Archive for Q&A

Randy,

I am looking for a 1 carat or larger G color Princess cut diamond for $6000-$6500 budget. What clarity and cut grades should I be looking at? Why are cut grades for Princess diamonds not listed on the certs? Can I trust the cut that James Allen lists with the diamond?

Thanks,

R

Answer:

I have some good news for you. Given the size and color\clarity grade you are looking for I think your budget is too high! You should be able to find a beautiful diamond in the $5000-$5500 range.  As for clarity I would stick with a VS2 if possible. In many cases you can even drop to an SI1 with a Princess cut and still find a clean diamond and a great value- as a rule of thumb I start out looking for VS2. I do think you can afford to go down in color to H (and even I ) without sacrificing and having the diamond look yellow.

As for Princess cut not being on the certification- no fancy shaped diamonds have Cut listed on the cert. There is a broad leeway given to the retailer in terms of specifying the cut grade and you do need to be careful. One thing to look at (at least in Princess) is that the ratio of the length to width be as close to 1 as possible. The closer to one you are the more perfect square the diamond is.  I would not recommending going with anything over a 1.05 ratio.

Some other things to look for in a Princess are:

          A depth of 65% to 75%

          Table below 75%

          Polish and Symmetry at least  Good

Given all this I would recommend this 1.00 G-VS2  diamond on James Allen.  It comes in at jut over $5000 so leaves you lots of room for a really nice setting.

http://www.jamesallen.com/diamonds/G-VS2-Ideal-Cut-Princess-Diamond-1490680.asp

Randy

Categories : Home, Q&A
Comments (0)

Randy,

Your site is really a wealth of information – thanks so much for organizing and putting this up.

My girlfriend and I are getting engaged soon and have been talking about diamonds. She is convinced that since she is getting a white gold setting we need to look at F or G color diamonds but after reading your site it looks like we can go for an H color. Does the color of the setting really make a big difference? If we do go with white gold can I still get an H color and be safe? The diamonds we are looking at are between 1.15 and 1.25 carat and generally in the VS2 clarity range.

Thanks,

Marc

Marc,

Thanks for writing in and I am thrilled that you and your girlfriend found the site useful.  You should definitely be looking at H color diamonds- with a white gold setting I would probably not recommend going to a J color but I have no problem recommending H color.

I noticed that you mention color, clarity and carat size – but you left to the most important of the 4Cs! Remember always look at the cut of the diamond as well as the other 4Cs. You didn’t mention a budget range you were looking at but here is a diamond that is a 1.2 carat  H-VS2 that looks great. If it’s not within your range let me know and I will help you find one that meets your budget.

http://www.jamesallen.com/diamonds/H-VS2-Ideal-Cut-Round-Diamond-1483121.asp

Randy

Categories : Home, Q&A
Comments (0)

Q:

I am interested in buying diamond stud earings for my wife. I have
been told that for earings, better to get bigger size than quality of
diamond. Do you agree with that? Also – What cut, clarity, etc. should
I be interested in AND what size should I expect to be able to find
for my budget? I am willing to increase my budget number a bit if it
proves to provide a fairly substantial upgrade in size. Thanks for
your help!

A:

I agree that for diamond stud earrings you should focus less on quality. For the size you are looking at (based on budget) you don’t need to look at anything over an H-SI1. What is important is the quality of the matching- how close the 2 diamonds look alike.

Based on the budget you provided you are looking at about a 3/4 carat total weight for the pair of earrings.

Take a look at this pair and let me know what you think:

http://www.jamesallen.com/diamond-studs/earrings/item_421-8223.asp

Randy

 

 

Categories : Home, Q&A
Comments (0)

Question:

I need to find the best value for my money getting as close to 1 Ct as possible. She prefers white gold or platinum and a pear shaped diamond.  Any suggestions? Which should I look for first….cut clarity or color?

This is so confusing!!
J

Answer:
Thanks for writing in and don’t worry- I am here to help!

As with all diamonds, I always recommend you start with cut – all around it has the greatest impact on how well your diamond will sparkle.

For a Pear shape diamond you want to look at a stone that has a length to width ration of no less then 1.5 and no more then 1.75. Anything in between is acceptable. Within this range the smaller the ratio the more “short and fat” the diamond will look and the higher that number (closer to 1.75) the longer and thinner – these are just 2 different looks and there is no “better” as long as you are in this range.

Be careful, cut grade is not indicated on the certificate of Pear shapes so always see a picture of the actual diamond before buying to make sure it looks symmetrical and has a nice rounded round side.

Clarity- the good news is that Pear shaped diamonds hide inclusions really well so you can be very comfortable going with an SI1\SI2 clarity grade and still be getting a clean diamond.

Color – Pear shapes tend to show off color more then others so your absolute minimum is an H color and unlike in rounds- I would even look at G color.

Here are 2 diamonds I picked out for you that are very good options – clean and within budget.

http://www.jamesallen.com/diamonds/H-SI1-Ideal-Cut-Pear-Diamond-1478003.asp?a_aid=4d4527e041e66

http://www.jamesallen.com/diamonds/G-SI1-Ideal-Cut-Pear-Diamond-1459255.asp?a_aid=4d4527e041e66

I hope this has helped and let me know if you have any questions.
Randy

Categories : Home, Q&A
Comments (0)

Question:

Hi,

I ready you article about clarity and I decided to go for a SI clarity diamond little over 1ct. I looked at few on James Allen and I have narrowed down a few. I would appreciate if you can give your views on them and help select best value for money or if you can suggest something from the site.

http://www.jamesallen.com/diamonds/G-SI2-Ideal-Cut-Round-Diamond-1460530.asp
http://www.jamesallen.com/diamonds/I-SI1-Ideal-Cut-Round-Diamond-1433122.asp
http://www.jamesallen.com/diamonds/H-SI2-Ideal-Cut-Round-Diamond-1468689.asp

Thanks,
A

Answer:
Thanks for writting in and I am happy to help you out.

Of the 3 you sent me the only one I really like ot ths middle I-SI1 http://www.jamesallen.com/diamonds/I-SI1-Ideal-Cut-Round-Diamond-1433122.asp?a_aid=4d4527e041e66 – The SI2 has inclusions that are dead center and will be very visible.

Here is one other options that you can look at. http://www.jamesallen.com/diamonds/I-SI2-Ideal-Cut-Round-Diamond-1460002.asp?a_aid=4d4527e041e66  It’s a really nice cut and size wise is only 0.02 smaller – no way anyone will see the difference.

Randy

Hello Randy,

Thanks for the suggesting a great diamond. I have placed order for it in a 6 prong platinum 2mm knife edge setting from James Allen. It will be delivered to me by next week.

Thanks again,
I really appreciate it.
Regards, A

 

Categories : Home, Q&A
Comments (0)

Randy,

Thanks for your amazing site and service. I am totally in the dark about diamonds so coming across the information you have here has been invaluable.

I have been looking at some of the diamonds on James Allen and have settled on 3 I really like. One of the 3 has a cut of True Hearts but I can’t find any reference to this on the GIA cert. If I do purchase a True Hearts cut diamond do I still need to pay as much detail to the diamond color and clarity? Is it worth the extra money?

Thanks again for all your help!

Answer:

Thanks for the compliment and I am really happy you found the site helpful in your diamond buying process!

True Hearts  is a James Allen trademark term used to describe diamonds that are cut to a strict set of Ideal proportions. When viewed using a special viewer (called a Firescope) a pattern of well formed hearts and arrows appear on the diamond table.  The cut has becoming popular since the mid 1990’s and has become a heavy marketing tool of the industry as less then 1% of diamonds “earn” the distinction of being called Hearts and Arrows.  On a GIA certificate a H&A diamond will have a cut grade of Excellent and on an AGS you will see a “Triple 0” grade for the diamond.

It is important to note that:

1)       Neither GIA or AGS will indicate that a diamond as Hearts and Arrows.
2)       A Hearts and Arrows designation refers only to the cut and not to the color or clarity of the diamond. I have personally seen diamonds that are H&A but have such low quality clarity grades that I would never recommend them.  For example: http://www.jamesallen.com/diamonds/E-SI2-Ideal-Cut-Round-Diamond-1362093.asp)
3)      A Hearts and Arrows designation does not at all take into account diamond color- the same rules of non H&A diamonds apply – in round diamonds look at an H color as your sweet spot. (read more on this page)
4)      Just because a diamond is listed as H&A it does not mean it will be more brilliant then a non-H&A diamond that has an Excellent cut. When looking at a diamond you need to take into account its overall cut and appearance not just the fact that it meets Ideal proportions.

 Is a True Hearts diamond on James Allen worth more then a “regular” Ideal cut? Not necessarily. I have seen some great True Hearts diamonds that I recommended to people but on the other hand I am all about bang for the buck and there have been many times where I would reomcmend a regular Ideal cut over a true Hearts.

 Hope that helps!

 Randy

 

Categories : Home, Q&A
Comments (0)

So after an exciting win, the New York Giants Greg Jones topped of his Super Bowl performance by proposing to his girlfriend, Mandy Piechowski,  on the sidelines. My inside sources tell me his diamond ring was a large round stone set in a band surrounded by diamonds studs.  I have not been able to (yet) get particulars on the 4Cs but I am sure that had he come to me for advice I could have saved him a bundle!

As for the proposal – she said yes!

 

Categories : Home, Q&A, Uncategorized
Comments (0)

Question:

I recently purchased a certified diamond from a local retailer. The diamond came with a GIA certificate but I am now starting to have some concerns that the certificate doesn’t really belong to this diamond. Is there any way for me to verify that the certificate is real?

Thanks,

Answer:
Bob,

Great question. Depending on the diamond clarity you may be able to see for yourself. The certificate should have a diagram on it which shows the inclusions and imperfections on the diamond. If the diamond is an SI2 or lower you can use a magnifying glass and match up the inclusions for yourself. If you have an SI1 or higher you may have to go to a jeweler and ask him to look at it using a loupe. The jeweler should be able to tell you if the diamond grading report that you were given matches up with the actual diamond.

If you are interested in just verifying that the actual report is real you can use the GIA online report heck service located at:

http://www.gia.edu/reportcheck/

Of course buying from a reputable jeweler such as James Allen is a great way to avoid the situation you are in in the future!

 Randy

 

Categories : Home, Q&A
Comments (0)

I am going to be proposing to my girlfriend in 2 weeks but I am getting a little nervous because I have still not picked out her ring. I am working with a $10,000 budget for both the diamond and setting. I can really use your help to choose a ring that will make a really great impression! She wants a round diamond but neither of us have any other idea of what to look for.

Thanks,
A

A,
Can you tell me a little about what type of setting you are looking for? Will it be a solitaire or will it have side stones? It can make a big difference in terms of price. You can use this page as a guide:

http://www.jamesallen.com/engagement-rings/

Randy,
We are looking for a solitaire setting – classic Tiffany style. Thanks so much for your help.

A

Read More→

Categories : Home, Q&A
Comments (0)

Hi,

 I know this is going to be a very broad question but for a round shape and a $5000 budget what diamond color and clarity should I be looking at? I read every one of your pages and love the info but I am still having some trouble picking out just the right combination.  

Any suggestions?

Thanks,

R

Categories : Home, Q&A
Comments (0)