2 carat diamond ring buying guide (expert ways to save big!)

2 carat diamond ring buying guide

“I’m looking for a 2 carat diamond ring. Based upon what I’ve read on your site and others, Brian Gavin seems like the way to go. All indications are that hearts and arrows diamonds offer the best light performance. Would you agree? Assuming this to be the case, would you mind making some recommendations? I’m not really ready to purchase yet, but would like to get an idea of what you recommend. I’m also wondering what you think about diamonds that weigh just short of 2 carats?”

“I know that my fiancé would like a two carat diamond ring. However it seems like I can save a lot buying a 1.90 – 1.99 carat diamond. Am I really going to see the difference between those and a 2 carat diamond ring? The two month salary rule puts me in the range of $20,000.00 for an engagement ring. But a local jeweler suggested that 3 months salary is more appropriate these days? What are your thoughts on that?”

2 carat diamond ring prices:

2 carat diamond ring prices, Brian Gavin diamond reviews, AGS 104088433004 clarityThere is a substantial price increase that occurs between the 1.99 – 2.00 carat marks. Which is why this 1.941 carat, H-color, SI-1 clarity, Brian Gavin Signature round diamond offers such a great value! The Price Per Carat (PPC) is only $10,817.00 whereas it’s $11,881.00 for this 2.143 carat, H-color, SI-1 clarity, Brian Gavin Signature round diamond.

The Light Performance of these two Brian Gavin Signature round diamonds is comparable. Both diamonds are cut like a dream and offer the same high volume of light return. Both diamonds are going to offer the same virtual balance of brilliance and dispersion. The difference in outside diameter will barely be visible if you compare the diamonds side-by-side. But if you were to compare the diamonds from across the dinner table? Forget about it. Keep in mind that there is one fifth of a carat difference in carat weight.

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How big is a 2 carat diamond?

There are a lot of factors that contribute to our perception of diamond size. People tend to shop for diamonds based on the carat weight, but I recommend focusing on visible outside diameter. To do this accurately, we need to determine the average outside diameter. Let’s use the 1.941 carat, H-color, SI-1 clarity, BGD Signature round diamond as an example of how to do this:

According to the Diamond Quality Document issued by the AGS Laboratory, the diamond measures 7.98 X 8.01 X 4.94 millimeters. The first two measurements represent the diameter of the diamond, as measured across the top surface of the diamond. The last measurement is the depth of the diamond, we’re going to ignore the last measurement for this exercise.

Add the two outside diameter measurements together: 7.98 + 8.01 = 15.99 millimeters.

Divide the sum of 15.99 millimeters by 2 = 7.995 which is the average outside diameter.

Let’s compare that with the average outside diameter of this 2.013 carat, H-color, VS-2 clarity, Brian Gavin Signature round diamond. This diamond measures 8.07 X 8.10 X 5.00 mm which averages out to 8.085 millimeters.

What do you think the odds are that you’ll be able to discern the difference between 7.995 and 8.085 millimeters?

Diamond carat weight price tiers:

There is an increase in the Price Per Carat of diamonds that occurs between the 1.99 – 2.00 carat marks. Prior to that the PPC is technically the same for diamonds weighing between 1.50 – 1.99 carats. It’s also going to be the same for diamonds weighing between 2.00 – 2.99 carats. This statement is made with the understanding that the price is different for each combination of color and clarity.

Of course, when it comes to diamond prices, nothing is ever as simple as it seems…

2 carat diamond ring, Rapaport, Rap wholesale report, guide, sheetThis is a redacted copy of the Rapaport Diamond Report, commonly referred to as Rap or the Rap Sheet. Prices are listed in grid format by range of carat weight. Users cross reference clarity and color grades per section to determine the wholesale cash asking price. The red arrow indicates what this looks like, the junction point indicates where the price would be. While it seems like the PPC is the same for each combination, nothing could be further from the truth.

It is critical to understand that diamond cut quality can influence the price by up to sixty percent! The Hearts & Arrows Super Ideal Cut Diamonds sold by Brian Gavin fetch a premium, while lesser quality diamonds cost considerably less. The fact is that it takes about four times longer to polish diamonds to the precision offered by Brian Gavin. It also requires a greater degree of skill; more expensive state-of-the-art equipment; and the wheels need to be changed out more often. Brian Gavin distinguishes himself from other diamond cutters by providing proof of diamond cut quality. ASET Scope, Hearts & Arrows Scope, and Ideal Scope images are provided for every Brian Gavin Signature diamond.

Now you know why Brian Gavin Signature round diamonds appear to be more expensive than other ideal cut diamonds. The difference in cost is not simply a matter of brand name. Brian Gavin Signature diamonds cost more because they are cut to a higher standard.

  • Super Ideal Proportions
  • Superior Optical Precision
  • Crisp & Complete Hearts & Arrows
  • Exceptional Light Performance
  • Plus all the images to back it up!

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My top picks for a 2 carat diamond ring:

Brian Gavin Diamond Reviews: AGS 104088433004

Two carat diamond ring, Brian Gavin reviews, AGSL 104088433004 hearts arrowsObviously I find myself leaning towards this 1.941 carat, H-color, SI-1 clarity, Brian Gavin Signature round diamond. Clearly the hearts pattern looks exceptional, so we know that the degree of optical precision is fantastic. The proportions of the diamond are spot-on! You can expect that the 40.8 degree pavilion angle will produce a high volume of light return. And I’m certain that the 34.8 degree crown angle will produce a virtual balance of brilliance and dispersion.

Based upon the proportions and the higher degree of optical precision, this diamond should exhibit Broad Spectrum Sparkle. That is sparkle that’s larger in size, and bolder, brighter, and more vivid (than what standard ideal cut diamonds produce). It goes without saying that this diamond is an absolute Rock Star! You’re going to need some new sunglasses!

Now sometimes people have concerns about SI-1 clarity diamonds being eye clean. The reality is that very few SI-1 clarity diamonds are actually eye clean by my standards. I’ve got sharp eyes and tend to scrutinize diamonds pretty hard, but I’m told that this diamond looks amazing! Apparently the only thing you’re going to see with the naked eye is a whole lot of drop-dead gorgeous sparkle!

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Brian Gavin Diamond Reviews: AGS 104087779002

2 carat diamond ring, Brian Gavin reviews, AGSL 104087779002 ASETThis 2.143 carat, H-color, SI-1 clarity, Brian Gavin Signature round diamond offers the same light performance. It exhibits the same pattern of hearts and arrows that Brian Gavin is known for. But let’s focus on this ASET Scope image for a moment. Isn’t it phenomenal? Just look at all the bright red and green that this diamond exhibits! That’s an indication of how exceptionally bright and sparkly this 2 carat diamond ring will be on her finger!

As you’ve learned to expect by now, the proportions of this diamond are right where we want them to be. The 40.9 degree pavilion angle is going to produce a high volume of light return. The 34.8 degree pavilion angle is going to shower her with a virtual balance of brilliance and dispersion. She’s going to be lost in the sparkles flying off this diamond while she’s driving.

Have you ever seen the sparkle from a diamond bouncing off the headliner of a car? Trust me, it’s an amazing site to see. She’s going to be sitting there watching the sun reflect off of this diamond. She’s probably going to gasp out loud when she notices that it’s sparkling all over the car! Just wait, it’s going to happen one of these days. And then you’re going to have to explain why you’re laughing for no apparent reason. Might I suggest you simply:

  • Point at her 2 carat diamond ring.
  • Point at the sparkles on the headliner of the car.
  • And say “Todd said this would happen.”
  • That’s right, just blame it all on me.

By the way, I’m told that this diamond is completely “eye clean” even as close as 2 – 4 inches. Needless to say that this is the perfect center stone for a 2 carat diamond ring.

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 Brian Gavin Diamond Reviews: AGS 104050449012

2 carat diamond ring, Brian Gavin reviews, AGSL 104050449012 clarityThis 2.013 carat, H-color, VS-2 clarity, Brian Gavin Signature round is also perfect for a 2 carat diamond ring. Needless to say that the diamond is going to be eye clean given the VS-2 clarity grade. This means that you shouldn’t be able to see any inclusions within the diamond from a top-down perspective. Heck, the primary inclusions are barely visible in the clarity video! And that puppy was shot at about 35x magnification.

I mention this because people frequently express concern about how easy it is to see inclusions in clarity photographs. I hate to point out the obvious, but this diamond is the size of a tennis ball on my computer. But in real life it actually measures 8.07 X 8.10 X 5.00 millimeters. Let’s put this in perspective. The International Tennis Federation (ITF) defines the official diameter of a tennis ball as 6.54–6.86 centimeters. That’s roughly 2.57–2.70 inches.

So those little diamond crystals plotted within the table facet of this diamond on the diamond quality document? Unless you’ve got some kind of bionic super power vision, you don’t need to worry about those. They are nothing more than the clarity characteristics that make this 2 carat diamond ring unique.

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Choosing a setting for your 2 carat diamond ring:

2 carat diamond ring, classic knife edge solitaire by Brian GavinAs it so happens, I tend to be pretty traditional when it comes to engagement rings. So I find myself drawn to timeless classics like this knife edge style solitaire by Brian Gavin. This 2 carat diamond ring style is the one that every person in the world recognizes. The classic two carat diamond engagement ring. The ring that tells all those other guys that she’s taken, off the market (high maintenance and beyond what you could possibly afford). Did I say that last part out loud? My bad… Blame it on the Turrets Syndrome I don’t have.

But since we’re on the subject of affordability, let’s talk about that 2-3 month salary thing. I think you should only spend whatever you are comfortable spending on an engagement ring. Don’t ever let anybody else tell you how much you should spend on a ring. That’s just crazy! “Two month salary rule” / “Three month salary rule” who are they to tell us something like that?!?!

An engagement ring is not supposed to be a symbol of how much money you can spend. Personally I don’t care whether you’re buying a 2 carat diamond ring, or a half carat diamond ring. I don’t care whether you’ve got $500 to spend, or half a million dollars. The true significance of an engagement ring has nothing to do with monetary value.

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Todd Gray
Todd Gray is a professional diamond buyer with 30+ years of trade experience. He loves to teach people how to buy diamonds that exhibit incredible light performance! In addition to writing for Nice Ice, Todd "ghost writes" blogs and educational content for other diamond sites. When Todd isn't chained to a desk, or consulting for the trade, he enjoys Freediving! (that's like scuba diving, but without air tanks)
Todd Gray

@NiceIceDiamonds

Professional diamond buyer with 30+ years trade experience in the niche of super ideal cut diamonds. In my free time, I enjoy freediving & photography.
The incredible #story behind the Sirisha diamond necklace by @BrianGavin 71 #Diamonds cut to order #Amazinghttps://t.co/dHOo1T99xT - 7 months ago

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