What exactly are ‘As New’ and ‘Used’?

By on 3rd March 2017

When the premium version has been purchased values for each coin in ‘As New’ and ‘Used’ condition are revealed.

A ‘Used’ coin is one that has seen normal circulation and has normal wear for its age and the duration it has been in general use. A used coin from circulation that has been damaged, has extreme wear or is in any other way compromised will only ever be worth face-value, or in the case of the currently higher priced coins it’ll probably be worth less than the value shown in the ‘Used’ box.

‘As New’ coins are coins with full lustre and no scratches or marks visible to the naked eye. Very minor imperfections may be tolerated, as long as the coin was made that way and is exactly how it left the Royal Mint when new.
In the vast majority of cases this will be coins that are still sealed in original packaging. The Royal Mint call such coins ‘Brilliant Uncirculated’ or ‘BU’ for short. It did used to be possible, 15 or so years ago, to get mint sealed bags of very high quality coins and in those bags (if you were lucky) were a few flawless coins with no scratches or marks. The app also classes such coins to be ‘As New’, although some people do insist that ‘BU’ means still sealed. In fact, the way the coin grading terms have evolved over the years is very confusing, even to experts!

Recently, due to the way the Royal Mint make and distribute new coins, there are very few (if any) perfect coins ever found in circulation, even fresh from their sealed bags they are usually very shiny, but in a sorry state in terms of the number of scratches and marks. The Royal Mint seem to take less care making coins for circulation and ‘BU’ is increasingly becoming a term used for the coins made to higher standards for sets etc, rather than what it used to be, which was a coin grade to denote a coin with full brilliance (lustre) and this potential confusion is why the term ‘As New’ is used within the app and not ‘BU’.

The Check Your Change admin is Mr C H Perkins, publisher of numismatic publications in printed and eBook format. Author of "Collectors' Coins - Decimal Issues of the UK" and other books on British coins and related subjects.


  1. Lorna massie
    9th February 2019

    Leave a Reply

    Brillant site how do i up grade

    • CYC-Admin
      10th February 2019

      Leave a Reply

      On every coin page of the app you’ll find that option, above the back button.

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