Understanding KEH Camera’s Grading System

We receive a lot of questions regarding our Grading System. The KEH Grading System helps our team of experienced photo and video technicians to rate and grade used equipment in a reliable and transparent manner to help our customers choose the gear that best suits their requirements and budget.

Below is a chart that explains our grades:

All grades are based on cosmetic condition, except our “As is” (AI) grade. All equipment is in working order order *unless otherwise specified*. For some equipment such as collectibles, we’ll specify other relevant operating condition information in the ‘Notes’ field (adjacent to the Grade field). So, you may see a note like “Inoperative” or “Aperture Oily” etc. We use the same grading system to sell and purchase equipment.

Our professional and accurate KEH grading system was created in-house and is unmatched in the market. Our system assures an accurate evaluation of gear traded in to KEH, as well as bought from KEH’s website.

Each grade has a tolerance range. Some gear may be on the high end of a particular grade, and some gear may be on the low end. There are, however, specific factors to determine the correct grade for every piece of equipment. We have a large team of experienced and seasoned photography and videography experts writing up equipment.

Glass Disclaimer

Occasionally lenses, even when brand new, will have a slight amount of dust visible within the lens elements. This is a result of the manufacturing process and will not affect image quality or resolution.


We only offer fully functional gear, however, if the item needs parts that are no longer available or if the item is beyond economical repair, it is then categorizes As-Is and sold for parts.

There are many factors that are considered during the grading process. We want you to be confident in your purchase and offer a 180-day, non-transferable warranty and a 14-day hassle-free return period (on all items except Ugly and As-Is grades) in case your purchase isn’t perfect.

Do you have other questions that are dying for answers? Leave us a comment and call our team of photography experts at 1-800-342-5534.





  1. I had one heck of a time finding out what BGN meant. It is not in your list of Abbreviations. It wouldn’t hurt to pick a different name for this quality grade anyway.

  2. Your very first sentence is incorrect(All grades are based on cosmetic condition and all grades, with the exception of “As is” (AI), are in working order. This listing: Rollei Magic I (BAY II) Medium Format TLR Camera KEH Model# 244860 has the following grade, notes and price: Grade = EX, notes = Inoperative, Price = $109.00. Unless a person is a diehard collector who doesn’t use the cameras they buy, I don’t know of many people who would pay $109 for a camera that’s inoperative. This item is not only overpriced but doesn’t meet your grading system as to being in working order for the grade. It should be an as is grade since it is inoperative and priced accordingly.

    1. mm

      Hi Kim! Thanks for your comment and apologies for any confusion. We’ve updated our blog to clarify further. We use the attribute “Inoperative”, and other similar attributes, for Collectible cameras that have functional problems.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *