Opal Stones and Gems: Value, Price, and Jewelry Information

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Identifying Opal Patterns

Opal connoisseurs all have their favorite opal patterns. Learn how to identify the patterns of these beautiful gems with plenty of photo and video…

Synthetic Opal Types

Distinguishing synthetic opal from a mined gem is a vital skill for opal dealers. Learn about five different types of lab-made opal and what they…

Opal Prospecting and Mining

Headed out to the opal fields? Read on to learn more about opal prospecting and mining, plus some expert tips for finding precious opal beneath your…

Eight Opal Types Explained

Opal is a complicated gemstone, and many factors affect its price. Learn how to distinguish these eight opal types and how they differ in value.…

How Do Opals Form?

Curious about how opals form and show such stunning colors? Learn about the scientific theories behind opal formation and why some opals show a…

Top Spots for Gem Hunting in the US

Visit one of the top gem hunting spots in the US. Go alone or with the family. A gemology-themed vacation can be fun, educational, and (maybe) profitable.…

Gemology Cheat Sheets

These gemology cheat sheets review gem color and clarity grading, specific information on evaluating diamonds and opals, and basic gem identification…

Opal Polishing Survey Results

Take a look at the IGS member survey results for opal polishing. You’ll find recommendations for polishes, laps, and techniques for handling these…

Appraising Opals

Opals are unique gems with their own unique terminology. Learn the modern standard system for classifying and appraising opals used by major gem…

Opal Buying Guide

Our opal buying guide can help you learn how opals are graded, what to avoid, and how to identify a high quality stone or a bargain in the rough.

Australian Opals

Australian opals account for 95% of the world’s supply. Learn about Australia’s geological history, the start of its opal trade, and its notable…

Opal Faceting Information

Covers essential opal faceting information and related issues, research, tips, and guides about Opal Faceting. Choose what best fits the…

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