What is the difference between GIA & EGL? Is one better/more accurate/more reliable than the other?
GIA and AGS have better reputations than EGL. The best GIA grade is Excellent and the best AGS grade is Ideal. EGL is supposed to be getting better, but I would go with the two best labs. I prefer AGS graded diamonds, myself.
They are different labs. GIA has a significant presence in the United States while EGL is more commonly used internationally. AGS is considered to have the strictest grading standards followed by GIA and then EGL, IGI, etc.
before and still now, no one could be better than GIA as fas as grading the stones!
There are many GIA excellent graded diamonds that will not make the grade for an AGS Ideal 0. For more info, visit Pricescope. There are many threads and tutorials devoted to describing the differences in grading between these two labs.
If you go EGL make sure it's a USA cert versus anywhere else.
Thanks for all the info! I recently visited a jeweler who uses EGL and it deterred me from wanting to purchase from him. Is it hard for small jewelers to have GIA appraise their stones?
I don't think so. My jeweler has a small business, and the three stones we got from him (earrings and my ering) are GIA certified.
I believe it is more expensive to obtain a GIA certificate than it is to obtain an EGL. Another reason: since GIA is more strict, a stone might get a color grade of H instead of a G when going with EGL, for example. Therefore the stone could be sold for the higher cost of a G.
That was my concern...that the diamond I was looking at was probably lower in quality than what the jeweler was telling me. I thought maybe the F diamond was probably a G (still not too bad imo, but I want a true F). He kept saying, I'll show you the EGL certificate, etc., etc.
It gets complicated with all the double talk and reading between the lines!! And the more you learn about how the industry works and what actually makes up a diamonds value, the more you realise there is a whole lot to learn, and then some !!!!!! Sometimes I can understand the allure of just walking into a top brand shop and plonking some $ on the counter and just buying it then and there!!! Its so simple and the lack of research into the diamond, disecting every angle has an appeal to me!!!
Lately when I bought a new diamond, I had much enthusiasm about putting into place all that I had learned. All I could talk about was cut, angles fire etc. Reality for me personally put alot of what I learnt on the back burner....by reality Im meaning price.
I really dont believe their are any bargains. I think you really do get what you pay for, and in some ways, if you trust the jeweller, the certificate shouldnt matter too much.
I believe that there are so many factors influencing the price of each diamond that arent even on many of the main certificates. eg each color has a range, there are variations of excellent cut and polish etc etc. ie there are very technical things that go on with the cutting of diamonds that effect their price, but the consumer would not be aware. Eg. sometimes you get 2 diamonds with same stats but different price, there is a reason.
One thing my husband always says (to me) is.....I know what you want, but are you prepared to pay for it...meaning.....we might all want and deserve a 5 carat, D, IF, excellent cut......but reality has us compromising.
Another way to look at it is that you are not buying the certificate you are buying the diamond. Use your eyes, and if in doubt get an independant opinion from someone not connected with the shop.
FWIW, I personally think that if you do your research it will pay off. You might get a diamond with a cert. that says its an F but really its a G....as long as you are paying for a G, its OK. The biggest `mystery` is cut because its not always on the cert. about light performance, and that is really what you are paying for in the end.