$700 for a PSA 10 1st Edition Base Set Charizard?

Discussion in 'Collecting and Card Price Discussion' started by hyruleguardian, Oct 13, 2009.

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  1. hyruleguardian

    hyruleguardian New Member

    First of all I know I have been posting a bunch of threads on this forum... but so far I have only actually made 1 purchase! It's always nice getting feedback from some guys who have been card collecting for a long time.

    The item I mentioned in the title would also have free delivery which makes it slightly more enticing.

    Is $700 now for this card worth it in terms of future investment?

    If I bought this card, I would then sell my PSA 9 1st Edition Base Set Charizard (I currently have a complete set of PSA 1st Edition Base Set Holos).

    My thinking is that I should be able to sell the PSA 9 for $250, so I am essentially paying $450 to 'upgrade' my Charizard by 1 grade.

    I figure that the upgrade has the potential to be worth it. With certain highly desirable sports cards the difference in value between a PSA 10 and a PSA 9 card can be astronomical.

    I am not comparing Charizard to the more valuable sports cards out there but nonetheless no one can deny that this is the holy grail of Pokemon cards. There have been 190 of these cards that have been graded a PSA 9 but only about 30 that have received a grade of PSA 10 - given that there are so few 1st edition base set booster boxes left (and the fact that the ones that are left are more valuable if they remain sealed) it is doubtful the number of PSA 10 registered Charizards will get much larger.

    So... is it worth it? Thanks again for any advice.
  2. Will-iam

    Will-iam New Member

    Really? about 30 1st edition Charizard cards received PSA gem status? I thought it was a lot less.

    If you can sell your PSA-9 Charizard card in oder to 'deduct' some payment for a PSA-10 one, go for it. Though almost no one is buying PSA pokemon cards especially those that have a less than 10 status and those that do have a 10 status are viewed as not 'worth' it.

    Its a very precarious purchasing/balancing act: that causes a rift in decision making with regards to PSA graded pokemon cards. Gems or 10s are desirable but 'unaffordable' and 9s or less though 'affordable' not as desirable.

    The Charizard even in PSA gem status is not the 'holy-grail' perhaps in the sense of a retired from pack/box set card it is; but I would consider the graded cards I have more of a 'holy-grail' status than a 1st edition Charizard card.

    I don't mean that out of disrespect simply pointing something out that you should be aware of; in the sense that for true collectors a PSA-10 charizard is on the bottom of a long list of other cards, so as an investment choice its up to you but for me personally the PSA-10 charizard is over-hyped; especially now considering there are 30 I was under the impression there were like 10 with gem status.

    For sports cards that are 'classic' or 'vintage' that would be valuable but for something like Pokemon that is rather fairly high in number.
  3. hyruleguardian

    hyruleguardian New Member

    Well, for some of the 1st edition base set cards there are only 10 that exist. In fact, OTHER than Charizard, none of the 1st edition base set holos have more than 15 copies out there that have received a PSA 10 (Machamp doesn't count).

    The fact that there have been 30 Charizards is just testament to the fact that these cards have always been considered extremely valuable, thus people were more conscience in protecting them and/or were more keen to get the card professionally graded. But just because there are 30 Charizards and only 10 Magnetons doesn't make the Magneton even close to as valuable, of course.

    'Holy grail' is a relative term as it surely is not the same for everyone. Certainly there are more rare and expensive cards out there. This is all a matter of opinion and of course one person's trash can be another's treasure. However, I think it is fair to say that the 'most sought after' and famous Pokemon card ever is the 1st edition base set Charizard. Also the fact that this card comes from the booster packs distinguishes this card for me for me in a positive way.

    When I was a kid in 1999 and everyone wanted Pokemon cards, no one knew anything about promo cards, but EVERY kid wanted a Charizard. I even had my only precious Charizard card stolen from me in the 5th grade (It was silly to put my Pokemon cards in my backpack, of course).

    I think the card will ultimately have the most sentimental value for the greatest number of people, especially those kids who grew up at the height of Pokemon's popularity. Obviously 99.99% of those people will ultimately not give a hoot and a holler about Pokemon ever again. But even an extremely tiny fraction of people who grew up loving Pokemon who eventually want to buy some Pokemon cards as collector's items can make these cards fairly valuable. And one card I believe that most of these people are going to want is the base set Charizard, much more so than any promo card. I ultimately believe that if there was ONE CARD that most people could pick for themselves if they had the choice it would be the Charizard.

    For the record, I personally believe that ONLY the 1st edition base set cards and certain promo cards are actually worth getting graded. I personally don't see any Pokemon cards post-Jungle really being very valuable in the long run, even PSA graded. This is just my personal opinion of what will happen eventually to the value of these cards.

    Sentimental value can be much more important for buyers than simple rarity. So as long as the PSA 10 Charizard is still PRETTY RARE (30 isn't THAT many) I feel that this card is a good candidate to at least maintain its value going forward.

    Also, PSA 9 1st Edition Base Holofoil Sets recently sold on ebay for $1000 and $1400 (just check ebay's completed listings) so I wouldn't necessarily say these cards have little value. Clearly there are some people out there willing to pay good money for PSA 9 cards.

    I think any Pokemon card graded BELOW a PSA 9 has NO real value (it might as well not be PSA graded). PSA 9 cards are still fairly valuable and definitely add a lot to the value of a card as opposed to being ungraded, while PSA 10 cards are VERY valuable (although as you said, right now their asking price seems to be too high for consumer demand).


    Yeah, that was a mouthful. In short I believe that the PSA 10 Charizard will sustain its value even if there 30 of them out there. As long as the number is under 50 that's still fairly rare provided that the card maintains a high level of demand. In my opinion, if the card DOESN'T maintain a high level of demand it would spell doom for all graded Pokemon cards in existence because I believe this will always be the most sought out card.

    So that's why I am strongly considering 'investing' that extra $450 or so into the PSA 10 Charizard as opposed to the PSA 9. That and because I want it of course! But nonetheless I wouldn't have interest in these cards if I didn't believe they couldn't at least maintain their value going forward.
    Last edited: Oct 13, 2009
  4. Will-iam

    Will-iam New Member

    Are you saying this is worthless: http://pokegym.net/gallery/showimage.php?i=48765&c=173

    If so that's a real bummer for me, LOL.

    I understand where you are coming from with regards to a Charizard card being valuable with regards to being sentimental and nostalgic, which is why I also believe one of the most valuable Pokemon card sets is the 1st edition set especially in gem graded status.

    The Charizard card will go up in value years from now but it'll never surpass the very rare trophy/prize cards IMO.
  5. hyruleguardian

    hyruleguardian New Member

    Oh I totally agree with you about that particular trophy Pikachu card being VERY, VERY valuable.

    First of all that is a very famous card and of course it is as rare as you can get. Of course its incredible rarity and fame means that will probably always be the most valuable Pokemon card.

    Nonetheless, that is one of those rare exceptions. No other promo card for me comes close to matching the total package of fame / rarity / desirability that that particular card offers.

    That is one of those VERY few promos out there that, along with the 1st edition base set cards, I feel has a very good chance of only growing in value as time goes on.


    One more point about the PSA 10 Charizards. I wonder what percentage of people who own such a card are actually willing to sell it. If it's only 50% or so that means that in reality there are only 15 PSA 10 1st Ed. Charizards, just as an example.
  6. Will-iam

    Will-iam New Member

    Yes that is true, with regards to a PSA graded card becoming somewhat unique and therefor coveted amongst collectors.

    If only 50% are willing to sell/trade a PSA-10 Charizard it'll make it as you said in reality only half of the PSA-10 Charizards exist in availability though not factually, just as there exists more potentially ungraded; factors of levels of existence one must take into granted when dealing with graded cards as stated i.e. availability, factually and potentially.

    Also through duration it is assumed with collectibles they will become more or less frozen with regards to transferring of ownership causing an even larger potential in diminishing the availability status of the collectible.
  7. smpratte

    smpratte Active Member

    Hyrule you should get the psa 10 charizard. I do think that the 1st edition charizard represents a lot for pokemon cards. I mean because of that card it helped put pokemon on the map, or at least did a significant amount. Also out of all the cards you can grade the 1st edition cards are probably some of the best.

    Oh and the Holy Grail of Pokemon cards is the Pikachu Illustrator. That is not subjective I am sorry that is the Holy grail, at least for collectors, it is the most difficult card to obtain.
  8. Will-iam

    Will-iam New Member

    I hardly ever disagree with you Scott; but the statement of the pikachu illustrator being the 'holy-grail' is in fact 'subjective' Now it is the holy grail for me, you, the Silvestros and a plethora of other collectors but not all. Though there are other cards I hold the Illustrator equal to, perhaps not in monetary value and certainly not in scarcity/availability but in desirability such as my graded trophy cards.

    If I did obtain the pikachu-illustrator it would cease to become my 'holy-grail' since it would no longer be sought but would end up being obtained, then I would move on to my next 'holy-grail' which I refrain from mentioning since I know there is a lot of covet-collectors that watch/read these threads/posts and would cause unwanted competition. I mention seeking the Illustrator since I have a good report with someone who owns one.

    Back on topic: The Charizard card helped put Pokemon on the 'fad-map' the trophy cards put it on the collectors' map and that is more or less a factual statement.
  9. smpratte

    smpratte Active Member

    haha yeah you don't but i see what you are saying.

    I think $700 is not too bad for a psa 10 zard, especially if you are going to sell your psa 9 one, I think that is a good deal.
  10. Will-iam

    Will-iam New Member

    Yes comparably $700 is a very good price considering most try to sell that card for $1k or over.
  11. hyruleguardian

    hyruleguardian New Member

    Yeah, so as I mentioned in the other thread, I bought this card.

    I also wanted to add my thoughts on why I doubt there will ever be many NEWLY graded PSA 10 1st edition base set Pokemon cards in the future.

    It's so unlikely there are many just 'lying around' someone's house in PSA 10 condition. Almost all of these cards were pulled out of the packs by children who had no understanding of the significance of the condition of the card - and of course a PSA 10 card needs to be basically in perfect condition.

    The 1st ed. Zards that were pulled out of the packs by collectors and sellers with the specific purpose of getting a mint condition card to have it graded have already had it graded.

    Most importantly, there really aren't going to be many 1st edition base set boxes or packs that will ever be opened again. Not when the booster box itself sells for over $1000 and even opening the box is likely to only give you about 2 PSA 10 conditioned holo foils (with about a 1 in 8 chance that one of those would be Zard anyway).


    I am very happy to own this card. If I could have had any card of my choice in the entire Pokemon TCG (other than just picking the most expensive card so I could sell/trade it), this definitely would have been it. :0)
  12. smpratte

    smpratte Active Member

    ehh yeah but there were a lot of psa 10 charizard back in the golden era or whatever you want to call it.

    That card has got to me the most graded card, I would say there are at least 50 out there, some that have not even hit ebay. William would probably know more on it though.

    With that said it is still a valuable card.
  13. Will-iam

    Will-iam New Member

    hyruleguardian; both Ed and Gary have a plethora of first edition boxes/packs, in fact Ed is selling some packs on ebay between $50-60 ATM. I am pretty sure there will be more PSA-10 charizards in the future. I still think it is a valuable card due to its desirability but I wouldn't buy it, too much room for increasing the high grade account, something I do not have to worry about with my trophy cards.
  14. hyruleguardian

    hyruleguardian New Member

    Let's assume the following:
    -Odds of getting a holo in a pack are 1 in 3
    -Odds of getting a Charizard if the card is a holo are 1 in 16
    -Odds of getting a 'PSA 10' conditioned Charizard in this case are about 1 in 5 (because most cards from the base set are off-center)

    So that means only about 1 in 240 packs actually have a PSA 10 Charizard in them in the first place.

    Then add that to the fact that the VAST MAJORITY of people who purchase/own these packs aren't going to open them. Because they know that even if they are lucky enough to pull a holo it is still much more likely that the unopened pack itself is far more valuable.

    The EXACT number of Charizards right now that have a PSA 10 grade is 35 (there is also 1 BGS 10).

    We'll see where that number is 10 years from now. My bet is that the number will be less than 50.

    Given that it is at the top of the majority of people's most wanted list that number is still plenty small enough to make the price of this card very high.

    Remember - when the 10-year olds of 1999 turn 40 in 2039 and get nostalgic about their childhood and want to buy a Pokemon card, they're not going to think about getting a promo card that they had never heard of in their life. They are going to want THE Charizard, and those that want the best will look for the 1st edition PSA 10 card.

    I am not criticizing the promo cards. Their ultra rarity is what they have going for them. When you get the rare promo card that combines that great rarity with great desirability it makes the value extremely high.

    The PSA 10 Charizard doesn't need to be ultra rare, it just needs to be rare. And with its IMMENSE popularity, iconic status, and ownership of people's nostalgia the fact that there are 35 with perhaps just a few more on the way really isn't a lot to worry about at all.

    Just my opinion. I probably have no idea what I'm talking about. Forgive me. :p
    Last edited: Oct 15, 2009
  15. Will-iam

    Will-iam New Member

    Years in to the future is difficult to determine the value of these cards; I see a great potential for their value being increased but a potential is not a guarantee.

    The Charizard card's value diminished greatly when Pokemon card collector's and appreciators found out about Japanese promotional prize cards that were and still are very scarce.

    The scarcity one must understand is what makes the promo cards so desirable, the problem most people have with the ultra-rare cards are the following:

    1. Affordability: these cards are removed far and above most people's willing price range, unlike a 1st edition Charizard while expensive isn't the equivalent of buying a car or a rolex:lol:

    2. Rarity: The promo cards are so rare that most people get discouraged to even look for them you need to know people that know people to get an ultra-rare card:cool:; unless one pops up on ebay and even then because the cards are so rare a whole lot of trust must be involved with the transaction or you'l get gipped as has happened in the past to a fellow collector.

    3. Reverence: The Ultra-rare cards are held in such high regard with such mystery surrounding them that most people more or less out of respect refrain to look for them and will settle for simply scans of the cards.

    I agree that the Charizard card will go up in value if people stop selling them but I have been seeing for years people selling PSA 10 Charizards; that card needs to go into a long hibernation which is what happens with the really rare trophy cards like the SSB and TMB cards that were on ebay not too long ago; I doubt that you'll see those cards available for purchase on the public domain for a very long time.

    The Charizard PSA-10 however has just too much public transferring going on making it very difficult to increase its price however the price will not likely decrease since it has such a history however stagnancy is never good when it comes to making profit in the intermediate future.
  16. hyruleguardian

    hyruleguardian New Member

    My goal is to keep it as a collector's item, so even if its value doesn't increase it's not a big deal to me, because as you said, its value is very unlikely to decrease.

    I hear what you're saying about these cards changing hands a lot and this not necessarily being a good thing for the card's value - on the positive me owning one of them means I am holding at least 3% of the population of the card off of the trade market. :p

    Also, I've seen past listings on ebay of the PSA 10 'Zard sell for over $1000... so I feel okay at $700 (and hopefully I can get back around $300 selling the PSA 9 'Zard).
  17. Will-iam

    Will-iam New Member

    Yes getting that card for $700 bucks is a very good deal and for the record I do not have the desire to sell my cards either they're just way too cool!
  18. themightylordzeus

    themightylordzeus New Member

    Hello Hyrule Guardian, William, and new friends, yes a psa 10 base set 1st edition charizard is a glorious investment, people don't know what 1st edition really means.

    Its a card tied in a copyright bond to make it a collectable and extra valuable, the base set 1st edition charizard without errors in psa 10 gem mint condition is in fact the KING, and True HolyGrail of pokemon cards, why-.

    Sure the illustrator card is off the charts in rarity and value, as only six cards were assumed to be made and you had to win a major competion and be a japanese citizen to earn it also you had to be a kid, though there are two problems with this, 1. getting a psa 10 on one of these or any other trophy cards back in pokemon tcgs glory days would be implausable, even though the card was probably givin out in a toploader, still unless that toploader was air and debri proof the card would begin to decay to a small degree if not left in an airless box, hence becoming less then a 10, as people were not very well aware of how neccesary a psa grade really is to make the card optimal, still there are alot of ways the cards grade potential could deterioate if not fully protected, no need to talk about all these possibilitys as you can rationalize them yourselfs, 2. the real catch and reason the trophy cards are not all they are choked up to be is this, fortunetly for the people who wish they had the illustrator or other trophy cards, or people that wish they can get those cards with a grade of 10 can, why and how-.

    Its because when these cards were printed they were not printed 1st edition hence are technically unlimited, once an unlimited card is printed that same card can not be printed in 1st edition without either a change to the card or a change to the copyright, since these cards were printed without a 1st edition stamp the illustrator and other trophy cards by copyright can be printed exactly the same including copyright date, hence making a new batch of these illustrators and trophy cards indisdinguishable from the first, though through this there would more of these cards, they would still be extremely rare, valuable, and equaly divine, as though thay are unlimited cards they are still promotional cards, and for such major cards would probably like before only be released for a major promotion or tournament.

    Though pokemon has greatly faded in popularity, this planet is still going to be alive for atleast another million years and pokemon gods like ken sugimori will probably re make the pokemon franchise for this new generation, and us handfull of pokemon tcg nostalgic super fenes will buy them all up not giving those kids a fighting chance.

    However 1st edition cards, cannot be reprinted as it would be a violation of copyright law, though thay could make them again exactly like before, shadowless and super vibrant, but with a COPYRIGHT change/update, still thats what would make the cards from the original print run even more exspensive and in doing this would make these cards even more valuable, get it, that would make your charizard a gold mine of an investment Hyruleguardian.

    Sure about 50 of these babys exist in psa 10 condition, but thats still nothing when 10 million americans alone want them espicially those from the 90s who are sickiningly nostalgic.

    Last but not least i seriously doubt any of these already freed charizards that have not been graded will be able to be graded a 10 as they will not meet gloss standards meaning pack freshness/new smell etc.

    Now there are perhaps no more then 5 existing base set 1st edition booster boxs left, and the remaining saved packs bought online were almost certainly weighed.

    No Offense my friend Hyruleguardian but the true odds of a psa 10 conditioned charizard 1st edition base set is this.

    Per Pack-

    1 in 3 odds of a holo.
    1 in 15 holos is a charizard- as machamp comes in a individual starter deck shadowed, and a very rare two player starter deck box shadowless.
    2 in 3 chance it is centered- the base set was no were near as bad as 1 in 5 chance centered, as usually right out of the pack holos are centered.
    1 in 396 chance the card emerges from the pack already damaged- due to very rare factory error though for holos this almost never happens.
    2 in 3 chance of more valuable and desireable Thick 1 1st edition stamp variant.
    1 in 3 chance of rarer though much less attractive and slighty less valuable Thin 1 1st edition stamp variant.
    1 in 32 packs contain a thick 1 psa 10 1st edition charizard.
    1 in 56 packs contain a thin 1 psa 10 1st edition charizard.
    1 box to get a thick 10.
    2 boxes to get the thin 10.
    However these are just the odds its all random, 1 box can contain 3 charizards, 3 boxes may not contain 1 charizard. Yet as i said before there is practically no boxes left and already removed packs are likely weighed.

    Anyways The 1st edition base set charizard is also by mine and most others opinion the best looking pokemon tcg card in existence, the english base set 1st edition cards are the only cards with no shadows, besides shadowless english base set cards, and the colors are super vibrant with much more holographic sparkling, because trophy cards were not printed 1st edition they are subject to identical reprint with a major promotion and/or tournament, something we don't have to worry about with our treasured 1st edition cards, congratulations on your charizard hyruleguardian. I still love trophy cards don't get me wrong as they are super promos and 1st place cards make there owner the pokemon king, however even if the pokemon illustrator was 1st edition if i could have only one or the other id take 1st edition charizard.
  19. smpratte

    smpratte Active Member

    There are 42 registered charizard psa 10 cards. There are many that can be 10's and some that are still in packs.

    There are a lot of cards with less copies that are much more sought after for legitimate reasons. For example I have a no 1 ssb trainer which there are under 10 copies and it is graded psa 10. The no. 1 card ungraded is worth easily $3,000.


    A holy grail is defined by rarity first. Check out the trophy card section in the gallery on this site, trophy cards are the rarest cards out there. As much as you adore a psa 10 charizard it is not as rare or worth as much as the trophy cards. A PSA 10 charizard is a wonderful collectible but not a holy grail, sorry.
    Last edited: Jan 5, 2011
  20. ColdCoates90

    ColdCoates90 New Member

    Few people care about psa graded cards anyway; the fact that you say a rare card can't achieve a psa graded value of 10 and thus be considered a "trophy" card is humorous to say the least.

    Also, a first edition anything pales in comparison to a card that was printed in limited copies.
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