About Poster Grading

Many of the posters that we sell on Limited Runs are vintage and were likely used at one point .  As a result, they will likely show various degrees of use and age.  Grading is a way to describe the condition of the poster to the buyer.  Grading is subjective and there is currently no single standard grading system employed by the industry as there is with other collectibles such as coins and baseball cards.

At Limited Runs, we reviewed multiple grading systems across poster categories and have come up with what we feel is a system that works across all categories.  Our grading uses both a descriptive definition which we identify as the “Grade” as well as a numeric system which we call the “Grade Rate.”

Below we have included a chart to show all three grading styles so that if you are use to the alpha system you can compare how the alpha system aligns with our Grade and Grade Rate system.

Mint = 10.0 = A+
Near Mint = 9.0 = A
Very Fine = 8.0 = A-
Fine = 7.0 = B+
Very Good = 6.0 = B
Good = 5.0 = B-
Fair = 4.0 = C
Poor = 3.0 = C-
Very Poor = 2.0 = D

Each dealer that we work with grade the posters they sell on the site.  Grading may be subjective but our sellers generally follow our overall approach.  While we make every effort to make sure our dealers grade their posters consistently and accurately, we also recommend that our buyers look closely at the enlarged image of each poster.  That way you can see the condition with your own eyes.

Limited Runs Poster Grades

Mint or 10.0 (sometimes referred to as condition A+)
A poster graded in this condition should be absolutely perfect or “as new” meaning that the poster is in the same condition as the day it was made but may show slight signs of aging.  Note that an imperfect in the printing process may, in some instances, still qualify a grading in this category

Near Mint or 9.0 (sometimes referred to as condition A)
A poster graded in this condition should appear to in great condition but may have a slight blemish or tear, but this is very marginal and not noticeable.

Very Fine or 8.0 (sometimes referred to as condition A-)
A poster graded in this condition indicates that there may be some slight dirt, fold, tear or bubble or other minor restoration, but most of these are unconstructive.  The Poster should be bright, supple, and clean and not have an accumulation of more than two or three flaws.

Fine or 7.0 (sometimes referred to as condition B+)
A poster graded in this condition is still a very nicely preserved poster with good colors and, overall, still has a very presentable appearance. It may have tears, slight paper loss, and minor stains, but not in the image or in any crucial design area.  Also may have some fold separation.

Very Good or 6.0 (sometimes referred to as condition B)
An average, middle-grade poster, showing significant signs of use such as multiple pinholes or staple holes, possibly a small tape stain, small markings or pen/pencil marks, Lines and colors are good, although paper may have yellowed (light-staining).

Good or 5.0 (sometimes referred to as condition B-)
The poster shows serious signs of wear and tear. The poster may be slightly brittle due to age, or it may have some paper loss or staining or watermarks. The poster may have writing in an unobtrusive place. The poster may have some slight fading to colors. The poster may have heavier than normal light-staining or one or two noticeable repairs.  Poster may have unobtrusive paper loss (e.g. along the edges) but no loss to images or text.

Fair or 4.0 (sometimes referred to as condition C)
Staining may be more pronounced, restoration, folds or flaking are more readily visible, and possibly some minor paper loss occurs.  But the poster is otherwise intact, the image clear, and the colors, though possibly faded, still faithful to the artist’s intent, but conditions to this grade are distracting to the overall viewing of the poster.

Poor or 3.0 (sometimes referred to as condition C-)
The poster will exhibit some or all of the defects described in Fair grade, but to a greater degree.  The poster will have major paper loss (e.g. missing corners) but no more than 10%, fading, discoloration and damage to image.

Very Poor or 2.0 (sometimes referred to as condition D)
The poster will exhibit some or all of the defects described in Poor grade, but to a greater degree. Generally Limited Runs will not include a poster in this condition unless the item is rare or a notable poster.