- Virginia, U.S.
- Joined on February 4, 2013
Classic 45s (www.classic45s.com) opened for business in 2001 as a model web-based record store geared exclusively to 45 collectors. We designed the store to provide as much information as possible about each 45 record in our inventory--including not only Artist, Title, and Label, but also release year, songwriter and producer credits, a scan of the label (in many cases), detailed grades (4 for each record), chart history, sleeve information, and genre. We continually contribute to Discogs, helping to flesh out existing entries and occasionally adding a missing release.
About our descriptions
The descriptions that accompany each 45 in our Discogs inventory are written for the context of the Classic 45s website rather than for Discogs. As a result, some aspects of the descriptions may not be clear as they are mirrored here on Discogs, because of limitations in the Discogs marketplace. The first problem is that Discogs limits the length of the description field, so Classic 45s descriptions beyond that length simply get truncated. This truncation sometimes has the unfortunate side effect of eliminating detailed grading language, which always forms the end of our descriptions. The second issue is that Discogs doesn't let sellers display an image of their specific item for sale. Thus, when we use the phrase "see scan" in our descriptions, we're referring to the image that accompanies the record's description on Classic 45s... not the image that accompanies the record in Discogs. To get around the truncation problem, we try very hard to send truncated sections of text to the buyer before they commit payment on a record.
Classic 45s uses a somewhat different grading system than the one Discogs uses. The Discogs grading system is borrowed verbatim from the collector's magazine Goldmine. You can see a full description of our system on the Classic 45s website.
One big difference is that the Classic 45s system assigns every record 4 separate grades -- an overall grade, and distinct grades for Label, Vinyl and Audio. Unfortunately, we are not able to mirror those detailed grades on Discogs.
Another major difference is in the definition of the term "Mint." The Goldmine system that Discogs uses defines Mint as "absolutely perfect in every way." In other words, "Mint = Perfect". By defining mint as "perfect," whoever wrote this system made it uncomfortable for dealers and collectors to use that grade, because after all, nothing is perfect, let alone "absolutely perfect in every way." What those who defend the Goldmine system don't consider is that the real meaning of "mint" isn't "perfect," it's "new, like new." This is a big distinction, and one that confuses a lot of people. In the Classic 45s system, the definition for "mint" starts with "Looks new and unplayed." In the world of comic books, the definition for "mint" starts out: "Near perfect in every way." Again, that's a big distinction, between "absolutely" and "near" perfect, and it means that it's possible to use the condition "Mint" in the comic book world without violating the "mint = perfect" conundrum. Now, this doesn't mean that all new, unplayed 45s are mint, because they may have some defect(s), such as light ringwear, that lower the grade to near mint. So, when we use the grade "Mint," we don't mean "perfect," we mean "new, like new" or "near perfect." And since "mint" doesn't mean "perfect" in the real world, we can still use the grade "Near Mint" to describe an otherwise mint record with a flaw of some kind. The Classic 45s grading system description includes a long list of possible minor flaws for near mint records.
Classic 45s specializes in finding and selling records that are in new, unplayed condition (that is, no previous owner has played the record). As a dealer in new 45 stock (both original pressings and reissues), it makes no sense to me when I see a dealer call a brand new record "Near Mint" merely because they have taken an oath to never call a record "Mint." New records are by definition "Mint" in the real world, and "Mint" is the correct grade to label a record that has never before been played and is otherwise lacking any notable flaws. Since a large part of our inventory consists of new, unplayed stock, it's important that customers can clearly distinguish this from our used inventory as they shop.