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Need advice/suggestions on round cs - @$5500 budget

CakeM1x

Rough_Rock
Joined
Dec 18, 2011
Messages
12
I've browsed this forum for a while on and off and it has finally come time to get an engagement ring. I am planning on buying the center stone diamond from an online shop and the band from a b&m. My budget is about $5500 for the center stone. I was wondering if this will get me a good round center stone? From what I've read G is the sweet spot for color and I don't want to be able to see any inclusions with the naked eye. Any advice/guidance/diamond links would be greatly appreciated:)
 

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CakeM1x

Rough_Rock
Joined
Dec 18, 2011
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Forgot to put in a good round 1ct center stone in my original post. Is it possible to get a good 1ct with a @$5500 budget?
 

rubybeth

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Nov 12, 2007
Messages
2,565
I think G-H is a good range of color to stick with to stay in your budget, and VS2 clarity (or SI1 if can be confirmed eye-clean by the vendor) will help you, too. With respect to plummie, I don't think it's necessary to stay in the D/E range, nor would I recommend Blue Nile since you can't see images of the diamonds (unless you want to use Blue Nile for some reason, like you're in Canada?).

Here's a diamond suggestion, .8 ideal cut, H VS2 from Whiteflash:

http://www.whiteflash.com/loose-diamonds/round-cut-loose-diamond-2728081.htm

May I ask, is there a reason you want to purchase the setting locally? You will need to pay to insure the stone while it's being set, and pay a setting fee, among other things, so purchasing the diamond and setting from the same vendor is usually the way to go for simplicity. What kind of setting are you looking at? I'm sure we could find you something similar if not better than what you'd buy locally.
 

rubybeth

Ideal_Rock
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Nov 12, 2007
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2,565
CakeM1x|1324249080|3084173 said:
Forgot to put in a good round 1ct center stone in my original post. Is it possible to get a good 1ct with a @$5500 budget?
You will probably need to be more flexible with color/clarity to get closer to the 1 carat mark with $5,500. Unfortunately, diamond prices are quite high right now. But I think you could get close, like with the .8 stone, and Whiteflash, Brian Gavin Diamonds, Good Old Gold, etc. have upgrade policies so later you could switch to a 1 carat stone (make sure you understand their individual policies).

Also, how much have you budgeted for the setting? Because if you're setting aside $1,000 + insurance during setting, plus the setting fee, for a solitaire or something, it would be simpler to choose a setting from the place you buy the diamond and put more of the $$$ toward the center stone.

ETA: Here's a .92 H SI1 AGS 0 (ideal cut) in budget (ask for Pricescope discount and confirm that it's eye-clean): http://www.jamesallen.com/diamonds/H-SI1-Ideal-Cut-Round-Diamond-1425617.asp

Also note: if you like any of these stone suggestions, place them on hold ASAP since lurkers often snap up good finds.
 

dreamer_dachsie

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Dec 16, 2007
Messages
24,164
I don't think you can get over 1ct with a well cut stone with a reputable lab report (GIA or AGS) and G/VS for your budget. What are your priorities in terms of carat color and clarity? WHich will you compromise?
 

marchesa6989

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Oct 27, 2011
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203
i found 2 that score <2 on HCA and look like they could be eye clean - best to ask James Allen to put them on hold and evaluate them for you; if they are eye clean, get an idealscope to check light performance, and get a gemologist review to compare the 2 and see which one is better.

1.00 G SI2 $5530 with PS discount http://www.jamesallen.com/diamonds/G-SI2-Ideal-Cut-Round-Diamond-1440124.asp
1.02 H SI2 $5500 http://www.jamesallen.com/diamonds/H-SI2-Premium-Cut-Round-Diamond-1444560.asp

these have twinning wisps which often are eye clean (my own ring is H SI2 with twinning wisps and it's totally eye clean and stunning)
 

CakeM1x

Rough_Rock
Joined
Dec 18, 2011
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12
Already great feedback! I've never seen twinning wisps in person. Can you even notice them? Also my lady is very picky with the bands that is why I want her to be able to see and feel them in store. She wants something little and not chunky that doesn't rub (she is finicky and rotates here ring a lot). Here is the band she has liked best as well as myself. I'd rather have princess cuts in the channel set but it sounded like they couldn't do that. I have a chalmers here that has a 3d printer that allows them to make anything you want so I may go to them and see if they can do that.

What are other things to ask the jeweler to inspect besides inclusions?

ring3_0.jpg
 

marchesa6989

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Oct 27, 2011
Messages
203
With twinning wisps here is some info i gave to another member: [URL='https://www.pricescope.com/community/threads/newbie-engagement-ring-help.168987/..']https://www.pricescope.com/community/threads/newbie-engagement-ring-help.168987/....[/URL]. scroll down for some pictures of my ring plus a link to some educational websites with more pictures. Twinning wisps are often called the favorite type of inclusion and are defintely worth looking into as if u find one that is eye clean itcan give best bang for buck! But please check with the vendor to confirm eyeclean-ness and overall diamond performance :)
 

diamondseeker2006

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
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Jan 11, 2006
Messages
54,991
Hi! Marchesa has already given you about the only options you'd have at $5500 for one carat. Prices have increased greatly this year, and you just can't get a higher color/clarity stone for anywhere near that amount, even though it is a lot of money.

We highly recommend buying the setting where you buy the diamond because then then that vendor will be responsible in case there is any damage to the diamond while setting. No local jeweler will take responsibility for a stone that you didn't buy from them.

James Allen does have a princess channel-set setting that looks very nice:

http://www.jamesallen.com/engagement-rings/channelset-rings/Thin-Channel-Set-Engagement-Ring.html

another

http://www.jamesallen.com/engagement-rings/channelset-rings/Engraved-Princess-Cut-Ring.html
 

CakeM1x

Rough_Rock
Joined
Dec 18, 2011
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12
They got back to me regarding the two diamonds you posted March and neither were eye clean. Any other suggestions? I plan on doing more scoping of my own tomorrow when I have some free time. Busy couple of days so I haven't been able to do much yet.
 

marchesa6989

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Oct 27, 2011
Messages
203
i did a quick live chat with them and these ones are eye clean and score <2 on HCA. i took the liberty of extending the search to I color as well as it will be very hard to find many more Hs, and virtually nil chance of finding a G 1ct in your price range. also these are about $100-300 more than your budget but in this current market it's still a great price:
1.01 H SI2 $5810 http://www.jamesallen.com/diamonds/H-SI2-Ideal-Cut-Round-Diamond-1247699.asp
1.04 I SI2 $5760 http://www.jamesallen.com/diamonds/I-SI2-Ideal-Cut-Round-Diamond-1421955.asp
1.09 I SI2 $5650 http://www.jamesallen.com/diamonds/I-SI2-Ideal-Cut-Round-Diamond-1379136.asp
 

CakeM1x

Rough_Rock
Joined
Dec 18, 2011
Messages
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They are going to take a look to see if they are eye clean but they told me, "There is a limit on the inspections, but we are going to have our diamond department just look at them for you as a courtesy." Is this normal?
 

marchesa6989

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Oct 27, 2011
Messages
203
CakeM1x|1324430734|3085656 said:
They are going to take a look to see if they are eye clean but they told me, "There is a limit on the inspections, but we are going to have our diamond department just look at them for you as a courtesy." Is this normal?
yeah they usually only inspect 3 per purchase. i think one of these will be good though! fingers crossed :))
 

CakeM1x

Rough_Rock
Joined
Dec 18, 2011
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So the 1421955 was the better of the three. This is what they emailed me regarding that stone. Should I be concerned with I color? How noticeable will the yellow be on it? Is it something to be concerned with?

What should I request now? Thanks again for the help!

"the department specifically commented on the appearance and light play of the 1.04-ct round brilliant, diamond number, 1421955. With this additional information Andrew, how would you like to proceed?
 

marchesa6989

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Oct 27, 2011
Messages
203
CakeM1x|1324484775|3086085 said:
So the 1421955 was the better of the three. This is what they emailed me regarding that stone. Should I be concerned with I color? How noticeable will the yellow be on it? Is it something to be concerned with?

What should I request now? Thanks again for the help!

"the department specifically commented on the appearance and light play of the 1.04-ct round brilliant, diamond number, 1421955. With this additional information Andrew, how would you like to proceed?
i think that to achieve the 1ct mark within your budget, an I color is a good choice. choosing a stone with excellent light return and performance will create a lot of sparkle and in a way offsets the color, compared to a poorly cut stone which will look dull. I is also not a yellow stone in the slightest, it will not be as icy white and perhaps a bit warmer. but compared to stones you see in the mall at your average jeweler it will still be whiter and this stone will be a gazillion times better.

unless your girlfriend is extremely extremely color sensitive, most people do not even notice the warmth in an I stone. in the average person that starts to be noticeable perhaps at K or L. keep in mind that people on PS are a more select bunch who are more picky in their requirements.

basically with James Allen you have 24hrs to decide if you want to buy that stone now, and if not they probably will not (or very reluctantly) investigate more options for you. but i think that is a nice choice and something you will be happy with.
 

CakeM1x

Rough_Rock
Joined
Dec 18, 2011
Messages
12
I was pretty sure I color would be fine just a lot of money to not ask for your knowledgeable opinions!

What should I request now for more information on the diamond? Just request an idealscope image or more to post here?

Also has anyone seen that same band from Jared that I posted earlier in this thread from another retailer online? I couldn't find it on kays which is owned by the same company. I ask because I'm going to buy the diamond online and most likely the setting from jared since I know my gf liked it a lot compared to the 7 other jewelry stores we visited. Thanks again all for the help!
 

marchesa6989

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Oct 27, 2011
Messages
203
yes, you can ask for an idealscope. they did comment on the light play of the stone, which would insinuate that it performs well but better to be safe than sorry. once they send it to you (it will take a few days) then post it on here. i feel like we've found a great stone though so be excited ::)

in terms of setting have a look at these:
http://www.b2cjewels.com/Diamond-Accent-Settings/Channel-Set-Princess-Cut-Diamond-Ring-14K-White-Gold-6010-1.aspx
this one has the princess channel side stones
http://www.b2cjewels.com/Diamond-Accent-Settings/Cathedral-Pave-Set-Round-Diamond-Ring-14K-White-Gold%281-5-cttw%29-5994-1.aspx
 

CakeM1x

Rough_Rock
Joined
Dec 18, 2011
Messages
12
So I got some feedback from them. Here is what they sent me.

"I received your latest request after providing you with the gemologist's feedback on diamond 1376944. Fortunately, diamond 1421955 was recently brought into the gemologists' office and the idealscope image is already available. I've attached the image to this email per your request.

When the gemologist inspected this diamond, they determined that the crystals in diamond 1421955 blend nicely but that they are not impossible to see with the unaided eye. With that feedback alone, I have no doubts that diamond 1376944 is your better option. While the feedback provided by the diamond expert in the diamond department was helpful, our gemologist has already determined that some people will be able to pick up on the inclusions.

Not only is diamond 1376944 your cleaner option, it will also be your less expensive and whiter option. Since the gemologist determined that it has a mid to high H color performance (close to a G grading), it will likely face slightly whiter to the average eye."

Capture_5.jpg

This is the diamond they say is better(1376944)? http://www.jamesallen.com/diamonds/H-SI2-Ideal-Cut-Round-Diamond-1376944.asp
What do you think?
 

dreamer_dachsie

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Dec 16, 2007
Messages
24,164

CakeM1x

Rough_Rock
Joined
Dec 18, 2011
Messages
12
Even without seeing an idealscope of the diamond? So essentially I buy the diamond and if I don't like the appearance of it they will refund it?
 

Lula

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Apr 5, 2009
Messages
4,535
CakeM1x|1324586127|3086974 said:
Even without seeing an idealscope of the diamond? So essentially I buy the diamond and if I don't like the appearance of it they will refund it?
Personal inspection trumps the IS. But if this is your first diamond purchase you will want to make sure you look at the diamond in all lighting conditions, and compare it to other diamonds, too. What will you be looking for? Uniform sparkle, a balance between white sparkle and colored flash, no dull or dark spots that make the diamond look fuzzy or flat. You will want to make sure the inclusions are not visible to you, or if they are -- and an SI2 may have visible inclusions -- then make sure the inclusions do not bother you. Inclusions tend to be more visible in bright light, and when the stone is lit from behind. Remember, the stone will be in a setting, and sometimes the inclusions are less visible when the stone is set. Sometimes the inclusions are only visible from one angle or in one light. Again, personal preference (and sharpness of eyesight) will vary from person to person. Inclusions that bother you may not bother your fiancee or vice versa.

And, yes, James Allen has one of the best return policies of all the vendors. I returned a diamond that I bought from them. They were great to work with. If you do decide to return the diamond, make sure you follow their instructions closely. They will send you detailed information on how to return it.
 

dreamer_dachsie

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Dec 16, 2007
Messages
24,164
CakeM1x|1324611931|3087266 said:
Well I ordered the 1376944 *gulp*. Sure hope it looks good in person.
Good!

I am sorry, I thought the IS you posted was the IS of the stone you are ordering! But honestly, with its numbers and angles, it is unlikely the IS would reveal anything horrendous. I have personally not seen a GIA EX with a good HCA score with a dog IS. So you are likely find in this regard and can use your own eyes.

Lula gave very good advice for inspecting this stone! Follow it to a T sir! Especially look at it in lots of lighting to make sure its eye clean to your satisfaction. Sometimes an inclusion will jump out at you in certain lighting, and you want to know that within the return period, not after ;))
 

CakeM1x

Rough_Rock
Joined
Dec 18, 2011
Messages
12
So the diamond came in yesterday and it looks just fine to me. Showed it to two people and they couldn't see any inclusions either so I think I'm good to go! Looks great! I'd take some pictures but all I have is an iPhone 4 and closeup photos don't really work well but I'll try and take some pictures after work. Going to go get it appraised then insured by jewelers mutual before having it set if the local jeweler doesn't have bench insurance.
 
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