East West Records strives to provide customers with consistent, accurate grading practices. The issue of used record grading is after all one of the motivators for our online store. Frustration with online sales grading practices has deterred many a music lover from buying online. We feel confident that once you make a purchase you will be satisfied that our practices are conservative. We always try to view the records from a buyer's perspective, and what we would like to see ourselves.

We believe that there are many facets and nuances to different grades, so at times may use split grades (ie. Vg+/Ex) to better illustrate condition. We also may add a small description with the grade to note any particular detractions. Transparency is the goal. Pictures of the actual items are included to view, and we recommend using the "roll over" feature on a laptop or home computer to get up close and personal.

Any album with promo/delete notches will be downgraded according to size of the punch/notch/corner cut, as will stickers, ink on covers/labels etc.


Jacket sealed shut in shrink wrap; disc sold ungraded or "as is". Description of album sleeve will be stated. Please note we never use "Presumed Near Mint" as we find that misleading. Some records are looser in the sleeve and that gives the record room to move, that can lead to splits to the inners, and possibly some very light scuffing. Although most will be immaculate we can not guarantee that a sealed record will not be affected, after all, some of our sealed product is 55+ years old!


Our highest grade.

Appears unplayed and will bear no marks, sleeve scuffs, scratches, or spindle marks. The sleeve will be crisp and appear as new, or extremely close to it. The mint grade is not used and we use the Nm grade sparingly. If examined extremely closely the smallest defect may be found, but will be barely detectable. You will see that sleeves are very seldom graded Nm as they are exposed more, and difficult to keep in a new like state over the course of time. You will also notice that there is a higher percentage of this grade used on our selection of Japanese vinyl, as a higher number of our stock items have been incredibly well preserved, bearing little to no signs of use. We feel that some of  our sealed imports, and domestics being 40 to 50+ years old, playing dead quiet, and looking brand new, are truly time capsules and incredible pieces of history.


May have one or two visible imperfections (i.e. a small sleeve scuff, very faint hairline scratch, or other superficial marks) that will not affect play.

The vast majority of the media graded Ex, will have no visible marks noticeable to the naked eye. The sleeves may have minor visible imperfections, a small corner bump, a speck or two of the lightest small spots, a small corner bump but these defects will be very few in numbers (1 or 2), and will never all occur at the same time. An Excellent sleeve will not include delete holes/notches/cut corners. Overall, very sharp and pleasing to the eye. There is a fine line between Excellent and Near Mint so no split grades will be applied here, it's either Near Mint or it isn't.


A few visible imperfections.

These may include sleeve scuffs, light small scratches, or other superficial marks that will be low in numbers. Media may have some minor surface noise, small in numbers and isolated to the quietest passages. Will not be persistent. Sleeves may have minor imperfections, again low in numbers, that may include some light staining (foxing), that would be stated in the grading. This type of imperfection would be very light and isolated. A Vg+ sleeve may have a small promo/delete marking if the sleeve is otherwise Excellent or better. A Vg+ record may only have visible imperfections but play Excellent or better. 


Same imperfections found on VG+ records but in slightly greater numbers.

Records graded VG and above will typically not have any scratches that are deep enough to be felt with a fingernail. There may be some light surface noise noticeable on the media, but for the most part will be underneath the music, more prevalent between tracks or during quiet passages. Many of our records that have been graded Vg, is because of purely visual imperfections, but the media plays with little, to no issues. The sleeves may have moderate staining, creases, and other general signs of wear such as small seam splits.


A number of visible imperfections; the presence of a considerable number of light scratches will force a VG- grade, as will the presence of significant isolated defects such as scratches deep enough to be felt with a fingernail.

May play with persistent surface noise during quiet and loud passages alike. Sleeves may have considerable staining, creasing, sticker residue, and overall have an unattractive appearance. The media will not be saturated with visible imperfections. 

East West Records does not sell any media lower than Vg-, but the sleeve may be lower on rare, hard to find albums where the media is acceptable. In those cases it will be noted in the description.


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