The Diamond Pro

Q&A: Choosing a Round Diamond for a Simple Solitaire Ring With $15k Budget

The following is a real email conversation between The Diamond Pro and a reader just like you who contacted us. Personal information is always removed. Learn from these posts, or contact us yourself to get free personalized help.

Hello,

I would like some assistance in searching for a solitaire.

I’m looking for something between 2.2 – 2.4 carats with a budget of about USD 15k.

As per your articles, cut proportion is a priority to me but I’m not quite certain about a trade off between clarity and colour.

I am not married to a setting but it will likely be a very simple Tiffany type setting.

Your assistance would be much appreciated.

Do I understand it correctly that you’re looking for a solitaire style setting (with no additional diamonds)? And what shape of diamond are you looking for? Then I’ll be happy to send you my suggestion.

Yes, I am looking for a solitaire style setting with nothing else on it; one rock.

I am leaning towards a round diamond shape.

Thank you for the additional info.

Since you’re going to use a solitaire style setting, I suggest searching for a J color grade. Have a look at this diamond:

www.jamesallen.com/loose-diamonds/round-cut/2.21-carat-j-color-si1-clarity-excellent-cut-sku-3263720?a_aid=dmnd1357

It’s very well cut, eye-clean and going to look colorless.
https://www.diamonds.pro/education/color/

What do you think?

Thank you. It does look stunning.

How would you distinguish what you selected between other diamonds of similar spec and price point but with higher clarity? (VS1, VVS2) All apparently have ‘Excellent’ cuts. Not questioning your judgement, would just like to know more.

https://www.jamesallen.com/mobile/loose-diamonds/round-cut/2.19-carat-j-color-vvs1-clarity-excellent-cut-sku-1128868?a_aid=dmnd1357

https://www.jamesallen.com/mobile/loose-diamonds/round-cut/2.28-carat-j-color-vvs1-clarity-excellent-cut-sku-2693531?a_aid=dmnd1357

The issue with the stones you found is their IGI certification. You should search for diamonds with either a GIA or AGS cert only (these two labs are legitimate).
https://www.diamonds.pro/education/diamond-certification/#igi-certification

And also, the 2.28 carat is too deep. Cut highly influences the light return, which leads to lack of brilliance in this case. We search for stones with depth up to 62.6% and table up to 59%. These diamonds return light with the most brilliance in our experiences.

www.jamesallen.com/loose-diamonds/round-cut/2.32-carat-j-color-vs1-clarity-excellent-cut-sku-5113914?a_aid=dmnd1357
This one is absolutely stunning. I love it.

Blue Nile LD10608433

‘Clarity grade is based on clouds that are not shown’ note might be a problem here, this diamond might be less brilliant. You’d have to run it by a gemologist.

Thank you for your help.

I am likely to purchase the 2.32 J VS1 in the James Allen site.

That stone is an excellent choice being an eye-clean VS1 and nicely cut. Go for it.

What a shame, I had to delay my purchase and that diamond got snapped up. 🙁

Can I kindly get your opinion on https://www.jamesallen.com/loose-diamonds/round-cut/2.27-carat-j-color-vs1-clarity-excellent-cut-sku-5298048?a_aid=dmnd1357, please?

I’m sorry to hear about that. But yes, the diamond you picked is also gorgeous. I checked and the overall specs are fantastic. If you like this one, I’d definitely go for it!

Keep me posted, please.

Unfortunately, the first one is too deep. The other stone is beautiful and the specs are fantastic! I just noticed that it’s not available. Did you put it on hold?

I did!!! Thank you for your help again!

That’s fantastic news!

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Blue Nile Blue Nile is the largest and most well known internet jewelry seller. They have the industry-leading largest available 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
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