Find your diamond
Find your jewelry
shape
carat
color
clarity

My head is going to pop

IbrahimSS

Rough_Rock
Joined
May 18, 2011
Messages
71
Hello

I've read a lot about diamonds or so I think. But I'm still very very confused about how all this 4 Cs stuff relates to the 5th mainly overlooked one.

How can a 4.01 carat, round, G/SI1, Ideal cut stone cost $31k when a 3.04 carat, round, F/SI1, Excellent cut stone cost $30k from the same retailer? Based on what I've read this shouldn't be the case. I mean sure F is better than G but a full carat bigger at nearly the same price?

Can someone please help an ignorant young man find his bearings?

Thanks
Sam
 

IbrahimSS

Rough_Rock
Joined
May 18, 2011
Messages
71
I should probably mention this... these are the criteria (I think) I want
Cost: approximately $30k... I will wiggle about 1k up from this but not much more
Cut: Round
Carat: 2.5-3.1
Color: G and above
Clarity: VS2 and above

If you think I'm out of my mind feel free to let me know :D
 

Sheherizaad

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Feb 7, 2011
Messages
244
I assume you only want a round brilliant or are you open to any shape?

Also, is this your budget for the stone alone or the stone and the setting?
 

JulieN

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Jul 25, 2005
Messages
13,329
We really can't say what might be causing the difference in price without a copy of the GIA or AGS report.
 

Dancing Fire

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Apr 3, 2004
Messages
32,399
IbrahimSS|1305775253|2925432 said:
I should probably mention this... these are the criteria (I think) I want
Cost: approximately $30k... I will wiggle about 1k up from this but not much more
Cut: Round
Carat: 2.5-3.1
Color: G and above
Clarity: VS2 and above

If you think I'm out of my mind feel free to let me know :D
yes you are... :bigsmile: cost you at least $38-$40k for a well cut 2.5ct G VS2 GIA or AGS stone.
 

Sheherizaad

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Feb 7, 2011
Messages
244
Dancing Fire|1305786644|2925515 said:
IbrahimSS|1305775253|2925432 said:
I should probably mention this... these are the criteria (I think) I want
Cost: approximately $30k... I will wiggle about 1k up from this but not much more
Cut: Round
Carat: 2.5-3.1
Color: G and above
Clarity: VS2 and above

If you think I'm out of my mind feel free to let me know :D
yes you are... :bigsmile: cost you at least $38-$40k for a well cut 2.5ct G VS2 GIA or AGS stone.
This is why I asked whether or not he was open to other cuts. He may get lucky and find a great stone with a spread that may appear as large as a 3 ct round but without the price tag of a 3 ct round...
 

IbrahimSS

Rough_Rock
Joined
May 18, 2011
Messages
71
Sheherizaad|1305802364|2925541 said:
Dancing Fire|1305786644|2925515 said:
yes you are... :bigsmile: cost you at least $38-$40k for a well cut 2.5ct G VS2 GIA or AGS stone.
This is why I asked whether or not he was open to other cuts. He may get lucky and find a great stone with a spread that may appear as large as a 3 ct round but without the price tag of a 3 ct round...
So what's wrong with this then?
http://www.solomonbrothers.com/onlineCertCheck.ashx?lab=EGL&reportNumber=3031255423&weight=3.050

It's priced at about 30k. Please don't take this as a challenge so much as someone trying to understand where the price variation comes from. As much as I'm trying to learn about diamonds I'm still pretty ignorant about them. It's a lot to learn for a one time (hopefully) purchase.

Also, someone asked me if I'm including the setting in my cost. The answer is no. This is for the loose diamond.

PS... I hope I'm not breaking any rules by posting that URL
 

Stone-cold11

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Sep 9, 2008
Messages
14,069
EGL standard vary widely in color and clarity grading when compared to more consistent labs like AGS/GIA, as such prices varies widely too, even for the same grades by the same lab. Different lab locations also will determine the consistency of the grades, EGL USA generally strictest, not exactly part of EGL anymore. EGL Israel generally considered the worst offender. Also, as the grades varies widely, eye-cleanliness will also factor in to price, EGL VS2 may in fact be SI2/I1 grade and not eye-clean thus the further markdown in price.

Cut is not that great for that stone too. 44% pavilion probably too deep, depending on the rounding direction.
 

Dancing Fire

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Apr 3, 2004
Messages
32,399
IbrahimSS|1305812843|2925625 said:
Sheherizaad|1305802364|2925541 said:
Dancing Fire|1305786644|2925515 said:
yes you are... :bigsmile: cost you at least $38-$40k for a well cut 2.5ct G VS2 GIA or AGS stone.
This is why I asked whether or not he was open to other cuts. He may get lucky and find a great stone with a spread that may appear as large as a 3 ct round but without the price tag of a 3 ct round...

http://www.solomonbrothers.com/onlineCertCheck.ashx?lab=EGL&reportNumber=3031255423&weight=3.050

It's priced at about 30k. Please don't take this as a challenge so much as someone trying to understand where the price variation comes from. As much as I'm trying to learn about diamonds I'm still pretty ignorant about them. It's a lot to learn for a one time (hopefully) purchase.
EGL international report is not = to GIA/AGS lab graded stones.
 

iota15

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Mar 19, 2010
Messages
1,278
The difficulty with EGL grading is that it's not as tight as GIA or AGS - the more reputable and consistent grading labs. EGL has been shown to be sometimes 1 to 2 grades off clarity or color-wise. I can't see that particular certificate. But, one thing I know, if the price seems too good to be true, there's usually a reason - you just hope the reason is benign and coming to PS certainly gives you a leg up.

If I had to guess, the stone could be a real "H, Si1" (or maybe lower). Also, simply because a stone is VS2 (or potentially an Si) doesn't mean it's eye clean. For all you know, the inclusion can be a smallish but very visible black crystal in the middle of the table. Thus, the vendor looking at the stone will price it accordingly.

If you're interested in the stone, ask the vendor to bring it in, assess it and take pictures, idealscope and aset images for you.
 

IbrahimSS

Rough_Rock
Joined
May 18, 2011
Messages
71
Sheherizaad|1305802364|2925541 said:
This is why I asked whether or not he was open to other cuts. He may get lucky and find a great stone with a spread that may appear as large as a 3 ct round but without the price tag of a 3 ct round...
What other stones look as big but don't come with the cost?
 

IbrahimSS

Rough_Rock
Joined
May 18, 2011
Messages
71
So sure enough I changed the certification parameters on the search and low and behold the prices when up and sizes when down.

So it seems like if I want something clean to the eye and with a nice color I'll need to come down a bit on size. Fair enough. If I was to say target a 2.0-2.5 instead, can I be in that G and above and VS2 and above range? You can correct me if I'm wrong here but the reason I'm trying for G/VS2 as my minimum criteria is that I get the sense that's where the "clean to the eye" category begins.
 

dreamer_dachsie

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Dec 16, 2007
Messages
24,364
IbrahimSS|1305829072|2925818 said:
So sure enough I changed the certification parameters on the search and low and behold the prices when up and sizes when down.

So it seems like if I want something clean to the eye and with a nice color I'll need to come down a bit on size. Fair enough. If I was to say target a 2.0-2.5 instead, can I be in that G and above and VS2 and above range? You can correct me if I'm wrong here but the reason I'm trying for G/VS2 as my minimum criteria is that I get the sense that's where the "clean to the eye" category begins.
G VS2 is a very safe combination. Stick with GIA and AGS certs, rated GIA EX or AGS0 for cut. You can probably compromise on color or clarity to save some money or get a bigger stone. You can find eye clean SI1 stones for sure, it is just a little harder in that size. As to color, it is a personal preference, but many people are totally happy with H, I, or even J color stones in that size. How important is carat to you and the intended wearer?
 

dreamer_dachsie

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Dec 16, 2007
Messages
24,364
Sheherizaad|1305802364|2925541 said:
This is why I asked whether or not he was open to other cuts. He may get lucky and find a great stone with a spread that may appear as large as a 3 ct round but without the price tag of a 3 ct round...
Most well cut fancies actually face up smaller than a similar ct. weight RB, so finding one bigger that is less ct. weight is unlikely. There is some adjustment in the market for the smaller face up size of fancies -- a 3ct cushion is usually less money than a 3ct RB -- but when you account for face up size differences the "savings" are not really there with fancies. Price is sort of a function of both ct. weight and face up size, it seems.

Of course, you *can* find spreadier fancies, but they are not usually top cuts for their shape.
 

Sheherizaad

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Feb 7, 2011
Messages
244
Dreamer_D|1305833228|2925870 said:
Sheherizaad|1305802364|2925541 said:
This is why I asked whether or not he was open to other cuts. He may get lucky and find a great stone with a spread that may appear as large as a 3 ct round but without the price tag of a 3 ct round...
Most well cut fancies actually face up smaller than a similar ct. weight RB, so finding one bigger that is less ct. weight is unlikely. There is some adjustment in the market for the smaller face up size of fancies -- a 3ct cushion is usually less money than a 3ct RB -- but when you account for face up size differences the "savings" are not really there with fancies. Price is sort of a function of both ct. weight and face up size, it seems.

Of course, you *can* find spreadier fancies, but they are not usually top cuts for their shape.
What DD is saying is generally very true. It's very hard to find a great cut stone with a high or great spread without sacrificing something. Having said that, it depends on her taste. I'll give you an example. If she (your fiance) only wants a round brilliant then I think you're going to have to go smaller (2 carats give or take). However, if she's open to different shapes then I think a rectangular cushion would give a big impact for less money. It also depends on the shape of her fingers and again whether or not she likes "emerald" type shapes (i.e. elongated stones).

Mine is a 2.35 cushion but has AWESOME spread and great cut (chunky facets with a smattering of small facets). It took forever to find, but I waited. My "sacrifice" was the color (I) and flourescence which I ended up loving. So in short, it all depends. Probably not the answer you want to hear but it's the answer nonetheless.
 

Dancing Fire

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Apr 3, 2004
Messages
32,399
IbrahimSS|1305829072|2925818 said:
So sure enough I changed the certification parameters on the search and low and behold the prices when up and sizes when down.

So it seems like if I want something clean to the eye and with a nice color I'll need to come down a bit on size. Fair enough. If I was to say target a 2.0-2.5 instead, can I be in that G and above and VS2 and above range? You can correct me if I'm wrong here but the reason I'm trying for G/VS2 as my minimum criteria is that I get the sense that's where the "clean to the eye" category begins.
not VS2 but here is a G SI1 to give you an idea what a well cut stone should look like.

http://www.briangavindiamonds.com/diamond/diamond-detail/?product_id=AGS-1040399230006
 

dreamer_dachsie

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Dec 16, 2007
Messages
24,364
Sheherizaad|1305833815|2925885 said:
Dreamer_D|1305833228|2925870 said:
Sheherizaad|1305802364|2925541 said:
This is why I asked whether or not he was open to other cuts. He may get lucky and find a great stone with a spread that may appear as large as a 3 ct round but without the price tag of a 3 ct round...
Most well cut fancies actually face up smaller than a similar ct. weight RB, so finding one bigger that is less ct. weight is unlikely. There is some adjustment in the market for the smaller face up size of fancies -- a 3ct cushion is usually less money than a 3ct RB -- but when you account for face up size differences the "savings" are not really there with fancies. Price is sort of a function of both ct. weight and face up size, it seems.

Of course, you *can* find spreadier fancies, but they are not usually top cuts for their shape.
What DD is saying is generally very true. It's very hard to find a great cut stone with a high or great spread without sacrificing something. Having said that, it depends on her taste. I'll give you an example. If she (your fiance) only wants a round brilliant then I think you're going to have to go smaller (2 carats give or take). However, if she's open to different shapes then I think a rectangular cushion would give a big impact for less money....
I think you might have missed my piont a little Sheherizad. Cushions are actually very poor bang for the buck in terms of spread for ct. and price. A cushion may have higher ct. weight than an RB of similar price and color/clarity, but the face up size of said cushion would likely be smaller, even at the higher ct weight, than a similar RB. So switching to a fancy won't creat a bigger impact in terms of size, it will just be a bigger ct. weight. Same goes for most other fancies, like acchers and most ECs. Unless she prefers a fancy for purely esthetic reasons, switching from an RB does not actually "buy" you mutch in terms of apparent size or savings. I would not suggest a cushion for someone looking for the biggest looking diamond for its carat weight and price per ct.

The exception to this rule is if a person seeks a cushion cut that is cut entirely for spread, there you might get not only higher ct. weight for your money compared to a similar color/clarity RB, but greater spread as well. But that almost always means sacrifice on cut quality -- though people do vary in the look they like in their fancies and how much the emphasize size over ideal optics as we often define it on PS. Some radiants fall into this category -- big and spready and low price per ct., but not ideal optics by many cut nut standards.

The other more straightforward exception to this rule is ovals and pears, both of which face up huge for ct. weight but still have low price per ct. values compared to RBs and to other fancies.

So if the OP is set on the biggest rock he can find -- both carat and spread -- for the lowest price, he should try looking at ovals and pears, which even when very well cut are still huge for ct. weight compared to other cuts.
 

IbrahimSS

Rough_Rock
Joined
May 18, 2011
Messages
71
Maybe I'm mistaken here or just reading bad information but I thought this hearts and arrows thing wasn't a "real" cut and that there is no cert for it. How can my untrained eye tell something like this? Will the numbers in the cert indicate it in anyway from the depth or table or anything?
 

dreamer_dachsie

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Dec 16, 2007
Messages
24,364
IbrahimSS|1305839492|2925954 said:
Maybe I'm mistaken here or just reading bad information but I thought this hearts and arrows thing wasn't a "real" cut and that there is no cert for it. How can my untrained eye tell something like this? Will the numbers in the cert indicate it in anyway from the depth or table or anything?
H&A is a reflection of the precision of cut and can be assessed by using a special viewing tool that lets you see the arrows through the crown and the hearts through the pavilion. It is not a type of cut, but a feature of a certain type of really carefully cut RB.

The lab report will not tell you if a stone is an H&A. Reports sometimes have that label in the notes if someone inscribed "H&A" on the girdle or something. I think EGL might also include it in their cut labels, but that is not reliable.

You CAN judge the quality of an RB diamond's cut from the angles and proportions on a report. But you need additional images as proof of it being an H&A.

ETA: More here: https://www.pricescope.com/wiki/diamonds/hearts-and-arrows-diamonds
 

yssie

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Aug 14, 2009
Messages
21,105
HRD has a H&A report.. AGS, GIA won't, as Dreamer says, and anything EGL-I says is best taken with a vat of salt.
 

IbrahimSS

Rough_Rock
Joined
May 18, 2011
Messages
71
Does a H&A diamond really visually appear superior to an Ideal or Excellent cut diamond enough to justify the cost?

To answer some of the other questions above, I think the g/f would be happy with anything over 2 carats and I'm pretty sure RB is the shape to go with. I've also read you get more diamond for you money for a RB albeit more expensive as a shape.
 

yssie

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Aug 14, 2009
Messages
21,105
IbrahimSS|1305844414|2926033 said:
Does a H&A diamond really visually appear superior to an Ideal or Excellent cut diamond enough to justify the cost?

To answer some of the other questions above, I think the g/f would be happy with anything over 2 carats and I'm pretty sure RB is the shape to go with. I've also read you get more diamond for you money for a RB albeit more expensive as a shape.

Lots of debate - no universally accepted answer re. H&A and visual superiority.

Yes - RBs tend to face up pretty large for their size, and when well cut I do think they have the edge on in-your-face-sparkle (I haven't seen many of the branded shapes like square H&A cushions, AVCs, Octavias, etc. though)
 

Dancing Fire

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Apr 3, 2004
Messages
32,399
IbrahimSS|1305844414|2926033 said:
Does a H&A diamond really visually appear superior to an Ideal or Excellent cut diamond enough to justify the cost?

To answer some of the other questions above, I think the g/f would be happy with anything over 2 carats and I'm pretty sure RB is the shape to go with. I've also read you get more diamond for you money for a RB albeit more expensive as a shape.
IMO..more of a "MIND PERFECT" cut in your head thing.. ;)) all you need is a well cut stone inside the AGS 0 cut box.
 

Sheherizaad

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Feb 7, 2011
Messages
244
Dreamer_D|1305838544|2925939 said:
Sheherizaad|1305833815|2925885 said:
Dreamer_D|1305833228|2925870 said:
Sheherizaad|1305802364|2925541 said:
This is why I asked whether or not he was open to other cuts. He may get lucky and find a great stone with a spread that may appear as large as a 3 ct round but without the price tag of a 3 ct round...
Most well cut fancies actually face up smaller than a similar ct. weight RB, so finding one bigger that is less ct. weight is unlikely. There is some adjustment in the market for the smaller face up size of fancies -- a 3ct cushion is usually less money than a 3ct RB -- but when you account for face up size differences the "savings" are not really there with fancies. Price is sort of a function of both ct. weight and face up size, it seems.

Of course, you *can* find spreadier fancies, but they are not usually top cuts for their shape.
What DD is saying is generally very true. It's very hard to find a great cut stone with a high or great spread without sacrificing something. Having said that, it depends on her taste. I'll give you an example. If she (your fiance) only wants a round brilliant then I think you're going to have to go smaller (2 carats give or take). However, if she's open to different shapes then I think a rectangular cushion would give a big impact for less money....
I think you might have missed my piont a little Sheherizad. Cushions are actually very poor bang for the buck in terms of spread for ct. and price. A cushion may have higher ct. weight than an RB of similar price and color/clarity, but the face up size of said cushion would likely be smaller, even at the higher ct weight, than a similar RB. So switching to a fancy won't creat a bigger impact in terms of size, it will just be a bigger ct. weight. Same goes for most other fancies, like acchers and most ECs. Unless she prefers a fancy for purely esthetic reasons, switching from an RB does not actually "buy" you mutch in terms of apparent size or savings. I would not suggest a cushion for someone looking for the biggest looking diamond for its carat weight and price per ct.

The exception to this rule is if a person seeks a cushion cut that is cut entirely for spread, there you might get not only higher ct. weight for your money compared to a similar color/clarity RB, but greater spread as well. But that almost always means sacrifice on cut quality -- though people do vary in the look they like in their fancies and how much the emphasize size over ideal optics as we often define it on PS. Some radiants fall into this category -- big and spready and low price per ct., but not ideal optics by many cut nut standards.

The other more straightforward exception to this rule is ovals and pears, both of which face up huge for ct. weight but still have low price per ct. values compared to RBs and to other fancies.

So if the OP is set on the biggest rock he can find -- both carat and spread -- for the lowest price, he should try looking at ovals and pears, which even when very well cut are still huge for ct. weight compared to other cuts.
I don't think I missed the point at all. In fact I explicitly agreed with you. My point was simply that its possible (albeit very rare and time consuming) to find a rectangular cushion like mine that has great spread (bigger than a comparable RB) with great optics. My cushion was not cut for spread SOLELY nor is the cut Excellent. For me the trade off was an Very Good cut stone but only VG/G polish and symmetry. Obviously for a RB that won't do, but for my cushion it was great and its enough again for me (personally) and struck the right balance. For others it may not.

But the point is moot as the OP thinks a RB is best for his Fiance and your advice is spot on.
 

IbrahimSS

Rough_Rock
Joined
May 18, 2011
Messages
71
I think much of this all is exactly why I don't think I want to buy off the internet. I'm a huge internet shopper. HUGE. But for this, I have a feeling a well trusted jeweler where I can see the stones may be better. Maybe the right question should be how to find the right jeweler not the right stone... but then again maybe I"m wrong
 

Sheherizaad

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Feb 7, 2011
Messages
244
IbrahimSS|1305862962|2926290 said:
I think much of this all is exactly why I don't think I want to buy off the internet. I'm a huge internet shopper. HUGE. But for this, I have a feeling a well trusted jeweler where I can see the stones may be better. Maybe the right question should be how to find the right jeweler not the right stone... but then again maybe I"m wrong
First and foremost go with what you feel most comfortable doing. Having said that if you're buying a RB, and you have people like DD and DS and all the others helping you, I'm certain you will be not only fine, you'll be in EXCELLENT shape and will make the smartest decision possible.

If you were buying any other shape, I would say do it in person if you could. Maybe *possibly* even the setting you would do in person. But a RB? Easily, easily online (as long as the return policy is solid).

You're in great hands :appl:
 

slg47

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Apr 4, 2010
Messages
9,667
I would definitely look locally and online to see what your options are.
 

yssie

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Aug 14, 2009
Messages
21,105
IbrahimSS|1305862962|2926290 said:
I think much of this all is exactly why I don't think I want to buy off the internet. I'm a huge internet shopper. HUGE. But for this, I have a feeling a well trusted jeweler where I can see the stones may be better. Maybe the right question should be how to find the right jeweler not the right stone... but then again maybe I"m wrong

I think you're exactly right, actually. The trick *is* often finding the jeweller - the PS vendors we routinely recommend are because we've "clicked" with them, even from hundreds or thousands (or tens of thousands!) of miles away, but there's no reason your best vendor match can't be five minutes away from you...

Ditto slg - poke around, consider your options, talk to some vendors online and in-person, and go with your gut. If you want our opinions on a specific stone you know where to find us :))
 
Be a part of the community It's free, join today!
    Good Customer Service Goes a Long Way
    Good Customer Service Goes a Long Way
    5.5 Carat Diamond Upgrade
    5.5 Carat Diamond Upgrade
    Style File: Julia Roberts
    Style File: Julia Roberts

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