Sign In or Create Account

Knowledge Center

Silver Rounds Vs. Coins Comparison

Silver rounds and coins are popular forms of silver to invest in. Silver is a more affordable metal to invest in when compared to gold, which is why some collectors and investors seek it out. Gold and silver bullion both have their investment benefits, so it is best to research to determine what will work best for you before you invest.  

For those interested in purchasing silver, it is essential to understand that while coins and rounds are similar, they have a few key differences. 

Silver Rounds

Silver rounds typically have generic designs and are minted by private companies or mints. They often feature images or engravings related to various themes such as animals, historical events, or symbols.  

Unlike silver coins, rounds do not have legal tender status and are not issued or backed by any official government. They lack face value and are primarily valued based on their silver content. Silver rounds are generally made of .999 fine silver, containing 99.9% pure silver.  

They have lower premiums over the spot price of silver than silver coins, with premiums being the additional cost above the intrinsic value of the silver content. Since rounds tend to have lower collectible value than coins their value is primarily tied to the spot price of silver.

Silver Coins

On the other hand, silver coins are usually issued by government mints and showcase specific designs that represent the issuing country’s history, culture, or commemorative events. Examples include the American Silver Eagle, Canadian Silver Maple Leaf, and Australian Silver Koala.  

Silver coins hold legal tender status in their country of origin and are assigned a face value. However, the intrinsic value of the silver content in these coins often far exceeds their face value. Most silver coins are made of .999 fine silver, like silver rounds, although some coins like the Canadian Silver Maple Leaf and Austrian Silver Philharmonic have even higher purity (.9999). 

Silver coins generally carry higher premiums than silver rounds due to their rarity, demand, collectibility, and design. Silver coins often have higher collectible value because of their limited mintage and historical significance. Some coins even gain value among collectors that exceed their intrinsic silver value. 

In summary, silver rounds have generic designs, lack legal tender status, have lower premiums, and have lower collectibility value compared to silver coins. Silver coins, on the other hand, feature specific designs, hold legal tender status, have higher premiums, and often carry higher collectible value due to their limited mintage and historical significance. 

Silver coins produced by sovereign mints are generally regarded as more desirable for their higher quality and because sovereign mints back them. A popular, well-known coin is considered more secure because it’s well-known. It’s very easy for a third party to verify authenticity due to various security features such as laser engravings or missing reeds.

They also have published and verifiable weights, diameters, and thicknesses for their coins that can be easily measured. This additional security and verifiability create trust and make it easier to buy and sell. Because of these features, coins like the Silver Eagle or Silver Maple Leaf will be more liquid than a round. 

Popular Silver Rounds

Here are a few popular silver rounds that people often like to purchase: 

  1. Johnson Matthey Silver Rounds: Johnson Matthey, a renowned precious metals refiner, has produced silver rounds that collectors seek out. Their rounds often feature the company logo, weight, and purity markings. 
  1. Engelhard Mint Prospector: Engelhard Mint manufactured the widely popular Prospector 1 oz silver round from 1982 to 1988. They feature a prospector mining for gold and are highly desirable. 
  1. Buffalo Silver Rounds: Inspired by the iconic Buffalo Nickel, many private mints produce silver rounds featuring a design that replicates the Native American and buffalo images found on the original coin. 

It’s important to note that the popularity and availability of specific silver rounds may vary over time as new designs and releases enter the market while others become less common. It’s always a good idea to research and verify the reputation and authenticity of any silver round before making a purchase. 

Popular Silver Coins 

Here are some popular silver coins: 

  1. American Silver Eagle: The American Silver Eagle is one of the most popular silver coins in the world. Issued by the United States Mint, it features a stunning design of Lady Liberty on the obverse and a heraldic eagle on the reverse. The coin has a face value of $1 and contains one troy ounce of .999 fine silver. 
  1. Canadian Silver Maple Leaf: The Canadian Silver Maple Leaf is another highly sought-after silver coin. Produced by the Royal Canadian Mint, it features the iconic image of a maple leaf on the reverse and Queen Elizabeth II on the obverse. The coin has a face value of $5 CAD and contains one troy ounce of .9999 fine silver. 
  1. Australian Silver Kangaroo: The Australian Silver Kangaroo is popular among silver coin collectors. Minted by the Perth Mint, it showcases various designs of kangaroos on the reverse each year, while the obverse features an effigy of Queen Elizabeth II. The coin has a face value of $1 AUD and contains one troy ounce of .9999 fine silver. 
  1. Austrian Silver Philharmonic: The Austrian Silver Philharmonic is renowned for its elegant design and association with classical music. Produced by the Austrian Mint, it features an image of the Great Organ in the Golden Hall of the Musikverein in Vienna on the obverse and an array of musical instruments on the reverse. The coin has a face value of €1.50 and contains one troy ounce of .999 fine silver. 
  1. British Silver Britannia: The British Silver Britannia is a well-known silver coin with a rich history. Minted by the Royal Mint, it features the iconic figure of Britannia on the reverse and Queen Elizabeth II on the obverse. The coin has a face value of £2 and contains one troy ounce of .999 fine silver. 

These are just a few examples of popular silver coins, and many more options are available from various countries and mints. Each coin has a unique design, history, and collectibility, contributing to its appeal among silver investors and collectors. 

Quick Guides to Investing

Step 1:

Why Buy Physical Gold and Silver?

If you are concerned about the volatility of the stock market, you’re not alone. The extreme highs and lows of the stock market often lead investors towards safe-haven assets, like bullion. Historically, the Precious Metals market has an inverse relationship with the stock market, meaning that when stocks are up, bullion is down and vice versa.

Step 2:

How Much Gold and Silver Should You Have?

This question is one of the most important for investors to answer. After all, experts suggest limits on how much of any types of investments should go into a portfolio. After deciding to purchase and own Precious Metals and considering how much money to allocate, one can then think about how much and what to buy at any point in time.

Step 3:

Which Precious Metals Should I Buy?

With the frequent changes in the market and countless Precious Metal products available, choosing investments can be difficult. Some want Gold or Silver coins, rounds or bars while others want products that are valuable because of their design, mintage or other collectible qualities. Also, collectors may shop for unique sets and individual pieces for their collections.

Step 4:

When to Buy Gold & Silver

After considering why, how much, and what Precious Metals products to buy, an investor’s next step is when to buy them. This decision requires an understanding of market trends and the impact of economic factors on precious metal prices.

Explore More On APMEX



Rare Coins