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Thread: Diamond shopping, pls help!!

  1. #1

    Default Diamond shopping, pls help!!

    Hi can any enlightened soul share any tips/ things to avoid? I know about the basics like the 4Cs, but can anyone share about specifics like shops here, diamond range etc? I"m looking to buy a diamond ring that's about $3K. And does anyone have an Ideal-Scope I could borrow?

    Thanks very much!!!

  2. #2
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    Default what is your diamong ring for ?

    the purpose will determine what u should get .....

    1. If it's a proposal ring, get 'HEARTS ON FIRE' (HOF)diamonds,which are individually hand-crafted by Master Diamond Cutters

    2. Making it the world's most perfectly cut diamond

    3. If u oredi noe abt the 4 'C', HOF diamonds have one more "Brilliance"....u ve to see to believe..it really sparkles compared to other 'perfectly cut' diamond by other jewelers

    4. Of cos, u can get those big diamond rings during 'lelong lelong'..but y settle for those when u can get HOF in Singapore.

    5. This international brand used to be carried by LH but TP has taken over the exclusive rights.

    i hope this helps

  3. #3

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    Quote Originally Posted by hoppinghippo
    Hi can any enlightened soul share any tips/ things to avoid? I know about the basics like the 4Cs, but can anyone share about specifics like shops here, diamond range etc? I"m looking to buy a diamond ring that's about $3K. And does anyone have an Ideal-Scope I could borrow?

    Thanks very much!!!
    Hey,
    The ideal scope - isizt the tool that you used to inspect the clarity of the diamonds? Because if that is the one, I think most jewellry shops should carry.

    SK diamonds is a shop (the one with Jeaneatte Aw as the spokeperson), IMHO, is rather questionable. Recently because of the xmas promotion, I kept seeing their adverts on the papers and how can a half carat diamond ring only cost S$999, despite their claims that their diamonds are genuine? I was told Belgium (which is what they say) is usually not the country famous for diamonds (but more for chocolates). As far as I know, a half carat diamond normally should cost above S$3K already, and the diamond is really huge.

    For a S$3k budget, that is relatively quite a lot of variety to chose from. Solitaires (single diamond) usually costs more than an entire ring encrusted with diamonds. The sparkle of the diamonds mainly lies on the number of cuts on the diamond.

    Some diamonds have very faint shades of color, like pink or yellow. But the one that appears the most transparent is the best.

    If this gift is intend to be a suprise, chose the round diamond because that is the classic one and you will never go wrong with that.

    If the person you are intending to give your gift likes yellow gold, I suggest Poh Heng or Ong Cheong at Chinatown (opposite Sri Mariammam temple). If white or platinum, Tiffany will be good. Don't be intimidated by Tiffany because I tried several of their items before, and they are actually quite affordable but because of the festive season, I dunno whether they will chalk up the price.

    Regards,
    -Michelle-
    Last edited by mich_2103; 24th December 2004 at 03:11 AM.

  4. #4

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    Thanks for your replies! Yup its for proposing, hence I wanna get a nice ring!

    Ahv: may I know what's "TP"? Tiffany?

    Michelle: yeah I agree, the adverts had diamonds at ridiculously low prices which really can't be that good quality. And that's interesting what you said abt belgium, I went to LH and saw this .50 carat for about 3K plus which was also from belgium, wonder if its trustworthy cuz they don't have GIA can't rem what they have. I have not checked out tiffany's yet but I heard they were very overpriced?

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    congrats man Darrel.

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    Default 'Hearts on Fire' is perfect for you

    Quote Originally Posted by hoppinghippo
    Thanks for your replies! Yup its for proposing, hence I wanna get a nice ring!

    Ahv: may I know what's "TP"? Tiffany?

    Michelle: yeah I agree, the adverts had diamonds at ridiculously low prices which really can't be that good quality. And that's interesting what you said abt belgium, I went to LH and saw this .50 carat for about 3K plus which was also from belgium, wonder if its trustworthy cuz they don't have GIA can't rem what they have. I have not checked out tiffany's yet but I heard they were very overpriced?
    Tian Po .... I noe I noe ...sounds Chi-Na ..but hey, if u propose wif a HOF diamond ring...it means how much she meant to you ...I gave mine a HOF 'Siong' for the pocket but definitely worth every bit of it...I wont recommend this if it is just for any other occasion

    FYI,TF din appeal to me...I went in ..but the 'sparkle' is just not there and we are oredi paying a premium for the brand

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    I think a certified stone is important. Yes you are paying a premium for the certicate but if the stone is that great, it will be certified.

    I haven't seen a hearts on fire stone so I can't comment on it.

    Yes its possible to find .5ct for a low price but the grading of the stone won't be good.

    i think de beers has a site explaining the 4 Cs in a diamond.

    You'd find some stones have better clarity while another has a better cut or bigger size but less clarity. I prefer to get a good stone rather than a cloudy looking big one.

    Cuting of the stone is also important ie if the table is too broad and the depth is too shallow, the shine won't be great either.

    I know of guys who buy diamonds tat are G coloured but to them its ok as they wanted to get a bigger stone. A friend of mine bought a flawless stone for $6k but its not so big as a flawless stone was more important to him.

    So it all depends on what you and your gf are looking for in a stone.

  8. #8

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    i think http://www.singaporebrides.com/ would be a good place to look for more ideas..

  9. #9

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    choy: congrats what, haven't popped the qn yet lah... now my year end bonus all frozen in preparation of this new "non-photographic equipment"! heh...

    Thanks for your advices and links! will go diamond hunting tomm! just spent a long time surfing pricescope and diamond talk forum... and its 4am now already! man....

  10. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by hoppinghippo
    choy: congrats what, haven't popped the qn yet lah... now my year end bonus all frozen in preparation of this new "non-photographic equipment"! heh...

    Thanks for your advices and links! will go diamond hunting tomm! just spent a long time surfing pricescope and diamond talk forum... and its 4am now already! man....
    Congrats! Sell your photographic equipment to buy the stone man! Then she will realise how much she means to you! It is not the cost of the ring that matters. She must get the over the hill 'feeling' in this once in a lifetime experience!

    If I were to do it all over again, I will make it loud and public. One fella actually hired a plane to 'sky write' - eg "Marry me hoppinghippo!" etc.

    Maybe you can stage yours in a large & public new year event somewhere. The as you pop the all important question, 20 CS photogs suddenly appear to record the event - with flashes and all.... Then she can say "yes" in style. We can then shoot and flash until she reaches cloud nine.
    If she say 'no' - nevermind, you can always try again. You can also analyse the all shots and find out what went wrong. hehe..
    Last edited by tOGGY; 26th December 2004 at 10:04 AM.

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    The cut is prob the most important C IMO as it is the main determinant whether or not the diamand sparkles. As for the color and clarity, it is almost impossible to see with the naked eye the difference between a excellent one (D or E color) and a reasonable good one (eg G color) if the diamond isn't too big (eg >1 carat).

    Anyway, if you are buying from Larry, let me know. See if you can get you some discount.

  12. #12

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    Most shops having diamonds of different grades by personally I would avoid shops like Larry, Mondial, etc...cos usually you need to pay at a "premium" price. The brilliance "fire" is very important, where a dimond without brilliance is like a stone without "life". A diamond with good brillance means they are of proportional cut.

    Next you go for colour and avoid any colour go between "H, I" and below. Then the clarity of VVS2 or VS1 is fine but avoid anything which is lower. The clarity also depend on the the inclusion appears from the direction of view. Avoid those with inclusion where you could spot it from the top view (known as table) of the diamond.

    Most ppl got misconception of certified diamond means "good ones", a cert is to certify you that the diamond geniune and is of xxx quality and cut and nothing less.

    Request to view the diamond under white light to have a "accurate" judgement. When using the 10X loupe, you scan from the top till the tip of diamond , in another words you scan in different depth for inclusions or imperfection in cut. If you are determine on a particular piece, get the sales-person to clean it for you and then you view it for the final time. (For $3k you maybe able get a decent 0.45 to 0.5CT one)

    Take you time to shop for an ideal one since many shops available here and get more tips from friends around you. Hope the above (just my personnal opinion) helps, congrats and good luck!!

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    Quote Originally Posted by hoppinghippo
    choy: congrats what, haven't popped the qn yet lah... now my year end bonus all frozen in preparation of this new "non-photographic equipment"! heh...
    aiyah, I'm sure you'll get the ger lah. you're a nice guy what. geez, how time flies. Make sure she grants you permanent license for your fish tanks hor!

  14. #14

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    choy: aiyah I"ve been with her for 4 years liao, should be ok lah. and the fish tank licence I "acquired" that a long long time ago, good planning rite? hahhahah... so you got any tips to share on how to get budgets passed by your minister of home affairs/ minister of finance?

    Toggy: the plane sky writing thing happened in s'pore? didnt know that was possible here, must have caused a bomb!

    leadwe: thanks very much for your offer, I"ll let you know if I need it! :O)

    teo: wow those are really good tips, didn't know about the min ceiling for colour and clarity. as for the loupe do you mean its also possible to bring along a normal photography loupe? I was checking out the "Ideal Scope" and apparently it's just a normal loupe and pink coloured sides and small aperture for the the viewfinder, maybe its possible to DIY from a cheap photo-loupe and colour the sides pink and cut down on the viewfinder area?

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    How about conducting a MO?

    Okay ... I know i'm not helping ... all the best to you hoppinghippo and I sincerely wish you'll pleasantly surprise that special someone of yours!

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    Quote Originally Posted by hoppinghippo
    choy: aiyah I"ve been with her for 4 years liao, should be ok lah. and the fish tank licence I "acquired" that a long long time ago, good planning rite? hahhahah... so you got any tips to share on how to get budgets passed by your minister of home affairs/ minister of finance?
    4 years huh? maybe you don't need such a "wah-lao" diamond after all, perhaps she'd prefer an Oly E-300?

    Seriously though, I didn't buy a diamond for my wedding (bo lui mah) but bought a simple diamond ring for my 5-year anniversary (1 carat for $5 or 6K can't remember liao) anyway wasn't important the quality, we knew nothing about diamonds and don't intend to ever sell it anyway.

    I wanted to buy another for 10-year anniversary but wifey rather have the liquid cash given the economic situation, so we didn't buy. maybe buy one for 20-years (5 years more to save! )

    So you might check with her on what she wants as not every women wants to just spend her "future $$".

    As for fish tank license, I am still with my 80cm. my advise are obviously worthless

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    Quote Originally Posted by hwchoy
    4 years huh? maybe you don't need such a "wah-lao" diamond after all, perhaps she'd prefer an Oly E-300?
    Don't listen to him there lol!


    its not about how big the stone is. What is more important is that its from your heart and the best you can afford at this point in time.

  18. #18

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    hi hoppinghippo,

    in addition to the shops already mentioned, you could also check out canary.

    good luck!
    you can buy better gear but you can't buy a better eye

  19. #19

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    i think the larry outlet at taka is quite a good place to get ur diamond..

    look for alan chua.. very helpful and nice guy..

    i got mine from him..

  20. #20

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    hi zaren, where's "canary"? I've not heard of it?

    I think I may be ordering online instead, the pricings that I"ve surveyed so far seem to be up to 100% more than online prices! plus I"ve checked some of the local surveyed diamond vital stats on the Holloway thingy (http://www.pricescope.com/cutadviser.asp) and horrors!! some of them were really really bad!!!

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