Explain gemming priority

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I don't quite understand the strategy on gemming so perhaps someone can explain it to me.


The guide indicates int should be our top priority so why for the red slots are we not just gemming straight int instead of +80 int / +160 haste?

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Hello little Mage.


The theory behind gems at the moment is that secondary stats are more than half as potent as primary stats.  Therefore, when you can gem secondary stats, you typically gain more DPS than if you were to gem primarily Intellect.


For example, let's say Intellect gives you 8 DPS per point and Mastery gives you 5 DPS per point.  Let's look at some calculations.


Brilliant = 160 Intellect * 8 DPS/Intellect = 1280 DPS

Artful = 80 Intellect * 8 DPS/Intellect + 160 Mastery * 5 DPS/Mastery = 640 + 800 = 1440 DPS. 


Here, in this gem alone, you would gain 160 DPS.  Calculated up over all of your gems, this would be a sizeable gain.  As long as the stat weight of your secondary stats is more than half of Intellect, it will always be a DPS gain to gem hybrid gems because of the double stat allocation of secondary stats on gems.

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Okay thanks for the clarification. I played a lot in Cata where the idea was that unless the gem bonus was +int, you just put the pure int gem in every spot regardless of color. Based on the Icy Veins guide, it seemed like that was still the case but the gemming section seemed to go against that.


Either way, your explanation makes sense. I'd like to see the Icy Vein guide go into more detail on this.

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Another thing to keep in mind, if you use Ask Mr. Robot, it considers haste break on dot spells. So, if you can hit the next break up, and it works out being more dps, it will have you gems a lot of haste. If not, it will send your gems in another direction. 

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Int is still king. That's why any Intelligence-based class will enchant their cloak for Int instead of Critical Strike. In MoP, though, they detuned main-stat gems so that they weren't automatically the first choice. You use them only if 1 Int is more valuable than 2 of any other single stat.

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