Find your diamond
Find your jewelry
shape
carat
color
clarity

Numbers & Specs vs eyes?

Polabowla

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Nov 15, 2019
Messages
831
can someone explain why the numbers/ideal specs are so important as opposed to what our eyes see and love?
Often people ask advice & posters ask about many numbers, idealscopes & angles and so on.
I'm not mathematically inclined at all and my head swims.

Why not just trust our eyes to guide us to a stone we love, even with less than perfect numbers?

When I went diamond hunting (before my ps days) I saw a stone that supposedly was IF but the facets were so badly cut that even to my untrained eyes it looked terrible.

Like I have no idea of the best proportion or ratio for a heart but to my eyes it's not too fat or skinny so it looks great.

I would love to understand what I'm not understanding about the importance of all these specifications.
 

molecule

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Apr 2, 2018
Messages
232
For many posters, they don't know what to look for; if it's shiny in store lighting, then it's good enough. But shop lighting is optimized to make the stone look good, what about all the other real life conditions? Do you tell the poster to take a couple of stones outside at noon and in the evening?
Most experienced posters would love to, but it's not realistic for newbies. If you watch Rhino's old videos when he was at GoodOldGold, he would pick several lighting conditions to display several diamonds in.
 

anangel

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Aug 1, 2008
Messages
602
Short answer: many people on this forum are shopping online and aren’t able to see the diamond in person, much less in many lighting conditions, without purchasing the stone.
The numbers are part of the elimination process; there is a pretty good idea of what works well for light return and “sparkle” in terms of angles (on MRBs at least), so if those numbers look good, it’s a candidate that is worth further consideration (judging with one’s eyes).
HPD and ACA are so well vetted, they really don’t need to play the numbers game; they’ve built their reputation off only providing exceptional diamonds. Mind you, there is a slight premium for these branded stones, but if the numbers make your head swim, they’re pretty much all a sure thing.
 

jp201845

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Jun 24, 2018
Messages
371
With AGS 0000 graded diamonds you dont need to use the HCA tool only GIA because of the rounding and averaging with the proportions.
 
Last edited:

monipod

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Jun 25, 2019
Messages
419
I have only bought a few diamond rings in real life and did so because they looked gorgeous. In retrospect, I should have passed on the first diamond, but at the time it suited my needs (and newly acquired diamond fever). Now that I've spent time on PS and researched a bit better, I know what to look for, and if I was in the market for a MRB, I would use numbers as a guideline as I would have to buy from an overseas vendor (I can get better value for money than here in Australia sadly).

I think numbers aren't enough though and you need to see the stone as much as you can. I am expecting an Asscher to arrive today and I have no idea if it will be amazing in person but we'll see! I used numbers as much as possible, but unlike MRB there is no such thing as perfect angles/numbers for Asschers. I knew I was partial to Asschers with smaller tables so that I was mindful of. Of course there are many gorgeous looking Asschers with huge tables too.
 

stonehunter20

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Jun 7, 2020
Messages
351
based on my experience, because i was buying online and i can't see diamonds in person, i had to rely on some guidance to help me make a decision, in which case, it's the data and specs that i was looking at to help me buy a diamond remotely.
 

Polabowla

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Nov 15, 2019
Messages
831
Oh ok I wasn't considering buying online & needing guidelines. Of course that makes perfect sense thank you!
And yes glittery store lighting is tricky!
 

Big Fat Facets

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Jun 7, 2019
Messages
898
for me,
specifications such as certificates, aset scope images, video clarity clips, ... help me to reconfirm what i may or may not be seeing in a diamond that i am considering for purchase.

The specifics help to ease my mind for a larger purchase online or in person.

as long as it is a larger purchase, i will always want to triple check what my eyes tell me
 

Garry H (Cut Nut)

Super_Ideal_Rock
Trade
Joined
Aug 15, 2000
Messages
15,670
Light travels according to laws of physics at 2.41 times slower in diamond than air/space. It behaves according to Snell and other laws.
When we know the proportions of a diamond we can predict the maximum outcome assuming perfect polish and symmetry. Hence my HCA that is 20 years old now.
Reflector scopes like Ideal-Scope and ASET can not lie - they show where light goes to and comes from.
 

Polabowla

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Nov 15, 2019
Messages
831
Well now that I bought my heart ring pre-pricescope maybe it is better for me to just focus less on the numbers & love what i have so i don't regret it... once I see the flaws I can't unsee it .
 

nala

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Oct 23, 2011
Messages
4,528
Well now that I bought my heart ring pre-pricescope maybe it is better for me to just focus less on the numbers & love what i have so i don't regret it... once I see the flaws I can't unsee it .
Wiser words were never spoken!
 

Big Fat Facets

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Jun 7, 2019
Messages
898
Well now that I bought my heart ring pre-pricescope maybe it is better for me to just focus less on the numbers & love what i have so i don't regret it... once I see the flaws I can't unsee it .
to my eyes, your heart looks pretty darn beautiful. and i don't believe there are a certain set numbers of a perfect range for hearts like there is for mrb.
 

AllAboardTheBlingTrain

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Apr 22, 2020
Messages
632
I totally understand the need for numbers when buying online/blind etc. But I prefer to buy whatever I buy by eye (if I love it, I love it). I think that’s also because I can’t really see the difference between super duper ultra beautiful top 0.000000001% cut diamonds and your average well cut diamond (at least in videos and such). I prefer a bright white stone (with a bit of fire but not too much) to it and don’t like how super ideals tend to go dark in the sunlight. But I’m also more into fancy shapes than rounds, which are all about buying by eye.
 

Polabowla

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Nov 15, 2019
Messages
831
I totally understand the need for numbers when buying online/blind etc. But I prefer to buy whatever I buy by eye (if I love it, I love it). I think that’s also because I can’t really see the difference between super duper ultra beautiful top 0.000000001% cut diamonds and your average well cut diamond (at least in videos and such). I prefer a bright white stone (with a bit of fire but not too much) to it and don’t like how super ideals tend to go dark in the sunlight. But I’m also more into fancy shapes than rounds, which are all about buying by eye.
Same here.
 

yssie

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Aug 14, 2009
Messages
20,987
Reminds me of this zen koan -
First there is a mountain
Then there is no mountain
Then there is.


The first time you see a diamond... It's all just sparkle. You're seeing the diamond, and you're seeing a light show, but you've got nothing to judge what you're seeing by.
Correlating what your eyes like to see with numbers and imaging technology trends can help you better understand what you're seeing, and can help you buy with confidence - in-person and "blind". But I think it's easy to get derailed by numbers and photos and scans and tools and other people's ideas of bad/better/best and forget to... Well, just keep actually looking at stones!
Most people will come full circle back to prioritizing what their eyes observe and their hearts want first and foremost. But now you're seeing the diamond in full glory - it's nuances, its positives (by your personal preferences), its negatives (again, by your personal preferences).

I own precision cut RBs, OECs, rose cuts, briolettes, round portrait cuts... All show some form of "round outline" but play of light is completely different! I love them all :love:
 
Last edited:

AprilBaby

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Jul 17, 2008
Messages
11,153
The first diamond we bought by sight. I still love it and have no idea the specs. It was a .37 and in a necklace now. The second diamond I was better educated. It had a GIA cert but my head swam in the numbers. It is 1.21 H, Si1 and I choose is as a mix of numbers and sight. I still love it. My last diamond I am too well educated and put it thru all the numbers. Now I need as close to perfection as I can get. I have not seen it yet but I’m hoping it’s a winner. It looks amazing on the video. My point: twice I got winners by eye. don’t discount your eye. Once you know the numbers it’s hard to go by eye.
 
Be a part of the community It's free, join today!
    What is White Gold?
    What is White Gold?
    Push Present: Engagement Ring Upgrade
    Push Present: Engagement Ring Upgrade
    20th Anniversary Upgrade
    20th Anniversary Upgrade

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