Preview: 2011 Upper Deck Exquisite Football

Topps has Five-Star, Panini has National Treasures, and the last to be released is Upper Deck’s 2011 Exquisite football. Exquisite has always been highly regarded amongst collectors, and still maintains that high regard despite the NCAA license as evidenced by last year’s successful product.

This year shouldn’t be any different. With a strong rookie class and Exquisite’s great rookie autographed patches, it should be a hit once again this year. Bringing some of the greatest football players of all time as well as some future great players, Exquisite is a product worth the price of admission.

And I’ve had good experience in the past too.

At 6 cards per box, this product has always been about quality instead of quantity. 5 of the cards are autographs though, and collectors love that. Besides your standard rookie patch autographs, UD Black will make a return in this product as well as some very cool autographs that look almost 3-dimensional.

You can expect the product to be in the $400 range when it releases, with an official date coming soon.

 

 

Topps Five-Star Football Out and Looks Good

Why can’t Topps do a high-end baseball product like they can with football?

2011 Topps Five-Star is out and is what everyone had expected when previewing the product. Tons of on-card autographs, nice patches, and even redemptions for full autographed jerseys and helmets.

Five-Star was a welcome surprise last year and the product continues to be a great product again this year. It is once again, definitely a contender for football product of the year. The addition of those aforementioned full autographed jerseys and helmets really pushes it over the edge. I’ve been wanting a product to do this for years, and the fact that it has finally come true is exciting. Who wouldn’t want to pull one of those cards?

The only real complaint I’m hearing from collectors is the single, plain, jersey cards that you can find in any other product. That is a very legitimate complaint and is something that Topps should figure out how to avoid next year.

Now we have to wait and see the final product of 2011 Panini National Treasures football and 2011 Upper Deck Exquisite football products to see how they compare to a great Topps product this year.

What do you think of what you’ve seen from this product so far?

Preview: 2011 Topps Five Star Football

Remember last year, when Topps came out with Five-Star football and everyone wondered how Topps would pull off this new high end football product? Well, everyone was stunned when it turned out to be the best high end football product outside of Exquisite. UD had lost their NFL license and Topps was right there to pick up the slack.

Well ladies and gentlemen, it’s coming back for a sophomore season.

Mark February 22, 2012, down on your calendars for this heavyweight to come to your shop.

One autographed rookie card, one base rookie autographed patch card, one autographed veteran or retired player patch card, one autographed book or dual autographed card, one jumbo jersey or patch card, and 3 base cards. All for $475. Yes, it’s a pricey product, but man are those cards nice because every, every autograph is on card.

Not only will you find some of these beautiful cards, you may also find a redemption for authentic rookie NFL jerseys signed by that player. An idea I’ve had for awhile is coming to fruition and it sounds marvelous.

What do you guys think? Will it be that awesome product it was last year?

Preview: 2011 Topps Precision Football

Topps is creating another new football product this season and bringing in a hit per pack premium product with 2011 Topps Precision football. With a wide checklist of both rookies and veterans, this product looks like it could be a solid offering from Topps this year although it comes at a price.

$180 is that price for four packs of this product. Each pack will contain 3 base cards along with an autograph or an autographed jersey card. But the best part about this product is finally a sports card company is changing things up with autographs…Topps is featuring different color inks for it’s various autographed parallel cards.

The rookie checklist features 36 rookie subjects with red ink (#/75), gold ink (#/50), white ink (#/25) with all of them on-card autographs. You will find parallels of veterans as well in red, gold, green, and Precision parallels as well. There is even a small retired checklist at red, gold, and Precision parallels.

This product looks to be quite interesting with the possibility of up to an octograph booklet and all the way down to duals and some autographed patch cards.

Topps, you have my attention with this product. Precision and then Five Star look to be a great one-two combo in terms of Topps higher end products and I’m excited. I’ll be watching as this product goes on sale January 25, 2012.

Review: 2010-11 Panini Dominion Hockey

Well I flipped a coin between doing a full review for 2010-11 Panini Dominion hockey or Upper Deck The Cup and Panini won. But don’t worry, I’ll have the other review up for you guys tomorrow. Right now, it’s Panini’s time.

After my head to head dual box break and review of both products, I am now featuring a full review of Panini Dominion. I will not have a video at the bottom as I opened both products at the same time, so if you wish to watch my ugly mug open either product, click the link above. Other than that, it’s just a typical review, but of the $390 per pack nature.

Base:

Memorabilia:

Autographs:

Design:

In the design area, there are things that I think look beautiful and things that I think are just average. Some of the more beautiful cards I didn’t exactly pull like the rookie patch autographs and the stick cards, but the Nifty 50 set and the rookie autographs are beautiful themselves. They are very clean looking and have a great big area for players to sign their names. I mean, look at that Bobby Hull autograph, it’s gorgeous. Some of the things I don’t like are that dual game used card I pulled and I’m not a huge fan of the different foil colors on the parallels. The black parallel above is a 1/1, but you can’t really read it while some of the other foils just don’t look right with the colors chosen on the layout.

Checklist:

I give the checklist 5 stars because of the wide variety of players from today and yesterday. Some of these players on the checklist you can’t really find anywhere else in any hockey product out today. I pulled a Johnny Bower autograph, which is a player that doesn’t have many autographs out there so that was kinda cool. I’m not a huge historian of the game, but it’s nice to see some older players get some recognition today. I also like that Dominion does not overload it’s product full of top rookie autographs and keeps the patch autographs to a minimum. Some may not like that they may not get a patch autograph, but keeping them rare is really a good thing for the hobby, even if you may not like it as a collector.

Value:

As I’ve said in the past, sometimes I have a hard time deciding whether to give a product one star or another. I don’t use half points, so I tend to always round up unless I have sufficient reasons not to. If I could, I would give the value a 4 1/2. One of the reasons behind wanting to deduct that little bit of a point is the use of plain jerseys. The dual jersey and the plain jersey aren’t really my favorites and really should be limited in a product of this price. However, Panini did raise the original number of cards per box from 8 to 10, so I can consider these plain jerseys just to be like free extras. The patches are very nice with a 3 color of Anze Kopitar and a 2 color of Patrick Kane. The autographs are very nice as well with great on-card goodness including a great Bobby Hull. I also had the luxury of pulling a 1/1 (the black base) so that was a pleasant surprise as well.

Overall:

Overall, 2010-11 Panini Dominion is a great product to open. If you are a high end collector and can afford the $390 price tag, you are in for a treat. While the design could of been a little bit better when differentiating between parallels, overall the design is pretty good. The checklist has a wide number of players from today and yesterday which makes every hit you pull a surprise. I know I was definitely surprised to see the autographs I pulled and even the memorabilia. The value is there and there are some pretty huge hits in this product. Collectors seem to be a bit wary on the secondary market for some reason, probably because this product is new to the scene, but it should be given the same weight as The Cup.

As always, I would like to thank Panini America for sponsoring this product for me to open and review. I always thank them but I wanted to be sure to thank them a bit extra this time around because you don’t often get to review a $390 product and for that I am extremely thankful. Make sure you visit Panini’s official blog and their official facebook page.

I will be giving away a couple cards from this break in the future, as I am currently running the Panini NFL Player of the Day promotion.