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How to find Diamonds in Minecraft to craft better gear

Minecraft deepslate diamond ore blocks
(Image credit: Mojang Studios)

Knowing how to find Diamonds in Minecraft will make you one of the most formidable - and gaudy - hole-diggers in all the server. Diamonds are nearly always found buried deep underground, usually at the sort of depths that end up being quite perilous and will test your mining skill. It's worth it though - Minecraft has a pretty clear tier list of resources, and Diamonds are in the upper echelons, with Diamond Swords being one of the best weapons and Diamond Pickaxes being an excellent mining tools - so getting to the point where you're ready to snuffle for hardened carbon should be one of your early goals. Diamond ore generation was changed quite substantially with the Caves and Cliffs update, but the basic method of how to find Diamonds in Minecraft hasn't changed, and we've laid it out clearly below.

How to find Diamonds in Minecraft

How to find Diamonds in Minecraft

(Image credit: Mojang)
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Minecraft Diamonds are found below Y-level 16 and become more common the deeper you go. Since the lowest five layers of the floor in Minecraft (which is at Y-level -64 as of the 1.18 update) are mostly bedrock, you have a range of around Y16 to Y-59 to mine. Bear in mind that they'll be significantly more common, although still quite rare, at the lower end of this range, so anything around Y-50 to Y-59 should give you a decent chance of digging up diamonds. 

Once you've finally found some diamonds in Minecraft, make sure you're using a Pickaxe that's made of Iron or a better material. Stone and wood tools can break the ore but will not yield any diamonds!

While Minecraft Netherite (opens in new tab) is now the strongest material for weapons and armor in Minecraft, Diamonds work as the base and are much easier to acquire in comparison (though still somewhat hard in the grand scheme of things). 

If you get yourself a full set of Diamond armor, a Diamond Pickaxe, and a Diamond sword, plus an Enchanting Table, you'll be set for any enemy that tries to take you on. However, you'll need dozens of diamonds if you're going to kit yourself out completely, which is a time-consuming process for even the most hardened miner/explorer. With that in mind, here are some extra tips for finding Diamonds in Minecraft.

  • Use your coordinates to make sure you're looking at the correct level
    If all this talk of Y-levels is confusing you, press F3 when playing Minecraft Java Edition, or toggle the "Show Co-ordinates" option on your world settings in Bedrock Edition to reveal your coordinates. You can now see you character's Y-coordinate at any time, so ensure it's below 16 if you want to be in diamond territory.
  • Look and listen for lava pools
    Diamonds do not tend to spawn close to lava, but lava pools are naturally more open areas and you can look at more blocks this way. Plus, if you find a natural lava pool at around that level, it means every single block you see surrounding the pool has the potential to be Diamond Ore. 
  • Branch mine to maximize the number of blocks you expose
    Branch mining is essentially digging down to an appropriate Y-level, then creating a long, horizontal tunnel with symmetrical, straight paths branching off. For maximum efficiency, you need to start a branch along your main tunnel every third block, in both directions. You don't want to create new branches at every other block because you'll just be exposing the other side of a block you've previously seen and limiting how many new blocks — and potential Diamonds — you're spotting, so you need to leave a two-block thick wall between branches.
  • Explore deep caves
    Of course, Minecraft is all about caving too. So if you find a complex cave system that delves deep into the depths of the world, stock up on equipment (food, torches, weapons, armour) and start exploring! Large cave networks can be a really good way of reaching the depths of the world where diamonds are most abundantly found without having to mine your way down.
  • If you've already got an Enchanting Table, use a Fortune Pickaxe to mine the ore
    You've got to spend diamonds to get diamonds, but so if you've already crafted a Pickaxe with the Fortune enchantment on it, you can use it to increase the chance of getting more than one diamond per diamond ore block that you mine. Unfortunately, you do need to have already found Diamonds to make an Enchanting Table, but it's a great way to quickly accumulate more Diamonds at once. Consider it a long-term investment.
  • Stay away from Deep Dark Biomes.
    These new biomes, introduced in 1.19, spawn at similar depths to where diamond ore can be most commonly found. However, Deep Dark biomes are pretty tough for unprepared players - if you come across one, tunnel in the opposite direction, because it only provides disadvantages.
  • You've got a small chance of finding diamonds in naturally generated chests
    While diamonds are most commonly found in their ore form deep underground, you can also find regular diamonds in small quantities within lootable chests. If you find a shipwreck, mineshaft, desert/jungle temple, fortress, or a village, make sure you look for any chests lying around as you might find some useful items inside, including the odd diamond

Ultimately, finding Diamonds in Minecraft is mainly down to luck, but there are lots of methods and tips you can use to boost your chances. However, you get your diamonds, be sure to get enough to kit yourself out and you'll be the envy of the entire server.

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Leon Hurley
Leon Hurley

I'm currently GamesRadar's Senior Guides Co-ordinator, which means I've had a hand in producing or writing all of the guide and tips content on the site. I also write reviews, previews and features, and do video. Previously I worked for Kotaku, and the Official PlayStation Magazine and website. I'm a big fan of open world games, horror, and narrative adventures. 

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