1.Prong Setting - Setting style consisting of narrow metal supports that hold a gem in its mounting.
Advantages: Prong settings have two main advantages over other settings. First, more of a diamond stone is visible as prongs do not obstruct different angles of the view. Second, prong set diamonds are easiest to clean, since more of the stone is exposed. Disadvantages: The main disadvantage of this setting is it can be easily caught in clothing or hair. Prong settings can also scratch other people. Many women tend to take the prong setting rings off when going to bed or playing with children because of that. Another disadvantage is that prong settings, especially those with fewer prongs, do not protect gemstone edges. Over time, the stone edges may become chipped.
2.Channel Setting - Setting style with gems held in grooves, or channels.
Advantages: The channel setting protects diamonds’ girdles from damage. A second advantage is that if the ring design does not include any large centrepiece stones (as in a typical wedding band), the ring is likely to be less pricey, since smaller diamonds cost less. Disadvantages: Setting multiple stones in the channel requires more work than some other settings, so the cost of the setting increases. Some jewellers may use a shortcut by simply cutting a long groove in the ring, without making individual stone “seats” for each one. The problem with such craftsmanship is that it will make the stones less secure and overtime they may pop out of the groove and get lost.
3.Pave Setting - Bead setting with many small gems placed close together, often in a honeycomb pattern.
Advantages: Pave settings accent the central diamond or coloured gemstone to add brilliance and fire to a ring. Due to increased firepower of multiple stones cobbled together, the central stone may not need to be as large or as high quality, which can save some money (if not fully offset by the quantity of smaller stones and additional work on pave setting). Disadvantages: The key disadvantage of pave settings is the risk of losing the diamonds. Most pave settings use indentations in the band, rather than prongs that hold gemstones in place more securely. It is not atypical for a stone to occasionally fall out.
4.Flush Setting - Setting style with a gem set directly into the metal with its table at the same level as the metal surface.
Advantages: A flush setting secures the diamond’s girdle and pavilion. Accidental chipping or cracking is not likely with this level of protection. An additional advantage is the smoothness of the ring’s overall surface. Disadvantages: The intense pressure required to create a flush setting means there is a risk the jeweller could crack the stone while setting it. Also, the expertise required to apply the setting increases the cost of the setting.
5.Bezel Setting - A thin metal strip that wraps around a gem to hold it in place.
Advantages: The most obvious advantage is the bezel setting protects the diamond’s edges from any damage, such as chipping. Another advantage is the complete encircling of the stone typically makes a smaller stone look larger. Disadvantages: The bezel setting hides a large portion of the diamond in metal, so light cannot freely pass through the stone, making it less sparkly.
6.Tension Setting - Setting with gem held in place by pressure between opposing pieces of platinum or karat gold.
Advantages: The setting provides extra protection to the diamond’s girdle and pavilion, but not as much protection as the channel and flush settings. Another advantage is that the stones are typically level with the surface of the ring, which makes the ring less prone to catching or scratching. Disadvantages: A portion of the stones is unprotected, exposing them to chipping or other damage.