I am by far is not an expert and this is merely and solely based on my personal experience.
(Belum pape dah buat disclaimer panjang-panjang. HAHA. Kot orang ingat aku pakar pulak karang.)
Ok, let me start by telling you my story.
In choosing a ring for your male other-half, first of all you must know what kind of ring material that he prefers. I have to admit, for Muslim the choices are quite limited to only stainless steel, silver, titanium and platinum (the most expensive). Some opted for the less expensive suasa. Suasa is a mixture of gold, silver and other alloy. As for me, suasa is out of the question since it is haram for Muslim men to wear gold and I am very was-was about this because upon research I had found two opinions regarding this matter.
Some say that it is absolutely forbidden because suasa still contains gold, even if in a small quantity. Some that that it is acceptable because of the small quantity.
Another source here
Logically, if your food was contaminated with alcohol (as in arak) would you still consume the food? No, isn't it? So suasa is definitely not an option for us.
Since I have a very demanding fiance, *ehem, kidding!* stainless steel and silver too are not an option. So we have nothing but to opt for the most expensive material of them all, the platinum.
Nangis. <--- aku le yang nangis tu, terpaksa keluar duit banyak.
Platinum is expensive because it's a rare material. And dense. The price of a ring is calculate by how much the material worth per gram. And platinum is heavy and dense, hence the higher in price. DeGem, Diamonds&Platinum, Goldheart and Selberan are the jewelers (that we went) that offer platinum rings for men. Oh, I forgot to mention that another option is titanium which can be found at Tiffany & Co. The price for titanium ring starts at 2k. The downside of titanium is that it cannot be resized. Titanium is normally used for coating of the watches, spectacles because of its near-weightless properties.
We search high and lo for a ring that fit into our budget. Well, more of my budget actually. Bear in mind that for a decent plain-looking platinum ring, the price starts at 2.5k and above. The best composition for a platinum ring is 95% platinum and 5% alloy. There is no such thing as 100% Platinum. If you have a background in solid material engineering or at least learn chemistry you'll know why. If not, I'm gonna explain it in layman's language. Adding an alloy into pure material makes the material becomes more durable or in other word, stronger. Now don't get me carried away into explaining all the bonds inside a metal. It will pretty boring and too much info to absorb, trust me.
We search high and lo for the ring for my man. We went to various D&P and DeGem shops, to Selberan and finally to Goldheart. Goldheart is the only shop that we went that offers material other than Platinum. Bear in mind that the platinum that they have is 100%, which we are not so convince with, because of our knowledge in solid material and my knowledge in chemistry. And the SA keep on saying how good and "pure" their platinum rings are since they are 100% platinum. Pffft. Badly mis-informed. And they also have Platim ring which is sterling+silver. But we're not interested so we didn't ask any further.
Then...we got introduced to a new material! Well, it's not that new actually but it is new to the Malaysian market. The material is Palladium. Quick info about Palladium. It is actually in the same group as Platinum in the periodic table, which means that their chemical properties is similar but palladium is less dense than that of Platinum.
Less dense = less expensive = save money. Geddit? YAY!
Sadly for palladium ring, for now there isn't much design to choose from. But luckily the design that they (Goldheart) currently have, is similar to the ring that my fiance likes from Tiffany & Co. Hell, that man sure got an expensive taste.
He tried it on, liked and loved it but since we never heard of palladium before, both of us decided to go back and do a quick research/reading before we make our decision. I even went to certain extend of reading forums dedicated to jewel maker on their opinion on palladium, the pros and cons etc. All in the name of a ring.
Hey, I am a Type A so bear with me.
So, the next day we went back to Goldheart and the rest is history..
My advise is that it's always good to have a basic knowledge and know what you want beforehand. So that you won't feel "lost" or let yourself get cheated by the sweet talk of the SA. And don't scared to ask a lot of questions if you do not understand or know anything. Save the embarrassment and fear looking like an idiot somewhere else. But like I said, basic knowledge is important as you can prepare yourself and absorb things explained by the SA fast.
Better be safe than sorry girls.
If any of you still have questions feel free to ask me! I am glad to help. (Chewah, dah macam ring expert plak aku ni)