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Don’t Get Too Hung up on Carat Weight: Diamond Spread vs Carat Weight

July 18, 2014 2 min read

Diamond spread vs carat weight One thing that should be very important to consumers and can sometimes be overlooked is ‘spread’.  By spread, I mean how large the diamond will appear when looking at it face up.  Often times I hear customers who are so focused on carat weight but don’t stop to think about the actual mm measurements and how those will play a role in the overall size appearance of that particular diamond.  What they don’t realize is that carat weight is just the weight of the diamond but not necessarily how large the diamond will appear.  Don’t get too hung up on carat weight! Yes, of course a certain carat weight will coincide with a particular mm measurement but diamonds of the exact same carat weight can vary as far as the mm measurements go.  No one wants a diamond that weighs a certain carat weight but may appear smaller than similar diamonds in terms of face-up spread.  I have yet to speak with a client who says, ‘Give me a 1.00ct round that measures like a 0.90ct!”.  Why not try to get a diamond that may appear larger than other diamonds of similar carat weights.

For example, I was running a loose diamond search earlier this week and my client had a budget of around $4500 for a 1.00ct round G color GIA certified diamond. Here are the options I presented my client.

  1. 0.90ct G color, SI1 clarity GIA certified round diamond. This diamond has a very good cut grade with a depth % of 57.2% and mm measurements 6.35 x 6.40mm. Price: $4370.24
  2. 0.90ct G color, SI1 clarity GIA certified round diamond. This diamond has a very good cut grade with a depth % of 62.9% and mm measurements 6.35 x 6.40mm. Price: $4341.12
  3. 1.00ct G color, SI1 clarity GIA certified round diamond. This diamond has a very good cut grade with a depth % of 63.8% and mm measurements 6.25 x 6.31mm. Price: $5491.12

Which loose diamond would you choose? For me, it would be pretty clear that getting option #3 doesn’t really make sense. Yes, it’s 1.00ct BUT it measures smaller than option #1. Plus, the overall savings is $1120.80. This ‘new found money’ could be used towards the engagement ring setting!

Don’t get so hung up on reaching a particular carat weight. Spread is something that should be considered and looked at when searching for that perfect diamond.  Of course, you don’t want to sacrifice cut grade to get the largest spreading diamond as this could detract from the overall sparkle and brilliance. Be sure to keep compare apples to apples when searching for diamonds. Make sure to look at the overall size of the diamonds are you comparing and not just the carat weight!


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