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I understand this should be case closed (GIA vs AGS)

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simplysplendid

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I haven''t been on Pricescope for a number of days and I saw that there have been several discussions re: GIA vs AGS. As a consumer frequently buying diamond jewelry (at least once a month!), since both of these labs have rather strict standards themselves, I am comfortable buying from either labs. I don''t think anyone can say that a diamond is not better than another just because it was graded by GIA and vice versa. To me as a diamond lover, any diamond that falls within the specs of being ideal and looks great is great! I think any comments that imply that no one can claim that a diamond is ideal simply because it is not AGS graded ideal should be avoided.

I''m sorry and I may get stoned for this, but as a consumer and general jewelry lover, sometimes I just don''t see small visual differences between a 0.1 degree in the crown angle or a 1% difference in the percentages
. There may be a difference in the measuring instruments, technology and guidelines used between labs that generate some differences, but it may not be noticeable to many consumers. I think consumers like myself will probably do fine as long as I check my purchases with my idealscope and aset and the HCA! -- Just my 2 cents..

(Heh, I bought myself a OEC last month with an EGL cert with Good for polish and Good to Fair for symmetry and I LOVE THAT FIREBALL!)
 

yeewl

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Sep 10, 2002
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192
Hello,

I am glad someone brought up this topic regarding GIA and AGS cert issues. Just wanted to chip in and comment. Hope I am not opening a can of worms as this is my observation and honest opinion.

As I never had the opportunity to purchase any loose stones via internet and only gets to buy them at B&M, I can only trust what I see while using the Idealscope and ASET scope.

As for the cert/dossier, it does not matter to me which organization had graded the loose stone. The given details and proportion are just one of many ways in assisting me to select the best proportion stones and with the price to match.

It came in handy when I had the IGI stone (ideal cut H&A) and needed to search for another similar proportion in order to make a pair of earrings. When I compared the IGI and HRD loose stones side by side using the white paper test to see the colors, they both look exactly the same as what the dossiers had reported. Even the craftman who did my earrings setting commented the 2 stones compliments each other nicely. The 2 loose stones are FVS 1 and FVS 2 respectively.

As far as I''m concern, I am very comfortable in buying my loose stones with GIA, HRD and IGI (Japan) gradings.

At the end of the day, you choose what you like and can afford to pay. You still need to eat, sleep and pay bills the end of the day too. Just have balance what are your trade-offs and whether you can live with that.

And it''s true that in Singapore (not sure about other parts of asian countries), most of the jewellery shops here carries GIA stones much more than AGS because it is easier to sell to general public.


WL
 

Garry H (Cut Nut)

Super_Ideal_Rock
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15,170
Date: 3/25/2007 1:54:06 AM
Author:simplysplendid
I haven''t been on Pricescope for a number of days and I saw that there have been several discussions re: GIA vs AGS. As a consumer frequently buying diamond jewelry (at least once a month!), since both of these labs have rather strict standards themselves, I am comfortable buying from either labs. I don''t think anyone can say that a diamond is not better than another just because it was graded by GIA and vice versa. To me as a diamond lover, any diamond that falls within the specs of being ideal and looks great is great! I think any comments that imply that no one can claim that a diamond is ideal simply because it is not AGS graded ideal should be avoided.

I''m sorry and I may get stoned for this, but as a consumer and general jewelry lover, sometimes I just don''t see small visual differences between a 0.1 degree in the crown angle or a 1% difference in the percentages
. There may be a difference in the measuring instruments, technology and guidelines used between labs that generate some differences, but it may not be noticeable to many consumers. I think consumers like myself will probably do fine as long as I check my purchases with my idealscope and aset and the HCA! -- Just my 2 cents..

(Heh, I bought myself a OEC last month with an EGL cert with Good for polish and Good to Fair for symmetry and I LOVE THAT FIREBALL!)
Simply splendid - you hardly need defence on the cut front (see highlighted section above, and thanks for the plug). And old cuts do have bigger flashes of fire! ask CalahedrdrabraAbracadabrah.

And re color and clarity - even if there is a small difference in grades from various labs - it is a $ issue more than a quality issue in most cases - who can see a color or a clarity grade diff when wearing a ring?

Yeewl - I have no experiance with IGI diamonds graded loose in USA, but I do in some Asian labs, and I think they provide a great and consistant service. If I ever disagree with a grade I am able to understand it because they do face up color grading on border line stones (their Director from Hong Kong wrote something about it here on Pricescope).

Personally it is sad that we need labs and the additional cost they add to transactions. It would be nice if everyone was honest.
 

Paul-Antwerp

Ideal_Rock
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2,852
A lot of the discussion about GIA vs AGS is, according to me, due to two facts.

1. GIA is giving a cut-grade on round brilliants only. In fancy shapes, especially princess-cuts (for which AGS has an operational cut-grade), there is almost no possibility of establishing a true cut-quality on non-AGS-graded stones. With cut-quality being high on the agenda of most Pricescope-contributors, this causes a lot of pro-AGS-posts in princess-cut-threads.

2. In rounds, there is a clear difference in perception, whether you are a cutter or a Pricescope-consumer. For a cutter, GIA is clearly the lab with the best reputation worldwide. In some smaller markets, it might be considered the no.2-lab, but it is always in the top-2, both in brand-awareness as in considered quality-level. For the majority of cutters, having sales worldwide and cutting various levels of cut-quality, it is logical to often prefer GIA to the less well-known AGS. The perceived strictness (true or untrue?) of AGS does not help in its popularity with cutters.

As such, cutters, who choose to send their stones to AGS do this because the specific lab-report is part of their brand, and because the presence of the AGS-paper contributes to the uniqueness of their proposition. This does not mean that these stones are necessarily better than the best GIA-graded rounds. It is a strategic decision of a cutting organisation, and this decision is generally not based upon an American market-niche only.

From a consumer-perspective on Pricescope, the whole image looks different of course. The info resulting from the AGS-report clearly is more detailed than that of the GIA-report, and it is logical that, in a spirit of looking for the best cut-quality, consumers here start expressing their preference for AGS-graded stones. However, it is not because a stone does not have the GIA-paper, that it is less valuable than one with AGS-paper. Personally, I do not have a Harvard-degree, but I think that I can definitely compete with those that have.

On a side-note, I actually wanted to post this reaction on another thread, but I found it closed.

Live long,
 

yeewl

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Sep 10, 2002
Messages
192
Hello again

Yeewl - I have no experiance with IGI diamonds graded loose in USA, but I do in some Asian labs, and I think they provide a great and consistant service. If I ever disagree with a grade I am able to understand it because they do face up color grading on border line stones (their Director from Hong Kong wrote something about it here on Pricescope).

Personally it is sad that we need labs and the additional cost they add to transactions. It would be nice if everyone was honest.

Dear Garry,

Thank you so much for your kind response to this thread and suggestion of engaging some asian labs for their service. And I do agree with you, it would be good if everyone is honest. Life would be so much easier.

WL
 

yeewl

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Sep 10, 2002
Messages
192
Hello again

A lot of the discussion about GIA vs AGS is, according to me, due to two facts.

1. GIA is giving a cut-grade on round brilliants only. In fancy shapes, especially princess-cuts (for which AGS has an operational cut-grade), there is almost no possibility of establishing a true cut-quality on non-AGS-graded stones. With cut-quality being high on the agenda of most Pricescope-contributors, this causes a lot of pro-AGS-posts in princess-cut-threads.

2. In rounds, there is a clear difference in perception, whether you are a cutter or a Pricescope-consumer. For a cutter, GIA is clearly the lab with the best reputation worldwide. In some smaller markets, it might be considered the no.2-lab, but it is always in the top-2, both in brand-awareness as in considered quality-level. For the majority of cutters, having sales worldwide and cutting various levels of cut-quality, it is logical to often prefer GIA to the less well-known AGS. The perceived strictness (true or untrue?) of AGS does not help in its popularity with cutters.

As such, cutters, who choose to send their stones to AGS do this because the specific lab-report is part of their brand, and because the presence of the AGS-paper contributes to the uniqueness of their proposition. This does not mean that these stones are necessarily better than the best GIA-graded rounds. It is a strategic decision of a cutting organisation, and this decision is generally not based upon an American market-niche only.

From a consumer-perspective on Pricescope, the whole image looks different of course. The info resulting from the AGS-report clearly is more detailed than that of the GIA-report, and it is logical that, in a spirit of looking for the best cut-quality, consumers here start expressing their preference for AGS-graded stones. However, it is not because a stone does not have the GIA-paper, that it is less valuable than one with AGS-paper. Personally, I do not have a Harvard-degree, but I think that I can definitely compete with those that have.

On a side-note, I actually wanted to post this reaction on another thread, but I found it closed.

Dear Paul

Thank you for your valuable insight on this topic. Much appreciated. As I do not own any princess cut diamonds or AGS cert so I can''t comment.

All my 3 stones are standard 57 cut facets round brilliant. Therefore I have no worries in using different organizations (GIA,HRD,IGI) and selecting the loose diamonds. The cert/dossier just make things easier for me to choose and look at the measurements especially when I wanted to set them as a pair of earrings. I won''t be able to do so without all the details provided in the dossier as reported.

I believe with your clear explanation, this would help alot of people at pricescope to better understand and clear their doubts.


WL
 

aljdewey

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Nov 25, 2002
Messages
9,143

Paul, THANK YOU. I, too, wanted to post a similar reaction, but didn''t discover that thread until long after it was closed.


I don''t want to offend anyone, but I''m going to be frank in saying that I think the majority of the ''heated'' discussion about GIA/AGS stems from individual sensitivities and a rush of defensiveness when there really shouldn''t be any. There seems to be a compulsion for some owners of GIA stones to read and interpret pro-AGS opinions as personal slights or demeaning statements about their GIA stones, which spurs them to ''validate'' why their stones are just as good as AGS stones.

Paul-Antwerp: However, it is not because a stone does not have the GIA-paper, that it is less valuable than one with AGS-paper. Personally, I do not have a Harvard-degree, but I think that I can definitely compete with those that have.

Totally agree, and *that* is the crux of the problem here. No one who''s expressed a preference for AGS has suggested that GIA stones are less valuable, less worthy, or MUST not be as well-cut........ but a handful of folks who own GIA stones persist in interpreting the comments that way. It''s as though any preference for the one lab (AGS) MUST be defended as a slight against the other (GIA).

This "mine is just as good as yours" vibe is the cause of the angst, and I believe the very thoughtful crowd here on PS is capable of so much better.

This really goes back to self-confidence in one''s own choices. I hope Mara doesn''t mind my using her as an example. Mara has a gorgeous GIA stone, it''s exceptionally well cut, and she knows it. She''s secure and confident in her choice, so she can acknowledge that AGS provides more of the info on their reports that appeal to cut-freaks without feeling the need to validate or defend the worthiness of her GIA stone in the same breath. Appreciating the standard that AGS0 cut-grade is didn''t stop her from buying an exceptional, top-make GIA stone.

It''s no secret that I hold the AGS cut-grading system in higher regard, but that didn''t stop me from buying an exceptionally well-cut GIA stone, either. I don''t perceive comments about GIA''s cut-grades being less strict as a knock or slight against my GIA stone.

Paul and Ira echoed a similar theme: The perceived strictness (true or untrue?) of AGS does not help in its popularity with cutters. Acknowledging that very real market condition doesn''t automatically mean that all stones sent to GIA are ''also-rans''. As Paul points out, most cutters serve a wide range of the market; those who want ''ideal'' stones are a fraction of the total market. Since ideal stones are a small fraction of the total market (let''s say 5% for sake of ease), it makes sense that cutters who enjoy a good working relationship with GIA or any other lab would send ALL his goods (including his top-make stones) to that single lab. As such, it''s a no-brainer to know that some top-make stones are sent to labs other than AGS.....not just because they wouldn''t earn a top AGS grade, but for sake of ease.

That said, Paul is also astute enough to recognize what Pricescope IS: a collection of folks whose common interest is an appreciate for top-cut. As such, it''s logical that a group of folks whose top priority is cut (such as the Pricescope crowd) would prefer a lab that provides more detailed cut-info on their reports (as AGS does).

I''m sure Paul can hold his own with Harvard graduates, but I sure hope he''s not in the habit of introducing himself with "Hi, I''m Paul Slegers, and I''m every bit as worth as any Harvard graduate" any time he''s in a conversation where someone mentions Harvard.

 

pricescope

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Dec 31, 1999
Messages
8,266
Date: 3/25/2007 1:54:06 AM
Author:simplysplendid

....

I'm sorry and I may get stoned for this, but as a consumer and general jewelry lover, sometimes I just don't see small visual differences between a 0.1 degree in the crown angle or a 1% difference in the percentages
. There may be a difference in the measuring instruments, technology and guidelines used between labs that generate some differences, but it may not be noticeable to many consumers. I think consumers like myself will probably do fine as long as I check my purchases with my idealscope and aset and the HCA! -- Just my 2 cents..

(Heh, I bought myself a OEC last month with an EGL cert with Good for polish and Good to Fair for symmetry and I LOVE THAT FIREBALL!)
Simplysplendid, i hope you won't get stoned unless you inhale (swallow, inject into your blood stream) certain substance


I'm very glad that you enjoy your OEC - appreciate the difference and style...

The problem is that when it comes to their favorite brands, people in the cyberspace can get into (often silly) passionate debates about why ABC brand is better than XYZ or why D (IF-VVS) better than J (SI). What is not funny though some people can get really upset (for different reason) and start hating each other (see e.g. "Psychology of Flaming").


So as long as conversation is civil and positive - we shouldn't get stoned


RE: 1% or 0.1 degree. You're right - 0.1 degree shouldn't make real visible difference. However, 1% of pavilion depth variation can be caused by almost 1 degree angle difference and get you noticeable visual result, different grade on the grading report, and therefore affect the price...
 

oldminer

Ideal_Rock
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Sep 3, 2000
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6,377
Diamonds are always graded, broken down into categories, in ways that human eyes can barely see or not see at all. This is the way it was, to an extent, even before there was a GIA, but after the GIA became the leader in this field, diamond grading was broken into small, incremental categories. The price, or value, of diamonds in each category is a logical, free market extension from the existence of these agreed to categories.

Small differences in measurements which would be meaningless in many other fields of interest may prove to have a small or even a vast effect on a diamond's cut quality or light performance. The market dictates pricing based on the success of the cut along with weight, color, clarity and shape factors. Even if you don't care or can't see the difference, the system is finely tuned to react to very small variables.

In our offices both here and in India, we have processed tens of thousands of regular, non-AGS type princess cut diamonds for Light Behavior, a cut grade, with a good deal of success for one of the largest major retail chains in the USA. We are also working to get this work with a huge and growing chain of firms in India to do the same for them. While the devices we use do not have the recognition of many Pricescopers or US dealers, the public clients and the retailer we have been doing this work for have met with excellent sales results and no complaints that we have been made aware of. We can readily grade and compare non-AGS, or AGS cut princess styles for their quality of light performance. We've only done a relative few of these reports for consumers, but the equipment and software has continued to develop and advance to the point where now we feel confident that it is repeatable and meaningful.

Antwerp-Paul is right in that only a small number of AGS style princess cuts get cut quality graded right now, but it need not be that way. We can compare and grade any princess cut with a meaningful and clear result. It should be a big plus for Pricescopers and vendors, but they must take the opportunity to give it a try and a test opportunity. Without taking a serious look at the newest abilities of these grading devices dealers and vendors don't have an understanding of what now can be done quickly, efficiently and repeatably. The past 6 months have seen some major improvements in this equipment that few have been made aware of.

Glad to do a few stones for anyone who has interest in comparing visual grading with the machine generated, directly measured results that we are prepared to offer.
 

oldminer

Ideal_Rock
Trade
Joined
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It might be a good idea to present it on air. I see that presenters generally have a somewhat difficult time staying on camera and doing more than speaking. Using a device may require someone to move the camera to the device and back. It will be difficult to respond to questions during such a presentation, too.

I''ll see aht I can work out. THANKS
 
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