Saturday, October 13, 2012

Diamond Carat Size Explained

How Large is a 1 Carat Diamond?

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Diamond Education Guides The 4 C's

Carat size, is one of  The 4C's (carat, color, clarity, cut), and it is the unit of measure used to describe the weight of a diamond.

Diamond History:
The word carat originated from the carob tree - the tiny seeds of this tree are well known for their uniformity and consistent weight. Traditionally, diamonds and gemstones were weighed against these seeds until the system was standardized, and 1-carat was fixed at 0.2 grams. 1-carat is divided into 100 points, just as 1 dollar is equal to 100 pennies. A diamond weighing one quarter of a carat can also be described as weighing 25 points or 0.25 carats or 1/4-carat. Points are generally not used to describe weights over 1 carat.

Quick Conversion Chart:
25 points or 0.25 carats or 1/4-carat
50 points or 0.50 carats or 1/2-carat
75 points or 0.75 carats or 3/4-carat
100 points or 1.00 carats or 1-carat

As diamond carat size increases, both the diameter and the depth of the diamond increase. This is why a 1.00-carat diamond (6.5 mm diameter) does not look twice as wide as a 0.50 or 1/2-carat diamond (5 mm diameter).

Scarcity of Larger-Size Diamonds:
Diamonds are formed between 75-120 miles beneath the earth's crust and can sometimes take thousands of years to surface where they can be mined. Most diamonds were actually formed billions of years ago. So while all diamonds are rare, the larger stones (1 ct or larger) are even scarcer. So, generally speaking, larger diamonds have a greater value per carat. This is why a diamond's carat size has the biggest impact on the price of the diamond. Now you understand why a diamond twice the size will be substantially more money.

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  Diamond Education Guides The 4 C's

Learn more about the 4 C's before you buy a diamond.