I probably should have posted this last week, but I didn't really think about it until this weekend. For those of you who haven't been poring over the new gem recipes from Northrend, it may not be obvious what the new content will mean for your current wares. So let me make it clear: the new green gems are better than our current epics. And for those of you who are thickies... THE NEW CRAP GEMS ARE BETTER THAN OUR EPIC GEMS! If you haven't done so already, please cut and sell any gems you have left in your bank/bags/etc. Stop holding them in the hopes that they will sell like hotcakes on release day. Anyone with half a brain will wait a day or two until the Jewelcrafters on their realm start cutting masses of green gems and selling them for chump change.
Right now is the best opportunity you'll have to clear out your inventory. This week's patch means that talents have been shifted around, radically for some classes. Some stats have been tweaked, modified or changed completely for certain builds. People will be making changes to their gear. When changing gear isn't an option, gems will be the next logical choice. This is where YOU will come in with your shinies. Prices have been in the dumps for the past few months, now is the best chance you'll have to sell your gems for a reasonable prices. So don't waste it. Get out there and SELL SELL SELL!!!
On the other hand, in my opinion meta gems are worth stocking and I'll tell you why. No one will be able to learn new meta cuts until they hit 400 skill. Now it's possible that one or two insane idiots will somehow power their way up that high on the first day. You'd have to be extremely lucky to find enough ore to pull that off with all the other insane idiots who'll be clogging the server. But let's say it happens, some shmoe guilts his whole guild into donating every scrap of ore they can find to help him power up. He's still going to need an alchemist to power up with him and do the transmute. His Alchemist friend is going to have to get *his* hands on enough herbs to get up to 425. I'm not saying it's impossible, but this scenario is pretty unlikely.
But let's assume that some power guild pulls this off and unlocks meta gem cuts in the first day or two. The Alchemist is still only going to be able to transmute one meta per day. Therefore the Jewelcrafter can only cut one meta per day. After all that work is he going to sell those gems to you? No, his job over the first few weeks will be supplying metas for his hardcore guildmates (or risk their wrath if they find out he's making a mint off their generosity). Even if he does have a few to sell at some point, he's going to charge an obscene amount of money. And no one in their right mind is going to pay mega bucks to gem a piece of leveling gear they just got in Utgarde Keep.
So, it's my view that our current meta-gems will still be in demand for the first few weeks of WotLK. It will take about that long for the average JC to hit 400 and learn the cuts, which is when competitive pricing will kick in. Until that time, anyone who gets an upgrade helm will probably just spend 100g to put an old meta in it. Why blow a ton of gold on a helm you won't be keeping? Your average player won't. Now would be a great time to start transmuting metas if you have an alchemy toon. If not, keep an eye out for bargains on the Auction House. Most BC stuff appears to be selling cheap right now, so you might be able to get some good deals. Just something to consider ;)