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Does clarity really matter on round diamonds smaller than 1 carat?

Feb 6

Ring Handshot - Platinum classic Style Knife Edge Solitaire with .90 carat super ideal cut diamond
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This is a continuation on the blog post Brian Gavin Blue vs Hearts and Arrows wherein Jason asked a series of questions, one of which is whether clarity really matters on round diamonds weighing less than one carat…

The reality is that the clarity grade of a diamond is an important characteristic to consider regardless of the carat weight of the diamond, if for no other reason than the clarity grade of the diamond is going to have an impact upon the purchase price.

Every factor of the 4C’s of Diamond Grading:

Has an effect upon the value of the diamond and thus the clarity grade of diamonds weighing less than one carat is definitely something worthy of consideration.

In addition, the clarity grade of a diamond is based upon the visibility of the inclusions located within the diamond, and the extent of the inclusions, and the type of inclusions, and thus it is a factor regardless of carat weight.

But I think what Jason is really asking is whether the clarity grade of a diamond matters in diamonds weighing less than one carat, because maybe it’s not all that easy to see inclusions within diamonds that are smaller than one carat.

How big is a one carat diamond?

So the average outside diameter of a one carat round ideal cut diamond is 6.50 millimeters, some will have a slightly larger outside diameter and others will have a slightly smaller outside diameter, depending on the total depth measurement of the diamond.

To put this in perspective, the eraser on a standard #2 pencil also measures about 6.50 millimeters in diameter, so imagine a speck of dust sitting on the top of the eraser… is it something that you would likely be able to see? The odds are that you would be able to see something if you examined the surface of the eraser closely enough.

Now the average outside diameter of a round brilliant ideal cut diamond slightly smaller than a carat, like a ninety point diamond is X.XX millimeters, and the odds are that you would still be able to see a speck of dust sitting on top of the stone if you looked at it hard enough.

Dropping down to a half carat round brilliant cut diamond, the average diameter is around X.XX millimeters and I venture to say that you’d still be able to detect a speck of dust on the surface of the diamond if you looked at it closely enough.

The same principle holds true for a third of a carat diamond, a quarter carat diamond, and a tenth of a carat diamond, where the odds are that you will be able to locate the inclusions if the clarity grade is lower, such as I-1 or maybe even SI-2, if you allow yourself to relax and really scrutinize the diamonds, which is why Brian Gavin uses F/G color and VS-2 clarity melee in all of our Signature settings.

Suffice to say that I think that the clarity grade of a diamond is an important factor regardless of the carat weight, not only does it affect the value of the diamond, it also dictates whether you will be able to see the inclusions within the diamond you purchase without magnification. The clarity grade is relative to the carat weight and therefore must be taken into consideration when selecting a diamond.

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