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Is There A Noticeably Visual Difference Between 1.40 And 1.50 Ct?


Chris Player
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I'm shopping for an engagement ring.  I'm looking at a 1.41 ct, SI-1, H-color, XXX diamond priced at $8,600.  I want a 1.5 ct (XXX, H, SI-1 or 2) in the same price range.  

 

A: Is there a noticeable difference .10 (1/10) carat?

B: Can this be achieved given my budget?

 

I'm very new to this and appreciate any and all advice!! 

Cheers!

 

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A.  (1)  By heft, no.  A carat is 200 milligrams, so 10 points' difference is 20 milligrams.

(2)  By top-down view, probably not.  This is where the cubic volume of 10 points translates into a visual dimension, and almost every stone you look at is going to be within 1-2% of the same cross section.  HOWEVER, some 1.41 stones will face up larger than 1.5 carat stones... though they're not both likely to be XXX.

 

B.  Can it be achieved in your budget?  Not from current online stock; not without compromise on the cut.  A 1.5 XXX H SI-1/2 is realistically in the range of 15-20% more expensive, and a big part of that is the price bump per-carat when you hit the magic number 1.5.

 

Again, there's a qualifier: if you work the used aftermarket, which essentially means Ebay, and are very careful to buy well-described GIA stones from private owners, you could get that 20% back.  Perhaps even more -- like a ring thrown in with it.  Since you are not expert, and neither is the seller in most cases like this, there's luck and quite a bit of faith involved.  Be absolutely clear on how Ebay's "buyer protection" works for you before initiating a transaction, and follow Ebay + Paypal's rules to the letter.  (And pay your Paypal bill with a credit card rather than direct draw from your bank account, so you have an additional layer of protection on top of that.)

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Generally, I think the size difference is minimal but how minimal will largely depend on the proportions (& resulting size in mm) you are comparing.  Do you have the cut specs of the stones you are comparing?

Unfortunately I don't have the specs.  The guy I'm working with has not offered this to me.....should I request this?  I don't know how this factors into the equation.  How do proportions play into this?  thanks!

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A.  (1)  By heft, no.  A carat is 200 milligrams, so 10 points' difference is 20 milligrams.

(2)  By top-down view, probably not.  This is where the cubic volume of 10 points translates into a visual dimension, and almost every stone you look at is going to be within 1-2% of the same cross section.  HOWEVER, some 1.41 stones will face up larger than 1.5 carat stones... though they're not both likely to be XXX.

 

B.  Can it be achieved in your budget?  Not from current online stock; not without compromise on the cut.  A 1.5 XXX H SI-1/2 is realistically in the range of 15-20% more expensive, and a big part of that is the price bump per-carat when you hit the magic number 1.5.

 

Again, there's a qualifier: if you work the used aftermarket, which essentially means Ebay, and are very careful to buy well-described GIA stones from private owners, you could get that 20% back.  Perhaps even more -- like a ring thrown in with it.  Since you are not expert, and neither is the seller in most cases like this, there's luck and quite a bit of faith involved.  Be absolutely clear on how Ebay's "buyer protection" works for you before initiating a transaction, and follow Ebay + Paypal's rules to the letter.  (And pay your Paypal bill with a credit card rather than direct draw from your bank account, so you have an additional layer of protection on top of that.)

Thanks for the valuable feedback.  In your opinion, and without viewing GIA reports, etc., is $8,600 a good price for:

1.41ct

I color

SI1

Very good cut.....?

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The primary reason people buy 1.50 over 1.4x is the bragging rights of a carat and a half vs. 'almost' a carat and a half.  The same applies at several other thresholds like 2.00, 1.00, 3.00 and so on.  Whether or not that's worth it to you is a personal call, but it's worth it to enough other people to result in a significant price bump at those points (and a few others). 

 

You've given nothing like enough information to give advice on a price but you can look for comps yourself using the 'diamond finder' at the top of the page.  It's free, fast, and anonymous.  The database is full of ads from mostly discounty sorts of sellers and you can decide for yourself how your guy fits into the scheme of things.

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Thanks for the valuable feedback.  In your opinion, and without viewing GIA reports, etc., is $8,600 a good price for:

1.41ct

I color

SI1

Very good cut.....?

 

You've made two changes from the initial post.  The color has dropped from H to I, and instead of "XXX", your cut has been reduced to VG.  So, if the stone you had in the first post cost you $8600 and was correctly described, then it is a better value than the stone you now describe.

 

But this is just in terms of general information -- when you're dealing with SI stones, some may not be acceptably "eye clean" to you.  Which makes them still valuable for other purposes, like earrings or pendants, but not if it is for an engagement ring that everyone's going to be staring at in full light.  (Of the four stones I bought for my earring project, three were SI-1 -- only the fourth stone, which was an Asscher cut, did upgrade to VS-2.  But that was extra caution because of the flat faceting of an Asscher, not because I was worried about people looking deeply into my wife's ... ears.  :)

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