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Opinions on Loose Diamonds: WF ACA vs. Black by BGD

Discussion in 'RockyTalky' started by treeskier85, Sep 14, 2018 at 5:54 AM.

  1. treeskier85
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    by treeskier85 » Sep 14, 2018 at 5:54 AM
    I’m very excited to be in the process of purchasing an engagement ring for my girlfriend. After browsing this forum for the last couple weeks, I’ve learned a lot about diamonds and what to look for. That being said, I’m certainly no expert and would appreciate any advice you could provide for my upcoming purchase. Preferences are as follows:

    Budget: $12-15k
    Weight: 1.3-1.5ct
    Cut: Round Ideal
    Color: E-G
    Clarity: VS2 or higher

    I'd appreciate your thoughts on the following. Also, I'm not tied to these stones only, so please feel free to suggest other options. Thanks in advance!

    WF ACA - 1.422ct, F, VS2
    WF ACA – 1.43ct, G, VS1*
    BGD – 1.312ct, E, VS2**
    BGD – 1.27ct, F, VS2**

    *Any concerns about feathers on girdle edge compromising the integrity of the stone? Also, ASET image shows some green under the table facet at 2 o'clock, and both red and green in the center of the stone. Will this impact brightness or is it negligible?
    **I’ve read that the Black by Brian Gavin diamonds may have slightly better visual performance than many ACA stones due to even better cutting precision and polishing. While this may be true, I realize that both ACA and BGD are ideal cut diamonds, so I’m curious if the difference is significant enough to justify the price premium (if I go with BGD, I’d have to sacrifice ~0.1-0.2ct in size vs. WF ACA to stay within budget).
     
    Last edited: Sep 14, 2018 at 6:35 AM
  2. Wewechew
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    by Wewechew » Sep 14, 2018 at 7:07 AM
    I had an ACA and purchased a BG Black. I actually preferred my ACA and sent the BG Black back. I may have just preferred the angle combo on my ACA, but I wasn’t exceedingly impressed with the Black (although it was still a beautiful stone).
     
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  3. sledge
    Brilliant_Rock

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    by sledge » Sep 14, 2018 at 8:13 AM
    I'm mobile and haven't had time to analyze each stone, but the red or green dots is nothing more than light refracting at a certain angle due to the exact pavilion angle. Depending on the value it goes red or green.

    More info here:
    https://www.whiteflash.com/about-di...n/aset---table-reflection-whiteflash-1420.htm

    Also the slivers of green you notice on the table is likely due to a high crown and high pavilion combo. There was a good conversation on this yesterday. I will try to find that and post here for you to review. Short version was it had zero effect on a meaningful difference to the human eye.
     
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  4. SimoneDi
    Ideal_Rock

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    by SimoneDi » Sep 14, 2018 at 8:58 AM
    The BGD 1.312 E VS2 and the WF 1.422 F VS2 have my preferred cut proportions. Both are great vendors.
     
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  5. treeskier85
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    by treeskier85 » Sep 14, 2018 at 8:59 AM
    Thanks for the reply @sledge. After posting I saw the thread from yesterday discussing the high crown / high pavilion combo. That was helpful and makes me feel a bit better about the ACA diamond. Curious to hear your thoughts if/when you get a chance to look at the stones in more detail. Thanks again. Appreciate the response!
     
  6. ac117
    Ideal_Rock

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    by ac117 » Sep 14, 2018 at 9:04 AM
    That 1.422 F VS2! :love::love::love: Stunning!
     
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  7. treeskier85
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    by treeskier85 » Sep 14, 2018 at 9:04 AM
    Thanks @SimoneDi, it sounds like it can't go wrong with either. I realize I'm "splitting hairs" here. Appreciate your feedback on your preferences with each vendor! Assuming that the VS2 stones are eye-clean, I'd probably prefer the color upgrade over clarity as well. Thanks again!
     
  8. SimoneDi
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    by SimoneDi » Sep 14, 2018 at 9:14 AM
    I have been a long time BGD customer and have always been happy with their service and product. Their Black stones are something special. I have also been fortunate to visit WF and they have a stellar team and excellent diamonds and service as well. You really can’t go wrong with either!
     
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  9. sledge
    Brilliant_Rock

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    by sledge » Sep 14, 2018 at 9:40 AM
    For me, the winner is the WF 1.422ct F VS2. Freakin' love the proportions -- 55.6 table, 61.5 depth, 34.5 crown & 40.8 table. Plus it's an F color. :love: :love: :love:

    I'd have WF gemologist pull and confirm, but the website says eye clean and the cert looks pretty good too. I know for some, the way the cert looks doesn't matter but I struggle with "mind clean" issues so when I'm between great choices, little things like that do matter to me. Of course, the VS2 I bought my fiancee has nearly identical inclusions sans the clouds & needles on the lower right corner of the table.

    If you and your SO are color sensitive, you have to give consideration to the BGD 1.312ct. While about 0.20mm smaller (7mm vs 7.20mm) I do like the color. Most won't be able to tell the difference between an E and F. I just recently went through a debacle with my fiancee and learned she is much more color sensitive than I originally thought and an F would be borderline if I were re-buying again. I think I have a rare situation and 99% of people aren't this way.

    That said, the BGD 1.312ct is a gorgeous stone. I do like the angles. They aren't as great IMO, as the 1.422ct above but they are close. Struggling with mind clean issues, that cert makes my chest tighten, lol. I have little doubts that Brian and Lesley will confirm the stone is eye clean but again, it's that mind clean thing I struggle with.

    With the other two stones, I'd eliminate because of the larger 57+ tables. Nothing wrong with those really, outside of you have only great choices and my preference is a 54-56 table as the smaller the table the more fire. Also, it eliminates that G that you had issues with on the ASET, even though it likely provides no real world difference.

    Like @SimoneDi I am also a BGD owner, well technically my fiancee is, and I love Lesley and the rest of the BGD team -- they are good people, plain & simple. However, if you aren't color sensitive I really think the WF 1.422ct F VS2 is the clear winner here. Bigger, best angles (IMO), clean cert and it isn't costing you a premium.
     
  10. crbl999
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    by crbl999 » Sep 14, 2018 at 9:46 AM
    These would be my top picks as well. Depends on if you want to maximize color or size. I prefer the proportions of the 1.422 F VS2; both are excellent choices and will be amazing!
     
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  11. crbl999
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    by crbl999 » Sep 14, 2018 at 10:03 AM
    @Wewechew What are the proportions of your ACA and do you recall what they were on the BGD Black? Angle combos were most likely a factor for you.
     
  12. SimoneDi
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  13. Wewechew
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  14. TreeScientist
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    by TreeScientist » Sep 14, 2018 at 12:33 PM
    1.422 F/VS2 ACA gets my vote too. The cut is just about as perfect as they come, and it looks like a fireball in the video!
     
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  15. sledge
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    by sledge » Sep 14, 2018 at 12:37 PM
    Gorgeous stones with killer proportions. :love: :love: :love:

    My thoughts against the WF 1.422 F VS2 as I think that's the most comparable stone:
    • Breaking the 1.5ct magic weight barrier
    • Small $1k premium to gain about 0.10mm size increase
    • Most people don't notice size increases until around 0.20mm, so is the size bump worth it?
    • Downgrade from F to G color
    • Has medium blue fluor (hence BGD Blue series) which may help offset the color downgrade at some level
    • Because of the fluor, stone is probably priced better than most 1.5+ carat stones with similar C's
    • Is OP okay with medium fluor? It doesn't bother me, as my fiancee's stone is a BGD Blue but others may prefer faint or none.
    • Might be worth a call to Lesley or Brian to further discuss the cut differences in the Black and Blue series. From what I understand Blue is cut to the same standards (but not as closely monitored) as the Signature series, and the Black is cut to a higher set of standards.
     
  16. HappyNewLife
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    by HappyNewLife » Sep 14, 2018 at 12:52 PM
    go big or go home, haha. 1.422F!

    I wonder if there are any CBI diamonds in this size and price range, hmmmmm
     
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  17. lovedogs
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  18. treeskier85
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    by treeskier85 » Sep 14, 2018 at 5:51 PM
    Thank you all so much for the feedback! This thread has been incredibly helpful. Based on your guidance, I've decided to pull the trigger on the WF ACA 4.22ct, F, VS2 diamond. I can't wait to see the stone in person, and especially for my girlfriend to see it!

    This is such a great community, and I really appreciate all of your advice.
     
  19. holeydonut
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    by holeydonut » Sep 14, 2018 at 6:19 PM

    You jumped up to a 4 carat? :shock:
     
  20. HappyNewLife
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    by HappyNewLife » Sep 14, 2018 at 6:42 PM
    hahahah

    Can't wait to see it - make sure to come back with lots of pics!
     
  21. Dancing Fire
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  22. SimoneDi
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    by SimoneDi » Sep 14, 2018 at 7:25 PM
    I think OP meant 1.422 ;-)
     
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  23. Dancing Fire
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  24. sledge
    Brilliant_Rock

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    by sledge » Sep 15, 2018 at 10:23 AM
    Wow, freakin' gorgeous proportions. I know @John Pollard would remind us all CBI stones are crafted for perfection using advanced 3D technology, but damn -- 55 table, 34.5/40.7. Even in a 2D world, those are gorgeous!

    The cert is very clean too, even for those like me suffering from mind clean issues. Looks very similar to my VS2, except this one is better at VS1.

    It would really would be a trade off on the color and size. If I were buying again I'd be tempted to take @Wink up on his "See It To Believe It" (SITBI) program and try that baby at my house alongside the WF ACA 1.422 then let them do the magic fire dance and see which one talked most to my eyes.


    LOL, you did the take the advice -- go big or go home. 4.22ct. What can I say? :P2

    Obviously we know you meant the 1.422ct. Splendid choice. I'm happy we could help you reach a decision that makes you happy. I can't wait to see the pics. It will be a stunning ring, no doubt!
     
  25. treeskier85
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    by treeskier85 » Sep 15, 2018 at 1:34 PM
    @sledge @holeydonut Haha that's right, I really took the "go big or go home" advice to heart. I figured she'd really appreciate those extra ~2.8 carats in the 4.22ct diamond! :lol-2: That's what I get for trying to multi-task at work.

    Though a slight drop in size and color, that CBI stone does look beautiful as well. I've read a lot about how stunning their cuts are. Doing my best not to look around too much and get buyer's remorse. I'm pretty indecisive, but I feel confident that I've got a winner with the WF ACA (thanks in large part to the advice received here!).

    Again, thanks for all the help. Very excited to see the stone in person, and will certainly post a few pics when I get it set. Which brings me to another question. Any opinions on setting with WF vs. a local jeweler (who happens to be a family friend)? WF mentioned that if I set with them that it would be insured in case of any issues while setting. Planning to do some variation of the classic 6 prong solitaire setting, yellow gold with platinum prongs.
     
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  26. SimoneDi
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    by SimoneDi » Sep 15, 2018 at 1:46 PM
    @treeskier85 you selected a beautiful diamond. 100% set it with WF. They insure the stone during the setting process. Although rare, a jeweler can chip a diamond during the setting process and that’s the last thing that you want to deal with. WF will have the ring completed in time and they have an excellent bench!
     
    Last edited: Sep 15, 2018 at 1:52 PM
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  27. treeskier85
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    by treeskier85 » Sep 15, 2018 at 1:53 PM
    Thanks @SimoneDi. That's what I was leaning toward as well. They do have a lot of options for the classic solitaire setting. I'll need to try and nail down which I want. I've read that a lot of people modify their standard setting to increase the band width and upgrade the platinum for the prongs. Is that correct?

    Also, I am planning to have the diamond shipped to me first so I can take look with the loupe in person, and then will have it sent back to have it set. WF confirmed that they would cover the shipping and insurance throughout. They have provided excellent customer service throughout the process!
     
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  28. SimoneDi
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    by SimoneDi » Sep 15, 2018 at 2:06 PM
    Considering your timeframe, I might not do the entire shipping and returning process, but if you really want to see it first, then I suppose that is ok. WF sells ideal cut diamonds and the stone that you selected is gorgeous.

    If white metal is what you want, I would recommended selecting one metal for the ring - white gold or plat. The two metals look and age differently and for that reason, I wouldn’t recommend mixing them together in one setting. If you want a rose gold or yellow gold shank (band), then yes, then prongs can be platinum

    I would suggest picking one of their existing settings without modifications as they already have the molds in place and can turn those around pretty quickly. They are also returnable, if not modified.
     
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  29. sledge
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    by sledge » Sep 15, 2018 at 4:21 PM
    Sorry if my prior comments created any buyers remorse. While I do like the HPD stone quite a bit I'd personally prefer the bigger F ACA that you chose.

    You did well. Absolutely no regrets!

    And WF is top notch. I'd do the whole process with them and make your life easy. Not saying your jeweler friend wouldn't treat you right but WF is a super ideal vendor and understands their customers expects a level of perfection and pickiness that a typical buyer may not.

    If you want platinum prongs, WF can customize any of their settings to meet your needs. You are truly in great hands and I wouldn't alter that personally.
     
  30. diamondseeker2006
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    by diamondseeker2006 » Sep 16, 2018 at 3:26 PM
    Both of the Whiteflash stones were excellent choices! Stones in the 1.4 range are not common, and they represent a good value compared to the 1.5 mark with higher pricing per carat. I love the stone you chose, but G VS1 is my favorite combo for a modern round, So it was hard to go wrong! Best of luck to you!
     
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