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Certification Query


mattsim1
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Hello there,

 

This is more a query than a question, but didn't know where to ask. So posting this here. (sorry)

 

I am planning to purchase a 2 carat ring from Jared. As a first time buyer, i am sceptical and more concerned on the kind of certification provided. I would like to know if anyone has a GSI certification and what that means exactly. Do I have to worry about it when I buy the 2 carat that is GSI Certified, as opposed to any other certification.

 

Looking forward to your opinions and peace of mind!

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GSI is a Canadian gemmological services laboratory.

 

"any other" is a bit broad... and I'd rather have a GSI report than an EGL Israel one, but yes, I'd be concerned.

 

The reason for having expert 3rd parties (gem labs) provide grading reports is because tiny details of colour, clarity, cut quality and absence of enhancements/treatments have a large effect on fair prices of diamonds, and these details are typically impossible for consumers to assess precisely (sometimes these are difficult calls even for industry experts).

 

The lab report provides (or should provide) a confirmation of the vendor's claims about these attributes; in practice, the vendor is often relying on the report to provide the description, which is - in a sense - defeating the original purpose: remember, you didn't choose the lab; the vendor did. Since it becomes the only element on which you can form a judgement (other than your own personal grading skills), it is very important for the report to be reliable. Considering there are no specific requirements for opening and operating a gem lab, the default answer to that question is "no, it's not reliable" unless you find evidence to the contrary.

 

Speaking as a consumer, I would not buy a diamond from an unknown/not trusted seller (and I definitely do not trust Jared on gem descriptions) without a GIA, AGS, HRD or Gübelin report. I would not buy a 2 carat diamond from anybody without one of these reports, unless it's a very cheap stone (as in: costing less than $2000); bear in mind that a GIA report on a 2 carat diamonds costs about $170 plus shipping, so it's a small fraction of the typical overall cost of the item.

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  • 1 month later...

I had bought a 2 carat diamond pendant from R&R jewelers, that has a GSI certification and it roughly cost me around $6000, which I found is at par with the standards applied. Though I don't know about Jared and their jewelry, I see no issue with you going ahead with the purchase, when it comes to price point.

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[...] which I found is at par with the standards applied [...]

1. Which standards? Applied by whom?

2. How do you know it is at par?

 

What I mean is the following: here is a list of 600+ ~1 ct diamonds, graded F (so they should definitely appear white) VVS2 (so they definitely should have no visible inclusions without magnification).  http://www.diamondreview.com/diamonds/?sortOrder=price&sortDesc=1&fShape=Rnd&fCaratLo=1.00&fCaratHi=1.05&fColorLo=F&fColorHi=F&fClarityLo=VVS2&fClarityHi=VVS2&fCutLo=&fCutHi=poor&fDepthLo=50.0&fDepthHi=80.0&fTableLo=40.0&fTableHi=80.0&fSymLo=&fSymHi=poor&fPolLo=&fPolHi=poor&fCulLo=&fCulHi=vlarge&fFlrLo=&fFlrHi=vstrong&fPriceLo=0&fPriceHi=1000000

 

Prices go from just over $12k to just over $4k. That's a factor of 3, yet the "standards" appear to be the same. Lo and behold, the GIA stones that are well cut and have no fluorescence are all in the top part of the range; the "other labs" are all at the bottom.

Edited by davidelevi
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This is the same issue that has come up countless times in this and other forums.  You would do well to read some previous posts (you should search for posts about EGL grading vs GIA - The GSI is less covered).  The bottom line is that diamonds are priced by professional diamond merchants based on what the diamonds actually are.  The merchant then has to sell the stones to a relatively unknowing public.  Given stone X worth $5000, the merchant has a choice to submit the stone to a serious lab (GIA, AGS) and receive a real grade, let's call it G-SI1 for the sake of this example, or submit it to an industry friendly lab with a history of loose grading (EGL, GSI, etc...) from which he will get the same stone graded as an E-VS1.  Which do you think will sell better? stone X with a grade of G-SI1 or the same stone X with a grade of E-VSI?  They are both priced at $5000.

The obvious answer is stone X with a grade of E-VS1 because it appears so cheap to the uninformed consumer. But is the consumer getting a better deal?  Absolutely not. 

If anything, the consumer is now buying a blind item because the paper supposedly qualifying the stone is known to be overinflated, but there is no consistency as to how much it is overinflated.  The bottom line is that in order to make an informed purchase, you must be able to rely on the grading report.  GIA and AGS are the most consumer friendly (accurate) in the US.  If you rely on their grade, the rest is a matter of finding the deal that works best for you.  But at the very least, you should start by knowing what you are buying.

Edited by GeorgeDI
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Hello there,

 

This is more a query than a question, but didn't know where to ask. So posting this here. (sorry)

 

I am planning to purchase a 2 carat ring from Jared. As a first time buyer, i am sceptical and more concerned on the kind of certification provided. I would like to know if anyone has a GSI certification and what that means exactly. Do I have to worry about it when I buy the 2 carat that is GSI Certified, as opposed to any other certification.

 

Looking forward to your opinions and peace of mind!

It’s a confusing topic but part of the answer is in your headline and post. You used the word ‘certification’ no less than 5 times.

 

The documents that come with diamonds are certifying nothing, not even the ones from me or from GIA. What they are is an opinion about certain attributes of the stone by a particular grader or lab. Everyone has an opinion but the first question in all such cases is who it is and why should you believe them. The burden is on the lab and the people who are asking you to rely on them to convince you that their opinions have merit and the default answer is no. It gets worse. If you decide that a seller is asking you to make a purchase decision based on a lab that you decide is unreliable, don’t just hold it against the lab, hold it against the dealer who is asking you to rely on them.

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