Help! super-ideal/H&A, do most women care?


Apr 28, 2011
So before I read these forums, I was thinking about getting an ideal cut round stone SI1-VS2 H-I color around 2.5 carats on Blue Nile. I went there because it was a site I had heard of, and I knew some people who had bought stones there. My diamond education consisted basically of what I read on that site, and I had never heard of Hearts and Arrows, ideal scopes, or anything else in that vein. I then saw the Signature Ideal line on Blue Nile, and I couldn't really find any concrete evidence of how exactly those stones had better light performance. That basically led me to further research and eventually to this forum. Now after reading posts on these forums I've started thinking maybe I need to get a super-ideal stone, with perfect hearts and arrows etc etc. Basically I need a reality check.

I am mainly concerned with getting a stone with great light performance above about a 2 carat threshold. I talked to my girlfriend today about super-ideal stones and hearts and arrows and she looked at me, laughed a little, and said "babe, I just want it to be shiny, you are the only one who cares about any of that stuff. I don't even know what you are talking about." I tried to explain it to her and said well would you rather have it be really really shiny and symmetrical or just really shiny and .3 carats bigger. She said "I dont' know, probably bigger."

Anyways, this is kind of long but here is my question:
How different is the light performance going to be between an AGS 0/GIA triple EX non-branded stone from Blue Nile and something like a WhiteFlash ACA? Is my girlfriend going to be a lot more wowed at the "shininess" of a WF ACA, or is she not going to know the difference. From what I've showed her she doesn't seem to care about the symmetry of the arrows. She said "hmm I didn't know they were even supposed to look like that." I'm super anal about researching things like this, and I feel like I could debate it with myself forever, so any opinions or input of any kind about what you think a normal person without much diamond knowledge (my g/f) would rather have would be greatly appreciated. Thanks in advance!


Apr 4, 2010
since it seems like she doesn't care...then I would probably go with a nonbranded stone. Or, you could look at some in person to see whether or not YOU notice the difference.


Feb 8, 2003
Yeah, just find a great cut stone and go with that. Sounds like your GF will be able to tell to a certain extent, as in if it's "shiny" or not, but the H&A isn't her priority. FWIW, I have a great-cut diamond that's not a H&A and also have two ACAs and they look almost identical unless looking under an idealscope.


Jul 30, 2010
That sounds almost exactly like the kind of conversation I had with my fiancée over a year ago. :lol:

I think if she is/you are open to looking at diamonds together that's probably the best way to go about it. Everyone's threshold on cut is different.

GOG's videos on cut was a good place to start for us. After that we went to look at actual stones in stores. It turns out she has a clear preference for stones with good arrows symmetry, but doesn't care whether the hearts are perfect or not.

Black Jade

Aug 21, 2008
She says she doesn't care.
In real life, people mostly don't care. The only point to the whole thing is that the diamond be as sparkly as possible. All of these things are tools invented so that you can figure out if a stone is sparkly or not, sight unseen buying on the internet and have come up since internet buying. People stress out WAY too much about them.
I speak as someone who owns a pair of super ideal ACA H&A AGS-000 earrings and a ring which is not branded H&A but which is AGS000 and looks the same as the earrings int he H&A viewer. These are very beautiful jewels. I have friends who have jewels which are not as perfect on paper yet still look absolutely great. Me and one friend spent something like 1/2 an hour comparing my AGS ideal H &A with her GIA Very Good Cut in all kinds of circumstances and lights and could not see any difference in performance. I am sure that a jeweller, but we absolutely couldn't. when I think of the list of the people with the most beautiful and sparkly diamonds I know, several of them definitely up to mine from a layman's view, no one else has the paper certs and H % A viewer and the rest of the stuff but I really have decided that my papers don't matter as much as my eyes. What I like about Pricescope is that if you listen to the advice here, up to a certain point, you get really good deals for really beautiful stones. I don't care that my earrings have these superb stats and all these papers so muc as that I actually paid LESS for them through Pricescope advice than for the comparable earrings I saw in high end stores (the closest I saw to them, which had certs, but not as good, cost $5,000 more than what I paid for a slightly smaller size). In the case of my friend with the GIA very good, I also paid less than she did for her very comparable stone looking stone (the GIA very good) at the high-end neighborhood dealer (she looked up advice on Pricescope but decided not to go online).
With Pricescope knowledge,I have also now been able to move on and do well on the secondary market, since I know what a good stone is supposed to look like, have a secondary appraiser to go to and so forth. But it never was about the super ideal paper stats for me and clearly it is not for your GF either. Go ahead and give her the larger stone she wants. You are not getting a BAD stone which will not sparkle and I don't think you should obsess about having the most absolutely perfect stone according to Pricescope and jeweller standards which no one will notice in real life, I really don't.
But that's just my opinion.


Jan 11, 2006
I think as long as you go with ideal cut, you will be fine. I think WF has some GREAT stones in their Expert Selection and Premium Select lines which can help maximize the budget for people who don't "need" the ACA's. But usually, you just have to see what is available at the time you are looking. A GIA XXX with ideal light performance is just fine as is an AGS ideal cut stone that happens to have excellent instead of ideal for polish, as an example. I'd never sacrifice cut, but there are great stones that may not have perfect hearts. And 99% of us would never be able to see the difference when looking at the stone itself.


Dec 16, 2007
Get an AGS0 or GIA Ex cut stone with a good HCA score (under 2) and call it a day.

No, your gf will not be disappointed by the "drop" in cut quality. Neither will you.
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