Like anything, the pricing there, I am sure, includes name recognition, and location, if it's in a high end retail area. As with clothing, you can (and it would seem you did) find equal, or higher, quality for less, by looking around and doing your, seemingly extensive, research.
I just reread my old post and realized where it was confusing. The wedding band had to be shaped around the e-ring setting is because I, quite foolishly, forgot to get the wedding band mould made up at the same time as the engagement ring. I didn't have to buy any gold for her ring; all recycled from heirloom, or no longer worn, pieces from my grandmother, mom, and sister. I also think being in a suburb of Vancouver, rather than in NYC, affected the price.