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Question from a simple man with an unpretentious fiancee

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Carlos

Rough_Rock
Joined
Oct 23, 2002
Messages
7
Wow, this is a great forum. I thought I was ready to buy, but I'd like some advice first.

I'm engaged, but haven't gotten the ring yet (wanted the question to be a surprise, and the ring to be what she wanted). I've been doing some research, but I've reached a point of diminishing returns. You see, I thought I knew what I wanted, but then all of the comments here more or less insisting on an H&A cut (I'm exaggerating I know ) have got me worried that I should be paying a premium for that level of cut (and sacrificing carat) when I wasn't planning on it. Here are my current thoughts, having looked at stones a couple of times only.

H -- neither of us could tell the difference b/t H and "whiter" diamonds.
SI1 or better -- but must be genuinely eye-clean, I guess I've got decent eyes for clarity b/c I've seen some GIA SI1's that weren't eye clean.
1.5 Ct. or so would be nice -- I'm fortunate to have a good job (and I'm kinda old for a first timer!), so I can spend a bit. I plan to set this in platinum w/ one small side stone on each side, maybe .6 ct wt. total. That having been said, the notion of spending much over 10K on what's really not a "rare" gem makes me sick to my stomach.
Cut?? Well here's the question. My feeling was that at the end of the day, if the thing looks white and sparkly, it's size that's really going to matter. However, I've infered from many posters here that they'd perhaps weight the cut quality more heavily than that.

So roughly speaking, the trade appears to come out like this for $8000:
H&A G/H VS2/SI1 1.25
or
lesser cut (but still decent 60% depth and sub 59% table w/ VG polish and symmetry) G/H VS2/SI1 1.50+

I know it's a matter of our own taste, but I'd still like your opinions. FWIW, to my eye, the difference between 1.25 and 1.50 is significant.

Thoughts?

Thanks,
Carlos
 

Richard Sherwood

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Sep 25, 2002
Messages
4,924
If I understand your question correctly, you're wondering if a 1.50 fine make is preferable to a 1.25 ideal make, or vica-versa.

In this land of "cut geeks" I'm a bit trepidatious to venture this opinion, but I would go for the larger 1.50 fine make stone.

I feel that it's a better value (making it over that magical 1.50 hump), will look smashing, and will look B I G G E R ...

We're talking nuances here, and the nuance of the size difference between a 1.25 and a 1.50 is the most visible of those nuances, in my opinion.

Rich, GG
Sarasota Gemological Laboratory
 

Carlos

Rough_Rock
Joined
Oct 23, 2002
Messages
7
Thanks for the thoughts Richard! And yes, you understood my question exactly (I probably could have been clearer...)
 

mrmarius

Rough_Rock
Joined
Sep 15, 2002
Messages
63
Hi Carlos -

I just bought a stone similar to the one you described... a 1.3 ct H&A ideal cut H/SI2 round. I would not limit yourself to SI1 and better... if you look hard and long enough, you can find very good SI2s which are eye-clean and/or have small inclusions that can be hidden by a prong when the stone is set.

I was looking for a SI2 that was clean through the table. The stone I found at least in my opinion, compared favorably to a couple SI1s, and I saved about $1000 by getting an SI2 graded stone, so I was able to go up in size and get the cut I wanted.

Take a look at this thread: "bought a diamond... thx pricescope!"

marius
:wavey:
 

mrmarius

Rough_Rock
Joined
Sep 15, 2002
Messages
63
I got it at DirtCheapDiamonds.com. But I also went up and met with Jim Schultz, the proprietor there, I didn't want to buy sight unseen.
 

Carlos

Rough_Rock
Joined
Oct 23, 2002
Messages
7
Interesting. I was considering doing the same as I'm in the DC metro area so it wouldn't be too far. Was he able to show you a couple of diamonds for comparisons' sake (I know they don't really keep any inventory)?

Any other tips about dealing w/ Jim?
 

mrmarius

Rough_Rock
Joined
Sep 15, 2002
Messages
63
Basically I picked a couple stones from the website, and he shipped them in for me. I went up and we looked at them through loupes/idealscopes, measured them, etc., and I picked one. I spent a total of about an hour and a half up there.

Jim is a pretty straightforward guy, he won't try to push you to to get a better cut/clarity, etc... If you say you are looking for a G, he won't try to push you towards an F or an E. He would be more likely to suggest an H.

And he gave me a GREAT deal on a bridal set. I'm not going to go into anything like price here, all I can really say about the set is that I got a very very very good price on it, to quote someone in the know about such things.

I wholeheartedly recommend Jim and DirtCheapDiamonds.com!
 

Carlos

Rough_Rock
Joined
Oct 23, 2002
Messages
7
sounds like a very good experience. thx again for the thoughts.

I have to admit to being somewhat won over by the "anti-marketing" marketing on dirtcheapdiamonds.com. I'm in business myself so I recognize that they're probably making a very conscious play for a certain market segment (e.g, the ever expanding group of consumers who understand the false scarcity/cartel issues, but want a nice looking stone nonetheless), but, well, what can I say, it worked on me!
 

fire&ice

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Jul 22, 2002
Messages
7,828
----------------
On 10/23/2002 7:53:56 PM

If I understand your question correctly, you're wondering if a 1.50 fine make is preferable to a 1.25 ideal make, or vica-versa.

In this land of "cut geeks" I'm a bit trepidatious to venture this opinion, but I would go for the larger 1.50 fine make stone.

I feel that it's a better value (making it over that magical 1.50 hump), will look smashing, and will look B I G G E R ...

We're talking nuances here, and the nuance of the size difference between a 1.25 and a 1.50 is the most visible of those nuances, in my opinion.

Rich, GG
Sarasota Gemological Laboratory


----------------


As a women, I'm with Rich on this one!!!!! ..just check to make sure the measurements ARE larger (and that the girdle is not overly thick)

Also, I have seen a diamond from Dirtcheap recently and was VERY impressed w/ the quality.
 

mrmarius

Rough_Rock
Joined
Sep 15, 2002
Messages
63
----------------
On 10/23/2002 7:53:56 PM

If I understand your question correctly, you're wondering if a 1.50 fine make is preferable to a 1.25 ideal make, or vica-versa.

In this land of "cut geeks" I'm a bit trepidatious to venture this opinion, but I would go for the larger 1.50 fine make stone.
-----------------

Also, I think, although it might be difficult, if you can find something that is just a little bit smaller than 1.5, like 1.4 or even 1.45, that should be a relative bargain, since (I think) 1.5 is one of those "magic weights" where the price per carat takes a jump.

But there are probably very few 1.45 stones out there... they try to cut them to the magic weights if possible.

I went to the pricescope homepage and did a search and didn't change anything but the weights...

1.3-1.39 ct: 607 stones found
1.4-1.49 ct: 138 stones found
1.5-1.59 ct: 2581 stones found
 
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