The Diamond Pro

Q&A: Choosing a Round Cut Diamond for a White Gold Pave Setting With Up to $8,000 Budget

The following is a real email conversation between The Diamond Pro and a reader just like you who contacted us.
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Hello!

Thanks for posting all of your articles, they have been very helpful.

Seems that “eye clean” holds a lot of value when comparing diamonds but I’m not sure how to determine if something is eye clean online?

While reviewing the options on James Allen I found this diamond:
www.jamesallen.com/loose-diamonds/round-cut/1.30-carat-f-color-vs2-clarity-excellent-cut-sku-8381892?a_aid=dmnd1357

which, based on my “eye test” is clearer than this one:
www.jamesallen.com/loose-diamonds/round-cut/1.22-carat-g-color-vs2-clarity-excellent-cut-sku-5312912?a_aid=dmnd1357

The first link shows a diamond slightly larger with a higher color grade and even clarity, could you help me understand what I’m overlooking?

Eye-cleanliness is a bit tricky. The actual clarity grade is not so important. Clarity grade only tells you the size of the inclusion. That is one factor in determining eye-cleanliness. But harshness, location and reflection matter as well: https://www.diamonds.pro/diamond-clarity/. You can find an SI1 (even an SI2) diamond that’s eye-clean as well as a VS2/VS1 that’s not. It always depends on a particular diamond and its inclusions. Generally said, large and dark inclusions (such as crystals or large feathers) often are noticeable while twinning wisps are fine in most of the cases. Sometimes the diamonds look just perfect but the ‘clarity grade is based on clouds not shown’ note is an issue. That means that there’s a large cloud that saps the brilliance from the stone. I also recommend avoiding diamonds with knots and cavities and diamonds <1ct with clouds – they don’t have a clarity plot in the certificate so you wouldn’t know the size and location of the cloud and the diamond might end up being hazy and less brilliant. It usually takes the real picture of the diamond or its report (ideally both) to determine the eye-cleanliness of it.
Also, having some experience working with the diamonds in real life is useful, since it helps you learn how each type of inclusion looks in person.

I looked at the diamonds you sent me (they both have the same clarity grade btw) and here’s my opinion on them:

www.jamesallen.com/loose-diamonds/round-cut/1.30-carat-f-color-vs2-clarity-excellent-cut-sku-8381892?a_aid=dmnd1357
This one is eye-clean, but it’s, unfortunately, a no go due to the strong fluorescence. Strong fluorescence is undesirable on such high color as it can give the diamond a milky/hazy hue: https://www.diamonds.pro/education/fluorescence/

www.jamesallen.com/loose-diamonds/round-cut/1.22-carat-g-color-vs2-clarity-excellent-cut-sku-5312912?a_aid=dmnd1357
This one is a nice option and it’s eye-clean. Keep in mind that the videos are magnified and I always recommend zooming closer to x1 to get the idea of how the diamond will look like in person. The tiny inclusions on the table are not an issue, they will get unnoticed.

Thanks for the help. I’d like to cap the loose diamond at 8k and have the carat weight greater than 1.2ct. Here’s what I’m looking at. Any suggestions on which would be best or if I should change up the filters to get the most sparkle? The setting will be a pave white gold with small diamonds in the band.

www.jamesallen.com/loose-diamonds/round-cut/1.25-carat-i-color-vvs2-clarity-true-hearts-cut-sku-8530187?a_aid=dmnd1357

www.jamesallen.com/loose-diamonds/round-cut/1.28-carat-f-color-si1-clarity-true-hearts-cut-sku-7912762?a_aid=dmnd1357

www.jamesallen.com/loose-diamonds/round-cut/1.38-carat-i-color-vs2-clarity-true-hearts-cut-sku-8233349?a_aid=dmnd1357

I like your suggestion! Just purchased the one you recommended.

Thanks!

Happy to help!

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What we love about them:
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