How To Check The Diamond Quality
A diamond’s value is measured by all it’s different characteristics like shape, color, size, carat weight, clarity and cut, according to their respective importance. Know how to check the quality of diamond. For instance the cut quality is more important than the color. The 4Cs are the best way to start understanding how to value your diamonds. They determine the diamond’s quality.
Diamond Quality – The 4CsIn order to assess the quality of diamonds, experts gain knowledge and experience over a long period of time, to make sure you get the best quality for your money. The American Gem Society (AGS) has noted on the subject at length, and there’s a systematic rating system that the experts use to appraise your diamonds and find the exact quality grade according to your diamond’s characteristics. If you understand and use the same appraising techniques as the experts before you buy a diamond, it will greatly increase the chances of your purchase being a great one. To get the full picture of a diamond’s quality, 4 different aspects are taken into account – these are the 4Cs of a diamond:
- Cut – the shape and proportions of the diamond.
- Clarity – the amount of inclusions or blemishes on the surface or inside the diamond.
- Color – the amount of color or the lack thereof in a diamond.
- Carat Weight – the weight of the diamond in carats.
A Diamond’s Carat Weight
A Diamond’s Color Quality
The GIA color scale:
- Colorless – grades D-F
- Near Colorless – grades G-J
- Faint – grades K-M
- Very Light – grades N-R
- Light – grades S-Z
A Diamond’s Clarity Rating
- Flawless (FL) – no inclusions or blemishes.
- Internally Flawless (IF) – no internal inclusions; might have slight surface blemishes visible under magnification.
- Very, Very Slightly Included (VVS1) and (VVS2) – minute inclusions that are difficult to see under magnification.
- Very Slightly Included (VS1) and (VS2) – minor inclusions that are very easy to see under magnification.
- Slightly Included (SI1) and (SI2) – noticeable inclusions under magnification that are also visible to the naked eye.
- Included (I1), (I2), and (I3) – obvious inclusions that are easily visible by the naked eye.
A Diamond’s Cut Quality
- Reflection – or Brightness is how the diamond reflects light similar to a mirror.
- Refraction – or Fire is how the diamond refracts light with the prismatic effect, how it breaks white light into all its colors.
- Dispersion – or Scintillation is how the light plays between light and dark areas of the diamond, creating the diamond’s contrast.
The 10 grades of cut quality according to the AGS are:
- Ideal Cut (0)
- Excellent Cut (1)
- Very Good Cut (2)
- Good Cut (3 to 4)
- Fair Cut (5 to 7)
- Poor Cut (8 to 10)
A Diamond’s CertificationNow that you know how to test the 4Cs and understand the different grades and qualities, you’ll need an accurate report of the 4Cs for the diamond you’re about to purchase. Taking up the word of a seller at face value is not the best practice as most are eager to make a profitable sale. When purchasing a diamond it’s important to get a certified report from a reputable gemstone association that needs to uphold a certain standard in order to protect it’s good reputation. The certification is an appraisal by an unbiased 3rd party, not by the buyer or seller, and is very important as there have been many diamond scams in the industry, where diamonds of lesser quality were passed as higher quality and thus more expensive, to unsuspecting novices. The 4Cs’ specifications for Cut, Color, Clarity and Carat weight will be included in the diamond’s certifications. Most certifications will have a computer generated image of the diamond with indications of it’s inclusions. The certificate will indicate the carat weight along with the proportions of the diamond and will have details about the color, cut and clarity. The certificate will also detail the origin of the diamond and have security measures to show its originality. These certificates are issued by one or more reputable diamond grading labs in the US or Europe.
Some of the reputable diamond graders that you should look for are:
- Gemological Institute of America (GIA)
- American Gemological Society (AGS)
- European Gemological Laboratory (EGL)
- Diamond High Council (HRD)
- International Gemological Institute (IGI)
- International Confederation of Jewelry, Silverware, Diamonds, Pearls, and Stones (CIBJO)