Vinyl grading: am I being picky?

Discussion in 'Marketplace Discussions' started by Mister President, Aug 31, 2019.

  1. Mister President

    Mister President Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Call it picky, call it OCD....or just call me a pain in the backside.

    I recently purchased on discogs a VG+/VG (vinyl/cover) record that I've wanted for a while, it arrived and straight away noticed a few things: the top seam split across the whole top of the sleeve (VG ?) and a 4 inch scratch on one side. The split was mentioned in the listing though I didn't know it was the entire length of the sleeve, and the scratch wasn't mentioned at all.

    The record actually plays pretty well but I just couldn't unsee that noticeable big scratch, it bugged me.

    So sent back and waiting for the refund. It wasn't that cheap, the seller seemed annoyed I returned it, but I just couldn't see it as a VG+/VG, the world of vinyl grading argh!

    As mentioned it played pretty well and the scratch didn't effect play...should I have just kept it? I'm sure some people wouldn't have cared as much as I did.
  2. sparkmeister

    sparkmeister Forum Resident

    Abergavenny UK
    Was the scratch audible?
  3. Chemguy

    Chemguy Forum Resident

    No, you are not being unreasonable at all.

    A split seam all across the top ain’t VG. A large scratch could still be VG+, but if it’s audible, that not right. If it’s not audible, then ok...
    Mister President likes this.
  4. DK Pete

    DK Pete Forum Resident

    Levittown. NY
    I'm very much like you and I'm sure we're in good company here. For me, it would depend on how rare the album is by my other words, is it one that's been very hard to find at a decent price that I could afford. The 4 inch scratch *would * annoy me if it was deep enough that it caused pre-mature wear on my stylus...and yes, I'm very anal when it comes to the condition of album covers as well. but again, if it was an album that was important to me and not that easy to find (affordably), I most likely would have kept it and lived with it. If it's one i can find relatively easy, I'd return this copy.
  5. Mister President

    Mister President Forum Resident Thread Starter

    No not really...but boy a 4 inch scratch deep across most on one of the sides REALLY annoyed me. I think that and paying quite a bit for it...why do I put myself through this.:confused:

    The scratch was so noticeable I'm stunned it didn't effect the record but also can't see how the seller missed it.
  6. Mister President

    Mister President Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Yes I feel the listing was a little vague on purpose...or they just don't know much about records.
    lightbulb likes this.
  7. When In Rome

    When In Rome It's far from being all over...

    I think you were well within your rights to return the item if it's not as described.
    When I list something on eBay I point out every flaw, photograph every crease and describe it the way I see it. I probably paint a worse picture than I should but I really don't want any disappointed customers.
    One day I may even sell something...
  8. Mister President

    Mister President Forum Resident Thread Starter

    100% the same. It rare in the UK as it's a US pressing 70s funk album...but I'd rather play the long game and find one in the wild. Lesson learnt.
  9. sparkmeister

    sparkmeister Forum Resident

    Abergavenny UK
    Personally, if scratches aren’t audible, they don’t bother me but the sleeve should never have been rated VG imho.
  10. DK Pete

    DK Pete Forum Resident

    Levittown. NY
    If the scratch isn't audible even in soft parts of the songs, then I'd say, ok. But what if the music is just too loud for the scratch to be audible? It's still not good for the stylus each time it plays over I'm not so sure.
  11. Gaslight


    Northeast USA
    Possible OCD, at least on the cover. It's VG...that means there's going to be some flaws and it was advertised. (I didn't see the listing so not sure how it was worded). Splits are generally allowed with VG, as long as the cover hasn't completely separated.

    The scratch on the side I would have mentioned, if I was the seller. Best to be transparent about these things for exactly this reason. But if it wasn't audible...maybe discussing a price break instead of a return/refund? Unless of course you just can't stand the site of scratches.
  12. Chemguy

    Chemguy Forum Resident

    No, some guys are a bit shifty when it comes to play grades...seen it too often.
    Mister President and Satrus like this.
  13. Dr. Funk

    Dr. Funk Forum Resident

    Fort worth tx
  14. DeRosa

    DeRosa Forum Resident

    It looks to me like you desire "near mint" condition, so if you buy a VG/VG+ you will be disappointed.

    In my experience, anything below a "near mint" is going to have some significant flaws.
    VG? Personally wouldn't waste my time with it, the chances of it being very flawed are high.
  15. Slick Willie

    Slick Willie Decisively Indecisive

    sweet VA.
    VG+ vinyl is going to have issues, if not audible, I consider that a win. The VG rated cover is pushing it, I would have stated how bad. And the scratch should have been mentioned.
    Mister President likes this.
  16. SwollenGoat

    SwollenGoat Forum Resident

    Ontario Canada
    By Goldmine grading standards that Discogs uses, a VG+ cover can have a slight seam split and a VG can have a more pronounced split.
    The seller graded properly according to the accepted grading method, if it was me I would have included the seam split in the sellers notes to avoid this hassle.
  17. mkane

    mkane Musics a Passion

    Bit of hot glue and
    Mister President likes this.
  18. Satrus

    Satrus Forum Resident

    Cork, Ireland
    No, I don't think you are being picky at all. A record that is offered for sale should be described in detail citing every flaw/defect/damage that it has including sleeve damage or wear. It is only on the basis of a full, clear and honest description that one can evaluate whether one wishes to purchase the item. Some sellers are just flippant and try to get away with certain things. Not mentioning a 4" scratch is fraudulent in my opinion whether it reproduces on replay or not. That is some seam split? It should have been properly described without the full extent of the damage being 'held back' .. deliberately probably. Remember too, it is your hard earned, after tax, money and if you get something that is not up to standard, you probably won't ever play it. Sellers, like your one, really annoy me and the pity is that there are too many of them. Going forward, and you know this already, it is probably better to look for NM/M- for the record, where possible. Even at that, some jokers will tell you a record is NM/M- when it patently is not. Just recently, I bought a 2LP set from a Seller on Discogs, supposedly NM/M- for both vinyl and sleeve. It transpired that there is a loud scratch of Track One, Side Two, visible and audible. To be honest, I am reaching the point where I will just buy from Japanese Sellers in future when shopping for Used Vinyl. Most of them are clued in and have high personal standards and integrity. I will also buy from trusted Sellers with whom I have dealt in Europe and the U.S. One of the dealers I buy from in Japan describes every last detail in relation to the record and sleeve. This is the kind of person I want to deal with whose standards and attention to detail are on all fours with my own. In over twenty years dealing with him, I have never been less than delighted with anything I have bought from him. There are too many people out there who just don't have a clue, are dishonest or inattentive to detail, or all three.
  19. Pavol Stromcek

    Pavol Stromcek Formerly thoutah

    SF Bay Area
    You're not being picky, but this is why I've pretty much stopped buying anything online graded lower than NM. VG+ is too open to interpretation to be a reliable grade. Even though it allows for minimal surface noise, far too many sellers seem to think excessive persistent surface noise (or a dense web of hairline scratches) is fine for a VG+ record. And I've already had enough problems with NM records, but at least NM has a very clear-cut definition, so it's easier to return something graded as NM that isn't.

    So, while technically a VG+ record should be quite listenable and mostly free of distracting surface noise, in reality, lots of sellers pass off what should be VG- or worse records as VG+.
  20. kwadguy

    kwadguy Senior Member

    Cambridge, MA
    An easily visible big scratch should ALWAYS be noted in the grading (we're talking about a scratch that anyone would see, not a surface scratch you see only at one angle in harsh light or whatever) for an LP graded at VG+. If the seller didn't mention that, then you have every right to return it, and to expect the seller to pay shipping both ways. It doesn't matter if you can hear it.
  21. Mister President

    Mister President Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Well it's a funk album so has to be played loud lol and the music itself is very upbeat and noisy so maybe that's why I didn't hear any problems, I did think about the stylus too.
  22. Mister President

    Mister President Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Probably doesn't help that there are no pics on discogs, I know you can ask for them, but still. Think i've reached the point now that if a record isn't sealed online I won't bother, sorry to hear about the recent purchase, that's exactly what I want to avoid. I've actually had better luck on ebay which I didn't think would happen.
    Lucca90 likes this.
  23. Mister President

    Mister President Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Vinyl wise I don't buy anything less than VG+ and will stick to that, quality over quantity for me everytime and I'm joining your club of only buying NM records online, which probably means sealed. Frustrating as there are so many trashed records in London record shops (seriously throw them away!) I'm forced to go online to find what I want.
  24. R. Totale

    R. Totale The Voice of Reason

    I agree, and if one whole seam is totally split I expect that to be noted as well. To me, one whole seam open barely qualifies as G.
    kwadguy and Mister President like this.
  25. vinylontubes

    vinylontubes Forum Resident

    Katy, TX
    Seam splits are allow on VG+. Up to 1 inch and only on the bottom. If the cover has anything beyond this it's VG at best. The scratch is allowed as long as it isn't detectable during play.
    Mister President likes this.

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