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Would you buy a diamond that didn't have an ASET image?

DelsFan

Rough_Rock
Joined
May 10, 2013
Messages
51
I know my question isn't the first, and I have read many posts here over the last few years.

I am helping my nephew buy an engagement ring (to the point of, I'll pay for the difference if you'll insist on a super-ideal-cut diamond(s)). Like many of us have experienced buying a super ideal cut diamond/ring "over the phone", I feel I got a better ring, much better diamond, while paying slightly less than my local jeweler would have charged for a bottom 1/3 of the range GIA triple-EX diamond (which is the best they could source, after much pain and me finally insisting what they normally sell isn't good enough).
[Not to mention, one can get any one of several of the jewelers who sponsor this site to make whatever you want*, without going through the hassle of finding that exact ring in someone's store or catalog.
* In his case, he might want: a simple halo design, 1 to 1.5 point diamonds in the halo, 2 to 2.5 point diamonds along the sides, a cathedral style to help support the halo, and 0.8 carat center stone (we're looking VS2 range, G or H color). He doesn't want large diamonds along the sides of the ring but does want to be able to tell they are diamonds as opposed to chips. Maybe 2mm max. width of the band. Shared prong setting for the melee diamonds. Platinum material.]

Here's the rub; my nephew might not have the confidence to buy from one of the jewelers we "know" here, despite my encouragement, so he could end up purchasing a ring from his local jeweler.

And here is my question: If he can accomplish/learn the following, do you think he would be getting what I'd call a 95% to 98% diamond, what Whiteflash would call a Premium Select or Expert Selection, what Brian Gavin would call a Signature Blue. Something clearly better than average to the average person (or fiancee):

Could he
a) purchase nearly any AGS0 (cut quality) diamond
OR
b) purchase nearly any GIA triple-EX diamond with an HCA between 0.5 and 1.5


I have an ideal scope; if he is looking at a diamond in person that meets the above criteria and he sees anything resembling arrows as shown in the photo below, is he way beyond getting a good or "just" very good diamond?


Another less important question:
When I was at my local jewelry store and started talking about higher quality diamonds at one point (about the same point as I changed the subject, because I thought he was trying to "snow" me or didn't know any better) the local salesman told me "All diamonds have arrows." I was thinking most diamonds don't, including the bottom of the GIA triple-EX range. Am I correct?





Crude image, taken while holding ring and partially-centered IdealScope in one hand and camera phone in the other:

idealscope_image_of_h_a_diamond.jpg
 

gm89uk

Brilliant_Rock
Premium
Joined
May 26, 2015
Messages
1,449
HCA <2 is fine, why are you limiting GIA triple x to just <1.5. There is no more relevant theoretical leakage at 1.8 than 0.9. I'm not sure your idealscope is an idealscope, looks more like an arrow scope which does not reflect light performance.

If you did have an idealscope, an ASET is not necessarily for a MRB. Investing in an ASET/idealscope is a small price to pay for the worth of the diamond.

An AGS triple 0 would negate the need for a scope. Not all AGS000 are equal, some have better numbers/appearances than others, in my opinion.

All diamonds have arrows which are the pavilion mains, but some are washed away due to light leakage and so are not visible in the traditional way as you would imagine an ideal cut diamond.

Nothing wrong with buying from a brick and mortar store, but it's just more difficult to find an ideal cut diamond (unless there is a store that is aware of the high expectations of pricescopers), and if you had a scope with you and your own eyes, you can make a great choice, although probably for more money. What is the reason for your nephew being reluctant to using an online store? Is it safety concerns or just would like to see the stones in person? If it is the latter, maybe after some more experience he'll gain more confidence to buying online (after understanding the specifications involved).

All the best!
 

kb1gra

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Jul 6, 2012
Messages
621
I'm really confused by the question.

I've never bought a diamond with an ASET image. It's completely fine to buy a diamond just because you like it, even if it isn't "perfect" by the narrow standards of this forum and its owners/founders.

There are many brick and mortars who deal in ideal/superideal stones, even outside of the obvious branded lines like HOF. In my local area, I could think of three that I could go and see superideal/AGS000 stones. I've bought from two and found their prices to be competitive with online, considering the convenience of buying in person. None of them are in major cities, ironically. If that's how you want to shop, there really isn't anything wrong with that.

I now buy online for the "sales tax savings" (yes, I know about use taxes) which can eat up a substantial amount of a small budget, which is my situation relative to a lot of shoppers here.
 

flyingpig

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Nov 7, 2015
Messages
2,177
The last image is not an idealscope image. What you have is not an idealscope. It is an hearts and arrows viewer.
 

DelsFan

Rough_Rock
Joined
May 10, 2013
Messages
51
Thanks for your replies!

So, is the "Hearts and Arrows" viewer worth using? I know, looking at another "crushed ice" diamond, there were no arrows to be seen.
Back to my original (modified) question:
- Will a GIA triple-X diamond with an HCA less than 2, with arrows visible through my viewer, be a superior diamond; not necessarily as good as a super-ideal cut AGS0 with near perfect ASET images but a 95% - 98% diamond?
- With an AGS0 diamond without ASET images, is there anything else one needs to know/see if they are looking for a superior diamond, but not a 99.9% diamond? Again, is a diamond like this by definition going to be a 95% diamond at minimum?


My goal when I bought my wife's ring was to get a superior diamond (well, five of them) so I went with the PS vendor's top rated category. My goal with my nephew is to not let him buy some crap the local jewelry store says is Ideal, or good enough that no one will know the difference; but is really, at best, a bottom-rung GIA triple-X (like the worst of the three shown in this youtube video).

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Cz3qn2Tx6oI

There are many brick and mortars who deal in ideal/superideal stones, even outside of the obvious branded lines like HOF.
Saturday I was just in a local jewelry store looking at a setting my nephew liked. Friendly people. Asked the salesman if he offered ideal cut diamonds that displayed hearts and arrows and he went off on how they had GIA and EGL certified diamonds, they didn't have Hearts on Fire (which I'd never buy anyway) but it was not necessary, their one expert diamond buyer personally inspects all their [probably crappy] diamonds before he buys them, and all diamonds have arrows. I don't think so. It is my assumption that most jewelers cannot get an AGS0 diamond, they don't deal in super-ideal cuts, and they have to tell unsuspecting how great their average quality diamonds are in order to, as is their goal, stay in business.

If I were a salesman and someone asked me about ideal cut diamonds I'd say to myself, "Now here is a particular buyer who is willing to part with some cash to get a top-shelf diamond." Instead they pooh-pooh the idea, which makes me believe they are ignorant, or cannot get top quality diamonds at all. Or both.

I've yet to visit a jeweler who had a clue about super-ideal-cut diamonds. When I took my wife's ring to a local girl (jewelry store owner recommended to me) to inspect to be sure (after a year) the diamonds were secure she took one look and immediately asked if I minded if she looked at the center stone through her loop; I said of course I didn't mind. She looked for about five seconds and said I did very well, that she couldn't have gotten a diamond that nice.

I guess I'm saying all the stores I've been in have said they can do "Ideal Cut", but none can produce ASET images (one girl said, at the most expensive jeweler in my nephew's town, "What is that, I've been here two years and I've never heard of that!") or any other evidence their diamonds are top of the top tier. I have almost no confidence in any of them.

But my nephew lives 600 miles away and I want to be able to give him some solid criteria - like, "If it isn't at least "THIS" (for instance, one of the two assertions I've made at the beginning of this post), don't buy it no matter what they tell you." But I want to be able to tell him correctly.
 

gm89uk

Brilliant_Rock
Premium
Joined
May 26, 2015
Messages
1,449
I believe you're being a little tunnel visioned with your approach.
The tools we use here are very strict to reduce the probability of buying a dud stone if buying online. That doesn't mean hca stones that are 2 to 3 are all ugly and some are great, just less likely to be. In the states many jewellers do deal with ideal cut diamonds unlike the UK.

You can ask your nephew to go to a hearts on fire diamond store as they are easier to locate so he has a reference point of what super ideal cut looks like then do his shopping.

Ensure he looks at the diamond outside the halogen lights as most diamonds look spectacular regardless of cut in those stores.

As I've said before,aAll diamonds do have arrows, they are the pavilion mains, just some clearer and more organised than others. I doubt it would help your nephew much in the selection proces, as 1) the scope doesn't reflect light performance 2) your nephew may not be accustomed to what ideal arrows look like 3) many diamonds with steep deep combos have beautiful arrows but lots of leakage.

If you want to be safe just give you nephew a range of angles and measurements to work with that they can give the jeweller to try and find.

Crown 34 to 35
Pavilion 40.6 to 40.8 ( 41 ok if crown 34, 33.5; 40.6 only if crown 35.5)
Table 54 to 58
Depth 59.5 to 62.3
 

flyingpig

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Nov 7, 2015
Messages
2,177
There is no easy way. You need an ASET/IS. If there is a reliable way to buy a good quality diamond (WF Expert Selectio Level as you said) without ASET, we would be using it already.

Having that said, a AGS 000 with theregular Diamond Quality Report is never going to be a dud (relatively). It is even better if you get a AGS 000 with the Platinum Report with computer generated ASET. With GIA stones, you need the IS/ASET.
 

DelsFan

Rough_Rock
Joined
May 10, 2013
Messages
51
gm89uk|1475484220|4083117 said:
I believe you're being a little tunnel visioned with your approach...


If you want to be safe just give you nephew a range of angles and measurements to work with that they can give the jeweller to try and find.

Crown 34 to 35
Pavilion 40.6 to 40.8 ( 41 ok if crown 34, 33.5; 40.6 only if crown 35.5)
Table 54 to 58
Depth 59.5 to 62.3
And this is where the HCA calculator would be of benefit, yes?
In the absence of an ASET image, because many small (and large) town jewelers don't know or care about super-ideal-cut diamonds nor do their customers,
if either GIA or AGS rate the polish, symmetry, and light performance/cut as excellent,
and the HCA is less than 2,
then the likelihood of the diamond being a 95% diamond or better would be very high.

I'm telling my nephew:
- ALMOST any AGS0 diamond will be stellar - it will look better than what any of his other 22 y.o. friends are purchasing.
- If the HCA is greater than 2 with a GIA graded diamond, since we're flying in the dark without an ASET image, throw it back.
And if his local jeweler just can't provide that type diamond (at a reasonable price), there are plenty of tried and true vendors here who sponsor this forum, who can.



Thanks very much for all your replies and advice!
 

diamondseeker2006

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Jan 11, 2006
Messages
55,633
I think you are confusing him more than necessary with the HCA. It is so much easier to tell him the numbers need to fall within this range of GIA Excellent cut:

table: 54-58

depth: 60-62.3

Crown angle: 34-35.0

pavilion angle: 40.6-40.9

If we were helping him here, we could narrow down stones with a little more flexibility. But to make it easy for him, sticking within those measurements will help him get one of the better GIA Ex cut stones. Almost no jewelers in my area carry AGS Ideal cut graded stones, and I have seen some of those that I would not buy. GIA is far more common. The local jeweler will probably have to call in stones just like any here would. He'll just pay a little more buying his way, probably.
 
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