Value of Opal

How Can You Tell the Value Of Opal?

Value of Opal: Please note that the ‘Smart Chart’ reported towards the bottom of this article, is no longer available due to the illness of its creator. We will keep reporting on any progress being made to replace it. In the meantime, please leave a message at the bottom of this blog if you need help in this regard.

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Value of Opal

As a rule, when it comes to the Value of Opal, doublet opals are cheaper than solids, and a side view of the stone explains the difference, but this is not always the case. Some high-quality triplets can be more expensive than lower quality solids. If you are confused about pricing, please ask us.

Compared with other more known gemstones, opal is quite new and this makes the value of opal difficult to arrive at because up until recently there has been no consistent method to determine the value of opal. Although it has been known to Europeans for thousands of years, it did not become popular until it was found in quantity in Australia. (historical leather statement from Pliny)

As to the Value of Opal, Many jewelers are unfamiliar with it, so often don’t carry stock, so the public does not get to see its beauty. has two goals in mind.

First to tell everyone about this magnificent stone, and second to sell you a stone that you will be proud to wear. Whether you are a rich person, or like most of us, just making a living, opal is the stone for you. There’s nothing worse, if you are wearing a lovely ring, to have to admit that it is synthetic, if someone asks.

The value of opal is not just in how much the stones are worth from a dollar point of view, but how much it is valued from a personal point of view.

The exciting part about opal is that it can be cut in a number of different ways to suit everyone’s pocket, and whether you can afford an expensive opal or a cheaper one, you can still proudly state that it is a REAL opal, not a synthetic.

After you have studied this section, you will quickly see why the value of opal is established and why some opal is more expensive than others. If you are still a bit confused, just let us know your price limit and your color preference.

We will then make some helpful suggestions about the value of opal and what you should purchase.

There is absolutely no obligation to buy. And we have an international guarantee of quality. You may return your purchase for a refund, no questions asked. Please take note of freight and insurance details in our returns policy in this regard. Feel free to ask all the questions you like.

Suggestions in making a buying decision

  1. Determine your budget. How much can you afford? $10, $100, $500, $1000,$10,000 etc
  2. Purpose of the purchase.
  • Is it for you personally?. If so, perhaps you want to view it as an investment to be treasured and handed on to your children in time. In this case, you may want to spend more money and decide on a solid stone.
  • Is it for a gift? If so, maybe you don. t want to spend as much because you may have a lot of gifts to buy for various people, but you still want the item to look really expensive and appealing. In this case, go for a lower priced solid ,doublet, or triplet, in a gold plated rather than solid gold setting. This way your budget will be stretched further and you will achieve the same purpose. Remember, with gifts its not always the opal values but the kind thought and love expressed by them.
  • Keep in mind that if you buy multiples of gifts from our site, you can ask for a discount. Please do so when contacting me.

In this section, we have tried to explain the difference in valuing cut opal and opal values. For a brief outline of buying Rough Opals, click here. The Value of Opal is established by supply and demand. This makes it a more appealing investment than some other gems which are kept at high prices by cartels.

Having said that, the increase in opal value in the last 30 years is impressive. The following chart shows what happened up until 1980. Since then, the Japanese have become obsessed with the stone, and prices have gone through the roof. In recent times, since the Japanese recession, prices have leveled off, and now is a very good time to buy.

Value of Opal Using New Computer Software

(unfortunately this chart has now been discontinued due to the illness of its creator, but a new improved one is in process.

The following is taken from ‘Computer Software’ about the opal values system designed to be used by computers called ‘The Opal Smart Chart”

  • World First – Smart Chart: Value of Opal Appraisal Software
  • There is only one way to learn Opal values, that is by handling large volumes of Opal on a continuous basis.
  • There are only a handful of people worldwide capable of accurately valuing every variety of Australian Opal, most valuers, when confronted with Opal, seek assistance from an experienced Opal person, this costs time and money
  • The Smart Chart provides the means to access over 30 million Opals in photographic form, it will value these Opals in current dollar values by simply answering 14 photographic questions relating to Opal characteristics.
  • Each question is fully illustrated and is answered by simply clicking on the characteristic nearest to that of the stone in hand, help text is instantly available for each question, all photos enlarge for clearer viewing,
  • After answering all questions, press the relevant icon to obtain the value in a per carat and whole stone price for the stone in hand.
  • This can then be printed out along with the answers to the questions, which gives you both the value of opal and a verifiable document.
  • As a learning tool, The Smart Chart has no equal, after valuing an opal the characteristics can be altered infinitely, change the color, insert inclusions, change shape, even change the variety, all changes and their effect on value are instantly available
  • Even a series of hypothetical Opals can be valued, The Smart Chart is fun to use and quite addictive.
  • The information section contains over 25 screens of text with many previously unrecorded tips, for example how to detect a boulder doublet in a bezel setting.
  • The text should be printed out and read thoroughly prior to seriously operating the program, this makes program operation easier and more accurate.
  • Valuers inexperienced in the value of opal could expect to take 2 to 3 minutes for a valuation, with program familiarity it could reduce to under 1 minute.
  • If the value generated by the program disproportionately varies from the expected result, the judgment of each question should be reviewed, if still evident, a second opinion from an experienced opal person should be sought.
  • If correct judgments are made, the program is designed to provide a correct value, which is slightly optimistic for high quality stones and pessimistic for low grade stones.
  • There is an extensive photo library showing a selection of each variety of Australian Opal.
  • A new program will be available annually containing additional information, more photos and updated prices.
  • All terminology conforms to CIBJO. Opal Nomenclature on the value of opal.

The Latest Research on the Value of Opal


A new method of automated valuation using a machine and software is being developed to achieve a consistent way of obtaining the value of opal. By the looks of this, opal valuation will become easier to work out in time.

In the meantime, if you need some help with this, leave a message on this blog. You can do your own research on opal valuation here , here and here. This is the latest information on this subject from the Australian government organization CSIRO.

6 thoughts on “Value of Opal

  1. I purchased the Smart Chart for Opal in years ago and loved It. I believe I received 1 update. I have version 1.0.3 on CD. Has this software ever been updated? Where can I purchase it or an update?

    1. Mary, I emailed you regarding this. Updates for the smart chart relied on input from Peter Evans who passed away, unfortunately. I would say that the methodology in the original system is pretty much the same today although top quality black opals are getting very rare and expensive. But middle grades would be similar to what Peter assessed before he died. Hope that helps. peter

  2. I want saver the prices of unprocessed opalo the kilo

    1. I want to know the price of opalo in the natural state the kilo there are three main varieties of opal. Boulder, black, and crystal.
      Boulder and black are sold on sight in parcel lots not in kilos. white opal is sold in troy oz or grams. there are so many grades its impossible to answer this question easily. better to contact me direct using the pink leave a message box in the bottom right hand corner of each page and i will give you some examples by email. best wishes Luis

      Quiero saber el precio del opalo en el estado natural del kilo. Hay tres variedades principales de ópalo. Boulder, negro y cristal. Boulder y negro se venden a la vista en parcelas no en kilos. el ópalo blanco se vende en oz o gramos troy. hay tantos grados que es imposible responder esta pregunta fácilmente. Mejor contactarme directamente usando el color rosa, deje un cuadro de mensaje en la esquina inferior derecha de cada página y le daré algunos ejemplos por correo electrónico. mis mejores deseos Luis

  3. Hi thanks for taking time to look at my pictures,I look foreword to hearing back from you.
    Thankyou pauly o

    1. Paul please email me direct to regarding this. i am at the opal fields at present.

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