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Record Collecting: Help and Glossary
There are many vinyl price guides out there - books or online - and most of them give you values like "this record has a Mint Value of £50" or even "this record is worth 32.90€." This is nonsense! Plain and simple.

There is no such thing as an exact value for a specific record, even assumed a standardized, comparable condition and a specific snapshot in time. The value of a record - defined as in what you could sell it for, or what you would have to pay if you wanted to buy one - depends on a variety of criteria which I will detail below.

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Records are generally visually graded, especially those that sell for 25€ or less in Near Mint condition. The main reason is that the time involved to play-grade every item makes it impractical for most dealers. That being said, clearly visible marks or flaws with rare and expensive records should always be checked for how they actually affect play, a mere guess just won't do it.

Unfortunately there is more than just one grading systems in the vinyl world, which sometimes makes it difficult to compare grades internationally. In The U.K. the grade EXCELLENT (EX) is widely used, which sits between Near Mint and Very Good Plus, indicating a record that is just off Near Mint status.

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Here is a list of commonly used abbreviations in record collecting circles, with merchants, auctions and items for sale. There are many more such shorthand notations, but most of those not featured in this glossary should be self-explanatory.

By the way, it is perfectly legal to buy or sell a PROMO record even if it is labeled with something like 'For Promotional Use Only - Not For Resale.' Read more about this here and here.

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