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Help choosing a diamond!

sherryberrybear

Rough_Rock
Joined
Apr 26, 2016
Messages
85
Hi again everyone,

After a lot of searching, I can't seem to find the perfect OEC diamond in my budget so have decided to look for a round brilliant. I would really appreciate your help with this as I'm relatively new to the process (and very excited!).

Budget: $5500-5700 max for setting + diamond
Setting: $1910 (Tacori: http://www.tacori.com/59-2rd65)
Ring Size: 3.75

Ideally, I would love a diamond in the 0.80-1.00ct range that is bright white with no visible inclusions. I have been looking around and found several diamonds that I think might be good contenders (all HCA <3.0, some <2.0). I would love your opinions. A couple are ACA or Expert selections and have Idealscope images. The others do not and would only be available once I purchase the diamond which is part of why I need your help! All are GIA certified except the first ACA one which is AGS certified.

1) 0.82ct I/VS2 ACA/Hearts and Arrows $3660
Depth: 61.2
Table: 56.6
Crown Angle: 34.8
Pavilion Angle: 40.7
Cutlet: Pointed
Measurements: 6.02x6.03x3.69 mm
Idealscope image below
idealscope.jpg

ASET image
aset.jpg

Hearts image
hearts.jpg

2) 0.85ct F/SI1 $3802
Depth: 62.4
Table: 56
Crown Angle: 35.5
Pavilion Angle: 40.8
Cutlet: None
Measurements: 6.05 - 6.07 x 3.78 mm

3) 0.90ct H/SI1 $3787
Depth: 63.5
Table: 58
Crown Angle: 38
Pavilion Angle: 41.2
Cutlet: None
Measurements: 6.08 - 6.15 x 3.88 mm

4) 0.92 G/SI2 $3554
Depth: 62
Table: 57
Crown Angle: 35.5
Pavilion Angle: 40.8
Cutlet: None
Measurements: 6.21 - 6.24 x 3.86 mm

5) 0.81 H/VS2 $3268
Depth: 58.9
Table: 60
Crown Angle: 32.5
Pavilion Angle: 41
Cutlet: None
Measurements: 6.11 - 6.13 x 3.60 mm

6) 0.84 H/VS2 $3440
Depth: 61.5
Table: 56
Crown Angle: 34
Pavilion Angle: 41
Cutlet: None
Measurements: 6.09 - 6.11 x 3.75 mm

These last two are from Blue Nile so I would have to buy and then have it set at a local jeweler:

7) 0.90 I/VVS2 $3369
Depth: 60.6
Table: 59
Crown Angle: 33
Pavilion Angle: 40.6
Cutlet: None
Measurements: 6.23 x 6.17 x 3.76 mm

8) 0.9 I/VS2 $3388
Depth: 57.4
Table: 63
Crown Angle: 33
Pavilion Angle: 40.6
Cutlet: None
Measurements: 6.39 x 6.38 x 3.67 mm (I like the bigger spread of this one)

Thank you all so much in advance for your help! I'm also open to suggestions, though I prefer to buy from a vendor that is an authorized dealer for Tacori (or has a great relationship with one) so that they can do it all at the same time.

Thanks!
Sherry
 

Snowdrop13

Brilliant_Rock
Premium
Joined
Aug 27, 2011
Messages
1,857
I'm hugely biased having just received my ACA, also I VS2. It is amazing! I wasn't really sure what to expect but I can easily see how beautifully cut it is. I'm sure you wouldn't regret buying one!
 

sherryberrybear

Rough_Rock
Joined
Apr 26, 2016
Messages
85
That's fantastic to hear! Congratulations- I hope I have similar luck with whichever I choose :)
 

Gypsy

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Aug 8, 2005
Messages
40,198
sherryberrybear|1462311666|4026743 said:

I can't pull these up. None of them, except the ACA, are worth buying.

These are the parameters you need to stick to:

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='https://www.pricescope.com/community/threads/egl-certification-are-any-of-them-ok.142863/']https://www.pricescope.com/community/threads/egl-certification-are-any-of-them-ok.142863/[/URL]
So how to we ensure that we have the right angles and cutting to get the light performance we want?
https://www.pricescope.com/wiki/diamonds/diamond-cut
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.
https://www.pricescope.com/wiki/diamonds/holloway-cut-advisor
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. https://www.pricescope.com/wiki/diamonds/firescope-idealscope
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: 40.6-40.8 (there is a little give on this). And the crown and pavilion angles must be complimentary which is what the HCA checks for you.
 

sherryberrybear

Rough_Rock
Joined
Apr 26, 2016
Messages
85
Thanks Gypsy! I really appreciate the explanation.

Do you have any other diamonds that you think I should consider, or should I jump on the ACA?

-Sherry
 

Snowdrop13

Brilliant_Rock
Premium
Joined
Aug 27, 2011
Messages
1,857
It really depends how much time you have available to search for diamonds on the various sites. I took on board all the information from here (perfectly summarised above by Gypsy). I did lots of searches, using those parameters and felt I got quite good at sifting out stones that would be suitable. I decided to go with the ACA as I felt Whiteflash provided so much information up front that the whole process was just easier (especially for me as an overseas buyer and with their excellent upgrade policy). I was also in the frame of mind to have a "perfect" stone and the ACAs appealed to me.

There were a couple of other stones I considered, there's a 0.83 I VS2 and a 0.85 I Si1 still available, although I guess they are pretty much identical to the naked eye! Hope you find something you love, is this for a ring?
 

sherryberrybear

Rough_Rock
Joined
Apr 26, 2016
Messages
85
Yes- it's for my engagement ring! Luckily, my boyfriend and I are the perfect mix- I'm incredibly hands on (and don't like surprises) and he lets me choose whatever I'd like within budget. My dilemma, as with everyone, is increasing size and lower cut grade vs. smaller size and improved quality.

I did get an Idealscope image of a 0.91 H/SI1 from blue nile, but it looks so much less even than the WF ACA one. Do you think I would notice a visible difference (to the naked eye)?

yu_-ld06928314_idealscope-01.png

Finally, here's another stone from Solomon Brothers that looks pretty good on paper but I'm not sure what to think.

https://www.solomonbrothers.com/diamonddetail/8H4F7793/0.94-carat-si1-excellent-cut-i-round-brilliant-diamond


Thanks again!
Sherry
 

sherryberrybear

Rough_Rock
Joined
Apr 26, 2016
Messages
85
I found another diamond (AGS report attached) that is AGS0. I don't have any true images of the stone and the dealer wasn't able to verify that it was eye clean due to it being at an affiliated vendor (B2C jewels). The HCA score is 2.1 which I know is more than ideal, but given the much larger size and similar price point, what do you think?

diamond_report_.png
 

Snowdrop13

Brilliant_Rock
Premium
Joined
Aug 27, 2011
Messages
1,857
I'm sure that last stone is a lower price point for a reason, it won't be eye clean and the feathers are an issue. They are surface reaching inclusions and might affect the durability of the stone.
 
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