Find your diamond
Find your jewelry
shape
carat
color
clarity

IF Clarity Diamond Unanswered Question?

mtruong

Rough_Rock
Joined
Jun 4, 2016
Messages
28
Dear friends,

I just obtained a GIA diamond IF clarity but I look it under the loupe and see a few detail which make me concerns. Please explains this matter to me 3.jpg 3.jpg 1.jpg
 

distracts

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Oct 11, 2011
Messages
5,445
Firstly, you are looking at it upside-down. Diamond clarity is graded face-up at 10x magnification. Most of that stuff looks like specks of dust or dirt on the surface, as well as a little hair/fiber. It's the really straight thing that may be a needle inclusion or a polishing snafu. But, again, if it's not visible from face-up at 10x magnification, it has no impact on the clarity grading.
 

Bron357

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Jan 22, 2014
Messages
3,859
Firstly as mentioned @cflutist clarity is judged at x10 magnification. If you increase magnification beyond x10 you might well see “things”.
looking at the photos I think it needs a proper clean and rinse and a wipe with a non lint cloth. Those “things” look like dust, cleaning residue / bits of cloth to me.
However If the GIA report isn’t recent and depending where you bought it from, it may be “pre loved” and as such has sustained some chips and abrasions since the report was done.
 

headlight

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Nov 2, 2003
Messages
1,807
Firstly, you are looking at it upside-down. Diamond clarity is graded face-up at 10x magnification. Most of that stuff looks like specks of dust or dirt on the surface, as well as a little hair/fiber. It's the really straight thing that may be a needle inclusion or a polishing snafu. But, again, if it's not visible from face-up at 10x magnification, it has no impact on the clarity grading.
Diamond clarity is graded by systematic examination of the pavilion, girdle, and crown, in that order, section by section, using the wedge technique under the microscope.
 

distracts

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Oct 11, 2011
Messages
5,445
Diamond clarity is graded by systematic examination of the pavilion, girdle, and crown, in that order, section by section, using the wedge technique under the microscope.
From GIA: “In determining a clarity grade, the GIA system considers the size, nature, position, color or relief, and quantity of clarity characteristics visible under 10× magnification.”

While they are looked at under a microscope to plot inclusions, that’s not how grades are assessed, from everything I have ever read. And yes, girdle, crown, and table are “face up.” OP’s stone shows what looks like an exterior blemish on the pavilion, which, depending on how it is from face-up, may be perfectly consistent with an IF.
 

mtruong

Rough_Rock
Joined
Jun 4, 2016
Messages
28
Thank you for your comment. I will update all the picture that I took with my dino-lite digital microscope premier.

Response to some questions:
I just bought the diamond
The clarity is IF, it is over 2 carat diamond
With my 10x magnification, I am able to see the same inclusion on the picture from the crown.
I will take the image of the GIA inscription later so experts can tell me if it is authentic or not
 
  • Like
Reactions: AV_

Karl_K

Ideal_Rock
Trade
Joined
Aug 4, 2008
Messages
8,931
The 1st step especially with an IF, is it clean?
 

John Pollard

Ideal_Rock
Trade
Joined
May 1, 2008
Messages
3,517
RE grading versus plotting:

From GIA: “In determining a clarity grade, the GIA system considers the size, nature, position, color or relief, and quantity of clarity characteristics visible under 10× magnification.”

While they are looked at under a microscope to plot inclusions, that’s not how grades are assessed, from everything I have ever read.
GIA and AGS use a forest-first, trees-next approach using the buzzwords "obvious, noticeable, minor and minute."

The first C determined by the grader is clarity. The diamond is viewed in darkfield lighting, face-up, at 10X and the grader makes a decision based on her/his first impression. If the clarity characteristics are "obvious" the likely category is i3-i1. If they're "noticeable" the category is Si2-Si1. If "minor" it's VS2-VS1 and if they're "minute" - or undetectable after a few moments - it's VVS2-VVS1. Once the broad category is determined, the final grade gets determined using the criteria @distracts listed (size, number, position, nature, relief) in tandem with the detailed wedge plotting technique @headlight described.

If no characteristics were detectable face-up on first impression the grade might move to IF after the wedge examination. But the only time a Flawless grade will be issued is when the diamond has been submitted with Flawless requested in writing by the submitter, and the graders agree after their examination.
 

headlight

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Nov 2, 2003
Messages
1,807
From GIA: “In determining a clarity grade, the GIA system considers the size, nature, position, color or relief, and quantity of clarity characteristics visible under 10× magnification.”

While they are looked at under a microscope to plot inclusions, that’s not how grades are assessed, from everything I have ever read. And yes, girdle, crown, and table are “face up.” OP’s stone shows what looks like an exterior blemish on the pavilion, which, depending on how it is from face-up, may be perfectly consistent with an IF.
My comment to you was based only on what I was taught at the Diamond Grading Lab in Carlsbad where I completed Diamonds Graduate. (Along with the entire process as @John Pollard spelled it out below.) I apologize to you @distracts if I came across abruptly, that was not my intention.
 

distracts

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Oct 11, 2011
Messages
5,445
My comment to you was based only on what I was taught at the Diamond Grading Lab in Carlsbad where I completed Diamonds Graduate. (Along with the entire process as @John Pollard spelled it out below.) I apologize to you @distracts if I came across abruptly, that was not my intention.
I remembered you did the GIA diamond grad course so I didn’t think you were being abrupt - I was confused and trying to clarify whether I got something wrong in my understanding since I’ve read a lot about it in my second comment but it was the last thing I wrote before going to sleep so sorry if I then came off as dismissive! Fortunately John came along to synthesize what we were saying!
 

mtruong

Rough_Rock
Joined
Jun 4, 2016
Messages
28
Should the ink stain the other page of the GIA certificate in this case? That's one of my concerns
 

Bron357

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Jan 22, 2014
Messages
3,859
Firstly I think you need to properly clean the diamond using distilled water and a soft toothbrush. Set it aside safely and wait until it has dried and then re examine it.
remember of course that your level of magnification needs to be x10. Use a loupe and not enlarged photos as they may well be greater than x10 magnification.
in your photos I can see bits of cloth lint sticking to the diamond and dust. And these are being reflected around the diamond.
It is true that there have been reports of fake GIA certificates and fake GIA inscriptions but these are rare occurrences, it’s a sophisticated and involved “fraud” and unlikely provided you bought your diamond from a reputable vendor.
If you are still dissatisfied you should return the diamond to the vendor for refund. If the vendor is not accepting a return, I would send it off to the GIA for re certification. If it doesn’t come back as being IF, then you can other legal remedies if you choose.
 

ringo865

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Feb 14, 2014
Messages
2,350
The “spots” on the diamond in your most recent picture look like water spots.
 

distracts

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Oct 11, 2011
Messages
5,445
The thing that may be a surface blemish, I can't see from face-up. If it IS a surface blemish, that is consistent with internally flawless clarity - INTERNALLY flawless allows for minor surface blemishes, as I understand it. Maybe @headlight has more information on that. Other than that I just see dust and dried water spots.
 

headlight

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Nov 2, 2003
Messages
1,807
I think assessing whether the stone is IF or if the stone has a fake report or a fake inscription or any of the above is not something you can do over the internet. Getting this sorted out via an online diamond forum is not going to ultimately help you because we cannot see the diamond in person I think everyone here has given you great advice. At this point you need to pursue the issue where the stone can be inspected IRL by those qualified to do so. If it were me, and I had just purchased what I was led to believe was an IF diamond, I would go straight to sending it off to GIA. If they confirm that the diamond does match the report, then you know you have what you thought you were purchasing. If you come to find out that it is something else, then you will have to take it up with the person that sold it to you (hopefully not).
 

monipod

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Jun 25, 2019
Messages
201
Do you have the plot. IF means Internally Flawless no inclusions seen under 10x by an experienced grader. However, it may have surface blemishes.
Is that why there is another grade above that? Flawless or FL isn't it? So those are the stones that are indeed totally flawless? Sorry - I always did wonder about this.
 

AV_

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Aug 5, 2018
Messages
3,056
Even in this short time after the report was issued, the stone may have been damaged. It takes a second.

Another thought: if what I am seeing in the picture is a streak of shallow bruises, perhaps this report is only barely optimistic regarding clarity in saying 'IF' instead of 'Potential IF'.

Then, this cannot be the only two carat IF on the market.

Furthermore, there is a not too old story around here, of someone shopping for a three carat FL of absurdly perfect cutting - there was none & an order was placed to cut one; so now such a stone does exist because someone wanted it badly enough.

2c
 
Last edited:

coda72

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Mar 1, 2005
Messages
1,616
I’m not sure where you are located, but you might want to take the stone to an appraiser in your area to be inspected.
 

gm89uk

Brilliant_Rock
Premium
Joined
May 26, 2015
Messages
1,437
Is that why there is another grade above that? Flawless or FL isn't it? So those are the stones that are indeed totally flawless? Sorry - I always did wonder about this.
An FL diamond must be specified before grading so the lab knows to handle it with extra care (using the tweezers etc). It is also likely it'll become IF after setting.
 

denverappraiser

Ideal_Rock
Trade
Joined
Jul 21, 2004
Messages
8,737
Counterfeit documents backed by fake girdle inscriptions are crazy unusual but it is possible. If you're worried about this, start with a qualified and independent appraiser. You probably need one anyway and you might learn more than you expect about your stone, the piece, or both. Ask your questions. What I see in the picture looks like dirt and debris on the stone but clarity grading from a photo is a bad idea.
 
Last edited:

headlight

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Nov 2, 2003
Messages
1,807
Counterfeit documents backed by fake girdle inscriptions are crazy unusual but it is possible. If you're worried about this, start with a qualified and independent appraiser. You probably need one anyway and you might learn more than you expect about your stone, the piece, or both. Ask your questions. What I see in the picture looks like dirt and debris on the stone but clarity grading from a photo is a bad idea.
As you and I, and most of the participants here know, an actual appraiser is a very specially trained person for this specific purpose. Many think anyone who has a jewelry store can do this. And, as we know, there are many jewelry stores who will do “appraisals” (like for insurance policy purposes) who have no business portraying themselves as competent to do this. In my post about not getting confirmation via a diamond forum, I had initially wrote to go to an appraiser, but given what seemed to be a new experience with a diamond for OP, I decided to just suggest going straight to GIA for this exact reason. OP can go to the AGS website to get referrals for AGS certified appraisers in OPs area (I know you already know this!) as at least we know that anyone who has earned the designation of AGS Certified Gemologist Appraiser has the required knowledge. Of course, someone like you or Dave Atlas can also perhaps recommend someone if we know OPs geographical area (or maybe Denver!!!).
 
Be a part of the community It's free, join today!

Need Something Special?

Get a quote from multiple trusted and vetted jewelers.

Holloway Cut Advisor



Diamond Eye Candy

Click to view full-size image.
Top