Jewelry Articles

Ring Settings Explained

June 29, 2017 - Jewelry Articles

The setting is one of the most defining characteristics of a ring and has an impact on the worth of the ring. A ring’s setting greatly affect the ring’s ultimate look and can minimize or maximize a stone’s appearance. If you are buying a ring you may be looking to better understand ring settings. Read below for a comprehensive guide to ring settings and to learn more about how different ring settings impact the value of a ring.


Navigating the array of ring settings that are on the market can be a tough process. The most common ring settings are:

  • Prong setting – A prong setting is one of the most popular types of ring settings, involving claws that hold the stone in place. Typically, a prong setting contains four or six prongs. Prongs come in various shapes—they can be flat, round, pointed, or shaped like a V. This setting is generally considered the most classic engagement ring setting.
  • Bezel setting– The bezel setting is also a very popular option for engagement rings. In a bezel setting, a metal rim encircles the stone and keeps it in place. In partial bezel settings, only part of the stone is encircled by metal.
  • Tension setting – A tension setting involves a stone being held in place by pressure. The stone in a tension setting will have its sides exposed and will often appear to be floating.
  • Channel setting— A channel setting keeps diamonds in place in horizontal channels on the band of the ring. This setting is typically used to set many smaller diamonds and is commonly used for wedding bands. A channel setting can be found in a single channel, with one horizontal row of stones, or a double channel, with two parallel rows of stones.
  • Pavé setting – Pavé settings involve small diamonds, often melee stones, set close together using tiny metal beads. The close setting of these small stones results in what appears to be a continuous surface of diamonds. When these small diamonds are used to surround a central stone, it is called a halo setting. A halo setting adds sparkle to the ring and makes the center stone appear very large. Halo setting rings first emerged in the 1920s and have experienced a resurgence in popularity in recent years. Halo settings exist as both a single halo setting, in which there is one circle of pave stones surrounding the center stone, and a double halo setting, in which two circles of pave stones surround the center stone.
  • Micro-Pavé setting—A micro-pavé setting involves the same technique as a pavé setting, but uses even smaller stones.
  • Three-Stone Ring setting – The three-stone setting encompasses three stones placed side-by-side, typically using three sets of prongs to keep them in place. Typically, the center stone is larger than the two side stones. Each of the three stones traditionally symolizes the past, present, and future. Oftentimes, a center diamond will be flanked by different types of gemstones.
  • Cathedral setting – The traditional cathedral setting uses metal arches, typically with prongs or a bezel extending past the arches to keep the stone in place. In this setting, the stone is mounted high above the shank.
  • Bar setting – Similar to a channel setting, a bar setting places stones in horizontal metal channels. Instead of the stones being held in place solely by the channel, they are also secured by metal bars on the stone’s other two sides. This setting is often used for wedding bands.
  • Gypsy setting — A gypsy setting, also known as a flush setting, involves diamonds embedded in a metal band. The diamond is inserted into a drilled hole in the ring’s band, resulting in a smooth surface and a more discreet look. This choice is often popular for men’s rings.
  • Cluster setting – This setting involves several diamonds set closely in a cluster-like formation. The cluster setting can be comprised of a larger center stone with smaller ones around it, or of a variety of stone sizes. From afar, the cluster of stones can often look like one large, impressive stone.

RIng settings

You can find more information on the basics of ring settings here.



You may be wondering: what effect does the setting have on the worth of my ring?  A ring setting can have a large effect on the value of the ring. The setting impacts ring value in a few different ways:

  • Popularity of setting – Some settings are more sought after on the secondhand market than others. Currently, prong settings, bezel settings, pavé settings, and three-stone settings are the most popular. The demand on the secondhand market for a given ring setting style can impact how much money a ring fetches.
  • Use of small diamonds — Diamond settings that emphasize the use of many small diamonds, like channel settings, pavé settings, cluster settings, etc. will add to the total carat weight of your ring. The larger the small individual diamonds on your ring are, the more they are worth.
  • Number of stones on ring – Similarly, a ring with a three-stone setting or a cluster setting is often more valuable than other settings due to the high total carat weight of the multiple stones.

No matter the setting you choose, the size and characteristics of the center stone will have a much larger impact on the value of your ring than the setting around it. For more detailed information on how much your ring is worth, see here.


Where to buy affordable luxury rings

The best way to buy luxury rings for affordable prices it to shop pre-owned rings. Not only is this the most eco-friendly and sustainable way to shop as it requires no new precious metal or gemstone mining, but it is also the most financially savvy way to shop. When buying from a reputable seller, pre-owned rings are polished are refurbished to excellent condition, meaning that you get a ring that looks like new but at a fraction of the original price. Shop a wide range of diamond and designer rings at fantastic discounts by clicking the button below.



Sell your ring: If you are interested in selling your ring, WP Diamonds is here to help. WP Diamonds offers a fast, free and secure service for selling your diamonds, designer jewelry, and luxury watches online. Simply fill out the online form and one of our in-house experts will be in touch shortly with an initial price valuation.


Trade in your diamonds, jewelry or watches: Additionally, if you are looking to upgrade your ring, get 10% more in store credit at Gemma or James Allen.

Bio: Written by one of our diamond, designer jewelry or luxury watch experts. With over 150 years of combined experience, our experts are able to comment on trends, share industry knowledge and provide diamond, designer jewelry and luxury watch education.

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