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Diamond decision

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pas

Rough_Rock
Joined
Apr 3, 2003
Messages
3
Hello,

I have a diamond decision to make and the scenario goes like this.

Store #1 is offering:

Hearts on Fire (AGS000)
0.51Ct
VS1
E color
18kt W/G setting

$3900USD

Store #2 is offering:

Ideal cut diamond with good symmetry (Not AGS000)
0.57ct
VVS2
D color
18 Kt W/G setting

$3300USD

Store #3 is offeriing:

0.56 Ideal cut diamond with excellent symmetry (not AGS000)
VS1
E color
18 Kt W/G setting

$4600USD
* * * * *

Other considerations are:
* I want an AGS000 diamond (HOF offers this)
* Store #3 charges more for their rings because they are a high
end design and ring crafting company.
* I want VS1, E, half carat...but am willing to go F or G in color (reluctantly though)
* The 0.57ct, VVS2, D color diamond sounds reeeeaaally affordable. Maybe too affordable.

The problem is this. I want to get the "best" quality stone and best ring on a ''limited budget''.

Am I too caught up with the AGS000 grading?
Will the HOF diamond out perform the diamonds mentioned above (in terms of brilliance, fire, and overall beauty)?
Will an AGS000 diamond out-perform an Ideal cut with an excellent or good symmetry grade ?
In your opinion, how much should I be willing to spend for
the diamond setting?

My budget is $4000, but am willing to spend "just a little bit more if needed".

Sorry for the lengthy message. I just want to make sure you have proper info to help me in this decision.

Buying a diamond is stressful.


Thanks for your help.
Pas

p.s. this forum is very helpful, I have heeded the advice of previous "posters" in my narrowing of the field to these three stores. Thank you.
 

Mara

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Oct 30, 2002
Messages
31,003
Sans MS" size="2">Hi Pas. Boy all of this is really confusing huh? I remember that


Anyway---here are my comments.

--Don't overpay for the stone....meaning don't bother with VVS2 if you know you'd be fine with a VS1. If you can only find the stone you want in VVS2, make sure you don't pay a huge premium for something that doesn't mean much to you.

--You are not being too picky by looking for AGS 0 stones, that is a good way to try to cull out some of the junk from the better stones, but you should not make a final decision just based on a stone having an AGS 0 rating. I have seen some AGS 0 stones rate 4.0 on the HCA. Not very pretty.

--Beware of the 'ideal' diamond characterization if its not AGS 0. Even then...what really IS an ideal diamond? It's a term thrown around so much, no one even knows anymore. Some may classify it as TIC or similar but Tolowsky's cut in many people's mind today would not be considered Ideal.

--Don't overpay. Period. You mention that the stone #3 co overcharges because they do design work. Well good for them. Why do you have to pay extra for that?
(Boy I feel edgy tonite!)

All that said...there really isnt enough info to go on, but if I had to make a decision or opinion based on the info you gave, I would say to go for the HOF stone. Why? Because I've seen them in person and they literally blow away alot of other stones I have seen, including some very beautiful TIC stones that rate well on the HCA. The HOF stone we saw was amazing. I saw two put together in a 3 stone setting (for fun) and was ready to drop the credit card on the spot. Thank goodness FI pulled me away. Hee hee.
OKAY, now that I have said all of that...I know you are buying offline, your post below makes that clear. HOWEVER, I have more information to confuse you. You may hate me when I am done. Because you mentioned your budget, your specs, your preferences, etc...I ran a quick Pscope search to see what else was out there. Guess what I found? Brace yourself.


You can get a .71 D VS1 AGS 0 Excellent cut stone for $3520. Shocked? It gets better. How about a .76c E VS1 AGS 0 Excellent cut stone for $3770. You want Hearts and Arrows? Okay...I found a .76 D VS2 AGS 0 Hearts and Arrows for $3680. Those are all from www.niceice.com by the way. I just ran a search using excellent cut quality and your parameters and about 6-7 stones came up.


Anyway--there you see the difference in offline vs online shopping. Your $4k budget gets you around .20c more, D or E color, VS clarity (no one can see the inclusions with their eye...pretty much guaranteed), and AGS0 designation, but not only that...Nice Ice is very discriminating in their stone purchases, and they offer alot of info on their stones online, so you can see closeup shots, ray path computations, ideal scope images, hearts and arrows images, etc. We're not talking a fly-by-night online vendor here, they are highly reputed and even post on this forum.


I don't want to completely deflate your bubble about shopping offline or say that the stones you found are not great. I really like the HOF stone you mentioned for the reasons I stated above. But if I had $4k and had to choose between the 3 stones you pointed out originally and the ones I found online, I would go online ALL THE WAY--size is way bigger (and you will see a huge difference IMO), you still have the D/E color you wanted, and you don't overpay for VVS. Plus there are no weird 'ideal but not AGS0' confusers here...what you see is what you get.


Just some more food for thought. You thought you were close to being done? No way!



Good luck...hope I didn't scare you too much.
 

Richard Sherwood

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Sep 25, 2002
Messages
4,924
-----------
Nice Ice is very discriminating in their stone
purchases
-----------

That's for sure. From what I've seen, their rejects are what most stores carry as the cream of the crop...
 

fire&ice

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Jul 22, 2002
Messages
7,828
hello,

May I ask why you want such a premium stone? I have to say in a stone this size very few people will see a measurable difference between a D VV2 & a G VS2. BUT.....there will be a *VERY* measureable difference in size. For under 4k (actually more in the 3k range), many stones are on pricescope in the .80 range for G VS2. .80 (or 3/4 carat) is a nice size stone.

As a women, I for one would like a larger less perfect stone than a small premium stone. A G VS2 *is* considered a very nice stone.

Good luck.
 

Iceman

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Aug 25, 2000
Messages
1,374
I will agree that Flawless, VVS1, VVS2 clarity grades are a big waist of money (but so are some of the cars I buy)


If your into something that is really clean stay with your VS1 or VS2. Ive seen GIA and AGS grade the SI1's that look like
VS's all 3 grades you could live with under a microscope. If you ever look at it again under them


Good luck in your pick.
 

pas

Rough_Rock
Joined
Apr 3, 2003
Messages
3
Thanks to all who responded.

This forum has been most helpful.

I ended up getting the HOF 51ct, VS1, E color diamond from store #1.

Special thanks goes to Mara for the "comic relief" I so sorely needed during this diamond buying process!


I had no idea how much more affordable it would have been buying stones online. I will suggest to my friends (who are in 'engagement limbo' also) to look into buying online. And of course, I will tell them to check out this forum and use the "Halloway Cut Adviser" as well.

Again, thank you for your candid remarks.

PAS
 

Mara

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Oct 30, 2002
Messages
31,003
Congrats on the new stone purchase Pas. I probably would have gotten a bigger stone online, but I can probably safely say that the HOF stone will knock your girlfriend's socks off. They are sure stunners! Did you see in person? Notice a difference?
 

pas

Rough_Rock
Joined
Apr 3, 2003
Messages
3
Hi Mara,

yes I did see the HOF diamond in person, and in my opinion it out performed the other diamonds I looked at it terms of overall brilliance and beauty.

I am happy with my purchase and maybe if I felt a little more comfortable with it, would have purchased online. I have been told that there is nothing to it (buying online that is) but I felt comfortable purchasing from a 'bricks and mortar' store this time round.

If I could do it all again, I would have devoted more time learning about and getting comfortable with the idea of purchasing online.

This forum has definitely openned my eyes to the diamond purchasing possibilities online.

Again, thanks for you help, it was most appreciated.

take care,
 
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