The Holloway Cut Advisor

1.00ct G VS1 With Holloway Cut Advisor Score Of .60

Q:

Hi Liz,

I am from Hong Kong, planning to buy a ring at 1 carat, G, VS1-VS2, and hopefully find something with a great cut.

I come across with this: http://www.bluenile.com/hk/_LD03284879

It scored an amazing HCA score of 0.6. So do you think this one is good? Is there any hidden agenda? Really appreciate your advice as this is one of the biggest purchases of my life!

Cheers,

Ivan

A:

Hi Ivan,

What is your overall diamond budget? What kind of setting are you looking for? I’ll take a look at your suggested diamond and let you know what I think shortly.

Kind Regards,

Liz

Q:

Hi Liz,

I am looking at a budget of $10K USD (plus or minus 1K) all inclusive (the stone + the setting) Also looking at the classic 6 prong setting.

This was also another one that score very high at the HCA score.. it got like a .7 I think..http://www.bluenile.com/hk/_LD03479176

I have read through your blog and really taken your tips on searching the stone…Would really appreciate if you can give me some pointers!

Cheers,

Ivan

Numbers Vs. Actual Diamond Images – What’s The Smartest Way To Spend $10,000?

A:

Hello Ivan,

Thanks so much for letting me know your diamond budget and engagement ring specifications.

Please understand that the Holloway Cut Advisor or HCA, is meant to guide you towards a good performing diamond and urges individuals to get final confirmation from other sources. It should not be used as the ultimate seal of approval for choosing a diamond. Let me repeat that, it should NOT be used as the ultimate seal of approval for choosing a diamond.

The HCA is actually a mathematical algorithm and is meant to be used as a predictor of light performance in round brilliant cut diamonds. It’s actual purpose is to be used as a rejection tool, not a confirmational tool. Did you know that it actually arrives at it’s conclusion after taking in the average measurements of 17 out of 57 facets? There is much debate within the diamond industry about the efficacy of the HCA diamond tool when it comes to predicting and evaluating a round brilliant diamond’s light performance. A very good and in-depth article on this very subject is written by Jonathan Weingarten owner of Good Old Gold. If you have a minute, read his “Consumers Guide To The HCA”.

Buy A Diamond Based On Numbers?….

Holloway Cut Advisor

The HCA Diamond Tool is used as a predictor of light performance for round brilliant diamonds. It is meant to be used as a rejection tool not a confirmation of a diamond’s light performance. The tool itself says, “HCA gets no info on symmetry, polish and minor facets; use it only to reject likely bad performing diamonds to narrow down your final selection. Ideal-Scope images and independent appraisers can help after that.’ Of note: this particular diamond (http://www.bluenile.com/hk/_LD03479176) is outside of AGS ideal cut grade proportions and just barely inside GIA’s Excellent cut grade proportions. Remember that the HCA tool doesn’t take into account all of the minor facets and cannot predict optical symmetry and contrast patterning.

Or Actual Diamond Images?

1.028ct G VS1 from Brian Gavin Diamonds

Boutique diamond vendors that specialize in super-ideal Hearts and Arrow diamonds like Brian Gavin Diamonds are fully transparent about their quality of finely cut diamonds. BGD supplies: actual magnified images, HD 360 videos, ideal-scope, ASET and H&A images to ensure you are getting the top 1% of all cut diamonds in the world.

With that being said, I wouldn’t purchase a loose diamond online using this as your only means of diamond cut and performance information.

Instead I recommend this beautiful 1.028ct G VS1 for $9,620.00: http://www.briangavindiamonds.com/diamonds/diamond-details/1.028-g-vs1-round-diamond-ags-104078700006

I prefer to advise readers on choosing a diamond from a reputable dealer that is completely transparent in their diamond selling. Vendors like Brian Gavin Diamonds specialize in top performing super-ideal diamonds that are confirmed to be in the top 1% of all cut diamonds in the world. They have everything you could possibly want to know about a diamond including magnified images, HD videos, AGS/GIA diamond grading reports, ASET images, ideal-scope images, and hearts and arrows images. Other diamond websites like Enchanted Diamonds, Zoara or Ritani offer GIA and AGS graded diamonds PLUS magnified images and HD video to properly evaluate cut, overall symmetry, and clarity grade (instant confirmation of eye-clean clarity). Overall, these are crucial tools that help in determining whether a diamond is suitable for purchase.

Therefore, unless you can find an AGS ideal graded stone from Blue Nile’s large inventory, I would recommend staying away from them. A GIA diamond grading report without additional magnified images and/or light reflector information really isn’t enough to go by in order to make an educated and informed diamond buying decision. You can still plug in the diamond’s proportions (Table %, Depth %, Crown and Pavilion Angles) and get an HCA score of less than 2.0, but this only tells you that this diamond is in the top 5% of all cut diamonds. Again, it doesn’t take into account all of the minor facets and cannot predict optical symmetry and contrast patterning. Additionally, if you have access to an ASET or ideal-scope image, this trumps any HCA score as it is the actual image of the diamond and not the result of a formula. Does this makes sense to you?

I hope I have managed to enlighten you a little about purchasing diamonds online. Many people think that the HCA diamond tool is the holy grail to diamond assessment but the truth is it is just a computer algorithm that uses trigonometry to number crunch. You simply need more information about a loose diamond to ensure that it is the light performer that you want.

Feel free to ask any questions or let me know what you think. I look forward to working with you.

Kind Regards,

Liz

Q:

Hi Liz,

Thank you so much for explaining the intricacies of diamond buying, admittedly I didn’t know half this information. The Brian Gavin diamond you recommended looks like a perfect fit. Thanks again for your time and detailed feedback! Really very eye-opening for a novice diamond buyer. Thanks again!

Cheers,

Ivan

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