Diamond Buying Advice/Reccomendations


Jun 9, 2016
I am looking advice on what specifications I should be looking for for a diamond that is in my price range, as well as any recommended diamonds.

Price Range: 4100-4250

Specifications that I've been currently searching:
Cit: Round
Carat: .80-.85
Color: F (give or take)
Clarity: VS1-SI1

It's going to be in a white gold solitaire setting so I want to make sure the diamond looks beautiful.

Also, is there much to be gained in terms of carat size by upping my price range to 4500?


Nov 7, 2015
Increasing your budget to 4.5k will give you a better chance of getting a well cut 0.9c G VS2 or F SI1.


Jun 25, 2014
ryverson|1465501110|4042324 said:
Price Range: 4100-4250

Specifications that I've been currently searching:
Cit: Round
Carat: .80-.85
Color: F (give or take)
Clarity: VS1-SI1
If you keep your budget as is ($4250), then 60% of plausible candidate diamonds (GIA3X/AGS and HCA=Ex) are within reach if you stick with F colored diamonds, and 80% of such candidate diamonds are within budget if you include both F & G graded stones. If you bump your budget to $4500, you will additionally be able to consider about two dozen available 0.90ct diamonds that meet your specs. These diamonds will have face-up diameters on the order 2%-4% larger than those you can access with your original budget range.


Aug 8, 2005
Round Diamonds 101:

The entire purpose of faceting a diamond is to reflect light.
How well or how poorly a diamond does this determines how beautiful it is.
How well a diamond performs is determined by the angles and cutting. This is why we say cut is king.
No other factor: not color, not clarity has as much of an impact on the appearance of a diamond as its cut. An ideal H will out white a poorly cut F. With round diamonds even a GIA triple Excellent is not enough. And you must stick to GIA and AGS only (HPD in Europe is good as well). EGL is a bad option: [URL=''][/URL]
So how to we ensure that we have the right angles and cutting to get the light performance we want?
Well one method is to start with a GIA Ex, and then apply the HCA to it. YOU DO NOT USE HCA for AGS0 stones generally, though you can. In general, AGS0 trumps HCA though as one examines the actual stone and the other does not.
The HCA is a rejection tool. Not a selection tool. It uses 4 data points to make a rudimentary call on how the diamond may perform.
If the diamond passes then you know that you are in the right zone in terms of angles for light performance. Under 2 is a pass. Under 2.5-2.1 is a maybe. 2.6 and over is a no. No score 2 and under is better than any other.
Is that enough? Not really.

So what you need is a way to check actual light performance of your actual stone.
That's what an idealscope image does.
It shows you how and wear your diamond is reflecting light, how well it is going at it, and where you are losing light return. That is why you won't see us recommending Blue Nile, as they do not provide idealscope images for their diamonds. BGD,BE, James Allen, GOG, HPD, ERD and WF do.

The Idealscope is the 'selection tool'. Not the HCA.
So yes, with a GIA stone you need the idealscope images. Or you can buy an idealscope yourself and take it in to the jeweler you are working with to check the stones yourself. Or if you have a good return policy (full refund minimum 7 days) then you can buy the idealscope, buy the stone, and do it at home.

Now if you want to skip all that... stick to AGS0 stones and then all you have to do is pick color and clarity and you know you have a great performing diamond. Because AGS has already done the checking for you. That's why they trade at a premium. Some AGS0's are better than others though, so pay attention to any ASET or IS provided.

In general with rounds, you will want a table 60% or less. A depth between 59 and 62.4. Crown angle 33.5-35. Pavilion Angle: 40.6-40.9 (there is a little give on this). And the crown and pavilion angles must be complimentary which is what the HCA checks for you.

I would include G in your color allowance.


Apr 8, 2014

As you may have noticed, many on this forum would tell you that the differences between an F (colorless) and a G (near-colorless) are often worth the price differential you will see by going with the G.

If you have not seen and F and a G next to each other in person, it may be worth taking a look. People have different 'color-sensitivity' and some do not see a difference at all.

If you are looking for diamonds other places than PriceScope do, also, be aware that not all lab grades of "F" are the same. Be sure to use a reputable lab with world-wide consistency.
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