Top Hat Records believes that everyone deserves fairly graded records, so our grading system follows the industry standard, outlined by the 'Rare Record Collectors Guide'.

However, we choose to under-grade our records to guarantee your satisfaction. For example, a record graded as excellent according to the guide, would be graded as very good by us.

Sealed: The record itself is in brand new condition, it has never been played and is sealed in its original packaging.

Mint: The record itself is in brand new condition with no surface marks or deterioration in sound quality. The cover and any extra items such as the lyric sheet, booklet or poster are in perfect condition.

Excellent: The record shows some signs of having been played, but there is very little lessening in sound quality. The cover and packaging might have slight wear and/or creasing.

Very Good: The record has obviously been played many times, but displays no major deterioration in sound quality, despite noticeable surface marks and the occasional light scratch. Normal wear and tear on the cover or extra items, without any major defects, is acceptable.

Good: The record has been played so much that the sound quality has noticeably deteriorated, perhaps with some distortion and mild scratches. The cover and contents suffer from folding, scuffing of edges, spine splits, discoloration, etc.

Fair: The record is still just playable but has not been cared for properly and displays considerable surface noise; it may even jump. The cover and contents will be torn, stained and/or defaced.

Poor: The record will not play properly due to scratches, bad surface noise, etc. The cover and contents will be badly damaged or partly missing.