Black by Brian Gavin Reviews (sizzling jaw-dropping sparkle)

Black by Brian Gavin diamond tennis necklace

“Black by Brian Gavin” represents the premiere (top-shelf) luxury line from Brian Gavin Diamonds. The diamonds chosen to be part of this collection, represent the best of their best. The pinnacle of achievement in the world of diamond cutting. Super Ideal Cut Diamonds offering spectacular light performance that is even brighter. Black by Brian Gavin represents the apex of Brian Gavin’s career as a 5th generation diamond cutter.

Extensive research and development has been in the works since July 2014 for this new collection. I’ve got to tell you, it’s been a real challenge for me to keep this a secret! As you are about to discover, Black by BGD is more than just another brand of super ideal cut diamond.

“Black” represents a new category that essentially extends the range of zero cut diamonds to the classification of +1. Keep in mind that the AGS Ideal-0 cut grade represents a range of cut quality. Thus there will be AGS Ideal-0 cut diamonds that represent the low end of the spectrum. AGS Ideal-0 cut diamonds that represent the middle of the spectrum and those that are on the high end.

Black by Brian Gavin DiamondsMore sparkle, more dazzle, more to love.

Black by Brian Gavin ~ Little Things Matter:

Brian Gavin Signature round diamonds have long been recognized as representing the high end of the spectrum. There are also a few other well-known brands of super ideal cut diamond that share that honor. However there is always room for improvement, even in a category that people recognize as being the best. Diamond cutters like Brian Gavin are always looking to raise the bar, even if only by a little bit.

Black by Brian Gavin, even better light performanceThe basic concept here is that there is always room for improvement. No doubt you are familiar with the premise that small changes can make a big difference. This is the essential belief driving the new Black by Brian Gavin diamond collection. Minor changes to the ancillary angles of the diamonds reduce the amount of low level light under the table facet. Thereby improving the volume of light performance and producing an even brighter diamond.

I thought it was a pretty simple concept when Brian first told me about it. It’s one of those things that makes so much sense when you hear it. I found myself wondering why I never thought of it before. And yet there was so much uproar when Brian announced the new line! It was as if Brian had reversed the orientation of the North and South poles! [Did you know, that’s actually possible]

The launch of Black by BGD has quite literally turned things upside down. I laughingly told one of my friends in the diamond business that the world was no longer flat. The Queen was not amused, but I took great joy in his anguish. It seems like everybody has something to say about “Black” and yet nobody seems to actually know anything about it.

Lucky for you, I ain’t nobody and momentarily you’ll be in the know…

Black by Brian Gavin DiamondsMore sparkle, more dazzle, more to love.

Black by Brian Gavin – Breaking the Silence:

Black by Brian Gavin, super ideal cut diamondsBefore we go much further, I just have to say how excited I am to finally be making this announcement! We’ve been talking about the improvements BGD has been making their Signature diamonds for some time now. However up until now, I was sworn to secrecy in the name of intellectual property.

Do you know how difficult it is for me not to talk about something like this?!?! Take another gander at the diamond necklace at the top of this page. Imagine knowing that necklace was being made entirely of Black by Brian Gavin diamonds. And having to keep quiet about it!

Oh the sick and twisted cruelty of it all… It’s not like they don’t know that I’m a Leo! We’ve been friends for years, they knew that knowing this would torture me.

Oh wait, now I get it… those devils! Well, the cat’s out of the bag now! And that means that I’m free to stand-up on my high and mighty soap box! Get ready. Here’s my rave about Black by Brian Gavin!

Black by Brian Gavin DiamondsMore sparkle, more dazzle, more to love.

Think of Black by Brian Gavin as AGS Ideal 0.1

Putting Black by Brian Gavin in the broad classification of AGS Ideal-0 cut diamonds actually seems unfair. The production standards of these diamonds exceed those parameters considerably. This breakthrough in light performance represents the next evolution in diamond cutting. At some point in the future, the evolution of the round brilliant cut diamond might look like this:

  • Round Brilliant, circa 1900
  • Marcel Tolkowsky Diamond Design 1919
  • Modern Round Brilliant, circa 1950
  • Hearts & Arrows, circa 1990’s (U.S. Market)
  • The Gavin Effect, circa 2016

Now just to be clear, I’m not suggesting that Brian Gavin is the only one producing diamonds of this caliber. However he’s the first diamond cutter I’ve heard talking about it. And he’s the only diamond cutter I know who is producing diamonds guaranteed to exhibit these properties. Every single Black by Brian Gavin diamond exhibits the Gavin Effect. Every one of them is cut specifically to reduce the presence of low level light between the pavilion mains.

It is completely possible that other diamond cutters are producing diamonds that exhibit similar characteristics. Some of them might be doing it routinely, while others might pull it off haphazardly. The point is Black by Brian Gavin is cut to exhibit these visual properties every time. It’s all about the consistency of production, the consistency of the brand.

Black by Brian Gavin Unveiled:

Black by Brian Gavin diamond, proprietary report, AGS 104089113007By all accounts, Black by Brian Gavin diamonds should deliver the highest contrast and light performance. The name implies luxury and elegance, while the sparkle factor of the diamonds speak for themselves. Fifth generation diamond cutter Brian Gavin is constantly changing the game and raising the stakes. I have no doubts that his competition is scratching their heads. It’s going to take them awhile to piece this puzzle together. As much as I’d like to spill the beans, I’m not (yet) at liberty to share the exact details. Let’s just say “sealed patent” pending.

While we’re waiting for that to happen, check out this proprietary diamond grading report issued by the AGS Laboratory. Pretty nifty, huh? This is actually just one page of the new report format for Black by Brian Gavin. The full report is a few pages deep and goes beyond the depths of the standard AGS DQD. I really want to tell you all about it, but lips + super glue = not saying a word. The Suspense is Killing Me! No, wait… That’s not quite true. I know the secret. I know what’s up. There is no suspense. So what is this feeling? Could it be the stress of Leo having to keep a secret?

Black by Brian Gavin DiamondsMore sparkle, more dazzle, more to love.

A Sneak Peek into the Gavin Effect:

Do you know anything about astrology and the sun sign? It’s widely accepted that Leo’s aren’t good at keeping secrets. Which might be why Brian’s given me permission to describe the Gavin Effect in broad strokes. That’s what Brian is calling the brighter internal pattern of light reflections visible within his new diamonds:

“The Gavin Effect” – The brighter pattern of light results from fine tuning the optical precision beyond super ideal.

Super Duper Sparkle Factor Beyond Compare!

Most diamond cutters merely aim for hitting the right angles when they cut a diamond. The target they’re aiming for is simply an overall cut grade of AGS Ideal or GIA Excellent. These are the guys who produce what I commonly refer to as standard ideal cut diamonds. Those diamonds have the right proportions, but lack the optical precision that would make them sizzle and pop.

A small handful of diamond cutters like Brian Gavin, specialize in the niche of super ideal hearts and arrows diamonds. They cut diamonds to exhibit a higher degree of optical precision. These diamonds exhibit crisp and complete patterns of hearts and arrows. The light return and sparkle factor of hearts and arrows diamonds are truly out of this world.

Peter Yantzer of the AGSL estimated that H&A diamonds represent the Top 0.001% of the annual production for rounds. Up until now, hearts and arrows diamonds were the best of the best. I’ve always considered Brian Gavin Signature diamonds to be among the finest in the world. Black by Brian Gavin raises the bar, it proves that there will always be room for improvement. I wonder what percentage of the annual production for round diamonds, the Black by BGD collection represent?

Meanwhile, back at the lair of BGD…

Primary vs Ancillary angles, Black By Brian Gavin diamonds, AGS plotting diagramBrian has been tinkering with optimizing the ancillary angles of round brilliant cut diamonds. In all that monkeying around, Brian unlocked an even higher level of light performance. Fine tuning the ancillary angles is one of the improvements that Brian made to his diamond design.

When cutting ideal cut diamonds, most diamond cutters focus mainly on the primary angles. Those are the basic outline and structure that comprise the crown and pavilion angles. The diagram to the left shows the parts and location of the crown and pavilion angles in green. The kite shape bezel facets comprise the primary crown angle. The pavilion main facets are on the lower half of the diamond, they produce the arrows pattern. The “Ancillary angles” are shown in orange, they consist of everything that is not a primary angle.

The Ancillary angles of a diamond consist of the star facets, upper half facets, and lower half facets. Diamond cutters tend to focus mostly on the primary angles of the diamond. After all, this is what is going to guarantee the ideal proportions rating. However the reality is that every piece of the diamond shape puzzle is important. And as you now know, fine tuning the ancillary angles produces a promising improvement in light performance.

Suffice to say that Brian Gavin is now producing diamonds that exhibit the most vibrant sparkle ever! We’re talking extreme light performance! Bolder, brighter, more vivid sparkle that is nothing short of hypnotic.

Brian calls it the Gavin Effect.

So what exactly should you be looking for?

What is it that sets Black by Brian Gavin above the rest?

What is the elusive Gavin Effect and how can you recognize it?

Identifying Low to Medium Light Zones using ASET:

ASET medium to low intensity light zones and leakage, AGS 104-074-551-037I’m not at liberty to fully disclose the details (yet) but I’ll give you a hint. The ASET image on the left shows low to medium light zones under the table facet. Specifically I’m referring to the little green areas that appear between the blue arrows under the table facet. The yellow arrows indicate the location of the more prominent areas of low level light within this diamond.

This ASET image from an AGS Ideal-0 cut diamond which exhibits a crisp and complete pattern of hearts and arrows. This super ideal cut diamond exhibits a high volume of light return and a virtual balance of brilliance and dispersion. However there is always room for improvement and that’s what the Black by Brian Gavin collection is all about. By fine tuning the ancillary angles of the diamond, the green sections under the table facet can be significantly reduced.

The light reflecting off of the lower girdle halves is what creates the red sections between the blue arrows facets. Subtle differences in the length and angle of the lower girdle halves can have dramatic effects upon light performance. In an ideal situation (pun intended) what we want to see here is intense bright red.

Sometimes it’s what you don’t see that matters:

Black by Brian Gavin diamond reviews, AGS 104089113007 ASETNow look at the ASET image for this 1.738 carat, F-color, VS-2 clarity Black by BGD Hearts & Arrows diamond. Notice how there isn’t any green indicating low to medium light zones between the arrows. The triangular zones between the arrows pattern is a nice, bright red. Indicating the highest volume of light return, which translates to better light performance.

It goes without saying that subtle differences in the presence of low to medium light zones may be difficult to distinguish with just our eyes. However it also stands to reason that even the smallest improvement in diamond cut quality produces better light performance. Just knowing that these diamonds are cut better, makes them seem to sparkle more.

There is something really cool about this discovery. Which is that it serves to improve the look of all Brian Gavin Signature diamonds. The proof is in the ASET Scope images. Take a look for yourself, you’ll see what I mean.

By the way, it is common for green to show up in the middle of the table facet. This is due in part to both red and green sharing the 45 degree junction point on the ASET Scope. Be sure to read what do the different colors of an ASET image mean if you want to know more.

Black by Brian Gavin DiamondsMore sparkle, more dazzle, more to love.

The Legacy of Brian the Cutter:

Brian Gavin, 5th generation diamond cutterBlack by Brian Gavin represents the highest pinnacle of achievement built upon five generations of diamond cutting experience. One of my clients recently asked whether Brian Gavin is personally cutting these diamonds  himself. The reality is that he is not, it simply doesn’t make economic sense for him to do so. It makes much more sense for Brian Gavin to be more like the conductor of an orchestra. Given the depth of his skills, it doesn’t make sense to have him play the role of the violinist.

Brian Gavin has done things like this for quite some time, as far back as I can remember actually. We started buying “A Cut Above” brand hearts and arrows diamonds from the Gavin’s back in 1998. Back then, the trademark for that brand was owned by his company Alpha Creations, Inc. They placed a small advertisement in a trade magazine, which we responded to.

Nice Ice was built upon Brian Gavin Diamonds:

The fact of the matter is that Brian Gavin used to produce diamonds for the Nice Ice private label. To that regard, you could say that Nice Ice was built upon Brian Gavin Diamonds. We’ve purchased thousands upon thousands of diamonds produced under the direction of Brian Gavin. Every one of them has been simply outstanding in both cut quality and visual performance. Brian was one of two primary suppliers which our private label is built upon.

Throughout the years, Brian has become both a good friend and an incredible mentor. I have a great deal of respect and admiration for the contributions which he has made to the world of diamond cutting. Which is why I’m so excited to be able to share some insight about his latest creation.Brian Gavin, 5th generation diamond cutter, also Ben Gavin, Alpha Creations Factory, Richmond Building, Houston TX, circa 1998 - 2002

Oh by the way, the two photographs on the right are of Brian’s father Ben Gavin. These were taken at the Alpha Creations diamond cutting factory in Houston, Texas. That place was a virtual who’s who of the diamond business.

Which Brian Gavin Diamond should I buy?

The reality is that you can’t go wrong buying a Brian Gavin diamond from any collection. Throughout the years, I’ve had the privilege of personally evaluating thousands of these diamonds. Every one of them has been truly spectacular, the light performance and sparkle factor are top notch! What we’re really talking about here, is more of a mind clean thing. Brian’s figured out how to improve the precision of the super ideal cut diamond and branded it.

I always thought that Brian’s production standards produced sparkle factor that is off the charts! Now we just have a more ultra-precise version to choose from. Naturally we know that this type of precision appeals to my Type-A-nal personality. Even if I’m not likely to be able to see a distinct difference with just my eyes, there is an incredible inner peace created by the precision exhibited in the ASET images.

Brian Gavin Signature is also better!

The cool thing is that the technological advances that create the Gavin Effect in Black by Brian Gavin diamonds, is creating even better Brian Gavin Signature diamonds. This is the nature of the game, you can’t improve the methodology of diamond cutting model without affecting every diamond you cut. When you teach your diamond cutters to cut diamonds a certain way, it’s going to simultaneously improve your entire production. So if I were buying a diamond, I would absolutely search both Black by Brian Gavin and Brian Gavin Signature.

Black by Brian Gavin diamonds cost just a little bit more than Brian Gavin Signature diamonds. However the difference in price isn’t remarkably different, it’s only a few percent. This is because it takes even longer to polish diamonds to this level of perfection. The average hearts and arrows quality diamonds takes four times longer to produce than a standard ideal. Producing the higher degree of optical precision requires alignment of the facets from the perspective of 360 degrees.

It takes even longer to cut and polish Black by Brian Gavin diamonds. The precision exhibited by the diamond in the reflector scope images is absolutely incredible. I find myself staring at the ASET images for the Black by BGD collection, completely mesmerized by the perfection of it all.

Black by Brian Gavin criteria:

  • Overall cut grade of AGS Ideal-0
  • Ideal Polish
  • Ideal Symmetry
  • Ideal Proportions
  • Ideal Light Performance
  • Hearts & Arrows Precision
  • Exhibits the Gavin Effect
  • D-color to G-color
  • VS-2 and higher in clarity

Ultra-discerning diamond buyers who want the very best, should focus on Black by Brian Gavin. The original collection of Brian Gavin Signature features a broader range of clarity and color. Be sure to take advantage of my free Diamond Concierge Service if you’re looking for a diamond. Obviously I know how to interpret the reflector scope images and can help you choose the best diamond available.

Nice Ice Diamond Concierge ServiceTake advantage of 30+ years diamond buying experience for free!

What the Competition is Saying
About Black by Brian Gavin
(they seem to be choking on it)

A moment of absolute truth. Right now, the competition isn’t saying anything about Black by Brian Gavin. Because they’re learning about it (right now) at the same time you are. The publication of this blog post is perfectly timed with Brian’s press release. At this very moment in time, I imagine Brian’s competition are:

  • Confused
  • Uncertain
  • Perplexed
  • Bewildered
  • Disoriented
  • Unclear
  • And shall we say, Pissed?

Black by Brian Gavin Diamonds. Challenging cutters to up their game.The emergence of Black by Brian Gavin Diamonds into the market is a game changer! It forces diamond cutters to up their game if they want to remain competitive. Brian quest to perfect sparkle factor and light performance of super ideal diamonds creates this new category of achievement. Throughout the years, I’ve had the privilege of watching Brian design, re-design and tweak diamond designs until they are perfect. Black by Brian Gavin defines the new design parameters for the super ideal cut diamond.

Producers of ideal and super ideal cut diamonds will need to go back to the drawing board to remain competitive. I’m quite certain they have absolutely no idea how Brian Gavin achieves this breakthrough in light performance. They’re going to need to order a Black by Brian Gavin diamond in order to reverse engineer it.

Every Diamond Cutter Needs to SEE a Black by Brian Gavin Diamond:

Is it too bold of me to suggest they use my affiliate link to order their Black by Brian Gavin? I’m struggling just a little bit about the morality of that concept. Keep in mind that Brian is not only a good friend, he’s also my personal mentor in the diamond business.

The diamond business is very competitive and every diamond cutter wants to be on the cutting edge. On one hand, once other diamond cutters figure out what Brian’s doing, they’re going to try and copy it. On the other hand, it’s going to take them awhile to figure out this new diamond cutting formula. Brian Gavin offers a 15 day inspection period and full refund policy. If they can’t get figure it out that fast, perhaps they can give it to their wife for the holidays?

Black by Brian Gavin DiamondsMore sparkle, more dazzle, more to love.

Update: The Competition Freaked Out!

Not surprisingly, the competition freaked out the moment Black by Brian Gavin was announced. Let’s face it, in the realm of ideal cut diamonds, Brian Gavin is King of the Hill.


Well, actually from my perspective he shares that hilltop with one other diamond cutter. Both of these guys used to produce diamonds for the Nice Ice private label hearts and arrows diamonds. It’s not likely that I’ll ever place one of these guys above the other. Let them share in the glory of knowing that they are at the top of their game! And besides, this other diamond cutter is not among those who freaked out.


But there were other trade members blowing up my Skype and filling my inbox with a whole lot of questions:

  • What is Black by Brian Gavin?
  • Is Brian Gavin selling black ideal cut diamonds now?
  • How are Black by Brian Gavin diamonds better?
  • What did Brian do to improve his production?
  • Are you going to say they’re better than our diamonds?
  • Why didn’t you warn us about this?!?!

And the thread on a popular diamond forum became so heated that it was removed after 3000+ page views! What is funny about that situation is that Black by BGD wasn’t even available on their web site yet. People went crazy over a simple VIP email message that was announcing the upcoming launch of Black. For the record, I saved the entire thread as an Adobe PDF document. The whole thing is so hilarious, I’m considering framing it for prosperity.

Celebrate Life’s Most Important Moments:

Black by Brian Gavin Diamonds, when you know.Throughout the centuries, exquisite diamonds are the symbol that commemorates life’s most important moments. Black By Brian Gavin Diamonds are among the best that the diamond industry has to offer. The pinnacle creation of five generations of diamond cutting by the Gavin family. The introduction of a brand that exhibits this type of consistency is one of those moments that I cherish. It represents the opportunity for you to own one of the finest cut diamonds in the world.

Black by Brian Gavin Diamonds is the perfect choice for commemorating all of life’s special moments. Celebrate the engagement of two incredible people, the beginning of your journey together. Immortalize the birth of your first child, and each new addition to your family. Pay tribute to your everlasting love and the bond of friendship that you share together.

Choose Black by Brian Gavin when you simply want the very best. When you know™

Black by Brian Gavin DiamondsMore sparkle, more dazzle, more to love.

Choose the Perfect Black by Brian Gavin Diamond:

It goes without saying that you really don’t need my help choosing the perfect Black by Brian Gavin Diamond. In a world full of diamonds cut primarily to maximize carat weight, Brian Gavin focuses solely on sparkle factor. The production goal for every Black by Brian Gavin diamond is to maximize light return, brilliance, dispersion and scintillation. Each and every one of the diamonds in the Black Collection are truly spectacular. They represent the absolute pinnacle of diamond cutting excellence:

  • The Perfection of Hearts & Arrows.
  • The Incredible Gavin Effect
  • Precise Proportions Maximize Light Return.
  • Spectacular Optical Precision Maximizes Sparkle.
  • ASET & Ideal Scope images to back it all up.
  • Diamond Clarity of VS-2 and higher.
  • Diamond Color of D-colorless to G-near-colorless.

The production specifications of every Black by Brian Gavin Diamond falls within my preferred selection criteria. These are the diamonds that I’ve been dreaming of throughout my career. They represent the pinnacle of achievement for the modern age of diamond cutting. Naturally, I’d love to help you select a Black by Brian Gavin Diamond for your special occasion. Feel free to take advantage of my free Diamond Concierge Service if you would like my help. (even though you really don’t need it)

Nice Ice Diamond Concierge ServiceTake advantage of 30+ years diamond buying experience for free!

Disclaimer: Descriptive terms such as perfection and super ideal are obviously intended to represent a higher realm of cut quality. But as a matter of fact, the very concept of perfection is relative to say the least. And I’m not aware of any gemological laboratory that actually uses the term super ideal to describe cut quality. However the term super ideal cut is a common use term throughout the industry. It is generally recognized as a descriptive term that refers to the classification of ideal cut diamonds that exhibit crisp and complete patterns of hearts and arrows.


Black by Brian Gavin Diamonds scores 5 out of 5 stars in this review by Todd Gray