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Everything posted by hermann

  1. hermann

    Welcome To Beyond The Bling

    Welcome to Beyond The Bling, an area to discuss anything beyond diamonds or jewelry. This is pretty much a free-for-all. Discuss anything, but please follow these rules: 1. Don't initiate discussions about highly-charged topics. This mostly means politics and religion. 2. Don't go into in-depth discussions about diamonds or jewelry here. Use the other forums for that. 3. Keep it fairly clean. PG-13 or cleaner. 4. The site's Terms of Service and the forum's Forum Rules always apply. 5. Be Nice.
  2. hermann

    Which 1.3 Diamond Should I Choose?

    Please cool it.
  3. hermann

    How To Tell If Its A Diamond?

    We recently did a software upgrade, and the links along the top got messed up, including the search box and the forum rules link. Working with software vendor on a fix...
  4. hermann


    Hi all, just to acknowledge and explain the outage that started in the early hours of Sunday morning, through Monday morning. The cause of the problem was simple -- a billing issue. Google Cloud shut us down without notification. To complicate the issue, Google Cloud also does our monitoring, so that was disabled as well, which meant I did not get any kind of notification of the outage. Anyway we're back up now, no data was lost, etc. Apologies for the outage! Hermann
  5. hermann

    Forum upgrade

    Hi everyone, happy spring! Today I upgraded the forum software again. It appears to be a fairly major software with new features, but as always, if you find any issues or quirks, don't be shy in reporting them.
  6. hermann

    Where To Buy Synthetic Diamonds

    denverappraiser has contributed the following update: It’s been 10 years since I wrote the above. Quite a bit has changed, but quite a bit also remains the same. More than half of those companies have gone out of business, and several new ones have appeared. It’s much more diversified now with bunches of smaller players in China, Russia and elsewhere and a couple of giant factories. A few big new retailers have appeared including Diamond Foundry and Brilliant Earth. That’s the way business evolves. Good luck guys. White synthetics have gone mainstream. Nearly every jeweler CAN get them, and quite a few do. If your favorite jeweler doesn’t have a display, ask about it. The pitfalls are largely the same. Synthetic doesn’t mean the same thing as synthetic diamond. CZs are synthetics. Moissanite is synthetic. Synthetic white sapphire and synthetic spinel can look pretty diamond like for 1/100 the price. Pay attention to the fine print. It matters. Synthetic diamonds are still expensive to make. Depending on how and where you shop they bring 15-30% less than comparable natural stones. If they’re significantly less than that, it’s a big red flag. They also are limited in size. 3 carats is HUGE. If the seller you’re considering has giant stones available, especially if they’re very attractive prices, this is a sign of trouble. The other big change is that the labs are now in this in a big way. GIA, GCAL, and IGI all offer grading reports for lab grown diamonds. That has opened up it’s own set of troubles in terms of trying to compare one against another and I do have some opinions here but all three are reliable labs and all three can be trusted in terms of stone identification. If you can’t tell, don’t buy it. The burden of proof is on them to prove what they have, not you to assume it. ANYONE selling real synthetic diamonds is going to be proud of them. They won’t be using words like ‘hybrid’. They won’t be claiming a miraculous new product that only they have. They’ll have one of the above lab documents.
  7. hermann

    Do these look like diamonds to you

    All posts/topics re this subject merged into this one thread.
  8. Hi KittyKat, Our traffic is as strong as ever and continues to grow, but yes the amount of posting has decreased. I believe both of these trends are due to the increase of mobile devices, which make it very easy to surf & find information at any time (thus leading to high traffic), but make it more difficult to type & post (due to teeny tiny screens/keyboards). Re your Forum ideas: we do have an "insider's forum" but it is only available to A-List, as for "how-to's", I feel it is covered within the massive amounts of postings already existing. All one needs to do is search, and ye shall (usually) find. We've been around for 18 years, so there's a very good likelihood these topics have been discussed & covered several times. Of course if you think up a topic that isn't covered, it's easy to start a new discussion... "Buy/Sell/Trade" we do have the classifieds, but maybe it should cover "wanted to buy"? We're living in interesting times for sure. Sometimes it feels like every bit of knowledge in our increasingly small universe is now contained within our computers...
  9. I get by with a little help from my friends :). The reality is, if Neil or Davide or any other well-known members nominate you, then you'd be in.
  10. From your other thread it sounds like you're starting to become a member of the trade, therefore all those rules would apply to you. Probably the most effective way for you to use Diamond Review is to contribute as a member of the trade, and once you become better known within our community and your contributions reach a certain threshold, you can join A-List and get those benefits. The idea is that while you're not permitted to outwardly self-promote by pasting link after link to your e-bay pages & so forth, you can certainly become a well-known and helpful member of our community who is known to specialize in X, Y, and Z, and then when someone need X, Y, or Z, they will instantly think of you. For example, if you needed a jewelry appraisal, who's the first person you would think of? Neil, probably. Yet Neil has never ever self-promoted outwardly. We just know him to be an incredibly knowledgeable and helpful person, and he's a very nice guy too. So we go to him. That's how it works.
  11. Hi all, We have completed a major forum upgrade AND server upgrade. In a nutshell, here is what was done: Server moved to Google Cloud infrastructure. We've always prided ourselves in providing a fast website, and now we are leveraging Google's speedy infrastructure to power Diamond Review as well. Full upgrade of software stack. We're now running the latest Linux, the latest webserver, the latest database, etc. Full upgrade of forum software. Our forum vendor released a major upgrade a few months ago, and we are now running it. This required a full reimplementation of the styling, to fit Diamond Review. I think the new forum software looks & feels awesome, and I hope you agree! Full conversion of website to modern middleware. Parts of Diamond Review were still using the very old CGI framework. No longer. https is now standard. All access to Diamond Review is now strongly encrypted, for extra security & peace of mind. Lots of new extras: Upgraded monitoring, enhanced backups, new CRM system for incoming requests through "Contact Us", and much more. We have thoroughly tested everything. However, if anything looks funny or does not appear to be working as expected, please first click "refresh" on your browser and clear your browser-cache first, then if the problem persists, please do report it to us. Thanks, Hermann DiamondReview.com
  12. hermann

    Major across-the-board upgrade

    Hi everyone, today I took care of some minor issues as reported by several users following the major upgrade last month: Fixed uploading of images. Prior to the fix, the size limit was 1MB. It has been increased to 10MB. Uploading (as opposed to linking) is the preferred way to post images. Blocked ability of an OP to delete an entire thread, including posts by other users. This was a new setting with the new version of the software that came with a poor choice for a default. In any case, it is fixed now. Signatures are back. This is only available for A-List Members, Jewelers, and Appraisers. Default avatar is user's initials. Consistent with current UX practices & expectations. Upgraded to latest forum software. Just house-cleaning. While upgrading, I also noticed some styling issues on Chrome, that were present even after hitting the "Refresh" button. It appears some of the old pre-upgrade CSS files were stuck in the cache. It took a full browser "clear cache" to fix. Just FYI to anyone having issues on Chrome. Thanks to everyone who reported issues!
  13. hermann

    Thoughts on this diamond?

    Cleaning house today; just a quick update, the issue of uploading images has been fixed.
  14. In general I much prefer you (and everyone else) upload images directly into this site. Notwithstanding any hiccups from the recent upgrade, we can handle images, and are happy to do so, to avoid exactly this issue.
  15. hermann

    Thoughts on this diamond?

    What kind of file were you trying to upload?
  16. hermann

    The Best Online Jewelry Shop

    Yep. Gone.
  17. If you have feedback about Diamond Review or have questions about the site itself, please post them here. Please continue to post your questions about diamonds or jewelry on The Rock. Any diamond or jewelry questions mistakenly posted here will be moved by yours truly. If your feedback, question, or comment is of a private nature, feel free to click "Contact Us" at the bottom right of the site, and send a private message. Likewise, if you're unable to post on the Forum because you're having problems registering, please feel free to contact us directly.
  18. hermann

    Urgent Advice Needed

    Hi all, just a gentle reminder, please keep the discussion civil. Remember -- Be Nice.
  19. hermann

    Looking To Decide Between 3 Diamonds - Please Help

    Welcome to Diamond Review! There's a link labeled "Forum Rules" on the top left of your browser. Those are the formal rules. Avoiding "the wrath of Hermann" :-) is easy..... just be nice! That's captured in the last rule, which says:
  20. hermann

    Ideal Princess Cut

    It is indeed. Neil, with your permission I would be happy to add this to a tutorial page (most of which are in sore need of updates anyway!)
  21. hermann

    Budget For Princess Cut?

    Welcome, Bryan!
  22. We had an unplanned downtime today. This is our first major downtime in 15 years of operation. Downtime started at around 8:00am PT, and lasted until 1:30pm PT. We lost the past 24-48 hours worth of posts. I'm still not sure what happened, but the server started crashing sometime over the past 24 hours, and reached a point where it could not be restarted. I ended up having to rebuild everything from backups. The good news is the rebuild required new server software, so we're now up to date. I am still fixing a few things, but if you spot any issues, please report them. Apologies for any inconvenience!
  23. hermann

    Which Diamond To Choose??

    Joshua, you're suspended from posting on Diamond Review for 30 days, for violation of Forum Rules. Update: After further discussion, suspension reduced to 7 days.
  24. hermann

    Woman Swallows $5,000 Diamond

    Too interesting/funny to not pass around. This made headline news on CNN, lol. http://www.cnn.com/video/#/video/us/2013/04/10/dnt-man-finds-and-returns-civil-war-ring.wusa Apparently she was attending some sort of gala/fundraiser where they had passed around 500 champagne glasses; 499 had fake diamonds, and 1 was real... hers. Needless to say, she had to call her doctor to "retrieve" the diamond