Where do you get your deck boxes and sleeves?

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Post by yeti1069 » 3 days ago

I currently have a totally random assortment of deck boxes, some suitable for 100 sleeved cards, and some not quite. Similarly, I have quite the hodgepodge of sleeves, many of which are falling apart, or are too unwieldy to be using when shuffling a 100 card deck over and over.

Now, I'd like to standardize how I'm storing and protecting my decks a bit, but searching around online, I haven't found a single location for what I want. For example, I'd like to get the deck boxes associated with some of the commanders I'm running (Kadena and Ghired were face cards at least), but even those I haven't been able to find from a single seller.

So, where do you all go for your boxes and sleeves? What brand(s) do you recommend?

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Post by pokken » 3 days ago

I use KMC inner sleeves, perfect hard on my foil deck perfect fit on my other decks. Dragon shield mattes primarily for outer sleeves.

I use Dex creation line medium boxes and ultra pro satin towers for deckboxes. The creation line mediums are nice for perfect hard sleeved decks, not many boxes will hold an EDH deck in hard inners.

edit to add:
* I get all my sleeves from Amazon pretty much, except DS mattes which I get on Ebay or at my LGS. The LGS price for KMC perfect fits is absurd (5-6 dollars per pack). I buy 10 packs on amazon for 25 bucks.
* I get 10 packs of penny sleeves for 12 dollars on Amazon, and I use these for all my cheap cards.
* I have gotten my previous Dex creation lines from Dex direct at GPs, and would order from them in the future. The Creation line Medium is pretty much the perfect deck box IMHO. It's very large but it does it all and has tons of room for stuff.
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Post by Rumpy5897 » 3 days ago

I've got all my decks in Dragon Shield Mattes, and have a split of KMC and Dragon Shield inners. As for boxes, I'm aggressively basic and just use the plainest possible Ultra Pro/Ultimate Guard 100+'es whenever possible. Cheap as hell, hold a deck double sleeved with my specifications and a couple tokens to spare. That's good enough for me. I have a single Ultra Pro Satin Tower and I hate it, blaming its stiffness for creasing a sleeve batch during clunky loading/unloading. The bulkiness wasn't great either. Frankly, a box is for holding the deck together and offering a modicum of protection, as you're gonna put it in a bag later anyway. The more compact the better. A lot of those fancy options add girth for no good reason.

Speaking of fancy options, actually - once I added Cathars' Crusade to Daxos, I preempted logistical needs for more tokens and got like 20 spirits. That proved to be too much for the trusty 100+ to hold, and I quickly found out that there's a gaping hole in the market where a hypothetical 120+ should be. I scoured the internet and eventually landed upon pokken's aforementioned Dex protection medium. However, availability was patchy on this side of the pond, and I eventually landed the last copy (a garish python print) from some forgotten warehouse corner. It serves its purpose, but is disproportionately large for the extra capacity it offers. I repurposed the side compartment as storage for the plastic life ticker thing they do sometimes, along with extra copies of basic lands matching the ones in my decks.

As for where I got this stuff - I supported my LGS whenever possible, to the point of rolling with the punches and trying out Dragon Shield inners when they didn't have KMCs. Plain 100+'es are easy to come by here, as are Dragon Shields, so I was set. Pity they folded some time last summer, they were good people. Seeing how my storage needs are basic when not trying to accommodate a thick token stash for a single card's benefit, getting this stuff online has been easy.

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Post by WizardMN » 3 days ago

pokken wrote:
3 days ago
I use Dex creation line medium boxes and ultra pro satin towers for deckboxes. The creation line mediums are nice for perfect hard sleeved decks, not many boxes will hold an EDH deck in hard inners.
Out of curiosity, how much "height" do the perfect hards give to the deck over normal perfect fits?

@yeti1069
I have gone through *a lot* of sleeves and deckboxes over the years. I started with basic Ultra Pro Standard sleeves before moving onto Ultra Pro Eclipses, and then to Dragon Shield Mattes, and finally (currently) Ultimate Guard Katanas.

My Inner Sleeves were "none", Ultra Pro, KMC inners, Dragon Shield Inners, and finally (currently) Dragon Shield Sealables.

For deck boxes, I went from 800+ cardboard boxes with my decks just lying back to back, to Ultimate Guard Boulders in Arkhives, Ultimate Guard Twin Flip n Tray, to Legion Vault v2 Dragonhide, to Aaron Cain Custom Made boxes.

Now, a lot of this changing around was because I wanted to try the new thing but it took me a long time to get everything set up the way I want. I like Ultra Pro because they were cheap and rarely split on me. They were easier to split, but really didn't. The Eclipses were nice but had a matte front so my foils weren't as shiny (and what is the point of foils if I can't show them off :) ).

Dragon Shields were super nice and were my favorite for a long time. The only issue is that they were thicker than other sleeves so they didn't fit in deck boxes the same way. Katanas are nice, have a good shuffle feel, and seem to last a while.

For inner sleeves, I never really noticed much of a difference between Ultra Pro, KMC, and Dragon Shield for their normal top loading sleeves. All had their issues with getting the cards to fit. Ultra Pro was a little tighter, though it didn't seem to affect things too much. But I still got uneven cuts, and non-uniform widths with all of them.

Dragon Shield Sealable though have been fantastic. I do think they rely on the sealable aspect a little too hard as I have still had some that are too lose where even being sealable isn't enough to keep them from sliding off, But, overall, they have been great.

I moved away from the Boulders and the Twin Flip N Tray almost entirely because they wouldn't fit double sleeved decks sleeved with Dragon Shields. And I just like the custom look of Aaron Cain's boxes so I went with those and I am glad I did. The best thing is the little cut out window he does so I can see my Commander in each box. I also asked him to make them slightly bigger than his "standard" size which he did.

But, for most people (who aren't using Dragon Shields) I would probably go with the Boulders + Arkhive. Those are pretty sweet.

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Post by pokken » 3 days ago

WizardMN wrote:
3 days ago
pokken wrote:
3 days ago
I use Dex creation line medium boxes and ultra pro satin towers for deckboxes. The creation line mediums are nice for perfect hard sleeved decks, not many boxes will hold an EDH deck in hard inners.
Out of curiosity, how much "height" do the perfect hards give to the deck over normal perfect fits?
A perfect fitted DS matte + KMC perfect fit deck is about 2.5" and a DS matte + KMC perfect hard is about 3.25". There's a little squishability in there, in that perfect fit squishes to about 2 3/8" and perfect hard to about 3.0". But I would absolutely not try to smush a perfect hard deck into a 3.0" space regularly it'd be super annoying and risk bending cards coming out and in.


pf-vs-pfhard.jpg

------------------------------------------

One thing I will note is that I was very worried about my foils in perfect hards before putting them in. They were very tight, and I had heard horror stories about them warping. However, every single foil I have in Ephara is perfectly flat now even the specialty foilings that are not as nice. It was very surprising to take my formerly somewhat curly judge foil land tax out of the deck and it was perfectly flat.

It took me over an hour to get all the foils in those stupid things and resleeve the deck. But I'm glad I did, and I keep all my ephara foils in perfect hards now.

You have to be super careful and what I do is put them slightly in and then push them in by pushing the sleeve down with the card bottom on a playmat. I had one card bend almost in half before I started that method and it was very terrifying...thankfully it was just a nonfoil Faerie Artisans that bent right back :P

-------------------------------------

And more re: sleeves

DS inners (not the sealables) are very short, and allow dust to get into the bottom of the card and risk nicking them when handling. I highly recommend against them. The KMCs are about 1mm longer and make it far less likely you'll nick the bottom of a card in handling.

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Post by 3drinks » 3 days ago

I use apple green Dragon Shield mattes and dragon shield side loading inner sleeves for all cards, whether in deck or not. It keeps everything protected and is easy to slide cards around. I buy these at my LGS, or tcgplayer retailers, whichever is cheaper (usually my LGS).

The only exception being my one pack of blackborder perfect fits from SCG, because that's the only place I found them. If only Bordifies ever pushed the white border perfects through.........
pokken wrote:
3 days ago
I use KMC inner sleeves, perfect hard on my foil deck perfect fit on my other decks. Dragon shield mattes primarily for outer sleeves.
What the heck is a "perfect hard"? It sounds like porn lingo >_>
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Post by DirkGently » 3 days ago

I use black (non-matte) dragon shields for my main collection. Mattes are a bit easier to shuffle, but I started my collection before they existed and I don't really want to replace 8,000 sleeves. My other decks are mostly in dragon shield mattes of various colours.

It is my firm opinion that double-sleeving is a waste of money, and a pain in the butt to shuffle. I've never had any issues with wear on my cards using single-sleeving and some of them have been seeing consistent play for nearly a decade. Some people seem to think it's crucially important to double sleeve, but my personal experience has been completely opposite that. But maybe it depends on how you shuffle, I have no idea. I single sleeve my tabernacle, workshop, moat, abyss, duals, etc. Never had any problems. Even my most used cards still look the same as when I got them, as far as I can tell.

Box-wise, I like ultimate guard. I've got a smaller box with dice compartment for drafting, and a super hive with 5 smaller deck boxes inside for commander, since it holds my playmat as well. I don't hate the "throw a bunch of deck boxes into a bag" approach, but it's been kind of nice to keep things more organized.
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Post by 3drinks » 3 days ago

You're right, it's not crucially important to double sleeve. I do however like the way a dbl sleeved deck feels and the reactions sitting down from people thinking it's bigger is always a hoot. I'd say it's better for the people that like to foil everything (I don't) but otherwise it's not a mandatory thing. I definitely will always do it when the cost of perfect fits are $6/pk though. Relatively small one time cost for insurance.
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Post by Dragonlover » 2 days ago

I double sleeved Molimo not for protection during shuffling/handling, but just in case a drink ever gets decked over the table while I'm playing it, there's foils in there I'd rather not have to replace.

I'm currently using a Superhive with an assortment of deck boxes and sleeves, mostly Ultimate Guard and Ultra Pro. I'm in the process of working out something that will both hold and transport the eventual 32 decks I plan to build, which I'll probably make myself, and then I'll standardise my deck boxes. Probably to 100+ Boulders to give room for tokens.

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Post by pokken » 2 days ago

3drinks wrote:
3 days ago
What the heck is a "perfect hard"? It sounds like porn lingo >_>
It's an inner sleeve that is about 2x maybe 3x as thick and has some rigidity.

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Post by pokken » 2 days ago

DirkGently wrote:
3 days ago
It is my firm opinion that double-sleeving is a waste of money, and a pain in the butt to shuffle. I've never had any issues with wear on my cards using single-sleeving and some of them have been seeing consistent play for nearly a decade. Some people seem to think it's crucially important to double sleeve, but my personal experience has been completely opposite that. But maybe it depends on how you shuffle, I have no idea. I single sleeve my tabernacle, workshop, moat, abyss, duals, etc. Never had any problems. Even my most used cards still look the same as when I got them, as far as I can tell.
Foils dude. The reason I double sleeve is primarily that if you double sleeve one card you need to do them all, and foils get *thrashed* in single sleeves. I'll often have a handful of cards in only foil and that means my deck needs double sleeving.

I have to pass on foils in the local community constantly because people don't double sleeve and their foils are all nasty and cloudy and have dirt and handling scratches. Most people are not capable of being super careful.

Even without foils I can tell if someone is a single sleever within about 30 seconds of looking at their trade binder. But with foils it's immediately obvious. Single sleever's foils stand out like a sore thumb in a binder.

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Post by Rorseph » 2 days ago

pokken wrote:
2 days ago
foils get *thrashed* in single sleeves
Truth! This is why I don't bother with foils, personally.

As for sleeves, Dragon Shield Mattes have replaced Ultra Pro Eclipses for me. The Dragon Shields just shuffle so much better for me. I had no idea so many people double-sleeved; it's not something I see a lot of in my local meta. Maybe I should give it some consideration for my fancier decks that don't get disassembled on a whim?
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Post by 3drinks » 2 days ago

pokken wrote:
2 days ago
3drinks wrote:
3 days ago
What the heck is a "perfect hard"? It sounds like porn lingo >_>
It's an inner sleeve that is about 2x maybe 3x as thick and has some rigidity.
So would you say it's only worthwhile for foil users? What about, for those like me that are getting into nonfoil and professionally altered work?
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Post by pokken » 2 days ago

3drinks wrote:
2 days ago
So would you say it's only worthwhile for foil users? What about, for those like me that are getting into nonfoil and professionally altered work?
Yeah I would not bother with it unless you have a bunch of pricy foils. One or two alters I'd just take the risk. If your entire deck is altered I might put them in perfect hards because it'd help reduce the likelihood of bending cracking the finish.

They are quite annoying to shuffle for small hands, although they do slide in between cards a little better the deck gets huge.

The main advantage is for foils which is that they seem to help prevent curling and even reverse it - at least that has been my experience thus far. I did test it with a couple first and I would recommend that.

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Post by umtiger » 2 days ago

Dragonshields are the most durable sleeves. I have some that are almost old enough to attend high school. Of course, they're used very sparingly sleeving my Type 4 stack, but still. My favorite advice is also to use only one color of sleeves for across all decks.

I'd say that double-sleeving is worth it for even non-foils.

If you can support a local store, it's a nice idea. They also might have stuff you can sample.

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Post by pokken » 1 day ago

umtiger wrote:
2 days ago
I'd say that double-sleeving is worth it for even non-foils.
I just wanted to clarify since some of the context got lost there but I was recommending against *perfect hard* inners for non-foil decks. They're overkill. Normal perfect fits are great at reducing incidental handling wear and dust/humidity accumulation on nonfoils but they don't need the extra rigidity.

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Post by DirkGently » 1 day ago

pokken wrote:
1 day ago
Normal perfect fits are great at reducing incidental handling wear and dust/humidity accumulation on nonfoils
I hear people say this and tbh it just confuses me. I look at cards I've owned and played for over a decade, and only ever had in single sleeves, and I'm not sure what sort of wear I'm supposed to be seeing. I don't see any dust inside the sleeve, I don't see any visible wear on the card. The borders are pristine black, there's no scuffing, the cardboard seems fine...what exactly is the double sleeve supposed to protect it from? In some cases, the sleeve itself has gotten pretty gross from wear, but the card inside seems fine from every metric I can think of to check.

I don't like foils, so it's harder to find one to compare, but my Zirilan deck has a judge mana crypt I got back when the judge promo was the easiest to get version. I guess I haven't played that deck a TON in the intervening years, but I can't see any noticeable wear on the card. I don't have a jewelers loop on me, though.

For people that actually claim to have examples of single-sleeved cards that are getting worn from use, how often are you playing these cards? How are you shuffling? I'm really just confused more than anything because I really can't replicate these results.

The one thing I can actually see them doing is protecting from drink spills. Personally I'd rather just exercise caution when playing at a pub - I'm not in the habit of knocking over drinks anyway, with or without cards on the table. The cost of double sleeving my collection, even at $5 a pack, would be hundreds of dollars (specifically: $400), so it's certainly not a trivial amount to pay for "insurance". But mostly I just hate shuffling double-sleeved decks, even with my huge hands.

If I could double sleeve just my cards worth more than $100 I'd do that maybe, just for peace of mind, but obviously it'd be too easy to tell by feel where they are. Anyway, I think if I'm going to accidentally damage a card it's far more likely to be accidental bending when putting it into a box.
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Post by pokken » 1 day ago

You can get 5,000 double sleeves for ~$125. That is how many I have bought over the years -- 5 x 10 packs from Amazon.

I can't get an amazon link to paste, but just search for "KMC perfect fit 1000" on amazon, it's $27.00.

re: Wear
Most of the chronic single sleever wear I see is from switching cards between decks and binders and surface scratches from dust and pet hair in the sleeves as they're shuffled/played. Less often but common enough to remark on it: Fingernail dents. But those can go through double sleeves too, just a bit more resilient.

The telltale sign of a fingertail nick from someone switching a card between a sleeve on the top edge is impossible to miss.

Most of the folks I play with have a handful of decks and play them all the time and rebuild new decks all the time, and a big portion of them do not have great hand hygiene. Washing your hands before handling your cards will reduce a huge portion of wear that double sleeves help prevent too, but not everyone does.

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Post by umtiger » 1 day ago

When you sleeve cards without an inner sleeve, the top of the card will get dirty. There's no realistic way to avoid this because there is an opening at the top of the sleeve.

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Post by DirkGently » 1 day ago

pokken wrote:
1 day ago
Most of the chronic single sleever wear I see is from switching cards between decks and binders and surface scratches from dust and pet hair in the sleeves as they're shuffled/played. Less often but common enough to remark on it: Fingernail dents. But those can go through double sleeves too, just a bit more resilient.

The telltale sign of a fingertail nick from someone switching a card between a sleeve on the top edge is impossible to miss.

Most of the folks I play with have a handful of decks and play them all the time and rebuild new decks all the time, and a big portion of them do not have great hand hygiene. Washing your hands before handling your cards will reduce a huge portion of wear that double sleeves help prevent too, but not everyone does.
That would make a lot more sense than anything else I've heard. I don't generally remove any of my cards from their sleeves, so maybe that's why mine all look fine. I wish I could claim I have great hand hygiene but it's probably pretty average. I can't imagine getting pet hair in a sleeve and not noticing, though, even when I had a dog.

I could certainly imagine wanting to use double sleeves if I was, say, playing a lot of DFCs, but there aren't really any DFCs whose value holds a candle to the old school expensive stuff so I'm not that worried about it. I do have a set of the SDCC DFCs in my closet, though, those have gone up a lot. I play the normal versions, though, since I want people to actually be able to read my cards.
umtiger wrote:
1 day ago
When you sleeve cards without an inner sleeve, the top of the card will get dirty. There's no realistic way to avoid this because there is an opening at the top of the sleeve.
If you say so. I'm sure there's some trace amounts of dirt if you busted out your electron microscope, but even for cards where the sleeve is pretty worn the card itself looks clean as a whistle to me.
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Post by pokken » 1 day ago

If you use the same sleeve colors and never move things from sleeve to sleeve that would pretty much explain it 100%. Moving from sleeve to sleeve is the most dangerous time in a card's life after moving from the pack to sleeve in the first place, at least in my experience.

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Post by DirkGently » 1 day ago

pokken wrote:
1 day ago
If you use the same sleeve colors and never move things from sleeve to sleeve that would pretty much explain it 100%. Moving from sleeve to sleeve is the most dangerous time in a card's life after moving from the pack to sleeve in the first place, at least in my experience.
That would explain it. I have a hard time imagining people moving cards between sleeves often enough (or carelessly enough?) to damage them tbh, but I suppose I can't claim to know other peoples' habits. I'm sure if you switch often and/or roughly enough it could eventually damage them.

Nobody ever says "you should double sleeve if you switch cards in and out of sleeves a lot" though. Everyone seems to think that, without double sleeving, your cards will pretty much self-destruct. Case in point, posts like umtiger's.
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Post by pokken » 1 day ago

There're so many things at play that I think it's worth inner sleeving any card over a few bucks when you get it and then inner sleeving your entire deck if you intend to play with it in public. The cost is really peanuts in the grand scheme.

Next time you do some trading seriously look close at people's binders. Most people's cards are in terrible condition.

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Post by 3drinks » 1 day ago

pokken wrote:
1 day ago
There're so many things at play that I think it's worth inner sleeving any card over a few bucks when you get it and then inner sleeving your entire deck if you intend to play with it in public. The cost is really peanuts in the grand scheme.

Next time you do some trading seriously look close at people's binders. Most people's cards are in terrible condition.
Ssh. Don't tell people that. This is how I got my BB Gauntlet of Might for $48 shipped. "Damaged" 👀👀🤔
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Post by DirkGently » 1 day ago

pokken wrote:
1 day ago
There're so many things at play that I think it's worth inner sleeving any card over a few bucks when you get it and then inner sleeving your entire deck if you intend to play with it in public. The cost is really peanuts in the grand scheme.

Next time you do some trading seriously look close at people's binders. Most people's cards are in terrible condition.
At least for me, I think the hassle of shuffling a thicker deck makes it very much not worth it, regardless of price. Whenever I borrow a double sleeved deck it annoys the hell out of me. When I think about double sleeving, I think of the years I'd have spent hating shuffling my decks, and the extra money, the extra hassle of sleeving them, the extra space they'd take up...and then I compare that to the damage I've done to my cards, which seems to be roughly zero, and I wonder why anyone would bother.

And that's with all my old school expensive stuff. When I see people double sleeving when their most expensive card is $50 - let alone "a few bucks" - I'm kind of baffled. To me the whole thing sounds like straight-up paranoia, especially with the dire warnings people throw out about the unavoidable severe damage cards will supposedly suffer without inner sleeves. Imo, anybody who's so concerned about the condition of their cards that they're even considering double sleeving should be more than capable of being careful enough with their cards to avoid damaging them without inner sleeves. Who cares if some sticky-fingered teenager with 5 cats is getting his cards gross? Just handle your cards with even a modicum of care and you'll be fine.

Most cards I see in trade binders came directly from booster packs. Occasionally some (usually older) cards will have noticeable wear, though it's usually hard to know where/when that came from. Although I confess I haven't seen a trade binder in a couple months at this point.
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