity to the grading of comic
For many, many years comics were only graded by the ones who
owned the books themselves.
Obviously there are still so many more books that have been
graded by the ones who own the books than ones that are
graded by CGC, but with CGC in place we all have the option
to submit books to them for grading or choose to acquire
only books that have been certified by CGC.
A summary of their processes are as follows:
Any owner of a book will send into CGC for grading. CGC
goes through a security process to ensure any book that was
sent into them matches what was listed by the sender.
The book(s) are then registered in their database. They
then have their grading team assess the book and after the
book has passed through three different individual graders
for the most part, a final grade is assigned.
is then placed into an interior archival envelope/holder
which is then sealed in an acrylic display holder with a
label that properly notes the grade and any pertinent
information such as certification number, title and issue
number, year of publishing, importance of the book and page
The display holder is clear on both sides so you can see the
front and back covers.
The display holder is setup where anyone who attempts to
remove the comic from the holder, it will have clear signs
that it has been compromised and would require the book to
be re-submitted to recertify the grade.
This helps any future trading of the book so perspective
buyers know that the book in the holder is truly the book
that received the grade on the label.
The book is then cataloged into their database with all
information as mentioned above and processed by their
shipping team who send the book back to the owner.
created their own grading standards and scales and bring an
unbiased and impartial assessment on any book. They have no
involvement with the trading of any book so this allows the
perspective buyer of any CGC graded book to know that there
are no manipulations in grading by the seller.
Their grading standard definitions are not published
anywhere and only note that they are of industry standards.
No one has any information as to how a grade is derived. We
can compare CGC books of the same final grade against one
another, but that does not necessarily help us know what
exactly they are looking for in assessing a grade.
Any books that have signatures from recognized writers,
artists, editors in the industry are verified by CGC in the
grading process. They also verify any restoration which may
include color touchups, tears sealed, missing pieces added,
etc…These are all identified on the grading label and in
fact they color code all labels for books in different
categories-regular untouched books have a blue label,
signature books have yellow labels and restored books have a
purple label. There is a green label for books that have a
qualifying defect such as a Marvel Stamp missing.
more collectors and dealers have come to accept CGC graded
books as the industry standard with the confidence level of
all who purchase certified books or submitted books through
them at an all-time high.
A lot of collectors and dealers may not always agree with
the grade that CGC assigns to any book, but it cannot be
contested and we all live with the results. The only way to
have any certified book be re-examined is to re-submit the
book hoping for a better grade the second time around.
CGC has available on their web site a census of all books
that have been graded by them. It’s an opportunity to see
how many of a given book has been certified by CGC and in
what grades. It’s not 100% absolute as mentioned earlier
that not all books have been certified by them, but is a way
to see what has been graded by CGC and where each book and
grades are currently at.
There does come a premium for acquiring CGC books. The
costs paid by the submitter to send in - have the book
graded and shipping costs to receive the book(s) back and
just the fact that the book has been professionally graded
has opened the doorway for many owners to ask more than what
normally a book would sell for in non-CGC form.
Be prepared that if you want to purchase CGC books, there
will be a 35% or more mark-up.
Personally I recommend only books that are significant in
history and price be considered for acquiring in CGC
format. Newer comics that have come out in the last 15
years or so do not make good candidates for CGC. I would
even say further back than that into the 1970s do not make
There have been some collectible items that have come out
since the 1980s, but none in my opinion are worth the
additional premium invested to either have the book
submitted for certification or already in certified graded
Books like Amazing Spider-Man #1, Fantastic Four #1, Justice
League #1 are good candidates for CGC grading, but books
like Batman #700 or Action Comics #900 are not.
Purchasing CGC Comics
reviewing sources for comic books, I typically like to check
out local comic book shops and conventions. I get to see
the comics in person and can examine more issues at one time than I could online.
certified graded comic books having to examine them in
person is not as paramount as it would be for non-CGC graded
books since you're not as leery due to the fact that CGC has
already graded the book and encased them into the CGC holder
for tamper proofing and as described above they have become
an industry standard and accepted by just about every
collector, buyer and seller.
For non-CGC graded books being purchased from online
sources, you want to have as many scans and pictures of the
book(s) you're interested in and a very detailed description
so you can make your best assessment on the book(s).
A lot of
collectors tend to ask about the condition of the CGC holder
first since they don't want any cracks or damages to the
holder which would force them to either pass on the book or
having to send into CGC for a holder replacement.
there are some instances where collectors and buyers
question a grade that the CGC has assigned, but most
collectors don't really need to examine a CGC book in person
in order to purchase them. Also many local dealers
tend to not have many CGC graded books available for sale as
a good majority of sellers have found using CGC books as a
great tool for marketing them online.
eliminates the need to sell them at local retail shops and
conventions as they open their market to the world by
selling them online.
is a great place to find CGC issues. They're a
national online seller and have been selling comic books
through the mail since the 1960s. They try to stock every issue of every
title that has ever been published.
see a large amount of
CGC covers of key books on this page that I
think will interest any CGC collection which will take
you directly to mycomicshop's inventory of that issue.
will see every condition of that issue they currently have
in stock so you can choose the right condition of the book
that you're looking for.
worried if you do not see an issue in stock or if it is CGC
graded when you click
on any of the links. Often times they will receive an
issue into their inventory on a fairly regular basis as they
purchase books and collections daily. Just go ahead
and bookmark the link after you've clicked on the issue here
or check back and click on the link to see if the issue
has come into stock. The links will stay permanently
purchased books from mycomicshop before and will continue to use them.
Their grading is accurate and they are a reliable source.
They have great customer service in providing you books in a
Amazon.com is another great choice. There is a
large amount of sellers who have their own eStores there and
offer a variety of issues. CGC books are in abundance
there and you would be surprised on what you find.
I have provided some direct links to some CGC books that are on sale at Amazon on this page which will
have additional details and purchasing information.
Simply click on any of the image links and you'll be able to
find more information on those issues. I could not
possibly provide a link to every book they have, but have
provided search boxes and using any of their direct links
will bring you to their site. There you can go further
search through for more CGC books.
Ebay is another option as there’s a lot of
collectors/sellers/dealers always looking to move in
and out of product and use Ebay as their avenue.
You may find some good deals on Ebay, but be careful to check out
the auctions and or Buy it Now listings carefully. Some
sellers’ terms are not right for everyone and sometimes the
items are not what you expect.
Always check out the seller’s profile to see how their past
selling has been. If they’re new to selling and have only
been buying, ask questions.
You always want to be comfortable with the person you’re
potentially going to be buying from and you really need to
know what it is you’re getting.
If you're looking for the largest selection of CGC comics, then ComicLink is
your best choice. They focus primarily on CGC
certified graded books and you can find a tremendous variety on their site.
They will have Golden Age, Silver Age and Bronze Age CGC
books. You will also find modern CGC graded books as
Enjoy your hunt and