Can I Find A Diamond Engagement Ring For Less Than $3000?

Today’s challenge was:

Can I find a diamond engagement ring for less than $3000?

I wanted to find a good quality diamond without going for inferior and poorly cut diamonds. It had to be a nice “sparkler“.

For this I applied a wider filter which involved looking through diamonds with a slightly higher coloring, like a K.

It is advisable to have K diamonds placed in a yellow gold setting. More about this below.


Shape: Round
Carat Weight: 0.76
Cut: Hearts & Arrows Ideal
Color: K
Clarity: VS2
Certificate: AGS
(with Computer Generated Light Performance Map!)

Depth: 61.9%
Table: 58.2%
Polish: Ideal
Symmetry: Ideal
Culet: None
Fluorescence: Negligible
Measurements: 5.82 mm x 5.85 mm x 3.61 mm
Crown Angle: 35.6
Crown %:
Pavilion Angle: 40.7
Pavilion %:

This particular Heart and Arrows Ideal cut diamond would be ideal for anyone who would prefer a yellow gold ring setting. This is because the color of this diamond has been grade by AGS laboratory as being a 3.5 which in the more familiar GIA color grade is “K”.  Yes, it is a little farther down on the color scale. Which is why it is often suggested that diamonds of this color be set in yellow gold. The yellow color of the gold creates a contrast and makes the slight coloring of this diamond less noticeable. With such perfect symmetry and polish the diamond will have a very high “sparkle” (technically called fire and brilliance), also reducing the notice-ability of the slight coloring. The VS2 grade makes this diamond almost completely perfect in regards to inclusions. As you can see from the image no inclusions are visible. And the grading report (certificate) indicates where the inclusions are to be found, so you know where to look for them. You still can’t see them even if you are looking for them.

This diamond is a good size for an engagement ring. Anything over half a carat will do, though most people try to get as close to 1 carat as possible.


Looking at the Computer Generated Light Performance Map not only tells us that this diamond has the highest grade of light performance, but also confirms the incredible symmetry.

At $2,550.00 I can guarantee that this diamond is going to be very well liked once you have it in your hands.

You may click here if you would like to buy it:

Here’s what it would look like in a yellow gold ring setting.

The engagement ring in the video is made of 18 karat gold. This is quite pure gold, with 18 parts out of 24 being pure gold, and the rest other metals/alloys. Since pure gold is quite soft it might be prudent to get 14 karat gold which is not as soft as 18 k gold and will do a better job of holding the diamond in place.

Here is a link to a 14 karat gold setting:

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How to pick the best diamond on a $5000 budget

In this article I am going to show you how to choose the nicest possible diamond on a budget of $5000.

We’ll use DiamondWave for this example. DiamondWave own every single diamond they present on their website, so you are guaranteed you will actually get the diamond you choose. The majority of the diamonds they have are round brilliant, which are the most sought after type of diamonds for engagement rings. Their diamonds are all high quality, so there’s hardly any chance you can go wrong, so this is a good place to start for a first time buyer.

As we have set a budget of $5000 for this exercise ,  we’ll be using part of it for the loose diamond, and part of it for the ring setting.

The $5000 will have to cover:

1. The metal band

2. The gem (or gems)

If I first choose the metal for the ring then I’ll know how much I can budget for the diamond and any extra gems.

What’s best? Gold, Platinum, or Palladium?

I recommend  going with palladium.

Palladium offers all the benefits of the king of metals, platinum, but without the hefty price tag. As it is considerably easier on the wallet (comparable in price to 14K gold)  it leaves more for us to budget on the diamond. Very pure gold (24K to 18K) is generally not used in diamond jewelry. Pure gold is quite soft. Gold has to be mixed with other metals to make it durable enough to carry diamonds. And many people prefer the white look of platinum for diamond rings. There is also a type of metal that is marketed as “White gold”. This is yellow gold that has been dipped in rhodium to make its surface white. It’s like gold plating in reverse which is not the most sensible of options.

All that to say, palladium is a good choice. It’s a choice you won’t regret as it is an excellent metal for holding diamonds securely in place, and it is hypo-allergenic so anyone with sensitive skin won’t get a rash from it. Some people are allergic to some yellow gold alloys.

Read more about choosing metals at DiamondWave.

choosing a diamond ring setting
I’ll choose a solitaire ring setting. This displays the diamond nicely.

In this example I will be choosing a ring which is not the very cheapest, so I know it’s got some substance: A nice durable palladium ring. As you can see DiamondWave’s prices are also good in the ring department.

choose the ring size
Here I choose the ring size and whether there will be 4 prongs or 6 prongs to hold the diamond in place. I choose 4 prongs  since this is the right amount for holding the type of diamond I will be choosing whether Round Brilliant, Princess, Emerald Cut, or Asscher.


I then click Add This Setting To Ring. I am then presented with the Diamond Search page.

Searching for a Princess cut diamond.


I have $4,450 budgeted for the diamond after setting $550 aside for the setting.

I then slide the sliders to narrow my search according to my preferences. The most important one is Cut. I won’t even consider anything that has a cut less than Excellent. Diamond grading certificates only give a cut grade for round brilliant diamonds.  DiamondWave has confirmed that all their diamonds are a very good grade, or better. This makes searching for a good diamond at DiamondWave easy, since fancy cuts (like Princess, Asscher, Oval, and such) do not get their cut grade mentioned on the GIA certificate.

In order for the search parameters to show which Princess (or other fancy cut) diamonds are available I have to expand the parameters a little to include Very Good Cut.

Since DiamondWave have a 45 day return policy, there is plenty of time to inspect the merchandise and get a different stone if needed. But sticking to higher quality ones will minimize any chance of that happening.

Choosing the preferences for a princess cut diamond
Cut grade is very important. But color should not be neglected. Princess diamonds should be “I” color or lighter. If you can’t look at the diamond it’s a much safer bet to choose one with a clarity rating of VVS2 or higher.

The first two on this list make excellent candidates for an engagement ring. The first one is 4.8 mm across, and the second one 5.1mm across. I looked at their grading reports to get this information.

If you decide you want more choice you can always look at the round diamonds.

As DiamondWave have many more round brilliant diamonds in stock I performed a slightly different search. I decided to narrow it down by adjusting the carat weight slider; as well as the polish and symmetry sliders.

choosing preferences for a round brilliant diamond
Symmetry is quite important, so I’ve slid the slider way up to show only Excellent Symmetry. In order to show only sized that would look good in an engagement ring I have slid the Carat Weight to 0.65.

The search with the options you see in the image above gave me the choice of 11 round diamonds. There were also the two princess cut diamonds from the previous search to consider. All of them fall within the budget I set at the beginning of this exercise, and any one of those will be beautiful.

If you look at the prices displayed, you will see that all of them fall within the allocated amount, and if desired the largest one can be selected which is a 0.77 carat diamond, I color, for $3,604. Alternately the diamond with the highest color grade can be selected: 0.74 carat, G color, for $4,226. The size of the two will be indistinguishable. Even though the color difference will only be slight, G color diamonds are real nice, and might be the one you find more alluring.

Another nice thing about dealing with DiamondWave is that you can call them up and ask them to have a look at the diamond you are interested in. They’ll be able to give you a first hand account of what it looks like, which can be extremely helpful. I highly recommend this.

Start your own search now:

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What size diamond should I propose with?

Man proposing to girlfriend with small diamond ring
Any real diamond is fine. Recommended size: 0.50 carat to 1 carat.

First time diamond buyers often want to know what size of diamond is acceptable. It’s a common Google search. “Is a 0.52 ct diamond good enough?” is one such phrase I noticed being used. I don’t know what was going through this person’s mind, and why they were interested in 0.52 carat specifically. Why not say 0.50 carat? Or 0.55 carat diamond for that matter. But that’s beside the point.

The answer to the question is YES.

Yes, a 0.52 carat diamond is good enough. Small diamonds (0.50 carat) are perfectly good enough!

Come to think of it, anything you get is good enough! Even a plastic ring with a paper butterfly on it is good enough. You don’t need a $10,000 ring to be good enough!

Still, a diamond ring says so much more. And it conveys a message that does not even have to be spoken. Of course speaking is still recommended. And it’s certainly easier to convince someone that you are totally serious if you do have a real diamond ring when you are proposing.

As far as size goes, a ring with a diamond which is over 0.40 ct can be seen clearly enough to be recognised as a diamond.

One carat seems to be a size that is commonly thought of when someone first starts thinking about getting a diamond. The majority of people set out to get a 1 carat diamond, but will settle for somewhere in between half a carat (0.50 ct) and one carat (1 ct).

Diamond experts usually recommend going for a diamond slightly over 0.50 carat if at all possible, even if you can’t manage a 1 carat diamond. Going for just below one carat is a pretty common practice. Maybe a little too common. 0.98 carat diamonds are pretty hard to find.

It’s actually easier to find a 0.80 carat diamond than a 0.95 carat to 0.99 carat diamond. Diamonds which are just under 1 carat get snapped up faster for two reasons.

1. The price per carat jumps disproportionately at every quarter carat.

2. And the visual size difference between a 0.95 carat diamond 1 carat diamond is impossible to see. And while diamond vendors are not permitted, by law, to call a 0.95 carat diamond a 1 carat diamond, there’s no law preventing the buyer from rounding it up to 1 carat when describing it to friends.

Statistics from only 5 years ago showed that less than 1 percent of women receive a diamond of one carat or more. However diamonds are becoming more accessible and affordable. For now. The supply is not unlimited. So right now is the best time to buy diamonds. And it is inevitable that more people are going to take advantage of

Possibly The Easiest Way To Buy A Diamond Ring

Brian Gavin just keeps amazing us with their fantastic diamonds.

Now they amaze us with their innovative new feature.

Today they have launched a new feature on their site which maked it even easier to make your choice without being swamped with hundreds of options.

Just type in your budget and you are presented with the 3 to 6 best matches. Once you choose the one you like you can still decide to upgrade to a diamond which has only a modest price difference. (2% to 3%)

I have always thought it advisable to set the budget first when shopping for a diamond. See my page on How To Buy An Engagement Ring. I have spoken to local jewelers who always tell people to pick what you want first, and think about the budget later. They confided in me that people will find the money if they want something bad enough. This obviously works for them, but I feel for the poor people who have over extended themselves. The beauty of shopping online is that you will not be faced with high pressure sales tactics, and it should be easier to stick to the budget.

I can say with full confidence that Brian Gavin Diamonds don’t sell anything one would regret buying. You know you are getting good quality from them. Even if their return policy is 15 days, I know you won’t be returning it because of an inferior diamond, that’s for sure. It’s still double the standard 7 day return policy found all over the internet.

We think this new feature for choosing a diamond ring is absolutely brilliant. This feature gets our “No Regrets” stamp of approval without hesitation.

stamp of approval

See the page here: