Diamonds cut with precisely aligned and optimally proportioned facets produce a fascinating pattern called Hearts & Arrows (H&A), a visual phenomenon that appears in the finest Ideal Cut diamonds when viewed through a gemscope. Diamond Ideals will provide you with your own Hearts & Arrows Viewer with the purchase of a 1.0 carat diamond or larger.

Not all Triple Ideal or Excellent Diamonds display Hearts & Arrows. The parameters outlined above still allow for a great deal of variance in the look of the diamond. The AGS document does not in itself guarantee the sparkle of a diamond. There is, however, a sweet spot: a narrow range within parameters that produces unbridled brilliance and scintillation. This narrow range also shows Hearts & Arrows.

Not all Hearts & Arrows Diamonds are AGS Triple Ideal or GIA Triple Excellent Diamonds. It is possible to see a Hearts & Arrows pattern in a stone if the polish or proportions are not ideal. Polish has very little to do with the pattern. Poor polish on an otherwise Ideal diamond, will create a wavy effect when viewed through a scope, visible only to the trained eye. Poor polish will decrease the diamond's brilliance.

AGS Triple Ideal or GIA Triple Excellent with Hearts & Arrows is the ultimate diamond

Perfect Hearts and Arrows

When a diamond is accompanied by an AGS Triple Ideal Cut or GIA Triple Excellent lab report and displays a perfect Hearts & Arrows pattern, you can be assured that the cut of this particular diamond has achieved the highest standards anywhere. This is truly a masterpiece of workmanship and the culmination of a marriage between technology and nature.

Do you need to pay for additional technology? The simple answer is NO. The Arrows Scope is the most important tool. It is low-tech: It does not require batteries or an internal light source, nor does it require years of schooling to interpret.

Proportions and Symmetry

Perfect proportions coupled with perfect symmetry produce the beautiful Hearts & Arrows effect of these Super Ideal Cut diamonds. The AGSL and GIA grade symmetry according to where the facet junctions meet. This does not take into consideration the differences between facet angles or the relative ratios of the different facets. This explains why Ideal Cuts can lack a Hearts & Arrows patterns.

It takes a total of 6 facets (2 lower girdle facets, 2 pavilion main facets and 2 upper girdle facets) to create one heart. The chevron is separated from the heart by the lower girdle facets. If the lower girdle facets are asymmetrical or disproportionate with the angles of the pavilion main facets one will not achieve perfect Hearts. Any deviation from perfection will be seen through the H&A Viewer.

Hearts and Arrows Viewer

The H&A Viewer is merciless when it comes to detecting any deviation from perfection. This device, as low-tech as it is, can clearly show even the untrained eye how well or how poorly a diamond is cut. We have assembled a few images below, to give you a clearer idea of what you want to avoid.


These diamonds are graded by the AGSL as Triple Ideal and by the GIA as Triple Excellent but are not Hearts & Arrows. Bad Hearts are uneven in size and shape, grooved, misshapen or nonexistent.

Bad Hearts


Bad Arrows are not properly aligned and shafts or points fail to appear.

Bad Arrows

What you want to look for:


These diamonds are AGSL Triple Ideal Cuts and by the GIA as Triple Excellent with Hearts & Arrows. Good Hearts display a perfect pattern, consisting of symmetrical, equally sized and shaped hearts.

Good Hearts


Good Arrows consist of a perfectly symmetrical pattern of equally sized and shaped arrows aligned on the shaft.

Good Arrows

Minor Inconsistencies

The H&A Viewer is not a scientific tool and should not be used to try to analyze the beauty of the diamond. Minor inconsistencies such as slightly pronounced grooves in the Hearts or the presence or absence of flares on the arrows have no bearing on the visual beauty of the diamond. These inconsistencies are often due to the particular setup used in photography. In viewing the Hearts it is important to look at the overall consistency of size and shape of the Hearts. Good Arrows are properly aligned with the arrowhead centered on the shaft.

Perfect hearts and Arrows

Perfect Hearts
Perfect Hearts — viewed bottom-up or through the pavilion A perfect pattern, consisting of symmetrical, equally sized and shaped hearts.

Perfect Arrows
Perfect Arrows — viewed through the top or table. A perfectly symmetrical pattern, consisting of equally sized and shaped arrows.

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