New vendor recipe has recently been discovered that many players are already taking advantage of. I’ve seen the trade chat filled all day long now with people selling 20% quality gems, typically well overpriced. Just in case you were to fall prey to hundreds of players currently trying to earn a few coins make sure to remember the recipe.
It’s overly simple and frankly it’s surprising it wasn’t already well-known. All you have to do is trade a level 20 gem and one Gemcutter’s Prism to a vendor and you’ll get back a level 1 gem with 20% quality.
Getting any gem to level 20 takes an enormous amount of time still but this might actually help with the situation. If you start using a gem at (your character’s) level 1 it should be level 20 around the time you hit level 85! By using the recipe you’ll be able to obtain 20% quality gems much sooner and cheaper so having all of them improved and leveled will be less of a burden for alternate characters.
Some gems are often not even leveled all the way due to attribute requirements. Certain support gems with +20% quality also become more efficient at level 15 or so than their non-quality counterparts and getting them to that level will not take long.
In the long run this should reduce the prices of maxed quality gems but also make level 20 gems more valuable. If you intend to sell your level 20 gems right now just be sure you know the drawbacks and understand that your abilities may have lower damage until you get the gems to a certain level. Basically, it might not be worth it.
Remember that gems don’t suffer any experience penalties like your character, so speedfarming Docks in merciless is a pretty efficient way to level them up. Also this is one additional reason why you should always keep a few gems in your alternate weapons. Even if you don’t end up using the gems you can still sell them once they reach level 20.