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Narrowed My Search to 4 Diamonds - Thoughts Appreciated


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My plan for an engagement ring was to take the diamond I purchase and have it set in a pave/cathedral setting that will be of white gold (and that would not include a halo). My initial goal was to get a diamond meeting the following parameters:


- 3 carats;

- Color of "I" or better;

- Clarity that is eye clean, (or absent being able to confirm the clarity, of VS2 or better);

- In the price range of $16k - $19k.


I realized that I would likely have to scale back my carat/color/clarity requirements just a bit to stay within my budget. I have narrowed my search down to the 4 diamonds detailed below (all of which I found online). I would love to get some thoughts on:


1) Are any of these particularly good/bad deals;

2) Are the depth / table % on diamonds #1 and #2 particularly concerning; and

3) Am I likely to find a bigger or better quality diamond at the same price, or the same diamond at a better price if I go through a local jeweler who would have access to Rapnet?

4) Will I able to find a jeweler who will take the time to find me a diamond with a listed clarity of SI1/SI2 that is eye clean, enabling me to get a larger carat size and/or better color for the price I am considering, especially in light of the reduced ability to actually go and look at diamonds in person in light of COVID-19 Issues?

Thanks in advance for your thoughts!





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Hi Jonathan,

Welcome to DiamondReview!

To your questions:

1. It really depends on what your priorities are. Especially in a fairly large stone, J may be a fairly visible tint. I would pretty much immediately discard the 3.01 because apart from bragging rights it's no larger than the others (and in fact visibly smaller than the 2.70. A cut grade of "Good" is not good...

2. Depth and table are far less important than crown and pavilion angles in assessing cut; it may be faster for you to give us the GIA report numbers, so we can see all of the info available on them, rather than pestering you for "and what about this?"

Also, note that GIA does not use the word "Ideal" anywhere in its reports; this is vendor marketing... (and FWIW, none of the 4 strike me as likely paragons of cut from the information available) 

3. A local jeweller is very unlikely to "save you money". First of all, practically everybody has access to Rapnet; Blue Nile (which I guess is where you found these 4) uses wholesalers that advertise their stones on Rapnet too. Secondly a local jeweller will have higher overheads than a pure internet-based broker like Blue Nile. What the local jeweller CAN do - and it's extremely valuable - is to get stones for you to see and evaluate, and provide advice based on his/her expertise (unlike BN, which has frankly got little expertise in assessing diamonds; their business model is predicated on diamonds being totally commoditised).

4. That is much more likely - and in fact is the great advantage of dealing with smaller/more service-oriented outfits. Which incidentally can be truly local or still be internet-based/remote dealing, but they can get the stones in, shoot comparative videos and photos and give you advice based on seeing the diamonds, rather than leaving you to make up your own mind on inadequate and difficult-to-compare information or third-hand reports of "the wholesaler said to the gemmologist that the diamond is eye-clean"

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At least around here (Colorado), most local jewelers actually are open although they have weird and changing restrictions on things like plastic shields, gloves and they like.  It's inconvenient but not really a deal killer.  They ARE prepared to show what they're selling.  The rules are different in different states and even different counties but don't just assume that COVID has them closed.  

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For a correctly graded and undamaged 3.0+/GIA/VS2/I/VG+/VG+/VG+, the median price is about double your budget at the discounty type dealers. Most B&M stores will be more than that.  I, of course, understand the desire to push for a bargain but pushing for half of market value is asking for troubles that don't show up in the advertising. 



Edited by denverappraiser
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