New to collecting psa

Hi Guys.

I have wanted to start collecting pokemon cards for awhile and would like to start at the shadowless 1st edition base set graded by psa but the psa 10 cards are quite expensive and at this stage out of my price range. Is there a future collectablity risk in buying lower graded cards as collectors may not value these in the future and the investment into the hobby could backfire? Are psa 9 cards or lower still desired to have a complete set or is 10 what collectors look for. Thanks

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I collected PSA 8 1st edition base holos. I think any 1st edition base holos will see growth no matter the grade at this point, but I would expect the higher grades to grow at a faster rate.


Thanks :blush: The 8s and 9s seem to be near mint cards anyway so I think it will be a good starting point.

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Any “investment” has risk. But if you are buying purely for your enjoyment of the cards, a slight increase or decrease in value isn’t going to bother you as much.

I personally collect 9s. They are for my personal collection that I don’t plan on selling. They are very good condition, and cost less than 10s, enabling me to get more cards. If I had unlimited money, I might buy 10s, but that will have to wait for a little bit! :blush:


Every investment ever has risk.

In the context of pokemon, 1st Ed base is the gold standard for sets. That is in the context of these being pieces of cardboard. More specifically collectibles are non-productive assets. They don’t produce anything; you are ultimately hoping someone will buy it for more down the road.

Asking if there is a “future risk” is asking people to predict the future. That is unanswerable. Also there is no one answer. All anyone can do is be engaged in the hobby, do your research, understand what you are getting into, figure out what you want within your budget, and enjoy the hobby!


I remember in some older thread we were talking about the relative gains of lower grades.

If you had money to spend prior to the boom of 2017, the lower grades actually showed a larger growth (percentage wise) than 10s. If you put all your money in 1st ed base holo 7s, 8s, or 9s, you would have more money upon selling than you would if you had bought 10s. Of course in the very long run, 10s are probably a better choice but my point is that there is demand and therefore opportunity in the lower graded 1st ed base holos.


The lower grades of 1st Base are highly desirable and a great collectible. I have 5s and 6s that present beautifully. Plus, they have gone up in price and popularity and I see no reason why that won’t continue…maybe more than you’d think;)


A ton of amazing responses in this thread. All great advice. I’ve only got two things I’d add:

  1. I still recommend getting the highest grade you can afford. If that means going a bit slower to get 8s instead of 7s, that’s a good decision. Higher grades maintain higher liquidity and you won’t be dependent on potential future interest in the event you have to sell.

  2. Buy the most expensive stuff first. It’s the most likely to disappear or increase in price later. I see people constantly making the mistake of starting by buying a ton of C/U, running out of money, trying to sell, and losing cash. Get the Charizard, then the Blastoise/Venusaur, then the rest of the holos, then the rares, then the C/UC. Lower grade C/UC aren’t going anywhere price wise any time soon but Charizards are moving up right now.

Best of luck!


Thanks everyone for the great info, the more I learn about the market and hobby the more I am getting excited to start collecting. At the start I assumed that psa 10 was the only grade that mattered but that seems to be subjective to not only the individual card but the individual collecting. I have a better understanding now regarding collecting vs investment.

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You’re certainly welcome. At some point down the road you’ll be sharing your knowledge with others;)

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It’s a pretty good thread still.