Tiffany E-ring Upgrade/HCA vs Triple Excellent - Decisions, decisions!

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  1. Hi Everyone,

    I have been reading every thread I can find on Tiffany diamonds, the upgrade policy as well as diamonds in general (HCA tool), Color/Clarity choices etc. There is a ton of very helpful information and extremely useful advice being given!!
    We purchased our ring 10 years ago and fortunately our local Tiffany is able to make an exception to allow an upgrade (since it’s over their current 5 year upgrade policy limit).

    Although I may not go with either of these two diamonds (specs provided below), these are two that I’m considering and am waiting for them to come in (will take about a month!). In the meantime, I was hoping I could obtain any advice/feedback on which is the better choice of the two?
    They are both priced the same, however Option 1 is Double Excellent with VG Symmetry but with an HCA of 1.2 and Option 2 is Triple Excellent but with an HCA of 4.2. So confusing – what’s more important Triple Excellent or HCA score?!
    This is for a Tiffany’s Brilliant in the Classic setting.

    Option 1: 1.38 H VS2 MEASUREMENTS 7.12 - 7.18 x 4.43 mm (minimum girdle diameter - maximum girdle diameter x depth in mm), Double Excellent/Very Good Symmetry, no fluorescence, no culet, faceted med to slightly thick girdle
    TOTAL DEPTH PERCENTAGE 62.0%
    TABLE SIZE PERCENTAGE 56%
    CROWN HEIGHT PERCENTAGE 15.8%
    CROWN ANGLE 35.4°
    PAVILION DEPTH PERCENTAGE 42.7%
    PAVILION ANGLE 40.6°
    LOWER HALF LENGTH PERCENTAGE 80%
    STAR LENGTH PERCENTAGE 55%
    HCA 1.2

    Option 2: 1.35 H VS1 MEASUREMENTS 7.06 - 7.09 x 4.45 mm (minimum girdle diameter - maximum girdle diameter x depth in mm), Triple Excellent, no fluorescence, no culet, faceted med girdle
    TOTAL DEPTH PERCENTAGE 62.9%
    TABLE SIZE PERCENTAGE 55%
    CROWN HEIGHT PERCENTAGE 15.8%
    CROWN ANGLE 35.0°
    PAVILION DEPTH PERCENTAGE 43.8%
    PAVILION ANGLE 41.3°
    GIRDLE THICKNESS Medium
    GIRDLE FINISH Faceted
    CULET None
    LOWER HALF LENGTH PERCENTAGE 78%
    STAR LENGTH PERCENTAGE 52%
    HCA 4.2

    I am also wondering your opinion on a Tiffany I colour and Si1 clarity? Although right now I think I'm comfortable with H/VS2..(current ring is H/VVS2).

    I am sure I will have more questions, but for now, while I wait to see these rings in person, your opinion on the above would be greatly appreciated!!

    Many thanks in advance!
     
  2. You should wait for Ame's respond. In the meantime, since you asked, I would reject Diamond 2 because the cut is too deep, fire is only 'good', and the scintillation is only 'fair', which is not good.

    In my opinion, an I is the absolute lowest I would go, but I am much more comfortable not going beyond H because I tend to view my diamond on the side as opposed to face up because my diamond turns on my finger and the first thing I see is its side. I wouldn't rule out diamond 1 or an I color stone. You will save more if you go for an I. Personally, I do not feel comfortable with SI-1, even if eye clean.
     
  3. I think you can find better, the first is ok, but pass on the 2nd, and here's why I don't like the 2nd one: It's a deep stone. It isn't getting it's full diameter for it's carat weight. Even with that 55% table, the angles are not ideal so the light return will not be great and it will "leak", not be as bright or fiery and therefore not as pretty.

    Not every stone that gets a "triple excellent" will be a great performer, who graded the stone? Tiffany's did. They can call it whatever they want. So I would use the HCA to weed them out, but you want the angles to work and the HCA is going to help you determine that more than Tiffany telling you if it's an "excellent" cut.

    If you're going to go down in clarity that much, you will want to see it in person and view it in several lighting conditions and angles before you go with it. Make 100% sure it's acceptable to your eyes in all lighting, distances and angles before you take it. I don't expect there to be an issue, but you're going down quite a bit in clarity, and you're eyes might not tolerate that. I think you can handle an I color from an H just fine.
     
  4. Thank you very much BurberryPrncess and Ame. You have both confirmed what I was leaning towards already (the elimination of option 2). I think it threw me off that that Option 2 was triple excellent but with the wrong angles/%'s - wasn't sure how it could be rated triple excellent!

    I think I will wait then for other potential diamond contenders (they are supposed to provide me new availability - if any, tomorrow). At this point, I am thinking I should see what the price difference is between an H and an I and then look at the options in person very carefully! When I receive more specs, I will definitely post here. Thanks again!
     
  5. Hi Ame, one more question if you don't mind. In your response, you said the Option 1 is "okay" but that you thought I could do better. Could you provide more info on that so I can use that knowledge and apply to any new specs I receive?

    Thank you!!!
     
  6. I've noticed a lot of Tiffany diamonds are deep. I mean, they know what's ideal, why do they keep pushing out a lot of very deep stones?
     
  7. The table on #1 is good, the depth for that table ratio is a little deeper than would be preferred, if you could get closer to a depth of 60 it would give you better angles. On that stone, the medium-slightly thick girdle is also taking up a little of your diameter for your carat weight. Not a lot, but enough that the carat weight is in the middle and bottom of the stone.

    An example of what I mean in better numbers/specs would be say a 55 table and a 59.8-60 depth with a thin or medium girdle. That gives you the proper spread for the stone, none of the weight is "hidden" anywhere, and the angles are more likely to work for the maximum light return.

    They have a different idea of what is ideal, and a wider range of what they deem excellent, similar in that respect to GIA, which has a larger net for what they consider an excellent cut. As to the why's...anyone's guess. It's why I think it's very important to be educated before you buy, even if you want the brand and the experience of buying from them or from Cartier or the like. Go in armed with knowledge and knowing what you want, and ask to see that. I wish that their sales associates were all educated on cut quality, and taught the customer that way, vs the majority of the sales associates pushing color and cut and carat above all else and acting like if it's from that store it's well cut, because it's not.
     
  8. Thank you very much Ame! I have gone back to the S.A. to ask her if she can find a depth of less than 60 and some of those other parameters. Also, I'm not sure what I did but when they assessed my ring, they said it had a scratch on the girdle and that this could have been attributed to my thin-med girdle thickness (on my old ring). What is your opinion? Is thin better than medium or vice versa? I would think it would be very hard to scratch a diamond and although I do wear it daily I don't do anything I can think of that would physically damage it!

    As for the depth, yes all the specs I have are in the total depth of 62 range. I am glad to have found all the useful information here and thank you Ame personally, as I can see that a lot of the responses have come from you! The sales agent do try to push that I shouldn't be worried, but I can't help it out now that I'm informed!!!
     
  9. A 62 depth isn't always a bad thing, it's still in the range of ideal, just on the edge of deep. The angles are what are important. I just think those particular angles on that stone are not great, and that there are better options out there. If you can get a stone with a 55 table and 60 depth or thereabouts, that would get great angles. But that's going to be a needle in a haystack, esp at Tiffany, so see what she comes back with, we'll run the numbers, and we'll see what the angles look like.

    As for the girdle-that has nothing to do with the scratch. They said there's a scratch on the stone? Any thickness of girdle could scratch, any part of the diamond could scratch. A very thin girdle could CHIP or crack, which yes it is possible you could have done that in your wear patterns, but a thin to medium girdle is only barely more prone than a medium or slightly thick. Chipping and cracking can happen a hell of a lot more easily than a scratch, because they're not as tough as they are hard. If you hit a diamond on a hard surface at the point of cleavage, it will halve that sucker pretty easily. Generally speaking, only another diamond can scratch another diamond. There are very few other items out there that can scratch a diamond that you would come into contact with that your girdle would have gotten scratched by. So if it was scratched, it was likely because it came into contact with another diamond, either when you wore it or before you even owned it, or in their handling of it. I am incredibly suspicious of their story, honestly.
     
  10. Ame, you are SO knowledgeable! Wish I knew this way back when my DH picked out my stone!
     
  11. Thanks for your insight and advice Ame. They were going to reduce the trade in value due to the scratch, but luckily they didn't. That's why this time around with the upgrade, I want to do it the "right" and "informed" way! This will likely be a one time thing, so I want to make sure it's the one! As for new specifications, I will certainly run them by you here when I receive some of interest. Very much appreciate your help!
     
  12. See that is why I am curious about their scratch story. I honestly wonder if they did it.
     
  13. I'm not sure, but atleast they're not penalizing me for it, so I'll focus on upgrade shopping :smile:
     
  14. Good attitude. I would be in there demanding video and stuff! lol! Looking very forward to the next batch of options!

    The main thing to remember when you get them...we can weed them out on paper. YOU will still have to see them in person and make sure you're happy. If you end up not liking what the "truly ideal numbers" look like with your eyes, then you just have to pick with your eyes and not worry as much about the paper. Not everyone loves what is perfect on paper.
     
  15. I think you're right Ame. My existing diamond doesn't fall into what HCA would say is an excellent diamond, however, it's very sparkly and fiery even when compared to other diamonds with better specs (in my opinion).

    On a more exciting note, I did receive new specs (but without the same amount of detail) =(
    I have asked for them, but in the meantime if you have any opinion just on these numbers, please do let me know!

    Option 1: 1.33 H VS1

    Triple Excellent Cut

    No Fluorescence

    No Culet

    61.9% Total Depth

    57% Table Size

    Faceted Girdle


    Option 2: 1.36 H VS1

    Triple Excellent Cut

    No Fluorescence

    No Culet

    61.9% Total Depth

    59% Table Size

    Faceted Girdle

    Also I asked them about the depth and it seems Tiffany for the most part limits its diamonds to in and around a 62% total depth. Based on this, do you think my original Option 1 is a good choice If I'm limited to upgrading at Tiffany within their diamond inventory? Doesn't look like I'll be able to get away from a 62% depth...

    Thanks very much!!