The cut of a diamond is by far the largest factor that determines its beauty. The better the cut, the better the brilliance and sparkle of the diamond. If the stone is cut is too deep or too shallow, light that enters the diamond will leak through it. This is why poorly cut diamonds often look darker and lack life.
Cut is said to be the most important C as it has the greatest bearing on the gem’s appearance. Personally, I fully agree with this statement. After all, why would you even want a diamond that is dull and lifeless?
Cut grade is the objective assessment of the gem’s proportions and finishing. In grading reports, the cut grade is assigned as a combined rating of these 2 aspects. Using the GIA system as an example, diamonds can be classified into various grades such as Excellent, Very Good, Good, Fair, and Poor. As much as your budget allows, you should ALWAYS strive for a better cut grade in a diamond.
Ok, I know you are probably thinking… “Why are you telling me this? I know that cut is important. As long as I choose a GIA triple excellent diamond, wouldn’t all my problems be solved?” Here’s what most people don’t know. While the GIA grading system can provide a fairly good assessment of the diamond’s brilliance, GIA also allows a wide range of proportions to exist within their triple excellent ratings.
This means that 2 diamonds with GIA triple excellent ratings might not necessarily look and perform the same. Ultimately, the subtle differences in proportions and facet alignment will affect the stone’s interaction with light. To help you decide which diamond has better performance, you need to go beyond what the grading report says and perform a deeper analysis.
Before you get too carried away by numerical numbers, there’s something I want to tell you upfront. Numbers and cut grades indicated on a grading report are not cast in stone and they are only meant to be used as a guideline.
Why? Even if the HCA tool returns a similar result for 2 diamonds with similar proportions, they would still handle light differently in real life. For more details, read this article to find out why the HCA software can often lead to disastrous shopping outcomes.
NOTE: THE HCA TOOL WAS CREATED MORE THAN A DECADE AGO IN AN ERA WHERE VIDEO TECHNOLOGY WAS ALMOST NON-EXISTENT ON THE INTERNET. NOWADAYS, YOU SHOULD NEVER RELY SOLELY ON THE HCA SCORE TO MAKE A PURCHASE. IT’S JUST SILLY TO DO SO.
Generally speaking, I would recommend you to reject stones that score higher than 2.0 on the HCA. A diamond with a score of less than 2.0 passes the first test and warrants a closer examination. Remember, the Holloway Cut Advisor is a “rejection” tool and not meant to be used a “selection” tool.
So, what’s next after you narrow down your initial selections? How do you take the analysis of your shortlisted diamonds to the next stage? Thankfully, there is a simple tool called the Idealscope which allows you to determine a diamond’s optics in an objective manner. Find out more on the next page…