This question came in from one of our readers via email.
Reader’s Question: “Thank you for the website and the information. Apart from Nanyang Gemological Institute, Raffles Gemlab and Far East Gemological Institute, are there other diamond appraisal or grading services in Singapore? I am looking for one that also does hearts and arrows, and light return/brilliance/fire/scintillation analysis.
Hope you can assist me on this query. Thanks.”
Where can you find a diamond appraiser or gemological service in Singapore?
Paul’s Answer: “Besides the 3 labs that you had mentioned above, there are 2 other labs who offer gem appraisal services in Singapore. This makes a total of 5 labs for you to consider visiting.
– Ideal Gemological Laboratory Pte Ltd
Personally, I had never personally tested the service of SIG and Ideal Gemological Laboratory. So, I can’t comment on how accurate they are in terms of their analysis and grading. However, I believe these services won’t be on par with the standards you would expect from GIA or AGS.
To my best knowledge, there is no widely accepted lab which grades a diamond for its “hearts and arrows” in Singapore. For example, you won’t see an A+ or “ideal” hearts and arrows rating in lab certificates. There are some exceptions to this when we look away from reliable labs like GIA or AGS.
For example, the HRD lab and EGL does grade H&A and will include the corresponding imagery in their report. However, these labs follow their own guidelines on what makes a hearts and arrows diamond and what doesn’t.
The point here is that there is no industry-wide acceptance on how the grading should be done for H&A patternings. There’s no way you can know how strict or how lenient they are in terms of this. In a way, even if the diamond is graded as “ideal”, the rating is meaningless.
At the time of typing out this reply, I had just finished writing up a whole section about hearts and arrows patterning on Beyond4Cs.com.
I am assuming that you are looking for someone who can provide you with photographs of your diamond under such a viewer and you probably want an opinion from him/her. One thing you need to be clear about the H&A grading standard is that one person’s labeling of hearts and arrows might differ from another person’s.
Most jewelers and appraisers have extremely low standards in this regard and very often, a poorly cut diamond would be defined as “well cut”. My advice to determine cut precision is to let your own eyes determine this.
You don’t need to waste your money or time with an appraiser when you are able to do a better job yourself. For analysis, this can be done with the hearts and arrows viewer where you can see the patterning and check it against the guidelines here.
For light return/brilliance/ analysis, you might want to call in and check with the labs to see if they can perform these examinations and provide you a verbal or written report. If you are looking for someone who can analyze the diamond using proper light performance equipment like the ASET or Idealscope, none of the local grading labs currently offer such services.
Alternatively, you could purchase your own ASET or Idealscope for your personal use. They cost about $50 each and work out to be roughly the same as an appraisal’s cost which makes them a worthwhile investment.
Here’s the thing, you don’t have to buy your own ASET scope or Idealscope if shopped at the right place. Some vendors already provide this information in their listings like the example below.
I hope your questions had been answered and you got the information you need. Feel free to get in touch with me if you have any further questions.