PSA Grading vs Beckett Grading vs SGC Grading (Massive Guide and Review)



  1. Good info. I’m on the bubble on whether to get some cards graded, let alone who to grade through, so this helps. The info on Beckett’s site seems marginally better than PSA (both seem lacking for someone new to the process). But, what seemed obvious to me was that there was a ridiculous amount of PSA 10’s for any given card (say, from 2019 Topps baseball), and maybe one or no BGS 10’s, when browsing listings on eBay. I can’t tell if it means BGS is stingier, or PSA is more lenient, or PSA is simply more popular. It also seems plausible that a BGS 9.5 may be as good as a PSA 10, but auctions suggest PSA 10 > BGS 10 (I’m sure there are many cases where that isn’t true).

    On a side note, your PSA vs. BGS Grading Cost section is incorrect; the price table shown for BGS is the return shipping costs, not the grading service level costs. Nonetheless, the costs add up quickly, and is a deterrent enough to not get cards graded.

    • thank you, Patrick… were going to have our leader author look into the correct you mentioned. We believe the order “generally speaking” from worse to best is BGS 9.5, PSA 10, BGS 10… but your 100% right in saying that in some cases this may be off… thanks for taking time out… cheers!

      • In my opinion SGC is hands down the top grading company. Sure PSA & BECKETT have stood the test of time. But in this business, it’s all about reputation. You wonder why other companies cannot join in on sharing the profits. They cant ger in the club. But SGC did somehow. Maybe it’s because they truly are the Best grading company in all aspects of the business. People, in general, do not like change. Well, SGC is here and they’re not going a anywhere. Open up your eyes people. SGC, is the new kid on the block with all the fresh ideas, and we need to look more toward the future instead of hold on to the past.

        • Hey Brian… you make a lot of great points and yes we have been using SGC more and more every month!

        • I wouldn’t say SGC is new kid as they have been around since 1998. I use SGC exclusively, but people have so much invested in PSA that it would be a bad investment move to change on their part. My issue with PSA and BGS, along with their die hard supporters is that $$$$ means more than integrity. My integrity can never be bought.

    • I know many that will resubmit 9’s to psa over and over until it makes a 10. You may want to take that into consideration if true that many 10’s are really high 9’s possibly.

      • Thanks for the comment, Jay! Somewhat what surprised people do that as the cost can really add u!!p quickly… how often on average does this work for the people you know? 70% 80%? 90% of the time… cheers! happy friday

  2. Please check out my PSA complaint about grading at Newport Beach Ca. at the BBB site to maybe help you make a determination on grading choices

  3. I go with BGS with my newer cards.from 2001 and up.they surprised me on some of my cards I thought would grade low and cards from the 70’s I was I’ll stick with BGS.all ways there when I call Johnny on the spot.PSA wants your money no matter what.and iam not PWCC YOU KNOW.Auto or not I made good money with BGS.STAY SAFE MY FELLOW AMERICANS,

    • Thanks for the comment Keith… we go back and forth on who we like and honestly it depends on the card… we have been sending PSA about 40% BGS 40% and SGC 20%

  4. Do you see GMA making a push to become one of the big players In card grading? The turn around time is very tempting but the resale value seem to be not in line with the other well know grading services…

    • hey Kurt… honestly, we have not researched GMA much to this point… we don’t really like the grade design

  5. PSA is on the decline. Avoid that company. Many allegations of graders damaging cards and giving their own cards or their friends’ cards better grades. Imagine buying a PSA 8 for $400,000 and have a new opinion that the card is now a PSA 9 now worth $2,000,000 plus, or other cards….

  6. I am starting to see BGS cards without sub-grades. I think they are trying to mimic PSA/SGC, but they seem to be less desirable than even BGS w/ subs in the same grade (and there is a whole tier/desirability within BGS subs that is another topic of discussion!). Do you find that to be the case? And have you seen how these prices compare to SGC?

  7. Very good assessment of the big three. I would like to share my experience. I recently completely graded the 1991 Topps Desert Shield set by BGS. When I first started the set in early 2017 I had bought several hundred psa 9/10s to crack out and submit to BGS as 1 I was as unsure how to tell a fake from real DS card and 2 I was told by a friend psa had the strictest standards. Well was both those statements wrong! With over 400 cards cross graded to bgs from psa the results are in and are not pretty for psa. A little over 100 cards graded lower with bgs from psa to include 3 psa 10s that made bgs 8.5! Only 10 prior psa cards came back higher with bgs. The rest of the cards crossed to their comparable grade PSA 10 to bgs 9.5, etc. On that point ALMOST ALL of my psa 10s that did cross to bgs 9.5 were minimum gem(3×9.5 and 1×9 subgrade). Psa 10s ARE NOT in better condition overall than 9.5. At worst it’s the same grade and from my experience getting a bgs 9.5 is slightly harder than a psa 10. Also I have zero bgs 10s graded from my set of 792 graded cards and there has yet to be a bgs 10 graded in the entire pop report of this set of roughly 4500 cards! I only have a handful of cards that even have a 10 for a subgrade with my set consisting of 8.5s and higher with most being 9 and 9.5 grade. On the authenticity note, I have seen literally dozens of psa graded fakes of these cards. This set being rare and pricey, has been the target of many counterfeit attempts. A trained eye can catch the fakes as they aren’t that good yet psa has let many fakes slip through and graded the card as authentic with a number grade. Recently with their backlog they have let even more slip through the cracks. I have yet to see a bgs graded fake of these cards and I’ve seen in person about 1/3 of the entire Bgs population out there. Lastly I did buy 12 SGC gem mint cards and broke them out to submit to give them a shot. Of the 12, 11 made bgs 9 and one made bgs 8.5! I stopped buying Sgc cards after that. All these submissions came over a three year period not one big submission but several medium to small submissions. I have several pictures of the crossover results and kept written logs of most of them. BGS is the most consistent and attention to detail grader out there. They are not perfect but I prefer them over the other two companies any day and pay premiums for bgs graded cards over psa or Sgc.

  8. I have collecting sports cards long before Psa, Beckett, and Sgc came along . I have had or had one of the finest hockey card collections . My prize set was the 1910 Sweet Caporal post card set along with sets of 1910 c56, 1911 c55 and 1912 c57 sets. PSA is very inconsistent grader . Beckett is a great card grader . However,Sgc to me is the best overall company to send cards to if you factor everything. If you really know cards you really dont need to send cards to anyone . If you need to sell your cards sell them to sell them to someone knowledgeable who knows whether they are good or not. Many people are either gaining or losing a lot of money relying on some graders opinion that is always debatable. Dont waste your money on graders .Use your own opinion on the cards.

  9. I have a baseball signed by people from the war serious in 2001 I don’t know if it’s real or not I’m trying to find out

  10. SGC customer service is next-level. Always on time. The Director of Operations answered my website e-mail inquiry re slabbing a large-sized card, and even emphatically warned me about the extended time needed for custom holders. His response actually sent me to BGS for that card (because they will numerically grade the issue, not just “A” it). But I’ve used SGC twice now for some highly-prized modern and vintage cards, and they have earned a loyal customer with their high standards of grading (most important factor to me). I’ve earned grades from the dreaded “A” to 9.5 MT+. And I love how they use the .5 for high-end cards within a grade because I value eye appeal most in a card. So that helps me with purchases of SGC graded cards on the secondary market. I’ll know that they look as good as you can get for that grade.

  11. Hi , I sent a Super Bowl XI ticket to Psa for grading , the ticket looked great. It took 1.5 years to grade the ticket. The ticket came back graded a
    5 , I was very upset for 5 grade.
    Will becket or sgc grade a ticket that
    Psa has already graded

  12. Let me begin with, I love SGC an everything about what they do. SGC, BGS, an PSA are top (3). My personal preference is SGC period any an all cross overs were either same grade or higher pristine through BGS if I had SGC 98 (10) crossed BGS pristine black label, an always crossed PSA 10 from SGC. They are the most consistent grading company as well as stepping up with more details on grading then BGS an PSA put together not to mention SGC has been well established well before PSA an BGS an they are not going anywhere, some of the most expensive collections are sold through memory lanes an SGC brings some high dollars , does not take rocket scientist to see this company is very solid an has my trust as a serious collector for the rest of my life.

    Keep up the great work SGC you guys R.O.C.K, an your company is truly the G.O.A.T of grading in my opinion does not get any better !!

    Much love,
    Happy collecting

  13. Debating about getting some of my potential high value cards from late 1969 to 1977 graded.

    What I cannot find info on is this concept of declared value for the card as that affects the cost of grading.

    So do you just claim the lowest declared value and then if it grades high, the grading companies just take what they believe is the market value and then charge you that higher grading fee?

    • Beckett will charge the turnaround time of the service not the value of the card. Card could be a $5 common or a 69 Mantle and it’ll be the same cost to grade. Declared value for them is for insurance purposes.

  14. It is an excellent article, thanks.I first experienced grading my cards thru BGS and SGC 20 years ago, and then pretty much stopped due to other things in life.I liked BGS best due their grading scale. I think I used SGC due to their lower costs for grading.I sold some and still have some. Very recently I sent some cards to PSA because their graded cards appear to fetch more money, although the cost is higher to grade on some cards. I am amazed that Beckett appears to fetch the most $ only for pristine cards. I guess that happens when your away for 20 years. It is extremely difficult to get a pristine 10 grade so no way am I sending my cards to BGS when a PSA 10 commands far more then a BGS 9.5—-which are suppose to be equals. If I was a new company starting today, I would keep the 10 as the normal top grade, but I’d have one more grade up for Pristine. Maybe just the word “Flawless” or “Flawless 10″….

  15. GMA needs to be highly considered in this discussion. I’ve used PSA BGS SGC and GMA. GMA is no different than the other 3 when it comes to grading. Yeah they get it wrong at times but so do the other 3. GMA is just as strict in grading if not more than the other 3. I do believe they have former PSA and BGS graders. Their slabs are no different than PSAs. At the moment nobody is touching their return times. I’ve seen a 600 card submission get returned in 14 days. All the negative talk about them online is from people who’ve never used them before. Only thing GMA doesn’t have is a registry which to me is no big deal. Resell value isn’t at PSA level but I’ve seen some cards sell at PSA value.

  16. have a 1991 classic best chipper jones error with no name on front and reverse is a totally of another player, card #, stats etc. It is in gem shape and was submitted to PSA. It was not graded but shows the card is a Misprint by PSA. With number/ barcode. But not in hard sealed case. I can’t find any info on this card at all. So is it one of a kind ? Are there more out there ? I would sure like to know.

  17. The huge difference is resale value. The value of an SGC graded card is not even close to BGS and BGS is less than PSA. The part that really seems criminal about SGC is they did their best to gather as many submissions as they could during the pandemic. When real customers start to leave negative feedbacks and reviews in regards to their experiences with SGC, you will start to read great reviews from very obvious fake names like, Joey Tribiani (the name of the guy from the Friends tv show)” Mr. Tribiani” is very well known for having some strangely high graded SGC cards and can easily be traced back to many “questionable” cards that “crossed over from PSA or BGS to SGC in much higher grades. You might also see positive reviews for SGC by people who have family members employed at SGC like Derek Grady(Mr Grady heads up Heritage Auctions and his son Tyler works at SGC) I ask the question, can SGC fairly grade cards that are being funneled to Heritage Auctions? That seems like a giant conflict of interest! Once it is out in the open about cards being funneled through Heritage and “Mr. Tribiani” people will view SGC in a much different light.

  18. Have used GMA for recent grading and find them to be fair and accurate. Problem is a GMA 10 won’t sell anywhere close to a PSA 10.

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