Monday, 26 March 2012

Video Blog - Do we Have Too Many Clarity Grades?

Welcome to the Toddwaz Report video edition, coming to you from the Travelodge television studio.

Take shifting standards as to what constitutes a SI2 and multiply them by the inconsistency in so-called “professional” grading labs, and we’ve got too many clarity grades.  It’s way too confusing for the public.  I think we should have only 3 clarity grades.  It would make it so much simpler.  Let’s divide diamonds into categories that make sense to consumers, and give power back to the people. 

We’re already splitting hairs within grades aren’t we?  “Hey, is this a 1990s GIA SI2, an AGS 4, an EGL VS1 or a modern day GIA SI1?”  How about this: we’ll continue to buy and sell diamonds according to the Rappaport grading categories, but we’ll promote them in three categories: Value, Eye-Clean and Collector.

Value diamonds would include everything that has eye-visible inclusions.  You’ll charge more for what might be called an “SI2” than you would for “I2s.”  Eye-Clean diamonds would range from old school SI2s to VS1s.  Again, you’d charge more for the cleaner and rarer ones.  Collector clarities will obviously include VVS2 and better.

Why bother doing this if we’re still going to charge according to the traditional grading incriments?  I’ll tell you why.  Because this allows the client to know what the hell they’re looking for!  Your customer who is considering a “Value” diamond knows that inclusions are visible to the naked eye.  If they remain in this category, they will select a diamond whose eye-visible inclusions are the most tolerable for the price.  Your Eye-Clean customer will spend a bit of time looking at diamonds with their naked eye, a loupe and maybe a microscope.  They will reject any diamonds whose inclusions they can see with their naked eye.  This takes SI3 right off the table!!!  The collector will inspect their prestigious specimen under the microscope and can nit-pick them all they want.

You know what else this is going to do?  It’s going to make people want to look before they buy.  Can they do that on the internet?  I don’t think so!  So in stead of having 13 grading categories … or is it 14 … or is it 17?  Let’s have three and be done with it!

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