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Ask A Diamond Pro: Advice on 0.81 Carat Round K Color Diamond

By Mike Fried,

Welcome to our blog, where we’re dedicated to providing unbiased and invaluable information to empower your diamond-buying journey. Recently, we received an insightful email from a reader who spent hours exploring our website. They’re on a budget of $2,000 and seeking guidance on two intriguing options, both K color diamonds from James Allen.

Our reader faces the common dilemma of whether to prioritize clarity over color. The second diamond, which has a slightly better clarity grade raises the question: is it wise to give up a tiny .05 carat weight increase for better clarity?

This choice depends on various factors, such as personal taste and where the diamond will be used. Join us as we explore the complexities of diamond selection, explaining how even small differences can greatly affect the look and worth of your engagement ring.

Here’s the reader’s original email:

First of all, great website, spent several hours gaining valuable unbiased information.

I am on a budget of about 2k for a round diamond and am curious about the below very nice cut that has K color but a faint fluorescent. I know it’s hard to tell through the picture and most local stores do not carry that low a color.

Is it safe to assume this will not be too overwhelming yellow?




Is it worth downgrading .05 for a higher clarity, again with color?


Thanks again.

(!! Note: The original diamond that the reader purchased is no longer listed on James Allen, so this blog contains a link to similar substitutions.)

Later in our email communication, the reader informed us that they were planning to purchase a platinum pavé-style ring. This single piece of information raises even more questions regarding the low-color diamonds they are considering. We will discuss the creation of the setting and the diamond color further in the post.

When To Choose a K Color Diamond

Choosing a K color diamond can be a strategic decision, particularly when budget constraints are a significant factor. While diamonds in the K color range may look slightly yellow, it doesn’t necessarily detract from their beauty or brilliance.

For instance, if you’re opting for a solitaire setting in yellow or rose gold, the warmth of a K color diamond can complement the metal tone beautifully. As an example, this 0.80ct K SI1 diamond in this ornated solitaire setting looks absolutely divine.

K color diamodn in a yellow gold setting
An example of a K color diamond looking absolutely stunnign in a yellow gold solitaire ring

K Color Diamond in a Platinum Pavé Style Ring

When considering a K color diamond for a platinum pavé-style setting, it’s important to understand how the color of the diamond interacts with the metal. Platinum is a bright, white metal, and it doesn’t have any warm tones like yellow gold does. Because of this, any hint of yellow in a K color diamond can stand out more against the bright backdrop of platinum.

In a pavé setting, where many small diamonds are set closely together, this contrast can be even more noticeable. The overall effect may not be as visually appealing, as the warmth of the diamond clashes with the coolness of the platinum.

Additionally, the pavé setting is designed to enhance the brilliance and sparkle of the diamonds by closely grouping them together. However, when a K color diamond is used in this setting with platinum, its warm hue can create a visual imbalance drawing attention away from the sparkle and brilliance.

Look at the example below. You can clearly see the warm tones of the K color center diamond compared to the white metal. There is also a big difference between the center stone color and the whither pavé diamonds on the band.

platinum pave settign with a K color diamond
Example of a platinum pavé setting with a K color diamond in the middle

What Is the Best Color?

An I color is slightly higher on the diamond color scale but has the perfect balance between value and brilliance. That makes it the perfect choice for a side-stone style settings in white gold or platinum.

The Result

We were pleased with the quality of the diamonds our reader initially picked. However, upon learning that he intends to use a pavé-style ring in platinum, we had to change our approach. Rather than continuing to search for a K color diamond, we found several I color options.

Because our reader was on a budget, we had to slightly reduce the carat weight. However, it’s preferable to have a slightly smaller but exceptionally bright and brilliant diamond than a larger one that appears yellowish or is poorly cut. In the end, he chose a gorgeous I SI2 diamond, similar to this one from James Allen.

Final Thought

Our reader’s journey, from looking at choices to asking for advice that fits their likes, shows how important it is to make smart choices. Even though a K color diamond might seem nice at first, checking if it works well with different rings and metals is really important. It’s all about finding the right mix of price, looks, and quality.

For our reader, realizing how a K color diamond might not go well with a platinum pavé-style ring helped us find better options. This shows that being open to different ideas can lead to a ring with a wow factor.

If you’re currently looking for a ring yourself or are planning to do it in the future, don’t forget that you can always contact us and we can help you navigate the world of diamonds.

James Allen James Allen is the leader in online diamond sales. Their imaging technology is the same as inspecting a diamond with a jeweler's loupe. They have the largest exclusive loose diamond inventory online and fantastic prices. They also have the nicest collection of lab-created diamonds online.
What we love about them:
  • No questions asked returns within 30 days of shipment. James Allen will send you a paid shipping label to return the ring.
  • Lifetime Warranty
  • Free International Shipping
  • Free prong tightening, repolishing, rhodium plating and cleaning every 6 months
  • Provide insurance appraisals
  • One free resizing within 60 days of purchase
  • Free ring inscriptions
  • Best-in-class high quality imagery of all diamonds in stock
  • 24/7 Customer Service
  • Best-in-class packaging
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Blue Nile Blue Nile is the largest and most well-known internet jewelry seller. They have a very large exclusive online inventory. Their high-quality images are catching up to James Allens' and their prices are amazing. 
What we love about them:
  • No questions asked returns within 30 days of shipment. Blue Nile will send you a paid shipping label to return the ring.
  • Lifetime Warranty
  • Free Shipping
  • Free prong tightening, repolishing, rhodium plating and cleaning every 6 months
  • Provide insurance appraisal
  • One free resizing within the first year of purchase
  • High quality images of about half of their diamonds
  • 24/7 Customer Service
  • 100% credit towards future upgrades (must be at least double in value)
  • Best in class fulfillment
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