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Need advice on quality vs. carat

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Rob9874

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I know, I''m sure I''m not the first poster with this dilemma. This is not my first diamond purchase. I was engaged 5 years ago, when I was poorer, and bought a 1.01-ct, I-color, SI3-clarity (EGL gives SI3''s). This time, I can afford to do better. I am leaning towards more quality, but every time I mention it to my fiancee (soon to be), she leans more towards carats. "I don''t need a flawless diamond," she tells me.

My budget for the diamond alone is $5000-$7000 (and I''m probably going to go towards the max of that). She wants princess. I posted earlier about an AGS0 F-color, IF, 1.02 carat I saw for about $6600. However, I think she''d be happier with a 1.4 ct, H color, VS2 for the same price. Or should I go I, SI1, 1.5 ct, and find one without visible inclusions? I also saw an AGS0, H, IF, 1.19 ct for the same price. Little bigger than the F/IF, but not as white.

Any advice? This is not an easy decision! :)
 

bosoxbw

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Dec 14, 2006
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'I' color is a little too warm for my eye. H should be good in a well-cut pricess.

Above VS2, you are essentially paying for no visible difference. So forget about IF and VVS if you are looking for a balance of size and color/clarity.

Personally, I'd look at H/VS2 and H/SI1 that are eye-eyeclean. You should also consider G/SI1 (eyeclean), which should be priced similarly to H/VS2.
 

justjulia

Ideal_Rock
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Well, she would have to want the shape that happens to show up the nearly smallest for it''s carat weight. I''d say if her heart was set on size, you will be going for different (notice I did not say "lower" because I had a K one time that was a knock out) color and clarity (like si). If you buy online, get the vendor to describe their stones to you individually. Get a good lifetime trade up policy, too.
 

Rob9874

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Date: 3/27/2007 7:46:00 PM
Author: bosoxbw
''I'' color is a little too warm for my eye. H should be good in a well-cut round.

Above VS2, you are essentially paying for no visible difference. So forget about IF and VVS if you are looking for a balance of size and color/clarity.

Personally, I''d look at H/VS2 and H/SI1 that are eye-eyeclean. You should also consider G/SI1 (eyeclean), which should be priced similarly to H/VS2.
OK, I like the peace of mind of hearing I don''t have to buy anything above VS2. :)

I love the look of a white diamond. I think color is much more visible than inclusions. In my budget (using price lists from my local diamond dealer, diasource.com), I can afford up to a 1.42 ct in H/VS2 (~$7000), up to 1.39 ct in G/SI1 (~$6500), but also up to 1.26 ct in F/VS2 (~$7000), and 1.18 in E/VS2 (~$6500).

Maybe I''ll have to see the size difference between the 1.42 H and the 1.18 E, and see if it''s worth the size sacrifice for color. My gut says go for the E. And I can get up to 1.34 ct if I do E/SI1. I''m scared of SI''s though.
 

Apocalypse

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Mar 10, 2007
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My opinion on this issue varies depending on the cut. Any step cut needs to be as free from inclusions as possible due to the fact that it''s easier to spot them, whereas the brilliant is so busy that the cutter can do a better job at hiding them within the cuts.

Personally though I am so OCD that I couldn''t ever purchase a diamond lower than VS2 ( but hey if you''re giving them away lol)

With color I wouldn''t go below I, of course there are many here who have seen diamonds lower on the color scale that have been cut in such a way that they look colorless ( I have not )
 

Apocalypse

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I would choose the 1.42 ct in H/VS2 over the others you have posted, but of course you will want to see them in person before you decide.
 

hikerchick

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Date: 3/27/2007 7:54:49 PM
Author: Rob9874
Date: 3/27/2007 7:46:00 PM

Author: bosoxbw

''I'' color is a little too warm for my eye. H should be good in a well-cut round.


Above VS2, you are essentially paying for no visible difference. So forget about IF and VVS if you are looking for a balance of size and color/clarity.


Personally, I''d look at H/VS2 and H/SI1 that are eye-eyeclean. You should also consider G/SI1 (eyeclean), which should be priced similarly to H/VS2.
OK, I like the peace of mind of hearing I don''t have to buy anything above VS2. :)


I love the look of a white diamond. I think color is much more visible than inclusions. In my budget (using price lists from my local diamond dealer, diasource.com), I can afford up to a 1.42 ct in H/VS2 (~$7000), up to 1.39 ct in G/SI1 (~$6500), but also up to 1.26 ct in F/VS2 (~$7000), and 1.18 in E/VS2 (~$6500).


Maybe I''ll have to see the size difference between the 1.42 H and the 1.18 E, and see if it''s worth the size sacrifice for color. My gut says go for the E. And I can get up to 1.34 ct if I do E/SI1. I''m scared of SI''s though.
Defintely anything higher than VS2 is overkill in my opinion. I also was not comfortable with SI1 diamonds until I began seeing all the amazing diamonds people have here that are SI1 and SI2 . . . in the scenarios you listed above, my pick would be the G/SI1 if it were eye-clean or the H/VS2 . . . if the lady wants size, that will get her the size.
 

Rob9874

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What about AGS 0? Those sound really beautiful. If I want a beautiful princess, should I invest in the AGS 0 cut grade?
 

diamondseeker2006

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Date: 3/27/2007 8:01:46 PM
Author: Rob9874
What about AGS 0? Those sound really beautiful. If I want a beautiful princess, should I invest in the AGS 0 cut grade?
In my opinion, yes. That is your easiest way to get a well cut princess stone. And I would aim toward G or H color. If you wanted to go colorless, then consider F, but D-E is overkill unless you have the money to get the color and the carats! I also like VS1 and VS2 clarity.
 

hikerchick

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Date: 3/27/2007 8:01:46 PM
Author: Rob9874
What about AGS 0? Those sound really beautiful. If I want a beautiful princess, should I invest in the AGS 0 cut grade?
I would get a AGS0 particularly in a princess cut where it is hard to find the "data" to educate yourself on numbers.
 

iheartscience

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Jan 1, 2007
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If she wants size, I would DEFINITELY get her the biggest diamond possible within your budget. I think she will be more than fine with a 1.4 h/vs2 or even better, an eyeclean 1.5 h/si1. I would MUCH rather have the 1.4 ct h/vs2 than the 1.18 ct e. (Can you tell I''m a size obsessed kind of girl?)

However, you should think about mentioning to her that a princess will face up much smaller than a round or even some other square shapes. Once I realized how small asschers and princesses faced up, I got over them real quick! I couldn''t get over the square shape so I went with a radiant. From what I looked at, it seems like good radiants face up bigger than good princesses for sure. With that said, if she definitely wants a princess, go with a princess.

You didn''t mention settings, but a halo setting (setting style with tiny melee diamonds around the center stone) will make the diamond look even bigger...something to consider if your lady likes size!

Good luck!
 

Apocalypse

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Date: 3/27/2007 8:47:34 PM
Author: thing2of2
If she wants size, I would DEFINITELY get her the biggest diamond possible within your budget. I think she will be more than fine with a 1.4 h/vs2 or even better, an eyeclean 1.5 h/si1. I would MUCH rather have the 1.4 ct h/vs2 than the 1.18 ct e. (Can you tell I''m a size obsessed kind of girl?)

However, you should think about mentioning to her that a princess will face up much smaller than a round or even some other square shapes. Once I realized how small asschers and princesses faced up, I got over them real quick! I couldn''t get over the square shape so I went with a radiant. From what I looked at, it seems like good radiants face up bigger than good princesses for sure. With that said, if she definitely wants a princess, go with a princess.

You didn''t mention settings, but a halo setting (setting style with tiny melee diamonds around the center stone) will make the diamond look even bigger...something to consider if your lady likes size!

Good luck!
It''s not as bad as most think, 1.5 mm to be exact
 

Lynn B

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Joined
May 9, 2004
Messages
5,609
I am a size girl, too, and I am willing to compromise on color and clarity (but NEVER cut!) to get it. So I understand EXACTLY where your GF is coming from!

My own stone is a killer AGS-0 2.36 carat H&A RB... J/SI2. It''s beautifully white, totally eyeclean, and I couldn''t be happier.

A princess cut may be a little different... it may "show" color or inclusions more, I don''t know. But what I can tell you is that you may be quite surprised how *low you can go* (in color and clarity) when looking at well cut diamonds.
 

Apocalypse

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Date: 3/27/2007 8:52:26 PM
Author: Apocalypse

Date: 3/27/2007 8:47:34 PM
Author: thing2of2
If she wants size, I would DEFINITELY get her the biggest diamond possible within your budget. I think she will be more than fine with a 1.4 h/vs2 or even better, an eyeclean 1.5 h/si1. I would MUCH rather have the 1.4 ct h/vs2 than the 1.18 ct e. (Can you tell I''m a size obsessed kind of girl?)

However, you should think about mentioning to her that a princess will face up much smaller than a round or even some other square shapes. Once I realized how small asschers and princesses faced up, I got over them real quick! I couldn''t get over the square shape so I went with a radiant. From what I looked at, it seems like good radiants face up bigger than good princesses for sure. With that said, if she definitely wants a princess, go with a princess.

You didn''t mention settings, but a halo setting (setting style with tiny melee diamonds around the center stone) will make the diamond look even bigger...something to consider if your lady likes size!

Good luck!
It''s not as bad as most think, 1.5 mm to be exact
Pardon me, I meant the difference is .5mm to be exact
 

Cehrabehra

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Jun 29, 2006
Messages
11,071
Date: 3/27/2007 7:37:42 PM
Author:Rob9874
I know, I''m sure I''m not the first poster with this dilemma. This is not my first diamond purchase. I was engaged 5 years ago, when I was poorer, and bought a 1.01-ct, I-color, SI3-clarity (EGL gives SI3''s). This time, I can afford to do better. I am leaning towards more quality, but every time I mention it to my fiancee (soon to be), she leans more towards carats. ''I don''t need a flawless diamond,'' she tells me.

My budget for the diamond alone is $5000-$7000 (and I''m probably going to go towards the max of that). She wants princess. I posted earlier about an AGS0 F-color, IF, 1.02 carat I saw for about $6600. However, I think she''d be happier with a 1.4 ct, H color, VS2 for the same price. Or should I go I, SI1, 1.5 ct, and find one without visible inclusions? I also saw an AGS0, H, IF, 1.19 ct for the same price. Little bigger than the F/IF, but not as white.

Any advice? This is not an easy decision! :)
I wouldn''t put money toward F IF unless it was important to her and she''s made her thoughts clear ;-) I don''t blame her! I would drop to SI1 (totally eyeclean) but stay at H and get the best *cut* princess in the biggest size.
 

risingsun

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Dec 19, 2006
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5,549
I agree with thing2of2...A 1.5 ct princess is ~6.5mm x 6.5 mm. Compare that to a 1 ct RB which is ~6.5mm or a 1.5 ct RB which is ~ 7.4mm. That''s a big difference IMO.
 

Gypsy

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Date: 3/27/2007 7:56:12 PM
Author: Apocalypse
My opinion on this issue varies depending on the cut. Any step cut needs to be as free from inclusions as possible due to the fact that it's easier to spot them, whereas the brilliant is so busy that the cutter can do a better job at hiding them within the cuts.

Personally though I am so OCD that I couldn't ever purchase a diamond lower than VS2 ( but hey if you're giving them away lol)

With color I wouldn't go below I, of course there are many here who have seen diamonds lower on the color scale that have been cut in such a way that they look colorless ( I have not )
A princess isn't a step cut, so an eye-clean SI is just fine frankly. As for the I versus H... If she's stressing size to you I would get an AGS 000 I and be fine with it. It might be a little warm... but it will be bigger. And with the fire of an AGS triple zero will mask the color enough to make your lady happy.

to be PERFECTLY honest though? I would check ONE thing with her before you buy a princess. Tell her straight up that a one carat round face up with 6.5 MM versus a 1 carat princess at 6mm... If SIZE is the most important for thing for her she may want to re-think the princess shape.

If she wants spread then round, oval, pear or marquise are the way to go. Not princess, cushion, asscher or EC (although occasionally EC's can surprise you). That .5 MM is a BIG difference to a size obsessed lady.

If I had another .5 mm I'd be THRILLED with my stone's size. If I had known about the spread difference... I wouldn 't have picked an asscher. No way.
 

Rob9874

Rough_Rock
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Mar 27, 2007
Messages
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She''s not obsessed with size. I told her about your replies here, and she reiterated that she does not want round, but is open to radiant. Would it be worth looking into radiant cuts?
 

boston_jeff

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Date: 3/28/2007 2:28:38 PM
Author: Rob9874
She''s not obsessed with size. I told her about your replies here, and she reiterated that she does not want round, but is open to radiant. Would it be worth looking into radiant cuts?
Personal decision. I''m not a huge fan of radiants.
 

asscherisme

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Hi,


If she wants size, I think you should do what she wants, within limits. I think pirncess shows color more than round and I would not go below an H. Also, some love SI stones, but I prefer VS stones. I think a good compromise between your instinct to go with IF and her desire for size would be a VS2. That way, there wll be nothing visible with the naked eye to bug you but you get far more size for your money than IF.

Good luck!
 

dtnyc

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1,088
I actually prefer radiants and "cut-corner" princesses (like the whiteflash Xfactor, Tiffany Lucida) over the traditional princesses.
I think that the clipped corners are a more classic look and are less chippy, it is better from a durability standpoint and increases visible size for carat weight.

http://www.whiteflash.com/diamonds_about/xfactor.aspx
 

Rob9874

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Mar 27, 2007
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Well, took my GF ring/diamond shopping tonight. She reiterated that she loves this Beverly K ring, which we discovered last weekend (just the engagement...maybe the matching wedding band later).




I looked at several diamonds, and the dealer explained how he thought the radiant cut matched the antique design of the ring better than the sharp corners on a princess. After viewing several, she fell in love with a rectangle radiant. It's an H, VVS2, 1.3 ct. It's a little higher clarity than I had hoped, but he didn't have anything similar in a VS2. The 3 microscopic dots on the GIA report were even hard to see on the blown up diagram, so it's pretty near FL. The dimensions are 7.11 x 6.19 x 3.91. We hadn't looked at rectangle before, but she liked the 7mm. To get that in a princess, I'd have to get much larger than 1.3 ct. It looked really nice with the ring, since the length extends way beyond the thickness of the ring. It had VG polish and G symmetry. Depth was 63.2%, and Table was 74.0%. It was $7500, but he's giving me a $500 break on the ring, which allowed me to increase my diamond budget by $500. I'm going to look around more, as I'd like to get a G/VS2 for a similar price (or H/VS2 for cheaper). But if I don't find anything, I'll buy that one. What do you guys think?
 

dtnyc

Brilliant_Rock
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That''s a beautiful and unique setting- would you set a rect. stone north-south or east-west in a setting like that?
I think doing it e-w would be v. exciting!
 

Rob9874

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She wants it N-S, to emphasize the diamond''s size, as it sticks out beyond the band.
 

rjdodd

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Date: 3/28/2007 6:50:54 AM
Author: Rockingout

Date: 3/27/2007 10:26:58 PM
Author: risingsun
I agree with thing2of2...A 1.5 ct princess is ~6.5mm x 6.5 mm. Compare that to a 1 ct RB which is ~6.5mm or a 1.5 ct RB which is ~ 7.4mm. That''s a big difference IMO.
have a look at this, the difference is not as big as you say size comparison of round vs princess
A 1.5ct princess is 6.5x6.5mm, for a total face up surface are of ~ 42 sq. mm

A 1.5ct RB is 7.4mm across, for a total face up surface area of ~ 43 sq. mm

They are really not that significantly different physically, but the RB is likely to appear a little bigger perceptually.
 

Sparkles22

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Wow that is a REALLY pretty set! Do you know by any chance how thick the bands are? Where did you find it? Please post more pictures!! Thanks! :)
 
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