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What are the minimum "Cs", for my diamond purchase?

jpcrecom

Rough_Rock
Joined
Sep 16, 2009
Messages
10
Google brought me. The "when?" discussions have occurred, and I''m probably about 4-6 months away from popping the question.

So I figured I''d start researching fully on the types. I''ve read a bunch of online guides, but there still is some cloudyness as to what specifications I should choose for the ring.

Cut: From my research, I know it''s the most important characteristic, but I don''t know what specific range I should be looking for. It will be a round cut.

Carat: She wants 2 carats. Spending as much money on a ring as I would on a car makes my blood boil, but that''s what she wants. A 2 carat ring with a very nice cut are the base guidelines.

Color: I''ve heard people say that the minimum I should go down to is "I", while other sites say "H" or even "G" offer the best value while still looking excellent to the naked eye.

Clarity: Like color, I''m unsure where I should be looking. While some are saying SI1 at a minimum, others are saying VSI2.

Cost: I take home about $5,500 a month and it looks like a 2 carat ring that was even color I and clarity SI will be about $11k just for the loose diamond (to put in a ring she''s already "hinted" that she wants. However, I also have over $200k saved, so in her mind, I shouldn''t really have a budget. So what is my budget? As little as humanly possible while getting her the 2 carat ring (or just under) she wants without having the ring not look cheap. I realize it''s probably going to cost between $10k-20k. I just want it as low as possible.

So what say you? what range would you recommend looking at in the color and clarity scale for me? What are the appropriate minimums where the naked, untrained eye can''t really tell the difference.

I''ve looked through a few pages of threads and haven''t seen anything with this topic. Sorry if it''s already been covered. Just link me.
 

jstarfireb

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Mar 24, 2007
Messages
6,231
The 4 Cs are always subject to personal preference, but here''s what I would do in your situation.

Carat: She''s already stated 2ct, so I wouldn''t compromise on that. Anything less may disappoint her.

Cut: Nothing less than ideal. Cut is king when it comes to a diamond''s beauty. Lorelei, Ellen, and others know much more than I about the right proportions to go for, so they can help you out.

Clarity: Eye-clean SI1 or SI2 will get you the greatest value for your money. With higher clarity, you''d be paying for something you can''t see. Since you''d understandably like to keep the price down, I''d stay at the SI range.

Color: This is the hardest one...there''s so much of personal preference when it comes to color, but it''s probably safe to say most people want a white diamond, one that doesn''t appear yellowish to the naked eye. In a 2ct stone, I probably wouldn''t go below I to ensure this. However, if she''s particularly color-sensitive and prefers whiter colors, she may prefer G-H. This unfortunately makes the price skyrocket.
 

ct-appr

Shiny_Rock
Trade
Joined
Jul 7, 2009
Messages
144
Don''t confuse cut with shape. The shape is you want is round. The cut is the proportions of the stone. The cut I recommend is ideal or near ideal. As you will read on PS, cut is the most important factor of the 4 C''s. A great cut will mask the color and help hide inclusions. I think your other parameters are in line. Good luck!
 

jpcrecom

Rough_Rock
Joined
Sep 16, 2009
Messages
10
Correct me if I''m wrong, but when I search for the diamonds on PriceScope, there''s nothing that has cut as "ideal". it has the symmetry and the depth, but nothing specifically that grades it as "ideal" or "near ideal"
 

Stone-cold11

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Sep 9, 2008
Messages
14,069
Date: 9/16/2009 6:03:33 PM
Author: jpcrecom
Correct me if I''m wrong, but when I search for the diamonds on PriceScope, there''s nothing that has cut as ''ideal''. it has the symmetry and the depth, but nothing specifically that grades it as ''ideal'' or ''near ideal''
If you use the cut quality search, you can select the cut rank, Ex-Vg should be good enough when there is images available.
 

jet2ks

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Feb 3, 2009
Messages
2,022

There are several ways to start searching for a well cut diamond. Here are some numbers that Lorelei likes to post for new seachers:


depth - 60 - 62% - although my personal preference is to allow up to 62.4% - don''t go too far past this or you can lose face up size and the diamond will look small for the weight.
table - 54- 57%
crown angle - 34- 35 degrees
pavilion angle - 40.6- 41 degrees
girdle - avoid extremes, look for thin to slightly thick, thin to medium etc
polish and symmetry - very good and above

From expert John Pollard.

"As the above implies, configurations depend on each other. A little give here can still work with a little take there.

With that said, here''s a "Cliff''s Notes" for staying near Tolkowsky/ideal angles with GIA reports (their numbers are rounded): A crown angle of 34.0, 34.5 or 35.0 is usually safe with a 40.8 pavilion angle. If pavilion angle = 40.6 lean toward a 34.5-35.0 crown. If pavilion angle = 41 lean toward a 34.0-34.5 crown.

GIA "EX" in cut is great at its heart, but it ranges a bit wider than some people prefer, particularly in deep combinations (pavilion > 41 with crown > 35).


You can enter the numbers from grading reports into the Holloway Cut Advisor. The idea is that diamonds that score under 2 are worthy of further consideration, maybe 2.5. Eliminate any that score higher.

Use the "Cut Quality Search" above and it will have the HCA score listed. There are a lot of diamonds that vendors have in stock that are not included in this search, however.

You can also ask for help searching from the PS community. There are several on here that like to hunt up beautiful stones. Just give us an idea of budget and your C''s preferences.

Good luck in the hunt.
 

Sam82

Shiny_Rock
Joined
May 27, 2008
Messages
295
I''m probably opening up a can of worms, but I don''t think you have to get her a 2 carat ring. Has she tired on 2 carat rings? Technically, she only needs what you can afford. You have to decide what you are comfortable with. If you don''t want to spend 10K+ then you don''t have to.
 

jstarfireb

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Mar 24, 2007
Messages
6,231
Date: 9/16/2009 6:58:37 PM
Author: Sam82
I''m probably opening up a can of worms, but I don''t think you have to get her a 2 carat ring. Has she tired on 2 carat rings? Technically, she only needs what you can afford. You have to decide what you are comfortable with. If you don''t want to spend 10K+ then you don''t have to.
Always true, but if he can swing it and if he wants to do it, it doesn''t hurt to give a gal what she wants!
 

Sam82

Shiny_Rock
Joined
May 27, 2008
Messages
295
Date: 9/16/2009 8:43:31 PM
Author: jstarfireb
Date: 9/16/2009 6:58:37 PM

Author: Sam82

I''m probably opening up a can of worms, but I don''t think you have to get her a 2 carat ring. Has she tired on 2 carat rings? Technically, she only needs what you can afford. You have to decide what you are comfortable with. If you don''t want to spend 10K+ then you don''t have to.

Always true, but if he can swing it and if he wants to do it, it doesn''t hurt to give a gal what she wants!
I agree 100%. He''s the one who said he is uncomfortable with spending that amount. Instead of just getting the "cheapest" 2 carat, perhaps he can pick something he''s more comfortable spending the money on. I think that 1-1.5 carats will look substantial on most ring sizes. Perhaps they could come to a compromise.
 

Dancing Fire

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Apr 3, 2004
Messages
31,870
Date: 9/16/2009 5:56:02 PM
Author: jstarfireb
Carat: She''s already stated 2ct, so I wouldn''t compromise on that. Anything less may disappoint her.
requesting XX cts?? is this a common occurrence with girls nowadays?
 

Sam82

Shiny_Rock
Joined
May 27, 2008
Messages
295
Date: 9/16/2009 9:34:16 PM
Author: Dancing Fire
Date: 9/16/2009 5:56:02 PM

Author: jstarfireb

Carat: She''s already stated 2ct, so I wouldn''t compromise on that. Anything less may disappoint her.
requesting XX cts?? is this a common occurrence with girls nowadays?
I was thinking the same thing. But maybe she just said that''s what her ideal ring is (at least I hope that''s how it went). My bf and I are pretty practical. He told me what he could afford to spend (and felt comfortable with) and I agreed to stick to that number. Some women don''t want to be involved in the money aspect. I''m wondering if the OP''s girlfriend has any idea how much a 2 ct. diamond costs. I had no idea until pricescope.
 

Black Jade

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Aug 21, 2008
Messages
1,242
Date: 9/16/2009 8:50:12 PM
Author: Sam82

Date: 9/16/2009 8:43:31 PM
Author: jstarfireb

Date: 9/16/2009 6:58:37 PM

Author: Sam82

I''m probably opening up a can of worms, but I don''t think you have to get her a 2 carat ring. Has she tired on 2 carat rings? Technically, she only needs what you can afford. You have to decide what you are comfortable with. If you don''t want to spend 10K+ then you don''t have to.

Always true, but if he can swing it and if he wants to do it, it doesn''t hurt to give a gal what she wants!
I agree 100%. He''s the one who said he is uncomfortable with spending that amount. Instead of just getting the ''cheapest'' 2 carat, perhaps he can pick something he''s more comfortable spending the money on. I think that 1-1.5 carats will look substantial on most ring sizes. Perhaps they could come to a compromise.
There''s a lot of anger in the OP. When you say that doing something makes ''your blood boil'', that''s a pretty strong clue that you''re unhappy about it. Some (more) discussion would seem to be in order before ring-buying takes place and definitely before marriage takes place.
I can understand a woman having a certain idea of what she wants (a ''dream ring'') but I'' m uncomfortable hearing that someone demanded a particular carat size and also (from what it sounds like) even went so far as to insist that their fiance could afford it, when he did not wish to do so, by pointing to the size of his bank account (which will soon be ''theirs'' and which probably also has to cover at least some of wedding, honeymoon, house downpayment?) But what makes me uncomfortable isn''t important--the fact that the OP is angry is important. Of course,maybe he was just phrasing things strongly in the heat of the moment (and it''s really not my business at all). But if the poster were my friend and came to me for advice about the ring, I''d definitely say not to go shopping just yet, but to further discuss.
 

glitterata

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Apr 17, 2002
Messages
3,618
I couldn't agree more, Black Jade. Not my business either, but if the OP or his girlfriend were friends of mine, I would urge them to discuss money matters and figure out how to bring their priorities into alignment.
 

Dancing Fire

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Apr 3, 2004
Messages
31,870
Date: 9/16/2009 10:12:18 PM
Author: Black Jade

There''s a lot of anger in the OP. When you say that doing something makes ''your blood boil'', that''s a pretty strong clue that you''re unhappy about it. Some (more) discussion would seem to be in order before ring-buying takes place and definitely before marriage takes place.
I can understand a woman having a certain idea of what she wants (a ''dream ring'') but I'' m uncomfortable hearing that someone demanded a particular carat size and also (from what it sounds like) even went so far as to insist that their fiance could afford it, when he did not wish to do so, by pointing to the size of his bank account (which will soon be ''theirs'' and which probably also has to cover at least some of wedding, honeymoon, house downpayment?) But what makes me uncomfortable isn''t important--the fact that the OP is angry is important. Of course,maybe he was just phrasing things strongly in the heat of the moment (and it''s really not my business at all). But if the poster were my friend and came to me for advice about the ring, I''d definitely say not to go shopping just yet, but to further discuss.
....about finding a less expensive FI ?
 

jpcrecom

Rough_Rock
Joined
Sep 16, 2009
Messages
10
I appreciate the feedback on both the ring and my relationship :).

She wants a certain sized ring. If I''m talking about a 1.5 carat for $8k or a 2 carat for $15k, it''s not money that''s going to bankrupt me, or really hurt me in any negative way. And no, she''s was not stomping her feet and demanding a certain size. It''s just what she''s always wanted.

While there may have been some anger in my post, it''s not about her. The "makes my blood boil" comment was really about spending gobs of money on diamonds in general. They aren''t precious or rare like gold. If it were a free market, the things would be about 1/10th of the price they currently are. But it''s a monopoly where they control supply to artificially inflates prices - and it''s really the first enterprise in history where marketing actually created demand from nothing. I''m not saying that diamonds aren''t pretty and nice and all that, and I''m not going all Leonardo DiCaprio against the industry. It''s just the economic specifics of this market which kill me. I wish the lab diamonds were able to grow a bit bigger and be a serious option. When that happens, the bottom will fall out of the price of diamonds. I''m just a bit too early.

That said, I do appreciate the feedback on the diamond ranges, and some options. I will absolutely look more closely at cut than I would have before this thread.

Thanks again.
 

FB.

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Jun 29, 2009
Messages
764
I would be wary of going lower than F/G colour in a large (2ct) stone, unless it's in yellow gold, in which case I'd go down to H/I colour for the right stone. While the lesser colour grades "face-up" white when the light conditions are good, even the best-cut stones can betray their body colour in low light.
Does the stone need to be 2ct? That's very large - small hands may not suit such a large stone.
Personally, unless she's passionate about having a 2ct stone and has tried one I'd lean towards 1ct size and get an ideal cut, at least F colour (colourless) and at least VS2 clarity (eye clean).
 

Sam82

Shiny_Rock
Joined
May 27, 2008
Messages
295
Date: 9/17/2009 11:06:51 AM
Author: FB.
I would be wary of going lower than F/G colour in a large (2ct) stone, unless it''s in yellow gold, in which case I''d go down to H/I colour for the right stone. While the lesser colour grades ''face-up'' white when the light conditions are good, even the best-cut stones can betray their body colour in low light.

Does the stone need to be 2ct? That''s very large - small hands may not suit such a large stone.

Personally, unless she''s passionate about having a 2ct stone and has tried one I''d lean towards 1ct size and get an ideal cut, at least F colour (colourless) and at least VS2 clarity (eye clean).
I too think that you and your gf should try on rings. I have HUGE fingers (size 9) and I think that a 1.5 looks substantial. Take a look at the under 1 carat thread. Some of those rings look huge on those with small fingers. A 1 carat and over on a size 7 looks pretty good to me. Right now, 2 cts might just be an arbitrary number to her.
 

jpcrecom

Rough_Rock
Joined
Sep 16, 2009
Messages
10
Of course she''s tried on rings of that size before.

I too, think that a 2 carat ring looks gaudy. She''s 5''6" so she''s not tiny, but I still think that a 2 ct ring looks too big.

Basically the "try to convince her to get a smaller ring" ship has sailed. So any more feedback on the recommended minimums given that size are appreciated as well as the ones who have already offered their insight.
 

Sam82

Shiny_Rock
Joined
May 27, 2008
Messages
295
Date: 9/17/2009 4:31:34 PM
Author: jpcrecom
Of course she''s tried on rings of that size before.


I too, think that a 2 carat ring looks gaudy. She''s 5''6'' so she''s not tiny, but I still think that a 2 ct ring looks too big.


Basically the ''try to convince her to get a smaller ring'' ship has sailed. So any more feedback on the recommended minimums given that size are appreciated as well as the ones who have already offered their insight.
Well you didn''t mention that she''s already tried on rings. If that''s the case and you want to give her a 2 ct ring, then so be it. As long as you are comfortable with it. I think you''ve already received great advice. If she''s looked at rings already, I would go to a jewelry store and she what her preferences are as far as color and clarity. Some like warmers stones and some people are color sensitive and prefer only colorless diamonds. I don''t know which one your girlfriend is. The same goes with clarity. Your gf could be a person with eagle eyes. Since your gf seems to be kind of particular, I would see what she prefers.
 

vetrogrl

Rough_Rock
Joined
May 13, 2009
Messages
64
Hi...while searching for my future engagement ring, I always wanted a 2ct. However, once I tried on different carat sizes and shapes,I decided to go with the pear cut. I tried on a few pears ranging between 1.5-1.75 ct and it looked big on my finger. I have a size 4 ring size and have a small frame. Plus my bf and i compared the 1.75 to the 2ct. and just looking at the 2 stones, we could not tell the difference between the 1.75 and 2.00ct. The price was a huge difference too. So maybe you can get a diamond a little under 2.00 ct. Going with a larger stone, you want to be able to get a good quality stone. Good luck! Your gf will love her ring whatever you choose :)
 
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