A Guide to Diamond Carats and Prices

visual carat guideLet’s talk about diamond carats and prices. Does size really matter when it comes to diamonds (or any gem, for that matter)? Well, unfortunately (or fortunately?) there’s no correct answer to that, except to say it all depends on the individual. To each their own, I say, especially when it comes to something as personal and unique as an engagement ring and wedding band. Just know that at the end of the day, it’s important to remember that amount of love your fiancé has for you does not equal the amount of carats in your engagement ring, nor does it predict the success of your relationship. Let’s not forget the 6.1 carat diamond Ben Affleck gave to J.Lo, shall we?

While the size of the diamond you end up getting will vary according to your budget and taste, just make sure whichever diamond you and your fiancé do go with it is AGS/GIA certified (read more about how their certification works as well as the 4 c’s of diamonds here).

diamond carats visual

A general guide to diamond carats and prices is below. An idea of the best quality (cut, color, clarity, and carat) you can expect within each price range is also included. Any higher than what is listed and you will most likely see a dip in quality, with a clarity grade of SI1 or lower OR a color grade of “H” or lower. Get more info on diamond color and clarity here.

James Allen

Diamond carats and prices information via A Diamond Buying Guide

$750-$1,000

  • Carat Weight: 0.30 – 0.5
  • Diamond Quality: Varied.
  • Setting: 14-18K gold (white or yellow), Platinum

$1,000-$2,000

  • Carat Weight: 0.30 – 0.70
  • Diamond Quality: Varied.
  • Setting: 14-18K gold (white or yellow), Platinum

$2,000-$3,500

  • Carat Weight: 0.35 – 1.10 (best quality: under 1 carat)
  • Diamond Quality: Varied.
  • Setting: 14-18K gold (white or yellow), Platinum

$3,500-$5,000

  • Carat Weight: 0.50 – 1.10 (best quality: 0.9 – 0.93)
  • Diamond Quality: Varied.
  • Setting: 18K gold (white or yellow), Platinum

$5,000-$7,500

  • Carat Weight: 0.80 – 1.50 (best quality: 0.80 – 1.10)
  • Diamond Quality: Varied.
  • Setting: 18K gold (white or yellow), Platinum

$7,500-$10,000

  • Carat Weight: 0.70 – 1.75 (best quality: 1.00 – 1.10)
  • Diamond Quality: Varied.
  • Setting: 18K gold (white or yellow), Platinum

$10,000-$20,000

  • Carat Weight: 0.90 – 2.25 (best quality: 1-1.5)
  • Diamond Quality: Varied.
  • Setting: 18K gold (white or yellow), Platinum

$20,000-$30,000

  • Carat Weight: 1.00 – 3.10 (best quality: up to 2.10)
  • Diamond Quality: Varied.
  • Setting: 18K gold (white or yellow), Platinum

$30,000-$50,000

  • Carat Weight: 1.00 – 4.50 (best quality: up to 2.50)
  • Diamond Quality: Varied.
  • Setting: 18K gold (white or yellow), Platinum

$50,000-$100,000

  • Carat Weight: 1.50 – 6.00 (best quality: up to 4)
  • Diamond Quality: Varied.
  • Setting: 18K gold (white or yellow), Platinum

$100,000-$200,000

  • Carat Weight: 2.00 – 8.00 (best quality: up to 5.5)
  • Diamond Quality: Varied.
  • Setting: 18K gold (white or yellow), Platinum

$200,000-$999,000

  • Over 3 carats and generally require a customized settings (standard settings can generally only accommodate up to three carats).

So what do these carats sizes actually look like on your hand? You can go into a store and try on the different sizes to get a visual, or you can see what diamond carats look like on a model with the graphic below. For more information, this is the best diamond carat size visual I’ve found online.

diamond carats visual



Trying to figure out which style you like the best? You can explore more diamond shapes here.

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