James Allen True Hearts vs Blue Nile Astor Ideal

Hunting specifically for premium diamonds can be quite a task but not when you get exclusive collections of premium diamonds by named and famed retailers like James Allen or Blue Nile.

True Hearts and Astor Ideal are the names of two such collections that offer top-notch diamonds in terms of cut, symmetry, and polish grade. To be precise, these diamonds deliver an unrivaled light performance.

But since the True Hearts and Astor Ideal collection is offered by two different brands, most of us wonder which one is really worth the premium price. What exactly are the differences?

You can expect the answer to these and many more questions right here in this guide. So let’s get started!

What is a True Hearts cut?

True hearts in itself is not the name of a cut rather it is the name of a collection by James Allen. However, a true heart diamond can be identified by its spectacular symmetry and proportions.

Anyway, let’s see what exactly a True Heart means. 

True Hearts as defined by James Allen

True Hearts is a premium collection of perfectly cut diamonds. The hallmark of the most ideal cut round diamonds with perfect internal symmetry and proportions, with superior gem grading for cut and polish, is what a True Heart diamond is all about.

True heart diamonds reveal a stunning pattern of hearts and arrows. These diamonds reveal a highly symmetrical 8 heart pattern when viewed from the bottom. While the 8 arrows can be seen from above.

This intricate pattern is quite hard to find. In fact, only 1% of the world’s diamonds earn the True Heart distinction. The Hearts and Arrows pattern is only found in round, princess, or cushion-cut diamonds which is why you’ll find True Hearts in these shapes only.

What is Astor Ideal cut?

Astor Ideal is a super ideal cut diamond collection. This collection by Blue Nile features top-of-the-line diamonds that offer utmost brilliance, sparkle, and scintillation. In short, these diamonds are cut with the highest precision and symmetry, producing an unrivaled light performance.

Astor Ideal by Blue Nile

Astor Ideal by Blue Nile is an exclusive collection of top-tier diamonds with a super ideal cut. The Astor Ideal collection was introduced to replace the previously known Signature Collection by Blue Nile.

Unlike True Hearts, Astor Ideal diamonds do not come with a ‘Hearts and Arrows’ report or offer any ideal scope images. But anyway, Blue Nile doesn’t claim to offer the H&A patterns exclusively in this collection either. 

However, as a customer, I would’ve appreciated ideal scope images at least. It makes it easier to assess the diamonds as well as the claims of their superior symmetry. 

Is Astor Ideal the same as Excellent?

As a matter of fact, yes. Astor ideal is the same as an excellent cut diamond (or ideal cut). If you look at the gem reports of both an Astor ideal and Excellent Diamond, you’ll find it graded as an Excellent/Ideal Cut diamond in GIA or AGS reports.

However, you will find the Astor Ideal diamonds to be superior in their symmetry and proportions. And that means they do offer better light performance. 

But also, keep in mind that you can find an excellent cut diamond that showcases an equally well-light performance at a lower price. Although, finding that can be quite a task. And that is why Blue Nile is cashing on its Astor Ideal Collection by limiting it to only the super ideal cut diamonds, hence, making the diamond hunt effortless for the customers.

Check out this comparison between a 1.52c. Ideal and Astor Ideal diamond with similar cut and clarity grades.

The Astor Ideal diamond is priced around $29,381 while the Ideal Diamond will cost you around $21,083 only. Do you really think the Astor Ideal is worth the premium price?

What is the difference between True Hearts and Astor Ideal?

While both Astor Ideal and True Hearts is a line of premium diamonds, there is a significant difference between them. 

As you know, a True Heart diamond possesses excellent internal symmetry, facet positions, and proportions that allow it to reveal a stunning heart and arrow pattern. These diamonds produce an unmatched light performance and shine from across the room. Well so do the Astor diamonds, then what’s the difference?

Astor Ideal lacks H&A

An Astor Ideal sure is a superior cut of diamonds but will you find the classic Heart and Pattern in them? That is exactly what makes it different from the True Hearts. Astor Ideal diamonds also possess an exceptional cut quality but most of them still aren’t capable of attaining the H&A status.

To be precise, Astor Ideal diamonds cannot be considered as true Hearts and Arrows diamonds. They do offer a brilliant light performance though but when it comes to symmetry and proportions, all of them are not capable of being an H&A diamond. 

So if you’re specifically looking for a Hearts and Arrows diamond then, go for True Hearts by James Allen or consider ACA by Whiteflash. You’ll not be disappointed, take my word for it. 

However, if your diamond hunt is not limited to an H&A diamond then you may as well consider the Astor Collection by Blue Nile.

Price Comparison True Hearts vs. Astor Ideal

Well, I must say that James Allen offers very impressive prices for their True Heart diamonds. In contrast to that, Blue Nile’s Astor Ideal range will almost cost you a fortune. But anyway, let’s have a look at a few diamonds so you can analyze the price yourself.

A 1.09c. True Heart diamond will cost you around $13,687. This diamond possesses a GIA grading report with VVS1 clarity and F color. The diamond also reveals quite a fine hearts and arrows pattern. 

As opposed to that a 1.08c. Astor Ideal diamond with similar color and clarity grades is priced at $14,469. Now I do realize that the symmetry and cut proportions are excellent as per the GIA report of the diamond. Yet, I don’t see that justifying the price difference. 

Similarly, a 1.02c. True Heart diamond with VS1 clarity and E grade will cost you around $9,256. This diamond reveals an exceptionally symmetrical heart and arrow pattern with minimal light leakage. You can check that out in the ideal scope images for this diamond below.

On the contrary, the 1.01c. Astor Ideal diamond, E color, and VS1 clarity is priced at $10,389. It is a fraction smaller but still, the price is higher. Therefore, the price difference between the two seems a little too much. 

To sum up I’d say that the Astor Ideal diamonds are a bit too costly. You do get a super ideal cut diamond, I agree but you can find the same thing in the True Hearts collection as well. And that too, with the addition of better internal symmetry and H&A patterns. 

Whatever you decide, make sure to closely examine the certifications of diamonds from both these collections. Blue Nile offers a readily available GIA certificate with each diamond on the website. But in the case of True Hearts, you’ll need to get in touch with James Allen’s customer support team. 

True Hearts Certification 

All True Hearts diamonds are certified by the most prestigious diamond grading labs i.e. AGS and GIA. However, these reports do not distinguish the diamonds as a True Heart anywhere. 

The AGS certificate grades the diamond as an ideal cut at most. Similarly, the GIA report grades the True Hearts as an Excellent Cut diamond. But if you care to analyze the symmetry ratios, polish, and proportions of the diamond, you’ll see how the True Hearts are superior to regular excellent or ideal cut diamonds. 

Astor Ideal Certification 

All Blue Nile diamonds are certified by the GIA labs. However, in the case of the Astor Ideal collection, the GIA report is accompanied by an additional GemEx grading report. Now the additional report may sound impressive to a few people but in reality, this report has no significant importance and reliability. Here’s what a Gemex report offers:

Anyway, as long as there’s a GIA report, the GemEx report isn’t really much of a concern. All Astor Ideal diamonds are graded as Excellent Cut diamonds on the GIA reports.

Is True Hearts better than Ideal?

Yes and no. True Hearts, more often than not, are better than Ideal diamonds, I agree. They are the rarest of all diamonds and their sparkle is unrivaled. However, if you consider a True Heart diamond with sub-par clarity or color grade on one hand, and on the other hand, take an Ideal cut diamond with high color and clarity grades.

Which one do you think will perform better? Of course not the True Heart. So in such cases, you can expect to find Ideal Diamonds to be better than True Hearts. 

But if you’re particularly looking for a Hearts and Arrows pattern, then, of course, True Hearts by James Allen is an excellent option. 

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