“I’m wondering what kind of big diamond rings people in the jewelry business might get to see. I’m looking for a big diamond ring! Which is something I’m hoping you’ll help me search for? As a result, I’ve been searching to see who offers the biggest diamond rings online. I found this 25.03 carat, G-Flawless, GIA Excellent cut on Enchanted Diamonds. What do you think of it? Have you ever seen a 25 carat diamond before? I’m not really looking for a diamond this big, but a girl can dream, right?
I wonder what a big diamond ring like this would look like. When shopping for big diamond rings, should I adhere to the same proportions you recommend for smaller diamonds? Realistically speaking, we’re probably looking for something about half this size. Where would you look for big diamond rings? While size is important to me, I don’t want to sacrifice sparkle factor. In terms of other things, I think that clarity is more important to me than color.”
Notice: This article was written before Enchanted Diamonds declared bankruptcy on June 20, 2019.
Without a doubt, that 25.03 carat, G-color, Flawless clarity, GIA Excellent cut on Enchanted Diamonds would be something to see! According to the GIA Laboratory, the diamond measures 18.85 × 18.78 × 11.57 millimeters. That means this diamond has an average outside diameter of 18.815 millimeters. That’s about the size of a penny, which actually measures 18.8 mm. Can you imagine what that kind of big diamond ring would look like on your hand?
As a matter of fact, I’ve seen lots of big diamond rings, and I’ll share my favorite story with you momentarily. But first, let’s review this big guy from Enchanted Diamonds. In view of the fact that the diamond is off-kilter in the clarity photograph, we can’t see how light is reflecting throughout this diamond. With this in mind, I can only estimate how this diamond is going to perform by the numbers.
The 40.8 degree pavilion angle should produce a high volume of light return. While the 35.0 degree crown angle should produce a virtual balance of brilliance and dispersion. Obviously, if you were serious about setting this in your big diamond ring, we’d want to see reflector scope images. Under those circumstances, we would ask for ASET Scope, Hearts & Arrows Scope, and Ideal Scope images. Those will enable us to judge the degree of optical precision, and judge the degree of light leakage.
Being that all of the preferred vendors who I work with are likely to have big diamonds from time to time, it makes sense to search them all. However it is also important to realize, that really big diamonds are often held in private inventory. That means that they are not likely to appear in the virtual inventory of most online diamond dealers. Sometimes really big diamonds won’t even be listed on the multiple listing services that we use to trade diamonds globally. Which is one of the advantages of having 30+ years in the diamond business, I know where to find them.
Just the same, you’ll want to search here for Big Diamond Rings:
Because any one of them might have the exclusive listing rights to represent the big diamond that you’re searching for. At the same time, you’ll want me to search the MLS and flip a few diamond cutters upside down to see what falls out of their pockets. Because you just never know which one of them might have a few big diamond rings laying around.
All right, I suppose that this is as good a time as ever to tell you my favorite big diamond ring story! As with all good stories, we might as well start out with Once Upon a Time. After all, that’s how all good stories begin, right? My late wife Robin and I were walking through the aisles of the JCK Trade Show in Las Vegas. It’s the largest jewelry trade show in the world. Lots of big diamond rings to gawk over, but it’s still pretty rare to find something really big.
Those of you who knew Robin will remember that she attracted attention wherever she went. She was a tall, 5′ 7″ blonde bombshell, who dressed to the 9’s and was dripping in diamonds. And as if that wasn’t enough, she wore solid 14k custom made, long gold fingernails striped with diamonds on all of her fingers. As you can imagine, it truly was a sight to see.
Robin wore a 5.75 carat pear shape diamond on the index finger of her right hand. With a 2.50 carat, marquise brilliant-cut diamond next to that on her ring finger. There was also a cluster ring with a bunch of diamonds on the pinkie finger of that hand. Then there was a 2.75 carat pear-shaped diamond on her engagement ring. Worn along with a 3.75 carat princess cut diamond on the index finger of that hand. With a bunch of other stuff in between, and a 5.10 carat princess cut diamond, set within a raceway of round diamonds as a pendant. Interestingly enough, she wore three-quarter carat super ideal cut diamonds as earrings.
We were standing in the aisle at JCK, talking with a couple of our primary suppliers. When suddenly, they got this real look of concern on their faces. They began to straighten out their suits, dusting off any lint that might be floating around in the air. And then they looked at Robin with this pleading look and said “Robin, we need a favor. Please don’t speak. Whatever you do, please don’t speak!”
As you might imagine, this caused Robin to ask more questions than ever! In addition to that, we began to turn around to see who was coming up behind us. “Don’t turn around!” they blurted out simultaneously. And once again, with that pleading look in their eyes, they begged Robin not to speak a single word. “Not one single word! Please Robin!”
It goes without saying that Robin had a bit of a reputation for being outspoken. In a diamond world which is largely dominated by men, she had scratched and climbed her way to the top. Which is why our friends were hoping and praying that she’d be quiet. Apparently, we were about to meet one of the largest producers of big diamonds! We later learned that he produces nothing weighing less than 10 carats.
So there is this awkward moment of silence, and then our friends start babbling something in Hebrew and extending their hands to the guy walking up behind us. We turn just in time to see him wave them away dismissively, and then he turns his attention to Robin.
He looks her in the eyes for a moment and then extends his right hand out to her, palm down, fingers closed. She extends her right hand out to his, palm up and open. He drops a 25 carat pear shape diamond into her hand and simply says “I give you this. You marry me!”
Imagine Robin standing there in the middle of the aisle at JCK, bouncing this 25 carat diamond in her hand! She’s just standing there, bouncing the diamond around in her hand, clearly contemplating her options. One of which was probably whether to divorce me, right there on the spot! Oh, and it goes without saying, that our friends are standing there speechless! While the diamond cutter with the big diamond rings is just standing there waiting patiently. Just picture a really fat cat, with canary feathers sticking out of his mouth.
Robin thinks about it for a bit and then responds. “It’s a very nice offer, but I’m already married to him.” Which she says while thumbing at me with her other hand. “What if I throw him in to sweeten the deal?”
True Story! And the guy leans back, checks out my buttocks, and says he’ll think about it. I turn beet red. The guy starts laughing, and then everybody laughs with him. He tells Robin, well you know, I had to try! Introduces himself and hands Robin his card along with the invitation to “Call me if you ever need some big diamonds, or change your mind!”
Then he grunts at our two friends (and me) and waddles off down the aisle at the JCK Trade Show. I couldn’t make this stuff up if I tried. Speaking of Big Diamond Rings! Check out this 50 carat, fancy intense yellow radiant cut diamond sitting in my hand!
Regardless of carat weight, you’ll want to stick with my preferred range of proportions for round diamonds. The best proportions for ideal cut diamonds are the same regardless of size. Remember that diamonds are a 3-dimensional model.
Whether you scale the size of that model up or down, the ideal proportions will always be the same. All of the diamonds in this article have proportions within what I consider to be the sweet spot! The primary difference between then is the degree of optical precision.
If you’re looking for the very best light performance for your big diamond rings, then you’ll insist on hearts and arrows. Look at the hearts pattern of this 8.108 carat, J-color, VS-2 clarity, Brian Gavin Signature round diamond.
By the way, this is the diamond in the feature image at the top of this page. I took that photograph of this diamond on a mini-pool table earlier this year. The amazing thing is that’s how it sparkles under fluorescent office lighting! Just imagine how spectacular it looks dancing in actual sunlight!
Blue Nile is a popular source for big diamond rings. No doubt about it, the buying power of this behemoth gives them a powerful reach. They have one of the largest virtual inventories of big diamond rings online. Which is not to say that they’re all going to meet my selection criteria. Only that you’ll definitely want to search Blue Nile when shopping for big diamond rings! The best option that I’m seeing there at the moment is this 10.72 carat, G-color, VS-2 clarity, GIA Excellent cut round diamond from Blue Nile.
This diamond has a pavilion angle of 40.8 degrees, which should produce a high volume of light return. While the 34.5 degree crown angle produces a virtual balance of brilliance and dispersion. The proportions are right smack-dab in the middle of the spectrum for the zero ideal cut rating.
By the same token, I can see from the clarity image that there is a bit of obstruction under the table facet. There are also some differences in the degree of contrast brilliance visible within the arrows pattern. You’ll find that this kind of thing is pretty common in the realm of standard ideal cut diamonds.
It can take up to 4X longer to achieve a higher degree of optical precision necessary for the super ideal cut classification. Most diamond cutters aren’t capable of producing a higher degree of light performance. Nor do they probably think they need to since the GIA doesn’t take light performance into account. Think about that for a minute.
Do you remember the song “Money makes the world go ’round?” Well, that’s what pops into my head when I look at this 10.09 carat, E-color, VS-2 clarity, GIA Excellent cut round diamond from James Allen. Because this puppy rings in at $766,390.00 and that certainly makes my world go ’round! Talk about a diamond big enough to have its own solar system! Seriously! This diamond has an average outside diameter of 13.99 mm, that’s practically 14 millimeters.
To put this in perspective, according to the Daily Med, a standard size, 325-milligram aspirin measures around 14 mm. So the next time your wife says “Not tonight honey, I have a headache” perhaps what she really wants is a really big diamond ring! Learning to pay attention to those subtle hints, is the secret to any good marriage. Of course, there is not going to be anything subtle about this diamond!
By the numbers, the 40.6 degree pavilion angle on this diamond should create a high volume of light return. While the 35.0 degree crown angle produces a virtual balance of brilliance and dispersion. At the same time, there’s only so much that we can tell about a diamond by the numbers.
Which is why we’ll want to see reflector scope images for this diamond and evaluate the optical precision further. There appears to be just a little bit of obstruction visible between the arrows pattern. We’ll want to get a better idea as to the extent of what effect that may be having upon the light performance. Because as you’re about to learn, proportions are only the first piece of the puzzle.
Diamond proportions are only one piece of the Light Performance Puzzle. In light of that fact, I would insist on reflector scope images before buying any big diamond rings! To properly judge the light performance of a diamond, you really need:
An ASET Scope image will enable us to determine how bright the diamond is. As well as enabling us to see where it is gathering light form in the room. In addition, an ASET Scope image will illustrate how evenly light is reflecting throughout the diamond. We will also want to see an Ideal Scope image, which will enable us to judge the degree of light leakage. Let’s face it, if you’re going to drop this kind of pocket change on a diamond, you want to get all the details first.
If you really want a bird’s eye view of the diamond, then you’ll insist on seeing it through a hearts and arrows scope. Because that’s really going to tell you how well the diamond has been cut. Every scope has its purpose, and the H&A Scope is what we use to judge optical precision. That is the consistency of facet shape, size, indexing and alignment of the facets from the perspective of 360 degrees. The higher degree of optical precision necessary to produce a crisp and complete pattern of hearts and arrows, will produce an even higher volume of light return. It will also increase the sparkle factor of the diamond, by creating more virtual facets and more intense sparkle.
Buying big diamond rings without the insight provided by reflector scope images is like buying diamonds in the dark. There really is only so much that we can tell about a diamond by the numbers. Just the same, people buy big diamond rings every day without really knowing anything about them. They blindly assume that a diamond is going to be beautiful because it’s GIA Excellent cut. Most people don’t know that the AGS Ideal & GIA Excellent cut grades represent a range or spectrum of performance. As such, there is going to be a low end and a high end of the spectrum. If you’re going to invest in big diamond rings, don’t you think it makes sense to know all that there is to know?
Trust me when I tell you that a clarity image is not sufficient to make this kind of decision! Look at the diamond details page for this 8.108 carat, J-color, VS-2 clarity, Brian Gavin Signature diamond.
How do I know it’s going to be drop-dead gorgeous? Because Brian Gavin provides all the information and reflector scope images necessary for me to make the right decision. Consequently, there’s no guesswork when I look at a Brian Gavin Signature diamond. I know that the diamond is going to be drop-dead gorgeous, beyond a shadow of a doubt. Because Brian Gavin provides all the reflector scope images necessary to reach that conclusion.
Any fool can put a diamond under a scope and snap a few photographs. That doesn’t necessarily mean that the diamond is going to perform well. That simply means that somebody took a photograph of the diamond through a reflector scope.
Staring off into space doesn’t mean that you’re going to walk on the moon. Buying some lingerie from Victoria’s Secret doesn’t make you a supermodel. And snapping a few pictures of a diamond through a few scopes don’t make it super ideal cut. Sorry to be so blunt, but I believe in calling it like it is. People send me reflector scope images for really poorly cut AGS Ideal and GIA Excellent cut diamonds all the time. Don’t assume that a diamond is cut well, simply because the vendor is providing a few scope images.
There’s a reason why some online diamond dealers provide reflector scope images for some of their diamonds and not others. More and more of them would provide images if their customers (that’s you) insisted upon it. But even still, at the end of the day, you have to know how to interpret those images for it to make any sense. With that in mind, I recommend you read this article on contrast brilliance and this one on obstruction. You’ll also want to read what do the different colors of an ASET Scope image mean?
And I strongly suggest taking advantage of my free Diamond Concierge Service before buying a diamond. Send me a link to the diamond, so that I can look over the details and provide you with insight. For instance, I can tell you with 100% certainty that the 8.108 carat, J-color, VS-2 clarity, Brian Gavin Signature diamond is going to be outstanding! That’s because the diamond has the super ideal proportions that I look for. But also, because the diamond looks amazing in the ASET, Ideal Scope, and H&A Scope images! Therefore, I’m able to verify the degree of optical precision.
What kind of light performance do you want from your big diamond rings? Would you believe that most people probably don’t give it much thought? They wrongly assume that AGS Ideal and GIA Excellent means that a diamond is the best. They don’t realize that each cut grade represents a range of possibilities and performance.
The analogy that I usually rely upon is a comparison of the different models of the Porsche 911. I think that most people might be happy with the performance of a standard Porsche 911. By that I mean the standard Porsche 911 non-turbo, which just rolled off the production line. I think that the majority of GIA Excellent cut diamonds with proportions in the mid-range are kind of like that. At the same time, we know that ideal cut diamonds can exhibit a wide range of performance.
There may be some which will deliver the light performance of a Porsche 911 turbo. Beyond that level of cut quality, however, exists a distant front runner that leads the pack in sparkle factor. Those are the super ideal, hearts and arrows cut diamonds produced by Brian Gavin. Those are the diamonds which I rank up there with the Porsche 911 Turbo S series, all the way up to the realm of the G3 – G4.
As you can see, there is a broad range of performance to be found within the Porsche 911 category. The same principle holds true for the AGS Ideal-0 and GIA Excellent diamond cut categories. The majority of people might be able to distinguish between the different models at first glance. On the other hand, the differences in the sparkle factor become clear as day when you know what to look for.
It goes without saying that I’m a big fan of Brian Gavin Signature and the new Black by Brian Gavin collection. Brian Gavin and I go way, way back. Brian is one of my original mentors in the diamond business. Not only that, but he used to oversee the production of diamonds for our private label hearts and arrows collection.
As a matter of fact, I was buying A Cut Above™ hearts and arrows diamonds from Brian Gavin back in 1998. With that in mind, I know exactly what to expect from every Brian Gavin Signature diamond. I have every confidence that they’ll all be drop-dead gorgeous! After all, every one of them that I’ve seen exhibits the highest volume of light return and sparkle factor. Apparently, they’re also the most incredible diamonds my girlfriend’s ever seen! Because she lost her mind when she laid eyes upon them (and she’s seen a lot of diamonds).
Last April (2017) my girlfriend and I spent a week in Houston, Texas. I spent most of the week at Brian’s office, while Lety did her part to fertilize the local economy. Lety grew up in Taxco, Mexico where she worked for a manufacturing jeweler who sells to high-end stores. As you might expect, she’s seen her fair share of diamonds. However, she’s apparently never seen anything like this.
In hindsight, I should have set up a video camera to record her reaction for posterity. Because she lost her mind when I set a few Black by Brian Gavin diamonds in front of her on a sorting tray. To be honest, I didn’t give it a second thought, I was doing a 3 stone comparison for one of my clients. Lety was sitting at the far end of a conference table on the other side of the room, flipping through some trade magazines. I set the 3 diamonds out on a sorting tray, spun them this way and that. All of a sudden, I hear Lety exclaim:
And then, she’s standing right beside me with her head between mine and the sorting tray. It was as if she was in a strange hypnotic trance. Seriously, she was gone. She just stood there looking at those diamonds, and repeating the same phrase over and over again.
Given that the subject of this article is “Big Diamond Rings” you might think that these were big Black by Brian Gavin Diamonds. However, the 3 Black by Brian Gavin diamonds I was comparing were in the 1.30 – 1.35 carat range.
The funny thing is that we were sitting in the conference room, which is illuminated by fluorescent lighting. So, I suggested that we walk the diamonds over to the window so that she could see them in the sunlight.
It was at this point that everything happening at Brian Gavin Diamonds came to a screeching halt! Because Lety let out this rather loud exclamation of “OMG! Oh Wow! Wow! Oh Wow!”
Which quite honestly made me feel kind of inferior. Because let’s face it, I’ve never quite heard her have that kind of reaction to anything before. Yea, that’s right, go ahead and laugh.
Obviously, every woman is different, so when you discover what works, you do it again. With that in mind, I took Lety back to the office and whipped out the 8.10 carat, Brian Gavin Signature diamond. Same reaction as before, but she didn’t say anything about the size.
Given that fact, I can only conclude that size doesn’t matter when it comes to satisfying her desires. Her reaction was exactly the same with the 8.10 carat diamond, as it was for the smaller Black by Brian Gavin Diamonds. This just goes to show that when it comes to diamonds, it’s really all about sparkle factor and light performance. She’ll get the same satisfaction from this 1.068 carat, G-color, VS-1 clarity, Black by Brian Gavin as she’ll get from this 3.068 carat, F-color, VS-1 clarity, Black by Brian Gavin diamond.
You do realize that we’re talking about light performance, right? Size is a relative concept that is largely a matter of perception. What one person considers to be really big diamond rings might be three-quarters of a carat. While somebody else will think that 1.00 carat diamonds are really big. For the most part, it seems that most women view anything larger than 2.00 carats as being really big diamond rings.
If you want to ensure that your big diamond rings deliver the light performance that you’re looking for, then have the diamond cut to order by Brian Gavin. Because you’re not likely to find really big diamond rings with all the sparkle factor of a Brian Gavin Diamond, just floating around out there. For the same reason why a lot of performance sports car enthusiasts are going to custom order their Porsche made to order. These are high ticket items that are not the bread and butter of the industry.
Very few people have the financial resources to buy really big diamond rings. Therefore, you’ll need to custom order your diamond from Brian Gavin to get exactly what you want. I’ll be happy to help you iron out the details and put you in touch with Brian. That way the two of you can create a clear cut picture of the diamond he’s going to cut for you. I can’t wait to see it!
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)
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