I´ve been reading your website over the last two days and have learned a lot. I wanted to have your opinion on a diamond that I plan to buy for an engagement ring at Blue Nile. It´s the LD06612987, 1.31ct, I, VS2 for $9,888.00.
Do you think the Blue Nile Signature cut I´m getting is worth the price? This stone doesn’t have an AGSL certificate but the GCAL report looks pretty good to me in terms of light performance. My budget is around 10k and am looking for a round, I, VS2, excellent cut, while maximizing size. I will most probably mount on a solitaire, four or six prongs.
Thank you very much for your help and advice,
Thank you for telling me your diamond requirements and available budget. I’m glad that you have chosen this diamond as it is an excellent example of how many consumers get confused around hearts and arrow diamonds.
In this case, the 1.31ct I VS2 from Blue Nile comes with a corresponding GCAL report which allows us to see an actual magnified image as well as detailed images of it’s hearts and arrow optical symmetry. When we refer to these images we can clearly see that the hearts are not symmetrical and in fact are quite sloppy and lopsided. This translates to a non-symmetrical dark arrow contrast pattern. This is not a true hearts and arrows diamond.
Instead, I recommend this super-ideal 1.345ct I VS2 from Brian Gavin Diamonds for only $10,108.00. In order to see the visual difference that precision cutting makes, take a look at both diamonds side-by-side. The 1.345ct I VS2 is graded by AGS and has triple 0 ideal in light performance and shows symmetrical and well formed hearts and arrows.
It is easy to see why proper size, shape and placement of the pavilion facets is critical to gaining a symmetrical diamond that will maximize overall brilliance and sparkle. Misshapen hearts and arrows will result in skewed contrast symmetry which affects the brilliance and beauty of a diamond. Sadly, the 1.31ct I VS2 from Blue Nile is a very poor example of a hearts and arrows precision cut diamond. There is no point in paying extra for a diamond of this quality.
Let me know if you have any questions.
Thanks for your quick feedback. Do you think Brian Gavin Diamonds is a better retailer than Blue Nile? What do you think? With a Brian Gavin “Signature” cut quality, do you think color I and clarity VS2 are good enough parameters or is it worth going one grade above?
Thanks for your help,
Blue Nile is the oldest and largest diamond website. They have nice jewelry and offer a very large virtual list of loose diamonds. However, they are lacking in their diamond search function in various aspects. I go into this in depth in my Blue Nile review. Additionally, their Signature diamonds are not consistently cut well as we’ve already seen.
What it comes down to is transparency and providing enough information for a consumer to make an informed and educated decision. Unfortunately, Blue Nile does not have images for any of their diamonds online. This puts them at a huge disadvantage when it comes to educated consumers that prefer browsing actual images of diamonds found at: James Allen, Brian Gavin Diamonds, Enchanted Diamonds, Zoara, Victor Canera, Ritani and Leibish.
Brian Gavin is a really standout vendor in that he puts extreme emphasis on cut precision. He’s a 5th generation diamond cutter and has done much to educate the diamond industry in cut precision and light performance. All of his ‘Signature’ diamonds are owned in-house and are the best of the best in terms of light performance and scintillation. He provides tons of information on each diamond including actual magnified images, HD videos, ASET (Angular Spectrum Evaluation Tool) images, ideal-scope images, hearts and arrows images, etc. There are very few diamond vendors that know as much as Brian regarding a diamond’s overall brilliance and sparkle. He has built his business on ethical diamond selling so yes, I wholeheartedly vouch for them and do know they are a better retailer in terms of consistency in product quality.
I think an I VS2 is a great combination; it allows you to get the largest carat weight for your available budget. If you wanted to upgrade it would make sense for it to be a G or better color, because an H/I are very similar and will not be much of a difference. However, the compromise is that your diamond will be smaller.
I do think that the 1.345ct I VS2 is a gorgeous diamond and worth every penny.
Thanks again for the quick response Liz. I’ve read up on BGD and really like their diamonds. I’m thinking of pairing the 1.345ct I VS2 with his rose gold knife edge solitaire: http://www.briangavindiamonds.com/engagement-rings/solitaire/classic-style-knife-edge-18k-rose-gold-5336r18. What do you think?
You’re very welcome! I love the classic six prong solitaire and think BGD’s platinum six prong head paired with his 18k rose gold band will be stunning. 🙂 Let me know if you have additional questions!
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