CGC or CBCS

If you’re a serious collector of comic books, you know how important it is to have them graded by a reputable service. Two of the most popular grading services are CGC (Certified Guaranty Company) and CBCS (Comic Book Certification Service). In this blog we’ll take a closer look at each of these services and help you decide which one is right for you. We look at the Pro’s and Con’s of each grading service, in the hope we help others understand the difference in the services.

CGC: The Pros and Cons

Click the image to be taken to CGC Comics website.

CGC is the most widely recognized and respected grading service in the comic book industry. They use a strict grading system that is based on a scale of 1 to 10, with 10 being the highest grade possible. Here are some of the pros and cons of using CGC:

Pros:

  • CGC has a reputation for being the most consistent grading service in the industry.
  • They have a large and experienced team of graders who are experts in identifying restoration, pressing, and other issues that can affect a comic book’s value.
  • CGC-graded books tend to sell for higher prices at auction than books graded by other services.
  • They offer a restoration check service to verify that a book has not been restored or tampered with.
  • CGC offer the Signature Series, which is a Signature Witness verification service for comics signed by Comic writers, artists and celebrities. This books when graded are given the prestigious yellow label and will only be authenicated when witnessed by a CGC representive at the point of it being signed. They now have regular in house signings, where you can send your books in for signings.
  • CGC have recently started to upload a photo image of Graded Comics in their verification service.
  • Last year, CGC offers free graders notes. Previously you had to have a paid membership.

Cons:

  • CGC can be more expensive, especially if you need to expedite your grading or have multiple books graded at once.
  • Some collectors feel that CGC is too strict in their grading and can be overly harsh on books that have minor defects.
  • CGC does not offer a verification service for signatures or sketches.
  • CGC is not anonymous to controversy, recently theere has been some high profile incidents such as acetate gate and the newly Holder Tamper Scam thats hit the comic community.

CBCS: The Pros and Cons

Click the image to be taken to CBCS website.

CBCS is a newer grading service that has quickly gained popularity in the industry. They use a similar grading system to CGC, but with a few key differences. Here are some of the pros and cons of using CBCS:

Pros:

  • CBCS is generally more affordable than CGC, especially if you have multiple books graded at once.
  • They offer a signature verification service to ensure that autographs are genuine. This is done through their parent/sister company Beckett Authenication Services, who are world-reknowned autograph experts in the industry.
  • CBCS graders are known for being more lenient than CGC graders, which can be a plus if you have a book that is borderline between two grades.
  • CBCS has always had free graders notes available.
  • They listen to customer feedback, over the years they have changed the look of their graded comics, with their most recent style being praised highly by the comic community.

Cons:

  • CBCS is a newer service and doesn’t have the same level of name recognition as CGC.
  • Some collectors feel that CBCS is too lenient in their grading and can be too forgiving of books with minor defects.
  • CBCS does not offer a restoration check service.
  • Like CGC, CBCS has not been anonymous to controversy. A few years back, an individual recorded themselves signing a comic book themselves and sending it off to CBCS for their authenication verification service, to which the signature passed and was verified as a genuine signature.

A few years ago, myself and a few others from YouTube, discussed which grading service we preferred for our comic books. You can find the video below:

In this video we discuss which Grading Service as collector we prefer.

So which one should you choose?

Ultimately I’m not going to tell you which service to use, I personally prefer CGC. But I will believe the decision between CGC and CBCS comes down to your own personal preference. In particular with the different style of the slabs and it comes down to your budget. If you want the most consistent and respected grading service in the industry, CGC is the way to go if you are looking to hold value in your investments. CGC are known to sell for a premium in auctions compared to CBCS. This is a key factor for my decision for my preference. However, if you’re on a tighter budget or want a service that is more forgiving of minor defects, CBCS is a solid option. Especially considering, if you want to buy already graded books, comics in CBCS slabs are definetly cheaper to come across than CGC. You can get some great books for a significantly less.

At the end of the day, both services offer a valuable service to collectors and can help ensure that your comic books are properly graded and valued. Whether you choose CGC or CBCS, just make sure you do your research and choose a reputable grading service to protect the value of your collection.