GEM-MT 10: Gem Mint. A PSA Gem Mint 10 pack is a virtually perfect pack that should exhibit pristine corners and edges, which are free of any holes, tears or wear of any sort (including not having any wear to the corner folds). The seal on the reverse must be virtually undisturbed and free of any soiling or toning. The sealed folds on the reverse must also lay flush to the pack and not exhibit any lift from the seal. In addition, the pack must be "fresh" in appearance and free of any water or mildew damage to the wrapper or gum in order to qualify for this grade. There may be an allowance made for a small printing imperfection as long as the pack still shows superb eye appeal.

Note: The top card within a cello pack must be centered approximately 65/35 or better.

MINT 9: Mint. A PSA Mint 9 pack is a pack that appears to have all the attributes of a PSA Gem Mint 10 but it may exhibit one of the following flaws: a slight touch of wear on one corner (absent a hole or tear in the wrapper), minor toning or soiling to the seal on the reverse or a slight centering imperfection to the wrap. In addition, the pack must be "fresh" in appearance and free of any water or mildew damage to the wrapper or gum in order to qualify for this grade.

Note: The top card within a cello pack must be centered approximately 80-20 or better.

NM-MT 8: Near Mint-Mint. A PSA NM-MT 8 pack is a pack that exhibits similar attributes to a PSA Mint 9 but it may possess one or more of the following technical imperfections upon close inspection: Slight wear at one or two corners, a pin-sized hole at one of the corners, a wrinkle in the surface of the wax/cellophane wrapping, slight toning or soiling on the seal, very slight toning of the wrapper itself and/or a slight centering imperfection to the wrap. In addition, the pack must be "fresh" in appearance and free of any water or mildew damage to the wrapper or gum in order to qualify for this grade.

Note: The top card within a cello pack must be centered approximately 90/10 or better.

NM 7: Near Mint. A PSA NM 7 pack is a pack that exhibits similar attributes to a PSA NM-MT 8 but it may possess one or more of the following flaws: There may be slight wear on all four corners, a few pin-hole sized tears on the corners or edges, a very minor tear in the wrapper itself, light toning or soiling on the seal, and/or a small stain, possibly due to water or mildew damage. A small allowance may be made for very light gum bleeding or soiling through the wrapper, not to reach the size of the gum contained within. Note: This is also the highest grade a cello pack can receive if the top card is 100/0(miscut). Note: This is the highest grade a pack can receive if the wax wrapper is a complete manufacturer miswrap, where there is a severe centering imperfection to the wrap.

PSA EX-MT 6: Excellent-Mint. A PSA EX-MT 6 pack is a pack that exhibits similar attributes to a PSA NM 7 but it may possess one or more of the following flaws: Wear may be present on all four corners and/or the pack may show light tearing on multiple corners. In addition, the pack may exhibit light tears on the edges of the wrappers, wrinkles on the surface of the wax/cellophane wrapper along with other types of small surface defects. The reverse seal may have soiling or toning as a result of water or mildew damage, as long as it is not deemed severe. The gum or wax wrapper can begin to show bleeding or soiling through the wrapper, but it must be limited to the size of the gum.

PSA EX 5: Excellent. A PSA EX 5 pack is a pack that exhibits similar attributes to a PSA EX-MT 6 but it may possess one of more of the following flaws: Wear may be present on all four corners along with one or two clear corner tears and/or edge tears. Under this grade, a pack may exhibit staining or discoloration of the wrapper, possibly due to water or mildew damage. The surface of a cello pack may exhibit a large split through the protective wrapping. That wrapping may also be misaligned but, in order to qualify under this grade, a sizeable portion of the seal must remain secure. In addition, the surface of the wrapper may show soiling damage from the gum or wax.

PSA VG-EX 4: Very Good-Excellent. A PSA VG-EX 4 pack is a pack that exhibits similar attributes to a PSA EX 5 but it may possess one or more of the following flaws: Wear will, most likely, be present on all four corners along with holes and/or tears on the corners and edges. A severe tear to one of the edges may be acceptable under this grade. The seal may be misaligned and partly raised but a somewhat sizeable portion of that original seal must remain intact. The surface of the pack may exhibit some discoloration, staining or soiling, possibly due to water or mildew damage. A cello pack may have a couple of severe splits through the protective wrapping as long as all the contained cards are held securely in their package.

PSA VG 3: Very Good. A PSA VG 3 pack is a pack that exhibits similar attributes to a PSA VG-EX 4 but it may possess some additional, severe flaws such as moderate tears on all four corners and along the edges. The seal may be heavily worn and the pack may be visibly soiled. The surface can be discolored, stained and have heavy mildew damage that begins to bleed from the surface of the wrapper into the edges of the pack.

PSA Good 2: Good. A PSA Good 2 pack is a pack that exhibits similar attributes to a PSA VG 3 but it may possess some additional, severe flaws. Major tears may appear on all four corners and along the edges. The seal may have heavy soiling or even residue from a foreign source, which hinders the eye-appeal substantially. The corners and edges of the contained cards may be exposed; however, the cards must still be held in place by the package and cannot show any evidence of removal.

PSA PR-FR 1: Poor to Fair. A PSA PR-FR 1 pack is a pack that exhibits similar attributes to a PSA Good 2 but it may possess some additional, severe flaws. Severe water damage may be present where it has seeped into the pack itself, affecting the cards contained within. In fact, the pack may show signs of warping as a result of the water damage. The wrapper may not be completely legible from staining, discoloration or other wear and tear but it must remain legible enough for the experts to determine authenticity. In addition, while the pack itself may be severely damaged, some portion of the original seal must be intact.

The PSA Unopened Pack Grading Approach
First and foremost, authentication is the most crucial step to the PSA grading process. With the prices generated by unopened packs in the marketplace, most notably in relation to vintage material, resealing and the outright counterfeiting of packs have been major industry problems. PSA will not grade any pack that has been deemed by the experts to be resealed, repaired or altered in any way. If a pack cannot pass this first step in the PSA process, the packs will not be eligible for encapsulation.

The Importance of Eye-Appeal
The eye-appeal factor is virtually as important to pack grading as it is to the approach used in trading card grading. There are, however, some unique condition obstacles that many packs are subject to. These include but are not limited to obstacles such as gum and/or wax residue that can alter the overall freshness of a pack and, in turn, hinder the grade. The presence of defects like mildew staining and gum or wax bleeding can lower the technical grade and detract from the overall eye appeal, depending on the severity.

In addition, while the centering of a pack wrapper is important, the pack grading approach does not view wrap centering in terms of percentages. The key factor, regardless of the technical measurement of the centering, is whether or not the centering (or lack thereof) of the wrap affects the overall eye-appeal.

There are instances where wrapper centering issues are the norm. Packs found from the 1977 Topps football issue provide great examples of this frequently-seen problem. The wrappers designed for that product clearly do not fit the way that most factory wrappers should. So, in a case like this, the pack graders will take that particular year into consideration before rendering their opinion. As long as the wrapper isn't a complete miswrap or entirely defective, then the centering of a wax wrapper should not hinder the grade substantially unless it affects the overall eye-appeal.