Graded 9.8 or multiple NM raw copies?

Hi All,

Noobish question. For whatever reason I’m still interested in increasing my collection of Venom 25 / 2nd Print, first cover appearance of Codex. I totally understood that some members believe in that spec and some do not.

But my question is, does it make more sense to spend roughly $90-100 on a graded 9.8 or is it better to buy roughly 4x raw NM copies for the same amount.

Assuming the character does ultimately increase in value down the line. What path would be more likely to yield higher returns? I realize this isn’t a perfect science as the condition on raw NMs may vary.

Thanks for any thoughts!

Yes, but here’s my golden rule. Ignore everyone and buy what you like if that’s what your desire is.

I’m bias as I’ll tell most people to buy raw as the % on ROI can be better. I’m a numbers guy myself. Sure the slab might end up going for 10x more but you’re initial investment is higher usually with higher risk.

So say you buy that slab at $100 and in 5 years it’s now worth $500, you made yourself $400 profit (well, before fees and such). One book = bigger pay day sounds nice right?

Now say you bought 4 copies, all in really nice NM condition, possibly 9.8 candidates for $25 each. Say in 5 years time those are selling between $100 and $200 on their own. Your initial ROI % is better in such a case.

I say, buy raw and if you truly believe you got 9.8 books, you can always slab those for around the $30-$50 for each and then sell at the slab going rate as well… you have more options with the raw copies in my opinion when it comes to selling.


I like buying 9.8’s if I’m buying from random people on eBay because most of the time I find they send me their crap copies if I’m buying raw.

I also like selling 9.8’s because my buyers know exactly what they’re getting and there isn’t any room for any problems.

This is why buying pre-FOC is so important, because you get 9.8 candidates and can play both sides of this.


I would also go with buying the raw books. This is a new book and if you buy from a reliable seller, the books may still come back cgc 9.8.


Also, from an economic perspective, I would definitely buy 9.8’s for this one right now.

You can pick up a 9.8 for $80ish.

Even with a 100% success rate on 9.8’s (which isn’t happening if you’re going to be grading copies you bought off eBay), you’ll spend close to that collectively if you grade the copies you buy yourself.

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I’d go multiple raws. You can get 5 copies, grade the 2 best copies and end up with 2 9.8s and 3 raws for about the cost of 1 graded 9.8.


Yeah, this book is in an interesting place right now pricewise. Where you can really approach it in different ways.

There’s also the Venom 25 3rd print 1:25 which is the black and white version of this book. It’s currently selling for roughly $60 bucks atm. I suppose that’s the best version of Codex’s first appearances rn. Outside of the Venom 27 double cover Jonboy variant, which I’m not interested in.

I will just haunt ebay for any Venom 25 2nd print copies that I find slightly undervalued.

Now all I need is for Cates to keep Codex relevant!

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I would buy raw and the. Submit to cgc yourself. The sales of the other 3 u get will pay for it all potentially.

Just keep in mind, villains come and go… so you’ll always see the roller coaster ride on value perspective. These are also moderns, so tread carefully as well I say. How many villains (besides Batman and Spider-Man villains and those that started bad but turned to good) have gone on to be big time investments? The list is far fewer than the hero side of things.

Unless Codex makes the switch from bad guy to good guy, expect that roller coaster ride to be a bumpy one depending on the direction taken with the character development and what’s still a huge unknown for Dylan himself, on Earth 616.

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For sure, even hugely successful Thanos’ pricing is somewhat held back by the limitations of being a villain.

With that said, the only new villains I’ve had faith in recently are Punchline and Codex. Punchline being somewhat secured by direct alignment with Joker/Batman/Harley.

Codex really does have strong Knull vibes and looks phenomenal on covers IMO.

From the few bits and pieces of Codex talking that we’ve seen so far, I can almost see Cates hinting at the character having a conscious of sorts. I don’t have any clear or great examples of that and I’m probably reading into it based on hopes. But perhaps Codex can ultimately be more complex than straight villain as this unfolds.

Either way, I definitely want to tread carefully on a modern villain for sure. I just still sense a bit of value based on current pricing for this book. We will see!

Punchline gives me that vibe she can end up like Harley, turns more good… or on the fence of good and bad… like Catwoman… can go both ways.

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I’m going with the raws as they may just be 9.8’s. Anyway. Then it’s just getting them graded if you wanted.

I second the comment about raws being sub 9.8 grades. I don’t think I’ve purchased a raw on eBay that was close to 9.8. I feel like people buy 5 copies, hold the 2-3 they want to keep or grade, then sell the two that are left.

Unless they are new releases. Anything over a year old tends to have just enough wear to make it a 9.4 or 9.6.

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I refuse to chase a 9.8 anymore with raw book purchases online if it is a book I really, really want in a 9.8.
(Caveat, I’m speaking relative to any modern book that has established value). I’ll chase 9.8s with FOC/new books and such.

Condition is in the eye of the holder… all my raw books are 12.0’s… they’re all precious and perfect, until I sell them. Then I just tell people they’re great books, actual grade is not guaranteed. :wink:

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Venomismypassion, I know you have like a million copies of Venom 25 the second printing lol. In your opinion, does this book tend to hold it’s condition well? Or would you say it’s somewhat of a tossup?

I have a bunch of copies myself and I feel like just less than half are potentially 9.8 which is not bad, but I’m also not positive

About 40% of my order was a 9.8 candidate. But I bought them pre-FOC. Most sellers on eBay are going to mail their least desirable copies and keep the good ones for themselves.

It’s a thick book with a dark cover. At $80 a piece I think you’re better off buying them graded already.

The math works like this:


$25 for the book with shipping
$8 for pressing
$20 for grading
$6 for shipping both ways if you’re submitting 10 or more books

You’re at $59 and you don’t even know if you’re getting a 9.8.

You would have to have a 66% success rate for the math to break even.

I can confidently tell you 2 out of 3 books you buy raw off eBay aren’t going to be 9.8 candidates.

Then you have to ask yourself how much time do you want to wait?

Is $20-$30 per book difference worth the guarantee of getting what you want and getting it quickly?

For me, the answer is YES.

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It is a new book so good chance a lot of un-graded copies will be 9.6 to 9.8. condition just make sure there are good, high resolution picks. Don’t want to get stuck with new books that won’t grade higher than a 9.0. Also, I think there are some that want to sell now just in case the spec does not pan out so you might be able to work out a bulk deal for those who have multiple copies. I am on the side that Venom #25 is still pretty good spec material… As long as he doesn’t turn into a yellow snowflake and gets flushed away or somethin.

My math was a little off on the success rate. You would need about a 75% success rate, not 66%.

This is a no-brainer.

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