shape
carat
color
clarity

Hello. I have a few questions...

Discussion in 'RockyTalky' started by HereForAFewQuestions, Jun 26, 2019.

  1. HereForAFewQuestions
    Rough_Rock

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    by HereForAFewQuestions » Jun 26, 2019
    I am planning on buying an engagement ring soon and am just starting to do some research.
    I’ve read in a few places and heard in some videos that I could get the most bang for my buck if I purchase just the diamond from an online store, and then have it set by a jeweler. Is this true? If so, what are some of the most trustworthy sources? The only one I’ve looked at so far has been James Allen. I thought they had a nice website - easy to navigate and narrow down the diamonds. Seemed to have nice, high quality photos of the actual diamonds they have for sale.
    What are the most important things to look for in a diamond? From what I’ve read, it seems carat weight is least important if you are concerned more about quality than the actual size. I understand cut is important, but would the color and clarity have the highest impact on overall quality?
    Thanks in advance for any advice!
     
    


    


  2. tyty333
    Super_Ideal_Rock

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    by tyty333 » Jun 26, 2019
    Are you looking for a round brilliant or some other shape?

    Tell us a little more about what you're looking for plus your budget. That will help us know where
    to tell you to look
     
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  3. HereForAFewQuestions
    Rough_Rock

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    by HereForAFewQuestions » Jun 26, 2019
    Definitely round. Is ‘round brilliant’ a technical term and does just plainly mean round?

    Edited to add: just did some googling and I see brilliant is a type of cut?
    Would like to stay in the $9-11k range.
     
    Last edited: Jun 26, 2019
  4. tyty333
    Super_Ideal_Rock

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    by tyty333 » Jun 26, 2019
    There are many "round" cuts of diamonds. Round Brilliant, or RB, is the standard 8 arrow round diamond most people think of when they here "round".

    Round Brilliant
    https://www.whiteflash.com/loose-diamonds/round-cut-loose-diamond-4109143.htm

    Size, color, clarity, budget? Do you have any other specs to share?
     
    


    


  5. HereForAFewQuestions
    Rough_Rock

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    by HereForAFewQuestions » Jun 26, 2019
    $9-11k budget. Color and clarity I’d like to have D and flawless or as close as possible. Size isn’t a huge deal but I’d prefer at least 0.80 ct.
     
  6. tyty333
    Super_Ideal_Rock

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  7. HereForAFewQuestions
    Rough_Rock

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  8. bmfang
    Brilliant_Rock

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    by bmfang » Jun 26, 2019
    AGS000 refers to a cut grade from AGS Laboratories. While a lot of brick and mortar stores will guide you to GIA triple excellent stones, not all GIA triple excellent will perform as well as an AGS000 cut grade stone.

    H&A is Hearts and arrows.

    While James Allen has some of the best imagery available online, a large number of PS folks would not recommend them as they do not make it easy for us to check out the proportions of the stones (ie, GIA or AGS reports are not provided unless you contact a customer service agent).

    If you are wanting to shop at somewhere like James Allen, I would prefer B2C as they allow you to search for stones with real stone images and for some stones, with advanced scope images as well (that is, Idealscope and ASET scope images).

    I am presuming your request for D flawless is due to cultural reasons?
     
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  9. MK Malone
    Shiny_Rock

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    by MK Malone » Jun 26, 2019
    I have seen this question come up frequently. Can someone explain the questions regarding culture and high color/clarity diamond requests? I am very curious about other cultures and would love to learn about this please. During my search, this gal wanted the biggest brilliant round possible (without noticeable color or inclusions)!! :love:
     
  10. bmfang
    Brilliant_Rock

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    by bmfang » Jun 26, 2019
    In some cultures, high colour clarity combos are prized more than carat size. E.g. a large number of East Asian cultures treat high colour clarity (D-E/VVS-IF-FL) as being symbolic of the purity of love or that the future marriage will be without flaws. Or some other reason.

    Being of Chinese extraction myself, a large number of my relatives have high colour clarity stones which may be smaller in carat size but they look erm... not so good (being diplomatic in case any find this forum and recognise who I am by my username).

    Whenever I’m back in Malaysia, Singapore, HK or China, there is further evidence of this as most sales staff at jewellery shops steer potential clients to high colour clarity as they are “rarer” than “lower quality” stones with lower colour clarity combos (peoples views would change if they did a search for virtual inventory). There are some stores that are changing that mindset to that of one where cut is of more importance than colour clarity (like Jann Paul in Singapore and the few Chinese jewellery chains that are stocking limited numbers of H&A stones).
     
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  11. MK Malone
    Shiny_Rock

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    by MK Malone » Jun 26, 2019
    Thank you so much!! Wonderful explanation.
     
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  12. HereForAFewQuestions
    Rough_Rock

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    by HereForAFewQuestions » Jun 26, 2019
    Thank you for all the great info!
    My color and clarity preferences are purely for aesthetics. My thoughts are, what’s the point of a larger stone if it isn’t “perfect?”
     
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  13. bmfang
    Brilliant_Rock

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    by bmfang » Jun 26, 2019
    Keep in mind, that a Flawless diamond is only flawless at 10x magnification because that is the standard magnification for diamond grading.
     
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  14. HereForAFewQuestions
    Rough_Rock

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    by HereForAFewQuestions » Jun 26, 2019
    @bmfang are GIA and AGS the top two grading companies? Do they have similar reputations?
    So AGS000 means D color and FL clarity?
     
  15. HereForAFewQuestions
    Rough_Rock

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    by HereForAFewQuestions » Jun 26, 2019
    That’s ok. I don’t ever plan on viewing the stone through a loupe. They were meant to be viewed with the naked eye!
     
    


    


  16. arkieb1
    Ideal_Rock

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    by arkieb1 » Jun 26, 2019
    A really well cut (ie super ideal) larger sized G or F will look way better on the hand IMHO than a poorly cut smaller D or an E. I think it's all about maximising budget. So really, you want something that will look white (go for an F, if you don't want to pay for colour differences most cannot see) and eye clean go for a totally clean VS1 or VS2 (because if it's eye clean it's eye clean) if you pay for VVS or IF it's something on paper the eye cannot see and a slightly bigger size stone which is something the eye CAN see and a decent cut which will also make the stone have better edge to edge brightness ie also something the human eye CAN see.

    So to spell it out you can get a bigger stone that will be white looking if you go for an F rather than a D or an E, a to maximise your budget go for a totally eye clean stone that is a VS stone - and put the money you save towards a slightly larger sized stone. Unless of course it's a cultural thing and she has to have a D or an E.
     
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  17. MK Malone
    Shiny_Rock

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    by MK Malone » Jun 26, 2019
    Hope this is helpful. Im sharing a link to a brilliant round diamond I just recently bought with help on this forum. I love it! It is a I VS2. Completely eye clean and the yellow is barely noticeable - but only in certain conditions, as it faces up very white and is so lovely, IMO. I’m thinking I could have spent more for an H stone, but this stone is perfect for me. Cut was most important to get the sparkle and shine I was looking for.
     
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  18. bmfang
    Brilliant_Rock

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    by bmfang » Jun 26, 2019
    In the US market, yes they are. In other parts of the world, other labs are also included with them (eg Europe, HRD would also be included in that list, in Asia, IGI also has a good reputation).

    In general, we on PS recommend GIA and AGS. For cut nuts, preference is likely to be AGS over GIA (though I can’t speak for everyone, only myself).

    AGS 000 refers to 0 grades for light performance, symmetry and polish. The ultimate AGS graded stone would be AGS 00000. A D coloured stone in AGS grading terminology is 0, the same score for a FL/IF clarity stone (hence five 0’s).
     
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  19. new-beginning
    Rough_Rock

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    by new-beginning » Jun 26, 2019
    AGS000 refers mainly to the excellens of the light return from the parameters used in cutting the diamond (round brilliant) - it does not mean D color and FL clarity.
     
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  20. bmfang
    Brilliant_Rock

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    by bmfang » Jun 26, 2019
    Just as an exercise, I took a look through virtual inventory at B2C for D FL/IF stones with ASETs and there are none available with decent light performance. Compromises have been made with cutting proportions. Could definitely find some within your budget but none that I’d be able to recommend in good conscience.

    All of the D IF’s at BGD and WF are way out of the OPs budget.
     
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  21. lovedogs
    Ideal_Rock

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    by lovedogs » Jun 27, 2019
    I would think carefully about whether you/your GF actually wants or needs D/IF. You'll pay a massive premium for something invisible. As @arkieb1 said, F/VS2, or F/VS1 will be completely white and clean to the naked eye. I'd even recommend G color to look very white to most everyone. Cut is the most important factor when choosing a stone. I would be looking a WF/BGD/CBI if you want the best cut.
     
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  22. arkieb1
    Ideal_Rock

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    by arkieb1 » Jun 27, 2019
    Yes exactly and IMHO a decent cut on an F or a G and a stone that is 110% eye clean will purchase something better than a badly cut D or E and a IF or VVS stone is simply paying for things on paper in stones this size that you cannot see....
     
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  23. lovedogs
    Ideal_Rock

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  24. foxinsox
    Ideal_Rock

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    by foxinsox » Jun 27, 2019
    If colour and clarity are your top priority then D/FL makes sense.
    For most of us here, cut is the top priority and colour/clarity/carat have their own adherents as to which is then the most important after cut.
    A diamond’s purpose is to sparkle and reflect light - this is why cut is the most prized aspect here because a poorly cut diamond doesn’t sparkle or reflect light. So for most of us, a poorly cut D/FL would be imperfect.
    Because the industry has done a great job of training consumers to think cut isn’t as important as colour and clarity, you will find that it is very rare to have a D/FL that is well cut and sparkles as much as it could. The reasons why are varied but basically round up to the fact that cutting for perfect/optimal light return and optical symmetry “wastes” more rough. And commercially if you have diamond rough that could yield a perfectly cut sparkly D/FL mirrorball that was 0.89 carats or it could yield a 1.10 leaky dull D/FL, it makes more $$$ sense to cut the sad dull D/FL because it will get you over the magic carat mark and let you charge consumers who don’t know better lots more.
    So take the perfection of D/FL with a big grain of salt. By one narrow definition it is the best but it usually results in diamonds that are anything but.

    What does the to-be wearer of the ring rate most highly? Does she want big or sparkly or white or clear..the most? For all your wishes in this, it will be her daily happiness that should matter the most.
     
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