Nice Ice Super Ideal Cut Diamonds

    Diamond Pendant options 0.80 – 0.99 carats

    Sandy writes: “I believe the computer ate my first note, so here’s a second try.   I wish to buy a diamond for a pendant.  Your essays have been very helpful.  I especially like the Crafted by Infinity sensibility and also the Brian Gavin signature diamonds.  Budget realities mean I am looking in the $4000 to $5000+ range, which dictates a carat weight of about .80 to .90.  Will that size diamond be aesthetically pleasing in a single-stone pendant?  I have identified a number of possibles, but weighing the interaction of characteristics is difficult.  How would you judge the relative merits of the following diamonds?” [outlined below]:

    The first thing to understand about this post is that I’m being asked to compare specific diamonds from two manufacturers who I consider to be Top Notch in terms of their production quality and dedication to producing diamonds of exceptional diamond cut quality… so we’re essentially going to be looking at diamonds which are cut to a level of precision that puts them quite literally in the Top 1/10th of 1% of the average production of round brilliant cut diamonds… In terms of what size diamond is “aesthetically pleasing” for a single stone diamond pendant, it really is a matter of personal preference, but I do think that this range of diamond is pretty nice and definitely visually pleasing.

    Crafted by Infinity #6223 is graded by the AGS Laboratory as weighing 0.788 carats, F color, SI-1 clarity with negligible fluorescence.  This diamond is typical of the Crafted by Infinity (CBI) production, it is cut well within the center region of the spectrum for the zero ideal cut proportions rating and has an overall cut grade of AGS Ideal 0 as graded on the Platinum Light Performance grading platform.  It has a crown angle of 34.4 degrees offset by a pavilion angle of 40.8 degrees which is exceptional and the diamond exhibits a crisp and complete pattern of hearts and arrows… quite simply, it doesn’t get any better than this in terms of production quality and the visual performance of this diamond is going to be exceptional.

    Brian Gavin Signature Hearts & Arrows diamond graded by the AGS Laboratory as weighing 0.801 carats, VS-2 clarity and G color with negligible fluorescence.  This diamond is currently indicated as being on reserve and thus I’m going to pass on evaluating it since it is not readily available as an option…

    Brian Gavin Signature Hearts & Arrows diamond graded by the AGS Laboratory as weighing 0.805 carats, VS-2 clarity and E color with negligible fluorescence.  The details are limited on this diamond because it is in the middle of being processed by Brian Gavin for sale on their web site, my guess is that it just recently arrived from the laboratory since the date on the lab report is from December of 2012.  So there aren’t a lot of images available for us to look at, but I’m confident that the diamond will exhibit a crisp and complete pattern of hearts and arrows since it is designated as being part of the BGD Signature collection which is specifically cut to exhibit a pattern of hearts and arrows… but still I’d like to see the images eventually.  We can tell from the AGS diamond quality document that the diamond has an overall cut grade of AGS Ideal 0 and the ASET scope image looks great.

    Crafted by Infinity #6211 is graded by the AGS Laboratory as weighing 0.850 carats, I color, VS-2 clarity with negligible fluorescence.  Now this diamond exhibits a crisp and complete pattern of hearts and arrows and is cut to the center region of the range for the zero ideal cut proportions grade and has been graded by the AGS Laboratory on the Platinum Light Performance grading platform just like the other diamonds we’ve discussed thus far, however it did not receive an overall cut grade of AGS Ideal 0 because the Polish grade was deemed as being Excellent and the overall cut grade will always default to the lowest denominator.   Now if you’ve got to bend a parameter in the diamond selection process, my inclination would be to allow a little flux in the polish department because the reality is that most likely there is a single polishing line somewhere on one of the facets of this diamond which is not something which is going to significantly affect the visual performance of this diamond… I wouldn’t discount in the realm of symmetry or proportions because they will have a definite and measurable affect on visual performance.

    Crafted by Infinity #6181 is graded by the AGS Laboratory as weighing 0.852 carats, G color, SI-1 clarity and it’s cut like a dream!  The proportions are dead center in the middle of the spectrum for the zero ideal cut proportions rating, so the “mirrors” of the diamond are set to reflect back out the top of the diamond for optimum visual performance… you’ve got a crown angle of 34.5 degrees offset by a pavilion angle of 40.8 degrees which is well within my preferred range of 34.3 – 34.9 degrees for the crown angle and 40.6 – 40.9 degrees for the pavilion angle.

    The diamond is graded by the AGS Laboratory as AGS Ideal 0 on the Platinum Light Performance grading platform and exhibits a crisp and complete pattern of hearts and arrows, so the facet structure of the diamond is essentially perfectly aligned and this diamond is going to exhibit a wonderful amount of sparkle!  In terms of inclusions, you’ve got a couple of diamond crystals and small groups of pinpoint size diamond crystals called clouds mixed in with a small feather which is located along the girdle edge of the diamond within the upper girdle facet located in the relative 3:30 position of the upper plotting diagram and a small needle shaped diamond crystal… nothing to be concerned about.  This is an excellent option.

    Now the challenge of course is to figure out which of these diamonds is “the one” based on how the characteristics interplay and the reality is that they are all essentially comparable in terms of the overall diamond cut quality and visual performance.  So it pretty much comes down to the combination of clarity and color…  I didn’t see anything that alarmed me in terms of the inclusions within any of these diamonds, so this won’t work in terms of helping me eliminate options…

    Cost of course is also a factor and each diamond is priced accordingly based upon the individual characteristics of each diamond.  I hate to suggest that you could literally flip a coin and do equally well with any of the options which you’ve indicated, but the reality is that it would be a perfectly fine way to make a decision in this particular instance!  Not only would any one of these diamonds make an exceptional pendant, but they are well suited for a solitaire style engagement ring… they are all cut wonderfully and should exhibit outstanding visual performance!

    About the AuthorTodd 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)

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    4 comments
    Kevin says March 7, 2013

    Hi Todd,

    Re:
    Crafted by Infinity #6181 is graded by the AGS Laboratory as weighing 0.852 carats, G color, SI-1 clarity

    The above diamond was rated very high but when I view the scope image of the ‘hearts’ I notice the hearts at 2, 3, and 4, o’clock positions are touching the ‘V’s for lack of better term. In other words there’s no gap between the hearts and the V’s.

    From what I understand the worse the optical symmetry especially in the hearts, the then light performance is affected negatively. The HRD guide to H&A diamonds explains there needs to be a gap and the gaps need to be consistent. Isn’t this true?

    Thanks
    Kevin

    Reply
      Todd Gray says March 11, 2013

      Hello Kevin, under normal circumstances your assessment of the hearts and arrows pattern of Crafted by Infinity stock #6181 would be correct in that the pattern appears to be inconsistent. However this is where having some access to the inner workings of the various diamond companies is helpful… at the moment CBI is experiencing challenges with their photography, it is something which is outsourced and whoever is taking the pictures apparently lacks the attention to detail required for this endeavor. CBI is working on finding an alternative service, but is limited in their local market and thus far have exhausted the resources available to them. Eventually they will probably need to purchase the equipment and hire the staff necessary to capture the images in-house, but that is not feasible for them at the moment. CBI is the only diamond cutter which I am aware of which attempts to provide these images for their jewelry store customers, so I commend them for the attempt, but I always captured and uploaded my own images because the quality has yet to live up to my expectations. That said, I’ve yet to personally evaluate a CBI diamond which did not exhibit a crisp and complete pattern of Hearts and Arrows, so it is something which I realize is a flaw of their marketing and not a factor of cut precision. I suggest that anybody interested in a CBI Hearts and Arrows Diamond ask the vendor they are working with to provide their own H&A images to verify the consistency of the pattern.

      Reply
    Sandy says January 24, 2013

    Thanks so much for your very helpful advice. With you excellent guidance I feel ready to move forward with the purchase of a diamond that I will wear and enjoy every day.

    Reply
      Todd Gray says February 21, 2013

      Thank you for the feedback Sandy, I’m happy that my insight was helpful to you!

      Reply
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