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Need Help - Newbie - trying to purchase a diamond ring

speedytaferon

Rough_Rock
Joined
Feb 16, 2020
Messages
6
Hi,

I am trying to make a purchase for the very first time and am really confused about what to get for my would be fiancé. She's hinted at getting a diamond ring and love to make it happen.

I had a budget of $5k- but found the process daunting. I visited multiple stores but couldn't find the right ring. I started with 1k - but didn't see any in store with a VS1 rating etc.

Based on the 4C's - I looked online for the following criteria:

Cut - Excellent/Ideal
Color - Flawless (D-F)
Clarity - VVS1 thru VS2
Flourosence - Faint/None

I looked online and found Blue Nile or James Allen. Would anyone be able to help/advise what might be a good path.

I have the below the I shortlisted: https://www.jamesallen.com/loose-diamonds/round-cut/0.91-carat-f-color-vvs1-clarity-very-good-cut-sku-7924881?a_aid=ps
 

tyty333

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Dec 17, 2008
Messages
21,411
Hi @speedytaferon

To shop at James Allen you have to request the GIA or AGS report so we can look at the depth/table/crown and pavilion angles.

You need to look at "Ideal" cut or better at JA. Set advanced options to be GIA and AGS labs only, max depth of 62 and max table at
58 (dont need to worry about setting the minimum for these two). This should help you pull up some better cut stones.

Or you can use the search at the top of Pricescope and it will bring up well cut stones for you.

You can also use the HCA tool to make sure stones are well cut. Look for stones that score 2 or less. Anything slightly over 2 might be ok too.

You didnt say what your size requirement (minimum) is. You didnt say if the $5k budget included the setting or not.

We need this extra info to help.
 

MRBXXXFVVS1

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Dec 5, 2019
Messages
267
Congratulations on your upcoming engagement! So excited for you! Here are some of my thoughts and recommendations:

I would not buy the stone you selected from JA as it is only a very good cut. Excellent cut, polish, and symmetry (grading by either GIA or AGS) would be my minimum to get the best light return, scintillation (sparkle), and fire.

In order to optimize for value and get the best stone you can within your budget, would you be open to a color between D-H and clarity between FL-eye clean SI? A well cut round diamond will often face up much whiter (some PSers have gorgeous warmer colored K stones too). It does depend on if there are cultural or personal preferences for higher colors and/or clarity.

Since your initial budget was $1k, would you consider a lab grown diamond? If so, I would recommend checking out Lightbox Jewelry and resetting one of the pendant stones into a ring. Their pricing is $800/ct and the largest round is a 0.88ct, the largest princess is 1.12ct, and the largest cushion is 1ct. A few PSers have done this and their rings are gorgeous!

Best of luck and excited to follow your journey!
 

speedytaferon

Rough_Rock
Joined
Feb 16, 2020
Messages
6
Hi,

I am trying to make a purchase for the very first time and am really confused about what to get for my would be fiancé. She's hinted at getting a diamond ring and love to make it happen.

I had a budget of $5k- but found the process daunting. I visited multiple stores but couldn't find the right ring. I started with 1karat - but didn't see any in store with a VS1 rating etc.

Based on the 4C's - I looked online for the following criteria:

Cut - Excellent/Ideal
Color - Flawless (D-F)
Clarity - VVS1 thru VS2
Flourosence - Faint/None

I looked online and found Blue Nile or James Allen. Would anyone be able to help/advise what might be a good path.

I have the below the I shortlisted: https://www.jamesallen.com/loose-diamonds/round-cut/0.91-carat-f-color-vvs1-clarity-very-good-cut-sku-7924881?a_aid=ps
Thank you for you reply @tyty333 - Sorry should have been more clear - yes the $5k is including the setting as well. The size requirement from a minimum is 0.8 thru 1.1 karat.

Thank you for your reply @MRBXXXFVVS1 - that is encouraging, I would certainly be open to different colors - however, it's hard finding them :(
 

MRBXXXFVVS1

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Dec 5, 2019
Messages
267
I just did a quick search on JA and there are several hundred options! Just takes time to filter through them. Luckily JA has great filter functionality, so you can adjust the specs to help narrow it down! If you go with a lab diamond on JA, you could get up to a 1.5ct!

Here's the Lightbox thread that got me to become a PS member. It's a fun read and gets you thinking about Lightbox options! Definitely my favorite thread on PS!

 

lovedogs

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Jul 31, 2014
Messages
9,927
I just did a quick search on JA and there are several hundred options! Just takes time to filter through them. Luckily JA has great filter functionality, so you can adjust the specs to help narrow it down! If you go with a lab diamond on JA, you could get up to a 1.5ct!

Here's the Lightbox thread that got me to become a PS member. It's a fun read and gets you thinking about Lightbox options! Definitely my favorite thread on PS!

OPs budget is 5k including setting. He meant he started looking for a 1ct stone. I wouldn't suggest a lab stone to anyone unless their significant other is 100% on board.
 

sledge

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Apr 23, 2018
Messages
4,440
Not sure what kind of setting you want, but looking around $4k or so here are a couple of stones that may meet your requirements.

GIA XXX 0.80 D VS1 @ $3,800

Basically spot on what you asked for, although at the lower end of size. This is to be expected when asking for high color and high clarity.

That said, she looks like a rockstar to me. Love the 35/40.6 combo and 56 table. This stone will be very firey.

Only "downside" I can see is the medium blue fluor. The stone isn't hazy or sleepy in the videos, but I'd want to check in various lighting conditions just to make sure. I don't think there are issues, but I always like to double check. It does help lower the price a little, and while D color I am not overly worried with medium levels.

cert2.jpg


GIA XXX 0.88 D VS2 @ $4,240

There is a black crystal on the outer edge of the VS2 stone near the arrow tip. The arrow hides it somewhat decent, but in blown up views you can see pretty easily. In real life viewing distances, I think it's probably eye clean.

Gives you a little boost in size over the 0.80. And the 35.5/40.6 with 56 table should result in a nice firey stone. I would ask for an idealscope just to make sure there isn't leakage.

cert3.jpg
 

sledge

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Apr 23, 2018
Messages
4,440
Sorry, I think I was typing my other response at the same time you posted this response.

Arrow symmetry on this stone is off a bit. Also, I noticed only "very good" on symmetry according to the JA website. The translucent arrows makes me believe your pavilions are over 41.2 degrees.

Can you post the GIA certificate for us to review the proportions so myself or others can double check? I think you may have some issues, and may want to swap the stone with a different one.
 

sledge

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Apr 23, 2018
Messages
4,440
Thanks a lot - attached is GIA certificate 21896A80-8BB8-4818-ABA1-57BC0A9581C6.jpeg
I was wrong about the pavilion angle but this still isn't a complimentary combo. The crown is too deep at 36.5 when couples with that 40.8 combo. It's resulting in a 63.4 depth.

How it made excellent cut by GIA is another mystery. Thought 63 was the max.

Either way, this stone is too deep and you will have light leakage when/if you request an idealscope image from JA.

Because the stone is too deep it pushes the weight vertically into the stone. In return the diamond has a small spread (diameter) for a 0.90 carat stone. For a stone with ideal proportions it would be measuring closer to 6.20mm.

So while you are paying for a 0.90 carat stone, it is sizing up like a smaller stone.

Both the D colored stones I recommended above would be better alternatives. Are you interested in those? JA could easily swap .
 

whitewave

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Feb 29, 2012
Messages
9,358
The one you bought is very deep. Paying for diamond you can’t see. Can you put the sale on hold and we can help you get a better stone?

Or are you happy with your choice?

I wouldn’t recommend a round with a very good designation anywhere on the certificate.
 

whitewave

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Feb 29, 2012
Messages
9,358
Thank you! That's incredible advice - Thanks a ton for sharing your experience. what do you think about this one - https://www.jamesallen.com/loose-diamonds/round-cut/0.83-carat-e-color-vvs2-clarity-excellent-cut-sku-8368566

I looked at the above 2 that you shared - however, they had an inclusion and I had hints dropped to try to get it as clear as possible.
Can you post the certificates?

She won’t be able to see vs2 inclusions in that size round (generally speaking).
 

speedytaferon

Rough_Rock
Joined
Feb 16, 2020
Messages
6
The one you bought is very deep. Paying for diamond you can’t see. Can you put the sale on hold and we can help you get a better stone?

Or are you happy with your choice?

I wouldn’t recommend a round with a very good designation anywhere on the certificate.
Yes, I just cancelled the transacation
 

sledge

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Apr 23, 2018
Messages
4,440
This would be my choice,hands down


.82 E vs2 will not be able to see inclusions at all.

It will be amazing,incredible and gorgeous.
Keep in mind, $5k is his all-in budget, including the setting. However, last I heard HPD had extended their holiday promo and was still including a FREE solitaire setting. Assuming that works for the OP, then this is a great solution.

However, I do have concerns if the OP will find the clarity to be acceptable. If he is going to bash on that D VS1 that has a crystal about the size of a pinpoint then he is likely going to balk about this VS2. It's an unfounded concern IMO. Both stones will be 100% eye clean. The VS1 will be hard to detect under a 10x scope, which is what clarity grading from the lab is based upon. The images on JA are 20x in normal view and around 40x in super view. I'm not sure the zoom levels of HPD/CBI stones, but guessing around 20x as well.

One thing I did notice weird about this particular CBI stone -- look at the hearts & ASET images. These are out of character for CBI quality. The hearts indicate inconsistencies in the LGF's. The ring on the ASET is odd, as the computer generated version on the cert doesn't show that ring. I think that is just a bad image that needs re-taken.

While this stone is far superior to any typical GIA XXX stone, it seems less stellar than most the CBI stones I've seen. If shopping at WF, I would call this one a "near miss" ACA and label it an expert select since it has AGS000 certification. To my knowledge, CBI doesn't have any "near miss" lines like WF does.

Care to comment more about the images @Wink or @John Pollard?

1581986868952.png

1581986852673.png
 

John Pollard

Ideal_Rock
Trade
Joined
May 1, 2008
Messages
3,541
Thank you for inviting comments @sledge

The hearts indicate inconsistencies in the LGF's
I'm not sure what you mean. Please see the crown-views. Pavilion/LGF relationships are clear in all of them.

The ring on the ASET is odd, as the computer generated version on the cert doesn't show that ring. I think that is just a bad image that needs re-taken.
It's due to the backlighting of our ASET images. CGI doesn't account for new or old bulbs, strength of lumens versus size of diamond, etc. If we didn't backlight ASET it would never be a question. Candidly, I am personally inclined to do what all the other reputable companies do and go to a non-backlit setup. But my peers in Antwerp have remained faithful to the original AGS metric with backlighting. Despite the harsher situation it presents.

As Texas leaguer just said in a different post, at some level of magnification, you will see inclusions in an IF stone as well.
Essentially, correct.
 

Dancing Fire

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Apr 3, 2004
Messages
31,022
I'm not sure what you mean. Please see the crown-views. Pavilion/LGF relationships are clear in all of them.
JP, I think sledge is saying that the hearts at 3:00 and 9:00 is off, looks smaller?.
 

sledge

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Apr 23, 2018
Messages
4,440
JP, I think sledge is saying that the hearts at 3:00 and 9:00 is off, looks smaller?.
Thank you DF, yes the 3 and 9 o'clock positions are what jumped out and mostly the 3. To a lesser degree, there is variation between 12 and 1 also, but the larger variation at 3 is what made me look closer.

Unless I have misinterpreted, as those V gaps increase that indicates longer LGF's compared to the rest of the stone. The report indicates 76 LGF's, so as those gaps increase in size it would indicate slightly longer LGF's in those positions, right?

I fully agree the ASET image is just the result of bad backlighting or some other mishap in the photography process. I fully expected a response stating such and my purpose was NOT to imply there was any sort of a performance problem. I do not believe that.

Personally, if I can only have ONE then I prefer a backlit ASET because as you pointed out it's easier to see. Obviously that is a two edged sword. Not that you asked but I actually prefer it when vendors provide both black and white backgrounds for their advanced images.

In regards to TL comments I fully agree that VS2 is more than sufficient and nothing is wrong with the CBI stone. My point wasn't that the CBI VS2 or really any other VS2 was an issue so much as if you scrutinize a VS1 then likely no VS2 will be good enough either.

My other interpretation was the referenced comment were made to indicate I was nitpicking the hearts and ASET. Not sure that was the case and this form of communication doesn't allow for tone, etc to decipher. Either way I was not trying to do that and hope my comments were not taken as such.

Last but not least, thank you @John Pollard for taking the time to respond. It is appreciated.
 
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