Steve Aoki Launches First-Ever Grading and Authentication Platform for Physical Music Assets

Audio Media Grading is likely to be of interest to dedicated collectors who view music as an alternative asset.

Steve Aoki brought a new infrastructure to the world of physical music.

It has long been widely accepted that certain vinyl issues, CDs etc. have an inherent value based on their demand, quality and rarity, but putting a price on these illiquid assets has historically proven to be a challenging task.

Aoki’s new venture, which he says is the first of its kind, aims to level-set the market by creating an acceptable industry standard. In launching his new company, Aoki is betting that the popular practice of grading alternative assets—one applied to products such as Pokémon and baseball cards—adopted by the audiophile community.

Steve Aoki performing at Electric Zoo 2022.

Brian Rapaport/

Partnering with Collector Archive Services (CAS), Aoki’s venture will help facilitate the review and authentication of physical music assets, including vinyl, CDs, cassette tapes and more. The final result will show the asset on a laminated plaque with an assigned score based on a scale of 10, depending on the condition of the asset.

Collectors also receive a certificate of authenticity with their graded asset, if the item passes inspection. About the company websiteAudio Media Grading will conduct a review of every asset starting at $50.

“Introducing Audio Media Grading, the world’s first music grading company,” wrote Aoki. “I’m teaming up with the folks from @CASGrading to create a new business where you can grade your vinyl, cassettes, CDs, and 8Track to classify and log your audio media. finally be able to watch the how does your interior grade compared to other surviving pieces.”

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