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help with engagement ring

piano

Rough_Rock
Joined
Mar 12, 2016
Messages
100
Hi all,

I'm a completely newbie here and need some help.
I plan to propose in the next few weeks and ready to pull the trigger but I need your help.
I would love to get a ring around $5k.
I have studied a lot but I might miss something here and there.
Anyway, I get these two. Which one is better and should go for it?
1. From James Allen
+ stone: 0.91ct, G VS2 Round for $4520.
link: http://www.jamesallen.com/loose-diamonds/round-cut/0.91-carat-g-color-vs2-clarity-excellent-cut-sku-813152
+ setting: 18k white gold for $540
link: http://www.jamesallen.com/engagement-rings/solitaire/18k-white-gold-2mm-comfort-fit-solitaire-engagement-ring-item-54

or

2. From Blue Niles
+ stone: 0.91ct, H VS1 Round for $4354.
link: http://www.bluenile.com/build-your-own-ring/diamond-details/LD06732966
+ setting: 18k white gold for $690
link: http://www.bluenile.com/build-your-own-ring/white-gold-engagement-ring-setting_19287

I'm leaning on the JA not due to the G vs the H but the reputation.

Do you think I would make a mistake here?
What else do I need to concern?

Thanks
 

Gypsy

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Aug 8, 2005
Messages
40,198
Yeah. You haven't done your research on cut. The answer is NEITHER.

Here you go, read this and follow the links. Okay?


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? No, the HCA by itself is not enough.

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 62.3. Crown angle 33.5-35 ( up to 36 okay if you can get an idealscope image). Pavilion Angle: 40.6-40.8 (there is a little give on this, you can go to 41 with an idealscope). And the crown and pavilion angles must be complimentary which is what the HCA checks for you.
 

Gypsy

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Aug 8, 2005
Messages
40,198
http://www.jamesallen.com/loose-diamonds/round-cut/0.90-carat-h-color-vvs2-clarity-excellent-cut-sku-947501 This is nice, if JA will get you an idealscope image on it (36 crown angle requires an idealscope image). I normally wouldn't go for VVS clarity in a round. But the pickings were slim at SI and VS and this is the other best stone for you budget at JA. Put on hold ask for an idealscope image.

http://www.jamesallen.com/loose-diamonds/round-cut/0.91-carat-g-color-si1-clarity-excellent-cut-sku-750601 Alternate choice. It's a 60/60 but the numbers are good. But as with the above, you need an idealscope image as the pavilion angle is 41. Very nice stone though. And is eyeclean as far as I can tell.

Settings:
http://www.jamesallen.com/engagement-rings/solitaire/james-allen-exclusive-engagement-ring-item-49507
http://www.jamesallen.com/engagement-rings/solitaire/james-allen-exclusive-engagement-ring-item-49506

Pick one of those two settings. They are the nicest solitaires at JA. And the setting matters. Because as the wearer that's what you see most of the time: the profile and the setting of the stone.
 

piano

Rough_Rock
Joined
Mar 12, 2016
Messages
100
Hello Gypsy,

First of all, big thanks, especially the recommendations.
I'm sure I have a lot to learn.
About the cut, the 2 I listed are both either EX or Ideal cut, is that not enough?
I understand the HCA#, the JA is 2.5 which is not great, while the BN is 1.7, excellent.
I carefully chose them 'cuz the figures are within the spec. (depth, table, crown angle, ...)
I even want the fluorescence is none or faint, not medium or strong blue. I don't know if I should dig too much into this.
Anyway, beside the HCA 2.5 on the JA, can you please tell me why the 2 that you are recommended, are better than the ones that I chose (assuming that we don't have the idealscope images)?

Again, I have too much things to learn so forgive me if I act clueless.
 

piano

Rough_Rock
Joined
Mar 12, 2016
Messages
100
Also,
" BGD,BE, James Allen, GOG, HPD, ERD and WF"???
I guess BE = Brilliant Earth, WF = WhiteFire?
I've seen other vendors on pricescope such Brilliant Engage (they imply $250 restocking fee if return), B2C Jewels, Solomon Brothers, ...
Are they worth to look into?
I know JA is best place but it costs more than others, I think.
Do you or anyone have any other recommendation?

Huge thanks to all.
 

piano

Rough_Rock
Joined
Mar 12, 2016
Messages
100
I have requested the idealscope images on those JA stones.
Should be free of charge, I hope?
 

flyingpig

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Nov 7, 2015
Messages
2,245
Yes. IS/ASET is and should be free of charge.

All vendors listed here at PS are legit.
They offer different levels of customer service, upgrade policy, shipping/return policies, and etc..

Some offer actual diamond images in addition to IS/ASET images, some dont. JA is popular because of nice balance between value, customer service and THAT 360 degree super zoom images which are very helpful. Some prefer premier vendors such as GOG, WF and BG. For others, it is all about value, so B2C, solomon brothers and usa certified.
It also depends on the setting and custom design you are considering. Some are carry better stock settings than others, and some are better at custom designing a certain setting than others.

You need to read all fine prints and pick a vendor that works for you.
 

piano

Rough_Rock
Joined
Mar 12, 2016
Messages
100
flyingpig|1457883028|4004466 said:
Yes. IS/ASET is and should be free of charge.
Thanks, flyingpig.
I hope JA can provide those images.
 

flyingpig

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Nov 7, 2015
Messages
2,245
I am curious why Gypsy rejected the BN stone OP listed..
http://www.bluenile.com/build-your-own-ring/diamond-details/LD06732966
Based on the numbers alone, this is potential super ideal.
PIANO. ask BN to hold this stone, and ask for Actual photo and Idealscope, although chances are low..

PIANO. JA you listed has an pav/crown angle combo of 41/35 or steep/steep. Not ideal and HCA reflects that. This can work, but rarely. Need idealscope to check any light leakage.
But BN has 35/40.8 which is acceptable, and this is also reflected in the HCA score of 1.7

As you can ser, HCA red zone and AGS ideal zone (solid white box) runs diagonally. Both favors stone with shallow/deep and med/med combo.
 

piano

Rough_Rock
Joined
Mar 12, 2016
Messages
100
@flyingpig,
Yes, I understand the JA's HCA# 2.5 isn't great but between JA and BN, it seems a lot of people leaning to JA for their reputation.
I've seen quite a few other stones from B2C Jewels, ..... but I don't want to post too much info in my very first post.

And, yes, I am wondering why Gypsy rejected the BN one, he must have a reason and I am still learning.

Besides my picks, can you or anyone else please suggest me others.
I think 5K is reasonable and acceptable budget for me, I don't want to be too cheap though.
 

flyingpig

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Nov 7, 2015
Messages
2,245
R u considering I and J color??
Is your partner ok with it?
If so, this increases your options and can go over 1 carat

Good old gold youtube channel has a great video on H J and K color.

I will search a few stone later..
 

piano

Rough_Rock
Joined
Mar 12, 2016
Messages
100
Her size is 5/5.25, I don't want getting a big stone with low quality :(
My budget is around $5K and I've tried to get the best out of it.
I'll take any recommendation from all input and very appreciate it.
I want:
+ good quality stone
+ I want platium setting but since it's expensive, i have to cut back to 18k white :)
+ 30-days return with free shipping both ways would be great

While we continue on the topic of stone, I have side question.
If I only purchase a engagement ring now, say from JA, and later I want a wedding band, does JA offer the matching band?
 

motownmama

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Jan 9, 2008
Messages
7,422
I see JA has a plat solitaire for $670. If you want plat I'd get it for $130 more than the setting you posted.
 

piano

Rough_Rock
Joined
Mar 12, 2016
Messages
100
Thanks again, flyingpig

I would skip I and below for now.
The JA H, VVS1 you listed is great but $4610 :( I think it will be way over my budget. But I keep it in my mind

0.9ct H VS1 from BN, it has excellent HCA# (1.0) but are we concerning about the depth and table? Plus, it's $4716 :(.
0.9ct E VS1, $47xx :(. The fluorescence is Medium, is that something that we should take into account?
0.9ct H VVS2, $48xx :(
Of these 3, I would take the E VS1, just my choice. Any objection?

0.9ct H VS2, $4164 with 1.8 HCA#, the fluorescence is Medium
0.91ct H VS2, $4354 with 1.7 HCA#, the fluorescence is None. I would take this instead of the above but not sure it's worth. Anyway this is the one that I posted in the original post.

The H VS1 from goodgold, I think it will be over my budget.

Does BN have good services?
 

piano

Rough_Rock
Joined
Mar 12, 2016
Messages
100
piano|1457881034|4004448 said:
I have requested the idealscope images on those JA stones.
Should be free of charge, I hope?
JA responded that unfortunately, they don't have the idealscope image for those stones.

So far, 'til now, the BN that I posted in OP seems to be the best (well, with respect to my budget :))
Since I can't get the idealscope image, I guess I have to stuck with those recommended figures (depth, table, crown/pavilion angle) and keep the finger crossed.
Are BN services good? Anyone? Any concern that I need to know in advanced?
 

flyingpig

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Nov 7, 2015
Messages
2,245
piano|1457924229|4004771 said:
piano|1457881034|4004448 said:
I have requested the idealscope images on those JA stones.
Should be free of charge, I hope?
JA responded that unfortunately, they don't have the idealscope image for those stones.

So far, 'til now, the BN that I posted in OP seems to be the best (well, with respect to my budget :))
Since I can't get the idealscope image, I guess I have to stuck with those recommended figures (depth, table, crown/pavilion angle) and keep the finger crossed.
Are BN services good? Anyone? Any concern that I need to know in advanced?
I agree that the H VS2 you listed in the OP is the best considering the proportions and value, so far.
The main drawback of BN is no picture and no IS/ASET in most cases. You just have to rely on the report and see the stone later when delivered, and decide. You can return the ring free of charge, if you don't like it. If you decide to keep it, it is still GIA XXX with ideal proportions.

Many have asked the same question on BN.
[URL='https://www.pricescope.com/community/threads/blue-nile.220312/#post-4000316?hilit=bn#p4000316']https://www.pricescope.com/community/threads/blue-nile.220312/#post-4000316?hilit=bn#p4000316[/URL]

Here is my last recommendation
http://www.eternitybyyoni.com/0.90-G-VS2-Excellent-Cut-Round-Diamond-GIA-1176449381/ds-2280901/
It is a bit deep at 62.5% (you lose about 0.03~0.05mm). But it is G VS1 (listing is VS2. but report is VS1) with potentially better proportions and cheaper.
 

Sphene

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Jan 4, 2015
Messages
666
wow you reject Gypsies advice at your peril she knows what she talks about when it comes to diamonds :wall:
 

flyingpig

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Nov 7, 2015
Messages
2,245
Sphene|1457942489|4004953 said:
wow you reject Gypsies advice at your peril she knows what she talks about when it comes to diamonds :wall:
??

Nobody rejected noone's advise.
OP asked JA for the IS images of stones that gypsy recommended, as advised. JA's answer is they cannot provide.
Meanawhile, i added a few options within 5k budget and gave a second opinion on the BN stone in the OP, which is gia xxx, hca 1.7, ideal proportions and potential AGS 0.
I am puzzled by this reaction
 

piano

Rough_Rock
Joined
Mar 12, 2016
Messages
100
Sphene|1457942489|4004953 said:
wow you reject Gypsies advice at your peril she knows what she talks about when it comes to diamonds :wall:
Why would you say I rejected Gypsy's??? :(
As state previously, I have a lot to learn and I am learning.
In fact, I am still waiting for Gypsy's answers.
I take any recommendation though.
 

piano

Rough_Rock
Joined
Mar 12, 2016
Messages
100
flyingpig said:
Here is my last recommendation
http://www.eternitybyyoni.com/0.90-G-VS2-Excellent-Cut-Round-Diamond-GIA-1176449381/ds-2280901/
It is a bit deep at 62.5% (you lose about 0.03~0.05mm). But it is G VS1 (listing is VS2. but report is VS1) with potentially better proportions and cheaper.
This seems great, flyingpig.
Do you have any experience with this vendor? Are they legit and provide good service?
They even have ring size 5.25 too, that's sweet.
2.5mm width??? is that too big?
 

flyingpig

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Nov 7, 2015
Messages
2,245
piano|1457968253|4005069 said:
flyingpig said:
Here is my last recommendation
http://www.eternitybyyoni.com/0.90-G-VS2-Excellent-Cut-Round-Diamond-GIA-1176449381/ds-2280901/
It is a bit deep at 62.5% (you lose about 0.03~0.05mm). But it is G VS1 (listing is VS2. but report is VS1) with potentially better proportions and cheaper.
This seems great, flyingpig.
Do you have any experience with this vendor? Are they legit and provide good service?
They even have ring size 5.25 too, that's sweet.
2.5mm width??? is that too big?
Unfortunately, I do not have any experience with this vendor. But it is a PS vendor/sponsor, and there have been positive reviews on this forum.

Regarding settings, I am not the most expert. But 5.25 size sounds like average, so is 2.5mm. I hope others can help with the setting.
 

piano

Rough_Rock
Joined
Mar 12, 2016
Messages
100
My lady is 5'3" with 5/5.5 ring size so I don't want getting a "thick" ring. I thought the standard is 2mm.
 

PintoBean

Ideal_Rock
Premium
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Jul 27, 2011
Messages
6,407

msop04

Ideal_Rock
Premium
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Messages
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piano|1457977628|4005158 said:
My lady is 5'3" with 5/5.5 ring size so I don't want getting a "thick" ring. I thought the standard is 2mm.
Hi piano. :wavey:

I am 5'5" and wear a size 5 ring. I can assure you that 2.5 mm isn't thick at all. In fact, most will recommend 2.0 as the thinnest shank to be safe. If your intended likes the looks of a knife edge, they look even thinner than they actually are...
 

piano

Rough_Rock
Joined
Mar 12, 2016
Messages
100
msop04|1457990627|4005257 said:
piano|1457977628|4005158 said:
My lady is 5'3" with 5/5.5 ring size so I don't want getting a "thick" ring. I thought the standard is 2mm.
Hi piano. :wavey:

I am 5'5" and wear a size 5 ring. I can assure you that 2.5 mm isn't thick at all. In fact, most will recommend 2.0 as the thinnest shank to be safe. If your intended likes the looks of a knife edge, they look even thinner than they actually are...
Thank you so much, msop04.
That would buy me a peace of mind.

Just another general question if you don't mind.
She said her size is 5.25, and most of vendors only offer either 5 or 5.5.
If I have to make a choice, would you recommend 5 or 5.5 size?
I don't want it too tight on her but again, not too loose.
What happen if she gets "fatter" :( during pregnancy and going forward?
Hopefully this is not a weird question.
 

piano

Rough_Rock
Joined
Mar 12, 2016
Messages
100
PintoBean|1457979573|4005163 said:
Hi Piano,

How about this from Whiteflash (WF)?
Eye clean 0.896 ct G SI1 Expert Selection Round - lifetime upgrade option!
http://www.whiteflash.com/loose-diamonds/round-cut-loose-diamond-3638368.htm?source=pricescope

4 platinum solitaire settings ranging from $656-$725
http://www.whiteflash.com/diamond-jewelry/compare.aspx?idnos=4025,4030,1024,4

depending on diamond + setting combo:
low $4,392 + $656 = $5,047
high: $4,392 + $725 = $5,117
The stone looks great, Pinto. Thanks a lot for that.
This is the very first one that I've seen it includes the idealscope along with description.
My concerns, again, the newbie concerns, so please clear my mind. They are:
I love the G but the SI1, is it big different compared to VS2? General speaking, we all want the higher qual.
Also, the girdle, I tend to wanting medium-slightly thick. This one is thin. Is it a concern? legitimate concern?

I assume WF is a good company, right?

About the setting, I thought my lady is petite, so I used to look for <2mm, but now I want 2mm at least :(
 

piano

Rough_Rock
Joined
Mar 12, 2016
Messages
100
From the reading, can I assume that AGS is equal to IGA in term of the specification?
Also, is that true that AGS0 (cut rated 0) is top-notch and even better than IGA triple X-cellent?
Please, hammer me if I am wrong.
 

PintoBean

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
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Messages
6,407
The link I posted with the 4 settings - the last two should be greater than 2mm and platinum - your first choice in metal.

Whiteflash is a very reputable vendor. Call them and ask them about the stone. Tell them your concerns with the thin girdle and ask for their opinion. Tell them that you see that the stone is indicated as eye clean, and talk to them about your expectations of eye cleanliness. Maybe this SI-1 is good enough for you, maybe it does not meet your expectations, but it's a dialog to be had.

If their feedback on the stone rules it out for you, ask them for suggestions of other alternative diamonds that are a little more money, if you were to downgrade the setting to white gold.
 
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