Cataloging

So once a collection spirals out of control into thousands of issues how do you keep track? In the feverish search at a convention how can you know what you bought just 30 minutes earlier at a different booth? What if you have an issue but it’s in terrible condition and you wouldn’t mind upgrading it at some point? These were the questions I was trying to find a solution for a few years back.

I initially was trying to find a free solution, perhaps a website that can track all of this. The best I could find was ComicsPriceGuide where you could create an account and add issues but it’s a bit slow and cumbersome to add lots of comics. It seems more useful for only the most collectible ones since it also doubles as a price guide.

Exhausting the website search, I started looking into apps. I stumbled upon the CollectorZ series of software and was initially skeptical. Anything that replaces a ‘s’ with a ‘z’ will always make me wince a bit. They offer multiple apps built on the same framework depending on what you collect. It had a one time $9.99 price tag but offered a trial version of the software that allows up to a 100 comics to be added. I tried it out and was pleasantly surprised.

The app is streamlined for the phone version which is great because that is what I’m holding onto when I go to a convention or shop. You can easily add entries into a series in bulk and the search feature is very robust. The database is already populated with images of the covers. I have yet to encounter an issue that isn’t already in there (although you could manually add it if the situation came up). I quickly put the money down and it was completely worth it.

It automatically syncs to a cloud database so I can view my collection across my computer and tablet as well. My SO even downloaded it so she can keep track of what I have. Very recently my collection has grown to the point where I want to start replacing certain issues that are in poor condition with nicer copies. I didn’t have to look around very much in the app to discover that I can add a custom tag on any particular issue, for instance “replace”. Then I can quickly search for the keyword and only the issues marked will appear. This is incredibly useful for being able to quickly see the shortlist in a store.

You can select an individual issue and see all the key details and a better view of the cover. If you really wanted you can override the image or add additional details. Either way it is nice to scroll through and admire what I have on occasion.

Recently in what I assume is to cover costs of upkeep the app has moved over to a $9.99 yearly fee instead of a one time cost. With that persistent cost it will now sync up with price guides to give you the value of the book among other features. I was fortunately grandfathered in without these newly added features so I cannot speak to them. Still, if you are looking for an easy way to database your collection I strongly recommend Collectorz Comics app even with the yearly cost.

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