This year, the Royal Canadian Mint introduced new security features for the Silver Maple Leaf bullion coin, which served to significantly change the appearance of the coin. More recently, a premium version of the Silver Maple Leaf was introduced featuring a reverse proof finish.
I have acquired examples of each of the coins and wanted to share images with readers, since oftentimes the online product images do not give a fair representation of what the coins will look like in hand.
Shown above is the obverse of the 2014-dated Silver Maple Leaf bullion coin. The portrait carries a reflective proof-like appearance, while the fields now contain radial lines emanating from the center of the coin. The lines are fine enough so that from a distance they are only faintly visible, but create interesting effects when the coin is rotated in the light. I find this new appearance much more pleasing than the previous background which featured faint vertical striations.
The reverse of the bullion coin contains the same radial lines in the fields with the addition of a micro-engraved laser mark to the right of the maple leaf stem. At the center of the mark is the number “14″ indicating the date.
Shown above is the obverse of the “premium version” 2014 Silver Maple Leaf. Once again the portrait is reflective, but more deeply mirrored and smooth when compared to the bullion version. The background is finely frosted, contrasting with the brilliant raised elements to create the reverse proof effect.
Lastly, the reverse of the premium Silver Maple Leaf is shown above. Once again the design is rendered with raised elements mirrored against frosted background.
Whereas the Royal Canadian Mint’s website refers to this as a “premium version,” the certificate of authenticity refers to the coin as a “2014 $5 Fine Silver Coin Bullion Replica”. There is a maximum mintage of 20,000 pieces, as compared to mint-to-demand for the bullion version.