The Diamond Pro

Q&A: Help Choosing a Round Diamond for a White Gold Solitaire With Around $1300 Budget for a Reader from Belgium

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.

Dear Diamond Pro,

Let me start by saying your website is so helpful, so interesting! It is an amazing asset in my search for a diamond & ring. If you’re ever in Belgium, let me buy you a coffee 😉

I’m looking for a round engagement ring diamond to set in a solitaire white gold ring. My girlfriend is very slender in all ways (small ring size too) and has a light skin/blue eyes/blond hair. Thought you should know this in terms of colour & carat.

My eyes fell on a couple of diamonds on James Allen site. One of them in particular caught my attention as it I could not find an inclusion although it’s an I1.

I have some other diamonds in my wishlist:

None of the diamonds on Blue Nile had a competing price (with 360° view) although this is recommended by you for European purchases.

Thanks for your opinion on the first (0.50 ct) diamond and help.

I’m glad you find our website useful. We are, in fact, planning a trip to Belgium in the near future. Now, let’s see how I can help you.

Here’s my opinion on the diamonds you selected:
2629012 – it’s cut WAY too deep and will lose a lot of its brilliance. Also, the cloud listed in the clarity characteristics will negatively affect the brilliance as well.

2210824 – this one is eye-clean, but I’m not a huge fan of its cut, the table% and the angles are off. I’d focus on something better cut to maximize brilliance. The same applies to 2519363.

I’d go with something like this:

It’s fantastically cut, eye-clean and will be very brilliant in any solitaire setting you choose.

What do you think?

I was looking forward to your mail like a kid to Christmas morning… Thanks for being so speedy and super friendly in your reply.

I really appreciate your opinion and review. It was quite hard for me to know the perfect depth of a diamond since your site doesn’t give benchmark figures and I believed ‘ideal cut’ was perfect in all ways.

The difference between the diamonds also seems very small. Forgive me for going into such detail but I really enjoy learning about this.

2629012 (mine)
2482233 (yours)


Depth %

I think the diamond you’ve chosen is very pretty, has a clear colour for being an I grade and I cannot spot the inclusion.

I believe this is a very good diamond and now I’m just in doubt of whether to buy a ring setting online or through a local jeweler.

I kind of like Blue Nile’s Petite Solitaire and haven’t found a similar setting on James Allen. I know you don’t give tips in this area but maybe you can weigh in?

In any case, a huge thank you for all the help and let’s stay in touch.

Thank you for the kind words, it’s very sweet of you (and I mean, literally sweet, as I noticed you work in a chocolaterie!).

55-60% of all round diamonds receive an Excellent cut grade from GIA. So they can have the same grades but there is still a wide range within that quality. Try keeping the max. depth of 62.8% (ideally around 61%).

Regarding the table %, we find that “perfect” light refraction usually occurs with tables around 55-57%. The larger the table, the less light refracts through it (sparkles) but also, the larger the diamond looks (that is the biggest facet on the top, so it makes the face appear larger). I like the 55-59% as it’s a good balance between the appearance of size and brilliance.

Regarding the setting, you are right that it’s 100% a matter of personal taste and style. If you like the one from Blue Nile, let’s just simply find a diamond from them as well. It’s always easier to buy both the setting and the loose diamond from the same vendor. They’ll set it for you and you’ll receive a complete ring. Also, Blue Nile are based in Europe (they have an office in Ireland) so you won’t pay any import fees, just the regular VAT (21%).

This one is gorgeously cut:
Blue Nile FLD08294677

Also, you can use this unique coupon code that gives you $50 off of your order: [contact us for your own unique coupon code]

What do you think?

If you could mail me the state you are in, then I could see whether I can send you some chocolates for all your help.

After your mail, I must say I was torn in 2. So I slept over it and came up with what’s bothering me:

· BlueNile: excellent ring (which is on backorder now :/), but no photo of the diamond (which is already gone).

Diamond picture or your “guarantee that it will be as great as James Allen” would make me buy.

· James Allen: excellent diamond and their 1,5 mm comfort is actually very similar to my favourite at BN.

Drawback: Higher pricing and shipping.

Although the proportions and cut of the diamond of BN are good, we can’t really know for sure until you see it. Would you be willing to take the risk and go for BN or would you place a higher premium on James Allen’s diamond?

Personally, I’m inclined towards Blue Nile because of their pricing & no import duties. The diamond is what I need reassurance about.

On a price point, BN is the winner.



Ring setting (14K)

+ tax/customs

+ coupons
-100 if you subscribe (already expired?)


All the best and thank you for all your help in this area.

That’s a kind offer, thank you. We are currently based in the Czech republic, Europe.

I feel for you in this situation and I want you to know that I went the extra mile to make sure you can buy an excellent diamond with confidence. That BN diamond is fantastically cut and looking at the clarity characteristics, there are no red flags you should be wary of. It’ll make a beautiful ring. Medium fluorescence is a bonus on an I color, it’ll help it look even whiter.

Hope you had a nice weekend.

Thanks for coming back to me, and hey once the purchase is done you should give me the address of your office and I’ll get you some chocolates.

As for the search for a ring I made up my mind to trust you.

I’d love to go for Blue Nile since they ship to Belgium and have great ring settings at a lower price point. Also, your coupon code is still valid.

As diamonds get sold pretty fast (your recommendation is already gone), I suggest we mail again in about 10 days(when my paycheck comes in ;)).

I found this diamond which is probably eye-clean despite some black freckles, but is has your ideal proportions:
Blue Nile FLD03528452

I am willing to spend within this budget and raise it with 15% if it gets me an truly extraordinary diamond. Otherwise, the price points we’ve been discussing are comfortable for me.

As things will go forward, I’ll get in touch with BN to see when they’ll get my fav. ring setting back in stock. And when you make me a recommendation at the end of the month where I can find myself in, well then I think I have no reason to wait.

All the best.

Thank you for the kind words again, I appreciate the trust.

If waiting until the end of this month makes more sense to you, let’s wait then. At least we won’t have to deal with the diamonds being sold one after another every time we find some good options.

As for the diamond you sent me, I wouldn’t recommend it. You are right, it’s nicely cut, but the feather seems to be very visible (and a feather on an SI2 diamond might even affect its integrity). Also, medium fluorescence on an F-color stone is a BIG problem, it usually causes haziness. I’d stay away.

Hope all is well? I thought I’d reach out to you as I’m ready to buy the diamond and ring setting at Blue Nile.

Just to re-cap our situation:
· Looking for a +- .45 carat diamond like the one you recommended to me a while ago:
Blue Nile FLD08294677

· Budget of € 950 to a max of +- € 1.100 is ok with me

· Is your coupon code $50 off of your order still valid?

· Sending to Europe (Belgium) (maybe interesting since stock differs sometimes from country to country)

I’d love to hear from you on Monday, as I’m not in the office on Tuesday.

Then I can make the order and I will keep you in the loop so you can claim your referral reward.

I took a closer look and that 0.45ct diamond is still the best option I can recommend. Yes, they can ship it to Belgium and the coupon is still valid.

Let me know how it goes with Blue Nile!

Thank you for getting back to me but I was hoping you could help me find a new diamond as the LD08294677 mentioned was sold out some time ago.

Do let me know if I should come up with some proposals but since I still have lots of learning to do, I am quite sure you’d beat me in both time and quality.


I’m just mailing you to let you know I’ll be out of office tomorrow.

So should you mail diamonds, it’s probably best to do so on Monday or Tuesday.

When I receive a mail from you, I’ll order asap.
And don’t forget to give me an address to send a box of chocolates too.

Thank you sincerely for all the help you’ve given me.

I took another look and this one will be just as beautiful:
Blue Nile FLD07836215

It’s gorgeously cut.


Thank you for your help in this.

I was a bit doubtful about the colour grade I but as this diamond is so well cut (I looked up your ‘perfect’ dimensions) I decided I’d go for it.

I’ve called BN and they reserved my basket for me.

I’ll be making the purchase within 48hours and let you know.

You know I’m still willing to send you some chocs over ;).

You got yourself a beautiful diamond. I hope you love it when you receive it.

Haha, if you are still up for the chocolate mission, I’ll send you our address as well.

Thank you very much, we appreciate it!

Let me know how the diamond looks when it arrives.

I’ll ship the chocolates when it cools down a bit, I’ll check the temps regularly.

As for the order, I just made it. Please find the details attached.

If you need anything else to have your commission, let me know.

Thank you. It is enough if you used this email for the purchase, it’ll help us double check with Blue Nile.

And thank you for the fantastic Belgian chocolate regards!

Have a great day.

Thank you! The diamond arrived to me today, my friend in Holland shipped it over.

It looks absolutely stunning. I’ve never seen a diamond like this in my life. I instantly fell in love 😉

The sparkle, the fire, the ring. I’m speechless.

Many thanks for helping me out. I hope the chocolates arrived well.

I was just about to message you, your chocolate arrived and it’s delicious, the whole team is thrilled and we thank you so much for it!

I’m so glad to hear that you are happy with the diamond. That made my day. I hope your fiancee-to-be will love it, too! Good luck with the proposal!

If it’s not too much to ask, do you think you can do us a quick favor and write us a small review on If you could, we would be extremely grateful. [LINK TO REVIEW ON IVOUCH]

Also, can you send us a pic of your new diamond? We’d love to inspire other readers with photos in our gallery.

I wish you and your partner a life of happiness and fulfillment.

It’s my pleasure to have just given you a very good review and recommendation.

I have not taken a picture yet but when I get the chance, I’ll pass it over to you for your gallery.

All the best.

Thank you!

Have a great day.

Top Recommended Vendors
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.

Use Promo Code DMNPROSETTINGS15 at checkout and save 15% off your setting
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

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. James Allen is now offering an amazing 25% off site wide Summer Sale!
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

Still afraid of getting ripped off?

Before you buy a diamond, get personal buying advice from industry veterans. We'll help you get the best diamond for the money.

Ask your diamond purchase question here

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

DISCLAIMER: We don't use your email for marketing. Period.

Why we are doing this for free?

Click for Diamond Purchase Advice 100% Free

Ask your diamond purchase question here

We are a team of diamond experts who will teach you to identify scams and avoid spending money on features you can't see. Tell us as much information as possible to help us help you (ie, budget, preferences, etc)

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.


DISCLAIMER: We don't use your email for marketing. Period.

Please enter your email address to receive your personal code:

Here is your coupon code: GFDSF3GF