Huge PSA 10 Mistake?

Purchased this Star Birth Charizard V SR in PSA 10 condition from ebay. It even went through ebay’s authenticity guaranteed check. Look at this gnarly scratch on the front of the card. Its about 3/4" long. I’m 99% positive its on the card and not the case. I have PSA cases with scratches on them and they always look like they are “above” the card. This looks clearly to me like its on the card and when you shift the card in the light it jumps out at you as a very deep scratch. I’m working on getting to return the card (hopefully ebay takes my side on this one).

Did PSA just totally make a big mistake on this one? Like they must have rushed through this card and never shifted it in the light. Straight on you don’t see the scratch but move the card around and it jumps out at you.

Just warning you, but you’re going to get a lot of shit on here for trying to return the card. The prevailing view on here (which I tend to agree with) is that PSA’s mistakes aren’t the seller’s problem.

But as to your question, yeah PSA (and all grading companies) make mistakes sometimes. This looks like an example of that.


Just graded a psa 10 with a corner ding. :see_no_evil:

If the seller doesn’t accept it then you can return it to PSA and they will most likely refund you the difference between the price of a PSA 10 and the price of whatever the newly determined grade is. That’s what they did with my last mechanical error return.


I’ve bought a decent amount of these raw and a non-insignificant amount have had that exact same defect. I am assuming its just a common printing error, but I can’t blame you for not wanting it on your 10.

I looked through ebay quickly and found one that has the same defect: Card PSA 10 Charizard V Alt Art s9 Star Birth 103/100 Japanese JPN Pokemon | eBay. Tough to spot, but if you look in the same spot you can make out it out faintly.


It’s now just the standard for items that go through authenticity.

PSA 10 doesn’t mean 100% perfect card. Buy the card, not the slab.


Not saying I vouch for them, but if that Cardrush subsidiary really went through their QC process that was shown on video, it’d be impossible to miss things like this. (Can’t remember which thread and who posted it.)

Again more evidence to backup that, if you’re not a casual, you’re a tougher grader than these companies.

Unless the seller mentioned anything about the condition to where they lied about something, there is nothing you can do about it. And it won’t let you return it.

They are still supposed to make sure the description of the auction is accurate with graded cards as well but they don’t. I got a PSA 9 where they said in the listing there were no dents or scratches. Got the card and it had several deep holo scratches and a fingernail dent to the left of the holo they clearly hid in photos. Regraded it for curiosity and it got downgraded to an 8.

I don’t think there is an issue with being upset for an undisclosed major issue. I just wanted to point out the irony in your username my dude. Lol made me smile


It’s not the first time I’ve seen a PSA 10 with some type of scratch or mark. Keep in mind, ‘virtually perfect’ is what PSA stands by with PSA 10. Do I think it should be a 10? Probably not, especially on a non-vintage holo type card. But it may not necessarily be a mistake in PSA eyes given you have to blow it up under light to find the flaw.

PSA 10 Definition:
A PSA Gem Mint 10 card is a virtually perfect card.

Attributes include four perfectly sharp corners, sharp focus and full original gloss. A PSA Gem Mint 10 card must be free of staining of any kind, but an allowance may be made for a slight printing imperfection, if it doesn’t impair the overall appeal of the card. The image must be centered on the card within a tolerance not to exceed approximately 55/45 to 60/40 percent on the front, and 75/25 percent on the reverse.

So my guess is PSA would consider this a slight printing imperfection, assuming that’s what it is.

They only do this for raw cards. For graded cards, they’re just making sure it’s an authentic graded card, the cert matches, etc. They’re not making sure the card inside the slab matches any kind of condition standard or anything disclosed in the listing - that’s the point of having it graded in the first place.

For graded cards, a PSA authenticator will verify that the case and label are authentic to the grade and check for any tampering and verify that the case and label are authentic to the grader. Cards will not be regraded.

As others have said here, this is not something that should be returned. That is bad buying behavior. You bought a PSA 10 and you received a PSA 10. Authenticity Guarantee confirmed that you received the card that you bought.

If you have an issue with the grade provided, reach out to PSA for a review. It is not the seller’s fault that you disagree with PSA’s grade.


Woah looks like I really stepped on a nerve here at e4. :stuck_out_tongue:
I would have to respectfully disagree that its not the seller’s responsibility. Scratches are one of the hardest things to see without looking at the card in person. Whiting on edges and bends can usually be detected in a photo before you buy. But scratches generally show up as the light shifts over the card. So seems to me like the seller should have contacted PSA and gotten this figured out if they got the card graded. But I can understand and respect people disagreeing with me.

Wow that definitely seems like a PSA mistake to me. I’ve had one with of whitening on a corner and I thought that was ok but a bend seems completely unacceptable to me for a 10.

Interesting I didn’t know they would do that. Thanks for the heads up.

Interesting wow, that does seem to support the idea of it being a print error. That makes sense too because its one of the deepest scratches I’ve ever seen on a card. Usually when a holo has scratches its more like surface abrasions that are light but can be substantial in number. Or its one or more that look like something really sharp and super thin created it. This is like deep and wide to the point that in the texture of the card it forms a canyon style impression.
Did you send any of yours in with those defects and what did PSA grade them as? I’m now worried there are a ton of these out there like this.

Hey Scott sorry what do you mean by this? Are you saying that a lot of cards with these defects are being tagged for ebay authenticity to avoid having to deal with PSA’s mistake? Also thanks for chiming in. I’ve been enjoying going through your youtube videos lately over the past year and hearing about your thoughts on the market and what has happened to Pokemon card collecting.

I hear you, but the trouble is universally PSA 10 cards tend to have a single forward facing picture or scan from the front and one from the back. Its generally rare for the listing to have enough pictures to identify a scratch. Without getting it in hand how do you tell what the card really is like? If I cared most about the slab and not the card I wouldn’t be frustrated with a 3/4" long scratch in the middle of my full art SR card, I’d be ok because “its a PSA 10”.

Sorry I’m not familiar with the video you are referring to. What was it about?
Yeah I’m definitely a tough grader lol. I’ve held 10’s I thought weren’t worthy of a 10 but this is whole different level to me. This sticks out like a sore thumb as a major defect. Like even a child would recognize a problem with this card if they were trading holos on the playground like the old days.

That’s frustrating. It actually kind of makes PSA cards potentially more dangerous to buy than ungraded. Lower chance of getting a bad one or mistake but if you do it could be costly so high severity if you get unlucky.

Thanks for understanding. Its just frustrating to spend hundreds on a 10 specifically because you want an excellent example of a card for your collection to hold for years and to get one that should in my humble opinion be several grades lower. I’d rather pay PSA 7 or 8 prices if this is the quality I’m getting.
Haha yeah I came up with this name a LONG time ago and have stuck with it. It was supposed to be in reference to all the time I was wasting online collecting and looking at all this stuff but hopefully I’m not wasting everyone’s time here.

I understand what you’re saying and definitely understand PSA allowing minor print imperfections. I’ve seem print lines and things like that being allowed. But you have to understand this scratch is deep, big, and about 3/4" long. You don’t have to blow it up in person or look hard to see it. Shifting the card at all in the light it jumps out at your more than most scratches I’ve encountered. It absolutely impairs the appeal of the card especially with it being right over Charizard’s wing it really sticks out.

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Alright @Dyl I appreciate you chiming in. Can you help me understand why this is bad buying behaviour. To most on this forum dropping $400 is nothing for a card. For me its actually not something I’ve ever done. This is the most expensive card I’ve ever bought. I buy it expecting 10 quality. Anyone with eyes can see there is a clear issue with it. If the seller was the one who got it graded then either:
A) they didn’t notice the defect. I think you’d have to be in a hurry but its certainly possible.
B) they noticed and wanted to get it sold and off their hands. Now if this is the case why not reach out to PSA yourself and get this fixed if you know something is wrong with it? Why pass this mistake on to the next person for them to deal with and for them to lose money. He likely spent MUCH less on this card so he doesn’t have nearly as much to lose by sending it back to PSA to resolve the mistake.
C) He bought it from someone else who had it graded. In this case again I think the seller to him should have taken care of this issue.

I’ve sold hundreds of things on my ebay profile and I’ve helped customers for years at work. You should always try to make your buyer/customer happy within reason. If you know you are giving them a bad product then disclose it. You will lose value but its the right thing to do. Hiding a bad product behind PSA’s grade seems like poor service to me.

But whatever maybe I’m flat out wrong. Sounds like most here will disagree and that’s fine. I guess in the future I’ll be asking for more pictures of every PSA card I buy because they lost my trust.

It’s definitely the exception and not the rule for PSA 10s to have an issue like this. By and large out of the 1000s and 1000s of PSA 10s out there, they are going to be perfect or very close to perfect. As @Pbali points out, if it’s a card with a known print defect, then PSA may still allow it to get a 10 even with that flaw. This is similar to many other cards that can exhibit flaws and still receive a 10. For example, English Jungle Holos tend to have the silvering and rough cut edges and if that’s the only flaw they have then they too can still receive a PSA 10 because it’s a very common/factory defect that they exhibit on almost every known example.

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Since it’s already authenticated by eBay, getting a return will be near impossible unless the seller actually wants to accommodate it. Personally, If I were the seller, I would decline the refund. The seller is selling the opinion of PSA. This is why I’m glad eBay implemented this authenticity guarantee, or else selling graded cards would be a nightmare with buyers believing a certain card doesn’t meet their personal standards for condition (ex. small whitening, chipping, scratches, OC).
Overall though I’ve seen worse 10s. One thing to remember is each grader has different opinions like most people buying graded cards.

I’m not as educated as many within E4, but I believe we who buy PSA10 cards (I am included) are buying them for their grade rather than the exact quality. Of course, we want it to be “perfect,” but these are graded by people who are most likely getting paid an hourly rate. We’re hoping they take it seriously, but mistakes happen. I know I have a stack of 10s that are uglier than some 9’s I have.

Just throwing out my opinions. When buying 10s, I usually see them as investments. For modern, I typically buy 3-5 copies of raw cards that look good on eBay, grade them, and hope for the best. So far, the print quality has been pretty good, so I have higher chances at 10’s.

For your specific situation, you can relist and hope someone else gets it, then buy a new copy, hit up PSA and try to get it corrected (IDK how this works because I’m lazy), or you can hold and hope it goes up over time and once again hope someone else doesn’t care. Whoever sold it to you did nothing wrong, as they sold you a PSA 10 Charizard, as noted.

I wish you all the best brother! :blush:

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I have an email from someone in the head of the authentication department explicitly telling me that they do have to verify it matches the title and description even for graded cards. And they told me that they did not notice the issues with the card when it was inspected.

So no.

I was also told by a person in the know who gave me a direct contact number that their whole department was basically an S-show (and still might be). They were massively understaffed and anything regarding claims was just automated and closed.

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Not me. I don’t want my 10s looking like borderline 8-9s like some of the 5 figure cards I’ve almost bought.

But it depends on the collector. The ones in E4 with ark of the covenant warehouses where they don’t regularly see their cards probably don’t care.