Find your diamond
Find your jewelry
shape
carat
color
clarity

Diamond Studs - $50k Budget

ruffrock

Rough_Rock
Joined
Jul 29, 2012
Messages
6
I really appreciate all of the great information. I think I am finally starting to feel more comfortable with the process and how I should approach it. I am going to talk to HPD, BG, and WF and see what feels right.

Another subjective question for the group - is getting a G color a bad decision at this price point or would I not even be able to tell for studs? It looks like HPD has two 2.07 ct diamonds that might work well, but they are H color. I originally thought I should focus on color as the most important attribute after cut, but will the human eye even notice that these are H color on the ear?

You have been given good advice. I would
re-iterate trying to stay just under 2.00 ct. DSS (diamond Shrinkage Syndrome) is a real thing here. Never say never on an upgrade
 

KristinTech

Brilliant_Rock
Premium
Joined
Aug 7, 2013
Messages
1,664
I’m looking for a pair of diamond studs for my wife for Christmas. Based on the size of her ears, I think 4 ctw (2 ct per ear) would be ideal. I am hoping for an F color (I could be talked into G, but would prefer colorless) and something that is truly eye clean (triple X and faint/no fluorescence). There are a lot of jewelry shops here in Chicago, but it is hard to trust salespeople who have an inherent conflict of interest. I don’t mind spending up to $50k, but would love to be closer to $40k.

I am a complete fish out of water in this search and would greatly appreciate any possible advice from this group.

Thank you!

As a proud owner of my 20th anniversary three-stone CBI ring (from HPD!), I will cast my vote for them! However, if you’re interested in staying local in Chicago, I’d make an appointment with Stan at http://www.mmartinjewelry.com/ Stan has helped me with my wedding jewelry from 1999, my studs (upgraded twice), and some other special jewelry through the years. He is a great guy. It’s by appointment only—he’s high up in Jeweler’s mall, and you would have his undivided attention.
 

SeanJ

Rough_Rock
Joined
Dec 2, 2020
Messages
18
I just saw the admin's note about High Performance Diamonds legal dispute. I can't find anything about it online. Does anyone know the details or should I consider purchasing elsewhere?
 

SeanJ

Rough_Rock
Joined
Dec 2, 2020
Messages
18
Is this potentially a risk to CBI as a cutter or are they continuing business as usual without Paul? Even if HP Diamonds continues, it seems their business might be at significant risk if CBI is in trouble.
 

PreRaphaelite

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Feb 2, 2015
Messages
2,950
I would not interpret it that way at all. I think it would be nearly impossible to find a more forthright response to a business concern than the letter addressing what happened. In business school this could easily be used as a case study in ‘what to do’ as an immediate action upon discovering any problem internal to the company.

I am not affiliated with them in any way. But they have my full confidence.
 

mrs-b

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Aug 18, 2013
Messages
8,271
HPD / CBI has wonderful diamonds - no doubt. However I prefer WhiteFlash's ACA diamonds because the inventory is larger so the selection is better. The drama of the above would be enough for me to decide to give it a miss for the short term at least and stay with WhiteFlash.

If you have any doubts whatsoever - take the safer option and go with WhiteFlash. BrianGavinDiamonds are also excellent and their 'Black' selection is apparently outstanding.

Full disclosure - I've owned diamonds from WF, BGD and Victor Canera. VC are actually my favorite, but I believe these would need to be custom cut, and there wouldn't be time for this before Christmas.

So I'd go with WF - for selection, as much as anything else, and for their stellar customer service.
 

SeanJ

Rough_Rock
Joined
Dec 2, 2020
Messages
18
I would not interpret it that way at all. I think it would be nearly impossible to find a more forthright response to a business concern than the letter addressing what happened. In business school this could easily be used as a case study in ‘what to do’ as an immediate action upon discovering any problem internal to the company.

I am not affiliated with them in any way. But they have my full confidence.

I agree completely that Wink did the right thing. But, their business is (currently) based on selling CBI diamonds. Their ability to provide their buyback program, upgrades, and potentially stay afloat is probably dependent on CBI continuing to produce high quality diamonds. I don’t know the status of CBI, but given that Paul was the founder and I believe the primary cutter, it doesn’t sound promising. I’m curious if HPD is going to need to start sourcing their diamonds elsewhere.
 

Bonfire

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Feb 22, 2014
Messages
3,498
You really can’t go wrong with either the WF-ACAs or the CBIs that you linked up thread. I wouldn’t hesitate to buy from HPD if those are the diamonds that you prefer.

You just need to decide what is most important to you. Higher color-G and clarity-VS2 or lower color-H and clarity-SI1. Both are super ideal cuts. Good luck with your decision.
 

CircularBrilliant

Rough_Rock
Joined
Nov 21, 2013
Messages
67
BGD has a "matchpair" suggestion of blacks that are a little under 2ct and a bit over 50k:

I don't own any blacks, but I have some from the signature line and think they're beautiful.

These are the two possible pairs size/color-wise I was able to find from VC's in-stock selection:
(~1.7 each, E) https://victorcanera.com/diamonds/JK9UF8/1.706ct-E-SI1-hearts-arrows-round-natural-diamond & https://victorcanera.com/diamonds/AGS104108194002/1.710ct-E-VS2-hearts-arrows-round-natural-diamond
(~2.3 each, G) https://victorcanera.com/diamonds/AGS104095645001/2.202ct-G-VS2-hearts-arrows-round-natural-diamond & https://victorcanera.com/diamonds/AGS104096334002/2.234ct-G-VS1-hearts-arrows-round-natural-diamond

If any look like something you would be interested in, I'm sure people more knowledgeable than me/the vendors would be able to weigh in on how well suited they are to earrings :)
 

whitewave

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Feb 29, 2012
Messages
10,744
Is this potentially a risk to CBI as a cutter or are they continuing business as usual without Paul? Even if HP Diamonds continues, it seems their business might be at significant risk if CBI is in trouble.

I don’t think Paul has been the owner for a few years. There is a parent company. It’s only Paul that has changed is what I see from this. Without Paul, I think it’s business as usual. Anyway, call Wink and ask him. His letter says to call with any questions.

P.S. I think this all happened over the summer and is over.
 

yssie

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Aug 14, 2009
Messages
21,480
Paul has not owned and will never own HPD. HPD is Wink’s company.

Wink’s pride is selling the most precisely-manufactured diamonds that technology can produce. Whether or not those diamonds are branded “Crafted by Infinity” is, I think, largely irrelevant. Whatever they are called, HPD will
A) Carry a branded label representing quality and consistency of diamond that Wink is proud to sell,
B) Maintain the upgrade and trade in policies that Wink has staked his reputation on,
C) Avoid service interruptions or policy adjustments for current owners of CBI stones.

The real question here is “do you trust Wink Jones?”. My personal answer has always been and will remain “yes”. Questions really would be best posed to Wink himself.
 

daisygrl

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Dec 30, 2019
Messages
642
I agree completely that Wink did the right thing. But, their business is (currently) based on selling CBI diamonds. Their ability to provide their buyback program, upgrades, and potentially stay afloat is probably dependent on CBI continuing to produce high quality diamonds. I don’t know the status of CBI, but given that Paul was the founder and I believe the primary cutter, it doesn’t sound promising. I’m curious if HPD is going to need to start sourcing their diamonds elsewhere.

There is a parent company (parent company is where the fraudulent activity occurred - per Wink's letter). If you look at their web site, they have recently added "future" diamonds ("future" means that are still in the process of cutting.) Wink made it very clear what the current situation is like in his letter and I do not see any threat. It is just a drama from the unexpected news until it goes away.

Contact Wink yourself, he will be happy to answer any questions you might have. Wink has been selling diamonds (all sorts of, not just CBI) for 40+ years. He is the owner of HPD and he as honest as they come. And, no, I am not affiliated with them in anyway - just their repeat customer so I speak from the experience. And I will not hesitate to buy from them again.
 
Last edited:

whitewave

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Feb 29, 2012
Messages
10,744
Paul has not owned and will never own HPD. HPD is Wink’s company.

Wink’s pride is selling the most precisely-manufactured diamonds that technology can produce. Whether or not those diamonds are branded “Crafted by Infinity” is, I think, largely irrelevant. Whatever they are called, HPD will
A) Carry a branded label representing quality and consistency of diamond that Wink is proud to sell,
B) Maintain the upgrade and trade in policies that Wink has staked his reputation on,
C) Avoid service interruptions or policy adjustments for current owners of CBI stones.

The real question here is “do you trust Wink Jones?”. My personal answer has always been and will remain “yes”. Questions really would be best posed to Wink himself.

Thanks for reminding me to clarify: Paul hasn’t owned CBI for years. There has been a parent company for years and Paul was an employee or consultant for the parent company.

Wink has always been the only owner of High paerformance Diamonds.
 

whitewave

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Feb 29, 2012
Messages
10,744
We wouldn’t know anything about this if Paul hadn’t contacted Pricescope claiming he owns a US business that never was his. (Paul lives in Antwerp).

Like, as in, it happened, Paul was fired (per the letter) and nothing interfered in the process of getting a CBI diamond.

So from what wink’s letter says, what I infer is that Paul (an ex CBI employee) seems to be making a very strange claim to Wink’s business.

It’s sad and strange that Paul chose to go out this way.
 
Last edited:

JJNPJ

Rough_Rock
Joined
Dec 4, 2020
Messages
11
I just want to chime in and say that I have a GIA triple X RBC diamond that doesn’t perform ideally.... truly, it doesn’t. I was so excited to get it, a stone a bit above 4ct In a slightly warmer color (which I prefer to colorless)... exceptional clarity at VVS2. It is a beautiful diamond and I do love it... but I went in with expectations far too high, thinking GIA triple X meant it would just dazzle me. It has some light leakage which, when combined with the warmer color, is rough In certain lighting.

Since then, just my 2 cents, but GIA triple X doesn’t mean much to me. Cut is everything and just relying on a GIA triple X rating you may end up sorely disappointed like I was, before I knew better. I have seen super ideals and they make my GIA triple X look pathetic performance-wise.
 

prs

Brilliant_Rock
Premium
Joined
Dec 26, 2017
Messages
1,441
FWIW my wife has a G on her finger, but was happy with J in her ears.

Very well cut diamonds will face up whiter than less well cut diamonds.

If in a hurry, as you are, stick to VS2 unless there is a trusted person on the other end of the telephone telling you the SI1s they are proposing are eye clean.
 

diamondseeker2006

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Jan 11, 2006
Messages
56,694
While I like Wink and do consider him an honorable man, much of the hype for CBI was related to the outstanding cutter, Paul Slegers. So to not announce he was gone back in June is kind of a disappointment to me.

In any event, I have studs and other pieces from Whiteflash and have always been pleased with their inventory and service. I personally prefer the 1.9 G VS2 pairs WF has listed. When I am paying for top quality diamonds, I want the clarity to be at least VS2, but that's a personal preference.
 

AprilBaby

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Jul 17, 2008
Messages
11,579
I have 100% confidence in Wink Jones. He is an honorable man. if you want CBI I would get them. I personally own ACA from WF.
 

diamondseeker2006

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Jan 11, 2006
Messages
56,694
If you want to drop to I color, and they do face up quite white, there are three just over 2 cts and any two would match.



 

whitewave

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Feb 29, 2012
Messages
10,744
While I like Wink and do consider him an honorable man, much of the hype for CBI was related to the outstanding cutter, Paul Slegers. So to not announce he was gone back in June is kind of a disappointment to me.

Well, I don’t think that is true, and I hate to keep it going on this post, but I also feel since OP brought it up and asked specific questions that if I can correct something, I probably should. So here I am giving my piece about this.

Most importantly, I think any questions about any of this should be addressed to Wink because Wink mentioned in his letter that he welcomes questions.

From my business dealings with HPD (I have bought 3 diamonds plus made one upgrade so far), I do think Wink is trustworthy, honest and with a ton of integrity. Plus he is an ex marine, so he is also bad ass though he is also laid back and cool. It’s clear he respects and welcomes a transparent process about this issue, so as I mentioned, anyone with questions shouldn’t hesitate to call or email Wink.

I also think it bears repeating that Paul has never been and is not the owner of HPD. In all of my dealings with HPD, I have never spoken with Paul. I have spoken with Wink and Melissa through all my purchases. I think all customers of HPD can attest to this.

I don’t think Paul was ever “THE” cutter. I think all HPD diamonds are cut “in house” by a team of polishers and Paul was on the business end of things and set the quality standards and oversaw the cutting. I think he also procured the rough, which we all know he was extra picky about because he wrote about why CBI inventory is smaller than other places. He was the reason CBI diamonds were established to be of high quality and have what we have sometimes called “the secret sauce” (whatever that is lol).

I hate that there is any appearance of drama over this because I don’t think there is any. Whether Paul is there or not, the same team of cutters/polishers remains the same and I really don’t think Wink has any intention of dragging Paul through the mud or anything like that. (I can’t see Wink behaving in this way— it would be out of character of him.)

So since we know there have been many purchases shown off here on PS with zero change of quality levels (you can see in the pics nothing has changed) that tells me that Paul was not the secret sauce himself, but the team of in house cutters/polishers were. Also, no one has complained of interruptions in service and Wink still has all the same policies for upgrades/trade ins. He still is selling branded CBI diamonds. Future cut diamonds are still listed in production

If anything, I think the continuation as usual of business and the same quality shows that while Paul began the company and set the standards, he has become irrelevant to the company continuing on without him. (As happens with many companies once the original owner sells out to a larger company).

I love the precision of my CBI diamonds and I like that I can just pick one without a whole lot of thought and analysis paralysis.

I trust Wink and his team. I plan to upgrade again in a few months.
 

diamondseeker2006

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Jan 11, 2006
Messages
56,694
Well, I don’t think that is true, and I hate to keep it going on this post, but I also feel since OP brought it up and asked specific questions that if I can correct something, I probably should. So here I am giving my piece about this.

Most importantly, I think any questions about any of this should be addressed to Wink because Wink mentioned in his letter that he welcomes questions.

From my business dealings with HPD (I have bought 3 diamonds plus made one upgrade so far), I do think Wink is trustworthy, honest and with a ton of integrity. Plus he is an ex marine, so he is also bad ass though he is also laid back and cool. It’s clear he respects and welcomes a transparent process about this issue, so as I mentioned, anyone with questions shouldn’t hesitate to call or email Wink.

I also think it bears repeating that Paul has never been and is not the owner of HPD. In all of my dealings with HPD, I have never spoken with Paul. I have spoken with Wink and Melissa through all my purchases. I think all customers of HPD can attest to this.

I don’t think Paul was ever “THE” cutter. I think all HPD diamonds are cut “in house” by a team of polishers and Paul was on the business end of things and set the quality standards and oversaw the cutting. I think he also procured the rough, which we all know he was extra picky about because he wrote about why CBI inventory is smaller than other places. He was the reason CBI diamonds were established to be of high quality and have what we have sometimes called “the secret sauce” (whatever that is lol).

I hate that there is any appearance of drama over this because I don’t think there is any. Whether Paul is there or not, the same team of cutters/polishers remains the same and I really don’t think Wink has any intention of dragging Paul through the mud or anything like that. (I can’t see Wink behaving in this way— it would be out of character of him.)

So since we know there have been many purchases shown off here on PS with zero change of quality levels (you can see in the pics nothing has changed) that tells me that Paul was not the secret sauce himself, but the team of in house cutters/polishers were. Also, no one has complained of interruptions in service and Wink still has all the same policies for upgrades/trade ins. He still is selling branded CBI diamonds. Future cut diamonds are still listed in production

If anything, I think the continuation as usual of business and the same quality shows that while Paul began the company and set the standards, he has become irrelevant to the company continuing on without him. (As happens with many companies once the original owner sells out to a larger company).

I love the precision of my CBI diamonds and I like that I can just pick one without a whole lot of thought and analysis paralysis.

I trust Wink and his team. I plan to upgrade again in a few months.

They certainly at one time promoted Paul as the cutter. I remember it clearly because I always said he likely wasn't personally cutting the stones, it was a cutting facility or factory. I got some pushback from that. They also would have "Meet the Cutter" events at which Paul would visit the CBI jewelers in the US. I remember customers specifically saying on here how much it meant to them to know exactly who cut their stones, made it more special, etc., and no one from HPD or anyone else corrected that. I said I believe Wink is an honorable man above. But I think if Paul is no longer associated with CBI, that would have been something important to disclose considering how he was promoted for years. We all make mistakes. I am not condemning Wink for making what I believe was a mistake, just expressing disappointment. Back in June it could have been announced that Paul was no longer with CBI, but the master cutters that worked with him there are continuing to produce the outstanding stones they always have.
 

yssie

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Aug 14, 2009
Messages
21,480
I agree that HPD deliberately tied themselves closely to CBI, and to Paul as the face of CBI... And they were extraordinarily successful in doing so. So now - extricating their image as an independent entity will be that much more of a challenge.

None of us consumers know the details of what happened over the summer. I suspect they were legally obligated to withhold disclosure of certain details.
 
Last edited:

yssie

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Aug 14, 2009
Messages
21,480
@psadmin Are representatives from HPD and CBI permitted to post directly on PS? At least to clarify the question of “who has been cutting stones for HPD recently”?
 

whitewave

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Feb 29, 2012
Messages
10,744
They certainly at one time promoted Paul as the cutter. I remember it clearly because I always said he likely wasn't personally cutting the stones, it was a cutting facility or factory. I got some pushback from that. They also would have "Meet the Cutter" events at which Paul would visit the CBI jewelers in the US. I remember customers specifically saying on here how much it meant to them to know exactly who cut their stones, made it more special, etc., and no one from HPD or anyone else corrected that. I said I believe Wink is an honorable man above. But I think if Paul is no longer associated with CBI, that would have been something important to disclose considering how he was promoted for years. We all make mistakes. I am not condemning Wink for making what I believe was a mistake, just expressing disappointment. Back in June it could have been announced that Paul was no longer with CBI, but the master cutters that worked with him there are continuing to produce the outstanding stones they always have.

I get your point. FWIW, I didn’t get a meet the cutter thing with my last purchase, and I’m not sure (I’d have to check) they still promote that on the website.

But with the previous one I received, it was called “meet the cutter” but then said to come meet the designer of your diamond.
 

Ella

Brilliant_Rock
Staff member
Trade
Joined
Jan 18, 2010
Messages
1,397
Folks please start your own thread to discuss these issues so the OP’s original question does not get buried.
 

marrduk24

Rough_Rock
Joined
Nov 30, 2020
Messages
28
A lot of helpful feedback here. Read my recent post about inspecting diamonds in person.

Whiteflash A Cut Above are a real deal. You could even go down to I/ VS2 and save $12000. I don’t believe they have any matched pair in H. Anyway email them

I am tomorrow visiting one of the largest diamond manufacturers in the world (their trade showroom in diamond district) and looking at 2 carat Stones from color D to I. I have been told G vs H vs I are virtually indistinguishable from top side, particularly if they are all super ideal. I just want to check it out for myself.
 

marrduk24

Rough_Rock
Joined
Nov 30, 2020
Messages
28
Welcome to Pricescope,

Just want to start off by saying you have a very healthy budget to work with and your wife will be thrilled with your generous gift for Christmas. When people talk about diamond studs on this forum from my observations, typically the viewer will be looking from a further distance compared to an engagement ring. For this reason you can drop down in color to G and clarity would be eye clean at VS2 in most cases. This will allow you to maximize carat size. Why pay extra for something your eyes can not see a difference right?

Here at Pricescope we highly recommend Whiteflash a Superideal vendor Which is based out of Texas and you can purchase online. What is a Superideal vendor? In short a vendor who specializes in the best cut diamonds which will give you the best sparkle and light show...the creame of the crop. We have a saying here at Pricescope cut is King !
Also Whiteflash has one of the best upgrade policies in the business , simply spend $ 1 more and you will get full value for your diamonds if you ever want to upgrade in the future...this policy is for the life of your diamond.

I have sourced out for you 2 loose diamonds that you can then set with Whiteflash's numerous settings depending on your taste.

Also would like to add the 2 diamonds i have found for you are both slightly under 2 carats each. When you reach that magic number of 2 ct the price bump is significant so staying slightly under 2 cuts you get more bang for your buck.

Here is the links of the 2 diamonds I found for you with similar specs.



Im sure other people will chime in and give some more advice and opinions.

Good Luck !

Excellent suggestions.
 
Be a part of the community It's free, join today!
    Top Luxury Classic Pieces
    Top Luxury Classic Pieces
    Style File: Catherine, the Duchess of Cambridge
    Style File: Catherine, the Duchess of Cambridge
    Diamond Prices - January 2021
    Diamond Prices - January 2021

Need Something Special?

Get a quote from multiple trusted and vetted jewelers.

Holloway Cut Advisor



Diamond Eye Candy

Click to view full-size image.
Top