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Would you spend extra on a super ideal?

Super ideals, would you care, and would you pay for it?

  • I see the difference and would pay for it.

    Votes: 48 64.0%
  • I see the difference and would not pay for it.

    Votes: 9 12.0%
  • I know there can be a difference but don't care enough to look for it, or pay for it.

    Votes: 18 24.0%

  • Total voters
    75

LLJsmom

Ideal_Rock
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Oct 24, 2012
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9,242
For the people who acknowledge the existence of super ideals, would you pay extra for a super ideal?

This question is prompted by my recent experience of searching for diamonds and buying at a b&m, where super ideals were not an option. The closest I got was an AGS000. Even with just an AGS000, I could see the difference between it and the GIA 3X. I could say I would figure out a way to pay the extra for the performance. My friend, who did not study the diamonds as intently as I did, also chose the AGS000, though not only for the cut but for other reasons as well. This was only an AGS000. If I were looking at a super ideal in this size, it would probably blow me away. But I can also see that other people that are not obsessed with diamonds, maybe would not care that much about how much it sparkles or if there might be a little dark area, and would be fine with a beautiful GIA 3X. Even if they could see the difference, they would not pay the extra for it.

(This is not in any a judgement upon anyone. People can enjoy diamonds in anyway they see fit. In a way maybe my being so anal about diamonds is more of a curse, takes away some of my enjoyment. If I bought the GIA, it would have been just a matter of time before I started finding flaws and obsessing, and probably wanting to trade or upgrade.)
 

Phoenix

Ideal_Rock
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Oct 5, 2006
Messages
9,095
Yeeeess!! I can definitely see the difference, albeit minute, between superideals and ideals. It's also a mind-clean thing for me. I've bought many, albeit smaller, superideals and will continue to buy superideals.

I wish I could have come across a superideal when I searched for my 5ct+. I searched high and low, across many continents - in person at trade shows, B&M stores and of course extensively online. I finally found Holly after a 6-year search and she's absolutely unbelievably gorgeous. But part of me knows that I yearn for a superideal.

What I find interesting is the melee used by the high-end maisons like Van Cleef and Cartier. I have no ideal if these are superideal-cut (certainly ideal-cut), but they sparkle like high car beams on steroids, like super super super teeny tiny clusters of the brightest sun you can get (okie, you get the idea, lol)!! They're always blindingly firey/ sparkly, even when I have a few days of sweat and dust on them.
 
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Phoenix

Ideal_Rock
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Oct 5, 2006
Messages
9,095
5.318ct Holly H VS2 and BGD 2.3ct each studs G&H Si1. I will say that it's prob difficult to discern the difference, but I do see it IRL - it's just soooo minute; and it takes a cut nut like myself, and I'd imagine a lot of seasoned PSers, to be able to see it.

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flyingpig

Ideal_Rock
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Nov 7, 2015
Messages
2,147
After viewing hundreds, if not thousands, of diamonds online and in person, I have learned to differentiate good quality stones from bad ones. I can easily assess light leakage without any special tool or lighting at a B&M store. In some cases, I can sort of tell the table size and/or pavilion angle of a diamond in the display case, based on the shape and size of the table reflection.

Ironically, the more I learn, the more lenient I have become in regards to cut for MRBs. I don't necessarily want a perfect H&A or even AGS0.
It is more ironic that, for melees, I only accept H&A quality such as ACA melees and BGD signature melees.
 

OoohShiny

Ideal_Rock
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Apr 25, 2014
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7,062
I have not seen enough examples of GIAXXX, AGS000 and SuperIdeal to truly speak from a position of knowledge on any visible differences, but I can say this - the CBI I bought for my good lady is night-and-day better than anything in the B&M shops I've looked in, being bright from edge to edge in diffuse lighting environments and throwing out incredible sparkle and fire from even 6+ feet away in point-source environments.

Did it come at a premium? Of course, but the performance continously impresses me and I have zero regrets that I took the CBI path. Would I do it again? Definitely, although everyone has different priorities and each decision is made on a case-by-case basis, and budget is always a (the?) key criterion.
 
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MissGotRocks

Super_Ideal_Rock
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Jun 23, 2005
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11,972
Yes, I would and I did pay the difference for a super ideal. The performance of the stone can't be beat and I don't regret paying the money for one minute. There are no mind clean issues with the stone and while it might not ring true for most, it was well worth the money to me to not constantly be second guessing everything I saw in my own diamond.
 

dizzyakira

Rough_Rock
Joined
Sep 25, 2016
Messages
96
I don't think I can. I've stared at numerous YouTube videos and can't see any difference between ideals, super ideals or even very good cut. I have a .7 er from hof and a .8 pendant that is very good cut and I can't tell the difference between the two. It could be that my eyes can't detect it. I can tell if a diamond is dark or cloudy, but if it's eye clean and sort of white, I just can't see if one has more sparkle or not. I also have a .2 ct diamond pendant from Macy's and can't tell if it's less shinier than my other diamonds. My friends remarked that my hof ering sparkles more than their tiffany round and their Cartier, but it all looks the same to me. Maybe I have to be taught to look for differences? Perhaps my hof isn't ideal? I think I've read somewhere that not all hof are super ideals. Maybe I need to get some Whiteflash earrings to compare, but at the size I could afford (.8-1 tcw), would I even see a difference? Sorry, I don't know if it's worth it if I can't see ito_O. Although, I really do want to see it.
 

dizzyakira

Rough_Rock
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Sep 25, 2016
Messages
96
Just wanted to add that I am a consumer with limited diamond (or any jewelry really) experience. And no experience in high end jewelry. Perhaps after a few months or years on this board I would have the knowledge to see the difference?
 

ratatat

Shiny_Rock
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Jul 12, 2017
Messages
253
I don't think I can. I've stared at numerous YouTube videos and can't see any difference between ideals, super ideals or even very good cut. I have a .7 er from hof and a .8 pendant that is very good cut and I can't tell the difference between the two. It could be that my eyes can't detect it. I can tell if a diamond is dark or cloudy, but if it's eye clean and sort of white, I just can't see if one has more sparkle or not. I also have a .2 ct diamond pendant from Macy's and can't tell if it's less shinier than my other diamonds. My friends remarked that my hof ering sparkles more than their tiffany round and their Cartier, but it all looks the same to me. Maybe I have to be taught to look for differences? Perhaps my hof isn't ideal? I think I've read somewhere that not all hof are super ideals. Maybe I need to get some Whiteflash earrings to compare, but at the size I could afford (.8-1 tcw), would I even see a difference? Sorry, I don't know if it's worth it if I can't see ito_O. Although, I really do want to see it.
I'm not sure if it can be appreciated in videos, I think it has to be seen in real life and in different lighting environments. Similar to trying to figure out what a certain colour grade will look like by looking at videos or photos, I don't think it can be done.
 
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yennyfire

Ideal_Rock
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Jun 6, 2010
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6,417
I would say that I would. I do think that it's easier to discern the difference in person. Even in a side by side video comparison it is hard to see the difference (for me), but in person, I can. I would pay the difference. Like LLJsMom, it would bother me over time, making it worth it to have a stone that "ticked" all of my boxes...
 

OoohShiny

Ideal_Rock
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Apr 25, 2014
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7,062
At the prices that decent B&M jewellers here in Australia charge for non super-ideal stones, it makes more sense for me to purchase a super-ideal stone from overseas.
Definitely true in the UK too!!

I don't think I can. I've stared at numerous YouTube videos and can't see any difference between ideals, super ideals or even very good cut. I have a .7 er from hof and a .8 pendant that is very good cut and I can't tell the difference between the two. It could be that my eyes can't detect it. I can tell if a diamond is dark or cloudy, but if it's eye clean and sort of white, I just can't see if one has more sparkle or not. I also have a .2 ct diamond pendant from Macy's and can't tell if it's less shinier than my other diamonds. My friends remarked that my hof ering sparkles more than their tiffany round and their Cartier, but it all looks the same to me. Maybe I have to be taught to look for differences? Perhaps my hof isn't ideal? I think I've read somewhere that not all hof are super ideals. Maybe I need to get some Whiteflash earrings to compare, but at the size I could afford (.8-1 tcw), would I even see a difference? Sorry, I don't know if it's worth it if I can't see ito_O. Although, I really do want to see it.
Do you clean them regularly? It makes a difference!
 

Wink

Ideal_Rock
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May 3, 2001
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7,404
So many things in this fun thread that I could respond to. I want to address two comments for now and then go walk the dogs on this rainy Saturday morning.

I've stared at numerous YouTube videos and can't see any difference between ideals, super ideals or even very good cut.
Most cameras are mono-vision, but humans have stereo-vision, which conveys depth perception and more stimuli than mono-vision can relay.

The camera has filtration limits, so the brightest white flashes and most intense contrast get muted by default.

Even if I had a super stereo-scope camera and perfect lighting setup, my videos would be much better than they are now, but still vastly inferior to our stero-vision with instantaneous brain coordination/translation system that allows us to see and understand what we are seeing in a much better coordinated vision that includes better depth of field, white balance and many other features that I am not sure will ever be available in video.

I have a .7 er from hof and a .8 pendant that is very good cut and I can't tell the difference between the two.
When I was a young college student back in the mid 60's, I was exposed mostly to wines like Mogen David and other sweet syrupy wines. Some were even carbonated. When offered a sip of a "good" wine I actually did not like it. It is good that no one wasted their great wine with me at the time.

Over the years I have learned to truly enjoy booth good and great wines, and I doubt I could actually drink any of the "candy" wines I once enjoyed. My palate has changed and matured. It may be that your visual palate will mature to where you can easily distinguish between the two diamonds and how they perform in various lighting conditions. It may also be that your eyes will never see the difference. Only you will know if someday you suddenly realize that you like the performance of one of the diamonds better than the other.

For me, I learned very quickly while I was still a student at GIA in 1975 that I preferred the "ideal" cuts as described at that time. They were hard to find, and I can tell you from one that I bought for my sister in 1978 and consigned back from her a several years ago that the ideal of then is NOT the ideal of now.

The diamond, though very nice, languished in my inventory for years before I sent it to Crafted by Infinity and had it cut down more than a quarter carat to CBI standards. It sold in less than a month for more than I had been trying to sell the larger diamond for. My sister was ecstatic that I sent her a larger check than I had promised to send when the diamond sold.

For some, the visual palate already discerns the "flavor" of the extreme precision of the super ideal cutting. For some it never will. Thus it is an extremely personal question that this poll is asking an answer for. I did not vote, as anyone who knows me knows both my personal and professional opinion.

Wink
 

Wink

Ideal_Rock
Trade
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May 3, 2001
Messages
7,404
@Wink I hate red wine. I find the flavor too bold and overwhelming and bitter. I had a taste of a $125 bottle of red wine. Now I see what the problem is... :lol::whistle: I have an expensive palette.
LOL, I know what you mean. I used to drink Mogen David, whenever I could get someone to buy me a bottle. (I was "underage", sadly, a problem I shall never have again.) Then I started drinking drinks like scotch and seven up, much to the distress of my host who caught his son and I mixing them at the party he was throwing. He said, and I quote, "Drink the da** scotch if you must, but use soda water not candy for the mixer!" We tried it and went right back to seven up. Then I drank scotch and soda for a few years, any cheap scotch would do. Now I drink Glenlivet when I am slumming and Oban when I want a good scotch, either without mixers, usually neat, but maybe one cube of ice if I want something cold.

While I like a good wine, I doubt I will ever have the wine palate that my friend John Pollard has. I was at a dinner table with John, Lieve Peeters, and Garry Holloway one evening at the JCK show in Las Vegas and watching them taste different bottles of wine and argue with the wine server (He most certainly was NOT a sommelier,) about many things, including the quality of the wine, was a treat I will never forget. I did not partake of the wines, knowing from experience that their palates for truly great wines is at a level I will never achieve. The advantage to that was that I did not partake of the wine portion of the billing either!

Sometimes an undeveloped palate can be a blessing...

Wink
 

Phoenix

Ideal_Rock
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@Wink , I always enjoy reading your well-thought out posts and your anecdotes. I too love wines, especially wine-pairing, but alas have given up drinking, in my quest to be more fit & healthy...certainly no more wine-pairing for moi ...anyway, I digress.

Occasionally though I will indulge in a glass of nice champagne or white wine or red wine. Red wines are funny for me: I used to really like them, lost my taste for them for a while, have started to like them again. I find that not all super expensive red wines agree with my palate, which I think, like you, is great for the wallet, lol (though there are some mid to slightly higher-end red wines that are quite acceptable). Champagne and white wines, on the other hand, I am afraid I enjoy Dom & the likes. I don't like any hard liquors or beer (well, except for a very small extremely cold beer).

I figure especially since I only allow myself the occasional glass or even half a glass, I might as well just go for the best.

Sorry for the threadjack, @LLJsmom.
 
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kayla17

Ideal_Rock
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Jan 14, 2003
Messages
2,083
Yes, I would and I did pay the difference for a super ideal. The performance of the stone can't be beat and I don't regret paying the money for one minute. There are no mind clean issues with the stone and while it might not ring true for most, it was well worth the money to me to not constantly be second guessing everything I saw in my own diamond.
This exactly. I'd much rather pay more and have a superideal bc it comes with peace of mind for me.
But I've also noticed for me that I'd also rather have higher clarity, lower color than vice versa.
I wonder if there's a correlation?
 

Phoenix

Ideal_Rock
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Oct 5, 2006
Messages
9,095
This exactly. I'd much rather pay more and have a superideal bc it comes with peace of mind for me.
But I've also noticed for me that I'd also rather have higher clarity, lower color than vice versa.
I wonder if there's a correlation?
Agreed with the peace of mind thing too, although for me personally, I can definitely discern the difference in cuts. RE the colour vc clarity preference, it's not so straightforward. I'd be comfortable with super eyelean Si1 in earrings. For rings, I'd prefer very clean VS2 or preferably VS1. Colour-wise, I don't think I could go lower than an H and am in fact thinking of upgrade my ering to a G, even if it'd be done at the expense of size. So, was initially thinking a 7ct+ H eyeclean VS2, now that goal post has been moved to a 6ct+ G VS1 or a super eye-clean VS2. But I will definitely NOT compromise on cut, going for super-ideal this time but this might mean another 6 yrs or so of waiting for this HG.
 

dizzyakira

Rough_Rock
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Sep 25, 2016
Messages
96
Wink, thank you for the explanation. You write so beautifully. I thought it was just me who couldn't see the difference in the youtube videos.
I fear your wine comparison is lost on me also. I remember at a New Year's Eve party in 2000, a friend gave me a glass of wine from a bottle that he said costs about 800. It was disgusting, but then I've never acquired the taste for alcohol, not cider nor champagne nor mixed drinks. My in-laws gave me a bottle of red wine from France for my daughter's birth in 2003, it sits untouched. I'm told it's a nice bottle but I will never drink it, nor will my dh, which is strange because he's French and is supposed to like wine.
Perhaps I am one of those people who will never be able to see the difference. However, I do like the closeup pictures of diamonds with perfect hearts and arrows. I might buy a pair of whiteflash earrings anyway, even if I can't see that they are brighter, because I don't want to miss out:confused2::oops2::roll2:.

Oooshiny, I clean my pendant and ring several times a week (since I've been on this forum!) and have not seen any difference. I did get them professionally cleaned and dipped last year and haven't noticed that one sparkles more than the other. In fact, I didn't know about super ideals until I came on here. My husband only got the HOF because his friend used to work for a jewelry store and recommended it (we bought in August of 2001 so I don't know if PriceScope existed then).
 
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MissGotRocks

Super_Ideal_Rock
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Jun 23, 2005
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Sometimes ignorance is truly bliss, not to mention a savior for one's wallet.

Since finding PriceScope, I find myself with these strange urges to buy jewelry that never troubled me before. :mrgreen2:


HDer, believe it or not, I agree with you. Ignorance can be bliss and folks that are not super picky can indeed be blessed.

I just want to share this picture and offer an explanation of the difference that can exist between an ideal cut and a super ideal cut since we are discussing this topic.

This image is of my former AGS0 2.22 stone on the left. On the right, my ACA 2.19 stone. The former stone was no dog - far from it. I had many compliments on that stone and it was a beauty in its own right. If I had tried to explain to most people what I was seeing in the old stone, they would have laughed and called me crazy. When I received this comparison photo, I felt totally vindicated in what I knew to be true. You can see some darker areas in the former stone from this still picture. I felt that at times I could see a shadow that didn't belong. Turn it one way, it was there. Turn it another and gone. Most of the time I didn't even see it. It was an extremely clean SI1 and I knew it wasn't an inclusion I was seeing. It was not a distraction and I seemed to be the only one that could really pick it up for the most part. Again, through the eyes of people that appreciated its size and sparkle without a critical slant it was gorgeous. However, I am that picky and because I love diamonds, I spent an inordinate amount of time looking at my diamond. I knew it inside and out. There was always a niggling though that it could be better. Perhaps only in a small nuance but still better. When I had the chance to make the trade for an ideal cut, I still really wrestled with the idea. I told myself I was being foolish. Why spend the money for something that no one could really see? However, the possibility loomed and I began looking in earnest for a stone that might tick all of the boxes. When I found it, I decided to really look into the possibility of the upgrade.

This new stone is so well balanced. No matter which way you turn it, everything just lines up perfectly. All of the facets light up and there are no dead spots, no shadows. It is simply amazing to me and brings me joy every day. I write this story again to first of all validate all of those who don't choose super ideal cut stones. So many factors go into the selection of a stone - size, price, color, clarity and cut. For those who have found a stone that they love, I am thrilled for you! I write this too for those who wonder, who question, who hope for something better. I hope that if it is important enough to you, that you one day find a stone that you love.

Inasmuch as I view PS first and foremost as an educational sight, I will always recommend the stone with the best cut possible regardless of the size, color or clarity. I will always recommend a vendor with a great trade in policy. I will always be respectful of what folks choose for themselves but when asked, I will always emphasize cut over all else. I have owned many diamonds along the way and know first hand the frustration in either not being able to trade or to have a trade in policy wherein you must trade up 50% or two attributes higher. I would have loved to have had the trade in policy that I have now many years ago. All things considered, I am very happy that I made the decision to go for the super ideal cut stone!
 

gm89uk

Brilliant_Rock
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May 26, 2015
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1,443
I have not had a wealth of hands on experience. I'm in the UK and have seen quite a few HoF.

Ideal Vs superideal is not qualitative data but a spectrum. I have an ideal none H&A, I can differentiate the slight difference in faceting the on and off of the pavilion mains happens Slightly more predictability in H&A but I cannot say it is superior in light performance and certainly they are details I never would have noticed if it wasn't for Pricescope and looking at an enormous amount of online stones and material.

I would buy a superideal if:

1) I could lower clarity, stay eye clean and achieve the same carat for similar price Vs another ideal
2) For certain carat weights such as 1.7/1.8 onwards, where fantastically cut ideals are of limited supply, sometimes it can be the same price to buy a superideal with your desired specs (such as if you wanted a smaller table etc)
3) in need for upgrade policy.

Reasons against superideal:

1) generally with patience, there are many examples of near H&A none superideal stones that I cannot imagine anyone noticing a difference (usually priced less)

Superideals have a price tag due to labour and rough sacrifice, but also brand.

2) some amazing diamond proportions are excluded (35.5/40.6), where if well cut, could appeal to many.

Essentially <1.6 carat I think a well cut ideal is quite easy to find, after that superideal looks more appealing. Generally you can go to a higher carat but if you didn't want to go too big, then superideals are super convenient.
 

Arcadian

Ideal_Rock
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Sep 17, 2008
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6,807
I will tell you as a non diamond person, that I can see the difference. My current diamond studs I did NOT go the S-I route but I will on the upgrade. I can't speak for anyone else, but for me, its a distinct enough difference. Thats not to say I don't enjoy my earrings, I do. I got a great deal on them, but S-I stones have a certain thing (maybe a on off pattern, at least thats what I see) to them you don't see outside of those stones.

I'm a colored stone girl to the extent that I think of diamonds as great accent stones. That said, though I can very well see the color between an F,H, and an I, when choosing my own studs I had to take color out of the equation, because for me its the least important aspect of a diamond.

The reality is, if someone can't see the difference, why should they pay for it? I'll be that person that says they shouldn't. But I rarely give any type of diamond advice so take my post with a gain of salt:P2
 

gm89uk

Brilliant_Rock
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1,443
@MissGotRocks thanks for sharing. Although the stone on the left is beautiful I do think with some patience you can get ideals far closer to superideal without the obstruction that you see. This is a problem you could have foreseen before you bought, from a single well taken photo.

Now if I was buying a non superideal, I would avoid ones with such contrast patterns. Many none superideals are out there wouldn't suffer the same dark areas that bothered you, without the price tag, if you were stringent and patient in your selection.
 

bmfang

Brilliant_Rock
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Jan 2, 2017
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Now I drink Glenlivet when I am slumming and Oban when I want a good scotch, either without mixers, usually neat, but maybe one cube of ice if I want something cold.
@Wink, from one scotch aficionado to another, if you like Oban, you would most likely like Dalwhinnie, Old Pulteney and Highland Park. Those are grand drams.
 

ratatat

Shiny_Rock
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Jul 12, 2017
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253
I'm actually seriously considering taking a ring making class at the local community college or enrolling in online ISG courses so I can get into JCK next year.

This is coming from absolutely 0 interest in diamonds or jewelry 6 months ago. Someone please help!
I feel like I need help too :shifty:
 

cflutist

Ideal_Rock
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Jul 12, 2004
Messages
3,891
Agreed with the peace of mind thing too, although for me personally, I can definitely discern the difference in cuts. RE the colour vc clarity preference, it's not so straightforward. I'd be comfortable with super eyelean Si1 in earrings. For rings, I'd prefer very clean VS2 or preferably VS1. Colour-wise, I don't think I could go lower than an H and am in fact thinking of upgrade my ering to a G, even if it'd be done at the expense of size. So, was initially thinking a 7ct+ H eyeclean VS2, now that goal post has been moved to a 6ct+ G VS1 or a super eye-clean VS2. But I will definitely NOT compromise on cut, going for super-ideal this time but this might mean another 6 yrs or so of waiting for this HG.
Why don't you just have Paul Slegers cut you a 6ct G-VS1 to order? Although a lot smaller than that, I have a Cut to Order CBI.
 
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