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Looking For Estimates On Stone Pricing


jim_0068
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Hello

 

I have been doing some research for a diamond purchase for an engagement ring. I went to the local jeweler my family has been using for roughly 13 years and he gave me a really good price on a stone that seemed to be phenominal:

 

Round

1.51ct

H color

SI2

H&A premium cut

EX/EX symmetry/polish

 

Really looked nice both under "normal" light and also the "jewelry store" light. However this is a EGL certified ring and from my research into this whole process i'm a little wary; especially since the color and clarity could be lower than what's stated. He offered me a price of $7200 on the stone (my budget is up to 10k for the stone).

 

-------------

 

So right now i have been looking around and this is basically what i'm looking for:

 

Style: Round

Budget: Up to 10k for the stone

Carat: 1.5X

Color: F-G

Clarity: Si1 or Si2

Cut: ideal to very good

 

From the users on this site do you think i can find something in this budget? I live in Chicago and have already been recommended to go to Windy City and plan too and i've already mentioned i've been to my jeweler. Last the jewel and gem show is coming to Chicago later this month and i have a hunch i might find my best deal/stone there.

 

Does anyone have any recommendations/comments on what i'm looking for and the price i'm willing to spend?

 

Thanks for any help

Jim

Edited by jim_0068
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Hello Jim,

 

It's a pretty broad range of specs, but you should be able to find a good stone within your budget. That's assuming you want a round, and assuming you want a GIA or AGSL graded stone (with those specs, you really should). If you want a square cut then it's even easier to stick to your budget, but be aware that the stone will probably look smaller. Some thoughts/ideas on other things:

 

Colour: you should try to narrow your range to make it easier on yourself to find a stone. I'd consider taking a look at F-G stones only; the difference between F and D is hard to see when stones are unset and in grading conditions, and all but impossible to detect in real life. On the other hand, if you are comfortable with your budget (remember that a nice setting can easily get into the thousands), there's no need to go down to H.

 

Clarity: since you are considering SI stones, look at the inclusion maps provided on the grading papers; the largest/most visible inclusion is usually listed first - ask the dealer to help you locate it, then check if you can see it without a loupe while holding the stone 10-12 inches away from your eyes. If you can't, then it's unlikely any of your fiancee's friends would be able to... :o

 

Carat: staying below the magical 1.50 will help a bit, without necessarily looking that much smaller, especially if well cut. Look at stones 1.40-1.49 too!

 

Cut: it's by far what matters most, and it's also the most difficult to assess objectively. If you have browsed on the forum, you will have found differing opinions on the value of tools like ASET, BrillianceScope (Gemex) and ISee2. My personal view is that they are useful as indications, but there's no accounting for taste, and you should avoid getting trapped into the "this is a better (and more expensive) stone - you can see it scores x% more than the other one". Unless you can see the difference (and like it), there's no value in it. Be even more suspicious of any recipes such as "only stones with x% table and y% depth will look good".

 

I would also be wary at the show. You'll probably suffer from diamond overload, and you will have limited time in which to close a deal. By any means, go there to enjoy and learn, but I would set myself a goal to come out without a purchase, rather than the opposite.

 

Good luck!

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Hi Jim,

 

I completely understand where you are at...finding a good stone and making sure that you are getting a good deal can be a very daunting task.

 

I would have to agree with just about everything the previous poster said. I have a couple of things to add....

 

First...if you are really looking for a true Ideal Cut/Ideal Cut Hearts and Arrows...stay away from EGL. As a buyer for strictly Ideal Cut H&A diamonds, to the highest tolerances, I can tell you right now that ever single cutter that I have come across who has offered me Ideal Cut H&A stones that were EGL has produced diamonds that were a disappointment to me. So, if you are looking for top eschalon diamonds...stay with AGS and GIA.

 

Second...for cut...don't strap yourself to technology, however don't ignore it. Have purchased millions of dollars of diamonds using ideal scope, ASET, brilliance scope, sarin diamension, helium scanner, ISee2, and more...I can tell you that these technologies, when applied correctly can certainly tell you when you have a great diamond on your hands. I agree that the naked eye is part of the equation, and all though one technology, when used on its own, can be mislead in one way or another, a diamond that performs in the top level across all the technologies, will be a beautiful diamond. Technology has its place, and you should use it to your advantage.

 

I do however agree that it is not advisable to limit your scope to something like....only look at diamonds that have table from 60% - 61%...this can be a strong sell tactic used by venders. I have purchased and sold many diamonds with 62% depths that have equal or greater optics to a diamodn with 60% depth. Scare tactics like this are something you should watch out for.

 

As for price...I did some quick price comparisons, and I came up with a couple of prices for you to reference in shopping....

 

(These approximate sample prices)

 

1.51 G Si1 AGS Ideal H&A $13,000 approx

 

1.50 G Si1 GIA Excellent Cut $11,500 approx

 

1.45 F Si1 GIA Excellent Cut $9,300 approx

 

This should give you a basic idea of what to go off of. I hope this helps.

 

All the best in your search!

 

Tim A.

Emma Parker & Co.

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I would agree to stick with GIA or AGS lab reports. I would also avoid a show environment. If something is wrong, how will you contact them at a later date??

If your budget is $7200 range, I can tell you that you won't get a stone that is properly graded in the 1.50 ct. range for a D-F color grade. You will have to go alot smaller than that if you want a well cut stone.

 

Realistically you would probably be closer to the 1.00 ct. weight range in the higher color grades.

 

If you go down in color to the H color range and stay with an eye clean stone (SI2) you can get a legitimate 1.50 ct. AGS ideal cut hearts and arrows for $9720 range. Also the better the cut grade, the less need for a colorless diamond grade. The cut will help the stone actually appear whiter and brighter.

Also the more info such as light performance from the brilliancescope and Isee2 the better. That will help you sort through the ideal cuts on which one is brighter with the best light performance.

 

It also doesn't hurt to get a nice warranty and upgrade policy in the future as well.

Edited by jan
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Wow

 

Thanks for all the useful and informative replies, you have basically confirmed what i had found that with the particular stone that i was looking at i was pretty much getting what i paid for, not much of a deal.

 

I have narrowed my criteria above and also for those that missed it, i have a budget up to $10k for the stone. For the setting, i am going for something more classic and elegant and even if i don't go with my jeweler for the main stone, i will probably for the setting and i know i can get a good deal on those which won't be more than $1500; unless of course where ever i buy the stone can package it all together for a nice price.

 

Thanks again and if anyone has anymore comments or suggestions they are welcome. Thanks!

 

--------------------------------------------

 

Would like to say that i have looked at more stones today and have definitely narrowed down my criteria:

F-G

1.5X carat

SI1 or SI2 with preferably table clean

Ideal or Excellent cut

 

I looked at a lot of stones today and saw even some VS2 G stones but the cut wasn't as good as some others, it lost a lot of light out the bottom. I then looked at a couple stones within my price range and characteristics and could even tell the difference between an excellent cut and a very good cut. These were all GIA stones btw. I can't believe how much different SI2s with different cuts vary. I will say that some of my finalized criteria are based around how well the diamond is cut and where the inclusions are on the stone.

 

thanks for so much help

Edited by jim_0068
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Would like your opinions on the following stones:

 

Stone #1

 

GIA

Carat: 1.71

Color: D

Clarity: SI 2 (table clean but see comments at end about mark)

Cut: Excellent

Polish: Very Good

Symmetry: Very Good

Table: 57%

Depth: 62%

Crown Height: 15%

Crown Angle: 35

Fluorescence: none

 

Price: $12,500

 

Comments: This stone is slightly outside my top budget of $10,000 by 25% however i am considering it. This diamond does have a visible inclusion on the first part outside the table (not sure what part of the diamond that's called). Easily visible under the loupe and you can find it with your naked eye too but it takes a bit to find it. HOWEVER, i am being told that due to the location it can be hidden under one of the prongs. Also the fire/brilliance/light return was phenominal both with and w/o the "jewelry lights" on. What say you experts?

 

Stone #2

 

EGL - USA

Carat: 1.51

Color: F

Clarity: SI 1 (table clean hard to see inclusions under loupe)

Cut: Ideal Cut

Polish: Excellent

Symmetry: Very Good

Table: 57%

Depth: 62.4%

Crown Height: n/a

Crown Angle: n/a

Fluorescence: faint

 

Price: Offering to me @ $8,600

 

Comments: This stone is inside my budget however the color didn't knock my socks off like the GIA D color did. However it didn't have the visible inclusion of the other one and the marks it did have was very difficult to find under the loupe. However this is an EGL stone and not GIA which i'm not sure is a good/bad thing. What say you experts?

 

Thanks for any opinions/comments

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Would like to say that i have looked at more stones today and have definitely narrowed down my criteria:

F-G

1.5X carat

SI1 or SI2 with preferably table clean

Ideal or Excellent cut

Given the ‘carved in stone’ specs of round brilliant ideal/excellent cut, 1.50ct.+ weight, accurate grading with GIA/AGS documentation, untreated natural diamond from a US discount dealer with at least reasonably good terms and conditions, your $10k or less budget roughly supports the following (and even these may not all that easy to come by without slightly pushing the budget).

 

SI1/H

SI2/F-G

 

That’s roughly what you’ve specified in your requirements above although I added H color in order to have a stab at the SI1 clarity since 'eye clean' seems to be of interest to you. I think you’re on the right track but, so far, none of the stones you’ve presented have met either your own standards or the expanded set I've given.

 

Neil

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so jan if you were my "diamond consultant" and I told you that I needed to buy a diamond that had a minimum carat rating of 1.5 what would u tell me? I mean at my budget and cut requirements I'm going to sacrifice somwewhere and to me I feel like I can on the clarity.

 

 

If you go down in color to the H color range and stay with an eye clean stone (SI2) you can get a legitimate 1.50 ct. AGS ideal cut hearts and arrows for $9720 range. Also the better the cut grade, the less need for a colorless diamond grade. The cut will help the stone actually appear whiter and brighter. This one is eye clean as well.

Also the more info such as light performance from the brilliancescope and Isee2 the better. That will help you sort through the ideal cuts on which one is brighter with the best light performance.

 

It also doesn't hurt to get a nice warranty and upgrade policy in the future as well.

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