For example, a 600 000 year old piece of Copal may not be as old as a 10 000 000 year old piece of amber, but it might be more mature if it were exposed to conditions in which it was polymerized to a greater extent then the amber.

In terms of Amber versus Copal, the locality in which the fossilized resin was discovered seems to used when differentiating between Amber and Copal.

Generally, Copal is softer then Amber, and tends to disintegrate in anoxic and luminescent environment much faster then Amber, (probably due to the less polymerized state of the resin structure)

In terms of linear age, Copal is generally Late Tertiary to Quaternary in age whereas Amber is Carboniferous to Middle Tertiary in age.

The Amber versus Copal issue is still a heated debate among scientists and collectors alike. Often times Copal is sold under the name of Amber, which often to the naked eye looks just like Amber. A piece of Copal is much less costly compared to a comparable piece of Amber and usually has many more organic inclusions within. A person buying a piece of Copal, thinking it is Amber may think that they are getting a good deal, when in reality they are being swindled, (sometimes unintentionally buy the dealer who is unaware that his/her Amber is really Copal).