CoinBrag.com's Coin Grading System
The CoinBrag database uses 7 levels for grading: good, very good, fine, very fine, extra fine, about uncirculated, and mint condition. You may see other gradings using other terms as well as a numbering system (most commonly from 1-70 where 70 is the highest quality).
Mint - MS : A mint coin is one that looks perfect or very near perfect. Many grading companies have 11 levels of Mint, MS-60 to MS-70. There should be no wear, blemishes, toning or any imperfections.
About Uncirculated - AU : A very detailed and shiny coin but may have the slightest of wear that keeps this coin from being Mint.
Extra Fine - XF : Light wear, all details should still be defined.
Very Fine - VF : Light wear, some of the minor details are barely or no longer visible. Major details are still clear such as the date or lettering.
Fine - F : Moderate wear on the coin.
Very Good - VG : Moderate-heavy wear on the coin's surface.
Good - G : Very heavy wear on the coin. The initial coins design should still be visible although the details are flat.
Proof - PF : Proof is not actually a condition of a coin but it is a coin that has been struck on it's surface with a special coating to give it a unique appearance.
Susan Headley has a great guide called Coin Grading Made Simple that I recommend taking a look at.
Other grades not used on CoinBrag:
Poor, Fair and About Good are all lower quality than Good coins. Useful only as space fillers until a collector can find a similar coin of better grade, these are not typically desirable coins except for the rarest of coins. Because of this, I don't feel the need to catalog these coins in our database.
CBV (CoinBrag Value)
CBVs have been compiled using multiple sources of coin values collected by me. Currently all CBVs listed are for coins in Extra Fine (XF) condition. CBVs should be used solely as a guideline for values and not as an authoritative value. Coins in lesser conditions tend to vary in value by a 10-20% decrease per grade below XF depending on the coin's demand and scarcity. Coins in condition better than XF will fetch a value 10-20% higher for each grade above XF. The more scarce a coin is, the larger the value can fluctuate between the XF value and those above.
Our price guide refers to the year 2011. No member of the CoinBrag community uses time-travel or psychic divination to predict future values of coins. The 2011 year is actually 2010 but since the majority of reference guides for coins date themselves a year ahead, we have done the same. This means that the 2010 CBVs are actually 2009.