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First Time Buying Online - What to ask?

chonch

Rough_Rock
Joined
Oct 20, 2015
Messages
12
Hello all,

I am new to looking/buying diamonds and like everyone out there I want to look for the best deal. The prices online are unbeatable compared to big chains and mom n pop shops. I have a budget set for $6,500~ and I found the setting at a family jeweler. I have a deposit on a diamond with them too but I am not in LOVE with it. I know the real opinion is my future fiance's but if I am going to drop that much money I want to know I bought the best.

My question is, when shopping online what other questions should I ask? I read a lot of horror stories about buying online and from just looking around it is much easier to buy with your eyes in person. I have been looking at Round light carat (.90-.99), D-F,FL-VV2,
Triple Excellent +, Depth no more than 62%, crown angle 34-35, Pavilion angle 40.6 - 40.9, Table 54-58. With these filterers I found 14 different diamonds. From here how do i narrow down the right/best one and not become another horror story?

Thank you in advance.
 

MissGotRocks

Super_Ideal_Rock
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Jun 23, 2005
Messages
14,179
Can you post links to any of the stones you are considering? You can also plug the numbers into the HCA under tools at the top of the page. Will give you some indication if the stone is worth further consideration.
 

tyty333

Super_Ideal_Rock
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Dec 17, 2008
Messages
25,293
Is there any particular reason you are so high up on the color/clarity range? You could easily drop down a grade or two and
still get a very white/bright eye-clean stone. These will be easier to find in your budget. Here are a few examples...

ACA - a stone has to meet high standards to be an ACA (they have more than I posted)
http://www.whiteflash.com/loose-diamonds/round-cut-loose-diamond-3586206.htm
http://www.whiteflash.com/loose-diamonds/round-cut-loose-diamond-3571557.htm
http://www.whiteflash.com/loose-diamonds/round-cut-loose-diamond-3222868.htm

Here is an AGS000 stone from JA...for this stone you would have to ask them about the clouds.
http://www.jamesallen.com/loose-diamonds/round-cut/1.01-carat-g-color-si1-clarity-ideal-cut-sku-432470

Anyway, like MissGotRocks was saying...it's easier if you show us the stones you are looking at and we can point out
any issues and tell you what you need to ask the gemologist/vendor.
 

chonch

Rough_Rock
Joined
Oct 20, 2015
Messages
12
I think I'm high on the color and clarity bc what it represents on paper.
The one I have a deposit is
http://www.gia.edu/cs/Satellite?pag...&c=Page&cid=1355954554547&reportno=5136080813

And the setting is
http://www.morgansjewelers.com/A--Jaffe--Engagement-Rings/Classics/MES309-67/20000145/EN

Her ring size is a 3 so anything I get has to be custom made for her.
All together it was $6,500 out the door. After looking online it seemed like a ripoff, and the diamond didn't have that I must have appeal to it.

As for the one online I don't have the exact links I'll post them once I get on a pc
 

Texas Leaguer

Ideal_Rock
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Messages
3,593
First, there is no reason to buy a diamond you don't love!

The diamond you indicate you have on hold (G Si1) is not the quality you mentioned in the opening that you were looking for. The combined price of $6500 looks attractive considering the designer setting lists at $2,200. Is the diamond pre-owned (2012 cert) ?
 

chonch

Rough_Rock
Joined
Oct 20, 2015
Messages
12
That's were I'm confused and lost and just overwhelmed. I'm not a fan of the diamond but my fiancé to be is. I've been much harder on the quality of the stone bc the amount of money spent on it. Looking at that diamond it just didn't have he fire and sparkel say at RB. I tell myself it's just the light at RB but I'm not sure.

I raised the quality of the diamond in my opening bc I know if I went with a high clarity I would eliminate inclusions I could see. That and since I can't see it in person until I buy it I figured the higher the better and avoid the buy and return game.

I am not sure if it's a pre-owned diamond would the (2012 cert) suggest a pre-owned diamond?
 

Texas Leaguer

Ideal_Rock
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chonch|1445444227|3940666 said:
That's were I'm confused and lost and just overwhelmed. I'm not a fan of the diamond but my fiancé to be is. I've been much harder on the quality of the stone bc the amount of money spent on it. Looking at that diamond it just didn't have he fire and sparkel say at RB. I tell myself it's just the light at RB but I'm not sure.

I raised the quality of the diamond in my opening bc I know if I went with a high clarity I would eliminate inclusions I could see. That and since I can't see it in person until I buy it I figured the higher the better and avoid the buy and return game.

I am not sure if it's a pre-owned diamond would the (2012 cert) suggest a pre-owned diamond?
While FL-VVS2 is overkill in practical respects, sometimes Si1 diamonds have issues with transparency. You may be picking up some diminished light return due to clouds in the stone.

It is not necessarily a pre-owned diamond but the fact that the cert is 3 years old begs the question. A stone of this size and grade with no issues and priced right generally moves in a matter months not years. Your merchant should be able to tell your the backstory.

Remember that your SO may is excited about the occassion and that might be make her inclined not to be too picky about the diamond. But you both will get more longterm enjoyment (and value) if you have the patience to choose wisely.
 

chonch

Rough_Rock
Joined
Oct 20, 2015
Messages
12
Thanks Texas that's something I would have never picked up on. She's not excited with looking anymore it has caused more fights than I can count. Films sure make this process fun and enjoyable but I've yet to have that experience. I think she is just ready to buy and move on but I'm not.

Also I think the merchant only gave us that price on the setting bc it was a combo deal I doubt if I buy online he would drop the price
 

Texas Leaguer

Ideal_Rock
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chonch|1445445850|3940674 said:
Thanks Texas that's something I would have never picked up on. She's not excited with looking anymore it has caused more fights than I can count. Films sure make this process fun and enjoyable but I've yet to have that experience. I think she is just ready to buy and move on but I'm not.

Also I think the merchant only gave us that price on the setting bc it was a combo deal I doubt if I buy online he would drop the price
I think we all understand how stressful this process can be. Don't let any merchant add to it by putting pressure on you. I recommend getting seperate prices for the setting and diamond so you know exaclty where you stand on both. Folks here will quickly come to your aid and in a very short period of time help you find something that will be right for you.
 

kenny

Super_Ideal_Rock
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chonch|1445441427|3940647 said:

I wouldnt' buy that diamond because the cut is not good enough.
That means the light performance will not be as good as it could be.
Instead of all the light being returned to your eyes some may leak out the bottom and sides.

I'm only going to pay thousands for a rock if it does its job VERY well, and IMO a diamond's job is to put on a July 4th light show.

There is a bullet-proof easy two-step process for finding a round diamond with superb cut:
1. HCA: The HCA is used to reject poor performers, but doesn't tell you enough in order to buy.
2. Idealscope: Tells you enough to make a buying decision.

The HCA is a tool that uses math to evaluate the light performance based on four numbers you get from the GIA report.

Here is the plot from your GIA report:


Here are the HCA results:


I would not buy a round that scores over 2.0.
Even when you find a diamond scoring under 2.0 you need more info before buying.
This is because two of the numbers the HCA uses, the crown and the pavilion angles, are actually averages of the 8 angles around the 8-sided diamond.
It's possible some angles are very high but others are very low so they average out to give a good average number.
This would be revealed by an Idealscope image. (IS)
https://www.pricescope.com/tools/ideal-scope

So, find diamonds that score under 2.0 on the HCA, then ask vendor or IS pics for them.
Compare the IS image to this chart, or post it here for feedback.
If your vendor refuses find another vendor or buy your own IS at the posted link and only buy a diamond from a vendor with an adequate return period.

http://ideal-scope.com/reference-chart-ideal-scope-images/



This process may pass up a couple diamonds that pros with 30 years of experience would not have passed up, but who cares?
You and I are not pros with 30 years of experience.
Vendors who poopoo the HCA and IS probably sell poorly cut diamonds, or are just ignorant.

screen_shot_2015-10-21_at_9.png

screen_shot_2015-10-21_at_0.png

screen_shot_2015-10-21_at_1.png
 

telephone89

Ideal_Rock
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I think you can reasonably drop to VS1/2 w/o having visible inclusions if that is something you worry about, however you can also the gemologists for their opinion. I like WF for rounds, and the ones that tyty posted are very nice. WF offers an 'eye clean' stamp on their stones, and can also make a video comparison/give you their expert opinion.

This one is also very nice
http://www.whiteflash.com/loose-diamonds/round-cut-loose-diamond-3273908.htm

If you wanted to eek out a bit more size you could also drop to an H colour
http://www.whiteflash.com/loose-diamonds/round-cut-loose-diamond-3569940.htm
http://www.whiteflash.com/loose-diamonds/round-cut-loose-diamond-3586222.htm
 

chonch

Rough_Rock
Joined
Oct 20, 2015
Messages
12
There is a bullet-proof easy two-step process for finding a round diamond with superb cut:
1. HCA: The HCA is used to reject poor performers, but doesn't tell you enough in order to buy.
2. Idealscope: Tells you enough to make a buying decision.

Would the Aset be a third method to use in asking for and determining if that is the right diamond?
 

kenny

Super_Ideal_Rock
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31,605
chonch|1445451413|3940712 said:
There is a bullet-proof easy two-step process for finding a round diamond with superb cut:
1. HCA: The HCA is used to reject poor performers, but doesn't tell you enough in order to buy.
2. Idealscope: Tells you enough to make a buying decision.

Would the Aset be a third method to use in asking for and determining if that is the right diamond?

IIRC, I've read pros here like Garry Holloway (the inventor of the HCA, Holloway Cut Advisor) say the Idealscope is the only scope you need for rounds.
The ASET is essential for determining good cut in every other shape.
 

chonch

Rough_Rock
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Oct 20, 2015
Messages
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Thank you I thought having knowledge on the 4c's is enough but boy was I wrong.
I am so glad i didn't pull the trigger on it. :D
 

kenny

Super_Ideal_Rock
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chonch|1445451840|3940720 said:
Thank you I thought having knowledge on the 4c's is enough but boy was I wrong.
I am so glad i didn't pull the trigger on it. :D

You're welcome!
I'm also glad you found PS before pulling the trigger!

... so many regretful buyers didn't.

I didn't.
I'm embarrassed to admit it here, but I payed a fortune for my first diamond purchase (TOTAL crap in a mall) ... and a chi chi mall at that! ;(

Actually that was my second diamond purchase, 10 years ago, and for my SO.
My first was a $75 diamond ring in 1976 from a pawn shop. :lol:

Forgive me PS for I knew not what I did.
 

chonch

Rough_Rock
Joined
Oct 20, 2015
Messages
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now it looks like i wont get my full refund...so sad but at least i can still get the setting there i guess..should have read the fine print
:read:
 

Texas Leaguer

Ideal_Rock
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chonch|1445470081|3940862 said:
now it looks like i wont get my full refund...so sad but at least i can still get the setting there i guess..should have read the fine print
:read:
You had a stone on hold and they are not giving you back your full deposit? What is the reasoning - has the merchant incurred costs on your behalf - did they bring the stone in specifically for you? How much are they holding back? Did they make clear the terms should you decide not to go forward with the purchase?
 

AdaBeta27

Brilliant_Rock
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Sep 7, 2004
Messages
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For liability reasons, I had the vendor I bought the stone from also mount the stone into the mounting that I provided. Otherwise, there are issues of who is responsible for any damages that could happen to the stone in setting it. Since these local people are being difficult(?), then maybe just blow them off altogether and purchase stone + setting from the same PS dealer.

I don't even deal with the local jewelers my region, any of them, unless it for a repair or to have a diamond simulant ring made. I know to not even go there to look at the diamonds they offer, because they will be scraping the bottom of the barrel in cut quality. The only exceptions are the two that carry Hearts On Fire, and their prices are outrageous.
 

Diamond_Hawk

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kenny|1445451566|3940718 said:
chonch|1445451413|3940712 said:
There is a bullet-proof easy two-step process for finding a round diamond with superb cut:
1. HCA: The HCA is used to reject poor performers, but doesn't tell you enough in order to buy.
2. Idealscope: Tells you enough to make a buying decision.

Would the Aset be a third method to use in asking for and determining if that is the right diamond?

IIRC, I've read pros here like Garry Holloway (the inventor of the HCA, Holloway Cut Advisor) say the Idealscope is the only scope you need for rounds.
The ASET is essential for determining good cut in every other shape.

Chonch,

While the Ideal-Scope is, indeed, a fantastic resource, there are reasons to use an ASET to gain even more information on all diamonds, including MRB's.

Check out this article:

http://www.pricescope.com/journal/what-aset-reveals-ideal-scope-does-not

Here is a excerpt form the article - please look at both images:

article_-_image_5.jpg

As you can see, where there has been some painting or digging (often to 'fix' angles so the rounded averages will achieve a desired number) the Ideal-Scope will indeed demonstrate that there is light return, the ASET image can reveal the actual intensity of that light return.

While the difference may or may not be apparent in actual day-to-day viewing, wouldn't you want to know? I would.
 
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