Weak vs Strong PSA 10

So weak vs strong psa 10s does anybody care when looking for graded cards to purchase or sell. It’s hard to tell from pictures and scans but does seeing something obvious like a card be off center or with a little whitening on the back deter you even though it’s a 10? Would you pay more if you spotted the same card that was perfectly centered no whitening etc. Just wondering because lately I feel myself being picky with the graded cards I purchase.

This thread is a good jumping off point to the same topic that you are wondering about!


I think it is common practice for most of us to really try buying the card and not the grade. There can definitely be quite a significant variance in a 10. It´s also a point of what you´re really looking for in terms of condition. Personally, I don´t care about a little off-center as this is something that happened in the factory and is just a genuine “error”. However I´m pretty picky about whitening as this is something that really bugs me. The market itself also shows that there is a lot of collectors out there valuing certain parameters/grades differently, a strong 9 for a base 1st charizard for example can fetch a significantly higher price than a weak 9 - of course that is not always the case and some ppl just want a card in a specific grade regardless of any defects.

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Oh, definitely. I’d never buy a weak psa 10 again for my personal collection. I was always mad at myself when I bought a psa 10 that looked more like a weak psa 9, just to save 10,-$…Now I even overpay a little bit on cards I really want, when they look amazing on the scans. Because at the end of the day, I’m more satisfied and that is what matters. :blush:


If this is where the trend is going NOBODY should sell/trade their ‘strong within a grade’ cards. Only list/trade your weak ones.
Honestly, all this hurts the hobby. I don’t even want to deal with people who selfishly pick over a grade because of how it hurts the collectible side of the hobby. And this is coming from someone who 99% of the time, because of my big Inventory, only grades cards I believe are 10s anyway.
Ofcourse this doesn’t cover grading errors and mistakes as those should be handled differently.


Why/how does it hurt the hobby if people value the card over the grade and would rather buy stronger versions of the same card?

I mean I understand how it increases my work as a seller and I really don’t like it… but I get it at least and as you say whenever I have duplicates of a card in a grade I either tend to cross it over to the other grading service or keep it myself. That is only natural.

Because this is becoming an epidemic. Just try to figure the effect long term if everybody does this. Instead of a long boring explanation by me, look to the future and what do you see?

@garyis2000 I’m definitely on the same page with you in a way. Again as a seller nothing frustrates me more than for a buyer to request a detailed description of the professionally graded card that me giving it can in no way help me. Literally if I say anything it can only be used against me… Grading was made to avoid all that.

In another way though, when I am a buyer I know PSA grades have a much wider range than most would admit to. PSA 10 and PSA 9 have overlap and in my opinion much more than I am comfortable with. Hence why I collect the solid 9’s that I feel are more moving into the low 10 range if anything. I have the benefit of handling several of each card at my PSA 9 grade and so I keep the best for me. 10’s I just sell off regardless strong or weak and honestly I try not to look too close to determine which the card may be.

It definitely is a tough thing, but it is equally tough to try and tell collectors to just buy the label and not the card. I don’t know how anything can really be done about any of it.

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I guess all you can do when a buyer asked for your opinion on the strength of the grade is to say it was graded by a professional service and it’s up to yourself if you agree.

I sorta say the same thing but add, “when I sent it in I thought it had a good chance at a 10 and, sure enough, it got the 10;)”

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I think this is a good thing, but I would also say the strong/weak debate is sometimes personal preference.

There’s a pretty big premium when buying 10s, so buy a card that you know you will be happy with.

I’d like to think most collectors are reasonable. Some might be extremely picky(expecting Pristine 10), but they’re a minority. Sellers have every right to not want to deal with them if they feel they’re not worth the trouble.

I agree with Gary, though I’m sure even he passes on certain 10s that look questionable or offers quite a bit less.

This debate is like when people go to the supermarket to pick out fruits and vegetables, some take their time to pick out the “best”. Others aren’t too picky. it is not right or wrong for people to care about strong or weak, but the fact is that this does exist within the same grade.

I do like Gary’s reply. The more you talk about the card, the more likely you’ll shoot yourself in the foot.