OK, I know once my fellow priests see my armory link I am going to get blasted but I just respecced and regemmed (as much as I could- ran out of badges and gold, lol) since I will be doing ICC25 next week.
I was told to gem for sp/int then got to reading on here that int isn't necessary to gem for and to be going for haste. *sigh*
I am currently 3/5 T10 (although only going for the pants to make the 4 pc bonus) and have mostly 251/264 gear.
I know my haste is WAY below what it should be (25% is the general consensus- right?) but cannot figure out how to get my haste that high without compromising my mana pool (just above 25k right now unbuffed).
This is my opinion about Holy, I'm sure others will disagree and some may agree with me.
As holy using intellect gems of any sort is bad. You do get mana regen from the intellect, more so than with spirit however, at the higher end gear levels, 245-277 (IMO) you really don't run in to too many mana issues. I'm full time disc now with holy offspec, but as holy I always hit socket bonuses with reds being spell power, blues being spell power/spirit, and yellow being either spell power/haste or strait haste it depended on whether I was trying to get as much haste or possible or sit around 800 or so. I would at the very least use sp/haste in your yellows and if you want/need more haste use them in your red slots as well. Spirit for holy is still a decent regen stat, it is lower than int, but you get spell power from it as holy which is why I always preferred it to intellect. I would also swap your meta gem to either the 21 int/mana restore since I believe the 2% mana from your current doesn't out-weigh the mana return of the insightful until you are closer to 30k mana.
Even as disc where you get a lot more back form intellect I prefer not to gem for it. The biggest thing to look at is that at the higher gear levels mana regen really doesn't seem to be an issue for us anymore. Also as BE you have your racial which is a good Mp5 boost when used on CD, and you have the sliver for a trinket which is another good chunk of Mp5 when used on CD. I do keep other trinkets in my bags in the event there is a fight where I need the extra regen. Again these are my feelings/play style for holy and by no means will I say they are right as I'm sure others will say I am way wrong.
I agree. You will normally have enough intellect 25-man raid buffed to keep your mana pool constant, using Hymn, SFiend and in your case Racial and Trinket when you get low. Gemming for intellect should not be a priority as a holy OR disc priest.
I would switch your meta to the 21 int and chance to restore mana. It has an insane proc rate. Also, you could try replacing you 12 Spell+10 Spirit with the Haste+Spirit blue gem, and your yellow sockets that have intellect with Spell+Haste. I recently regemmed, and put the 20 haste in yellow sockets, the haste+spirit in blue, and the haste+spell in red. I've noticed a positive change in my output. Most people seem to agree that the soft cap for haste is ~960, which sets your haste at 40% raid buffed. (Feel free to correct me if I'm wrong.) If you are worried about losing spellpower, you can put 24 Spell in the red sockets and stand near a Totem of Wrath =P.
As for Disc, I don't raid as that spec nearly as often, but I've seen many gemming for solid spellpower except to activate the meta.
Haste gains are still effective HPS gains whether you are renew or flash spec up to 50% haste. While you will lose spell power and your heals won't hit necessarily as hard, you'll get them out faster. For renew you are below GCD cap so you'll get more renews out faster, and as flash you'll cut down the casting time of flash heal.
From looking at your armory if you were to go all sp/haste in both reds and yellows and sp/spirit in blues and change meta gems. You may not even lose much spell power. You lose 46 from losing the 2 reds, but gain nearly 60 from swapping your two 20 int gems, and your green int/spirit gems. You will lose a net of 20 ish?(I did quick math) spell power from the meta, and 600 mana every 45 seconds from the other meta will help if you have regen issues. I think the haste gained from swapping out any gem with Int on it will far out-weigh the loss of the spell power. Take the risk and regem, if you don't like it you'll just be out some gold. When I was holy I raided with near 900 haste, and my current Holy priest raids with around 800. At the very least shoot for the GCD cap as holy especially if you are renew heavy.
I registered just to help you out a little because I agree with you; there is way too much confusion about gearing for holy. Most of it stems from a horribly outdated Elitist Jerks compendium I went through a lot of gold respeccing/gemming based on conflicting information I found floating around, so I can understand your frustrations! Unfortunately, alot of it is up to interpretation.
When it comes to haste, you need to be careful. Haste is great for throughput, but you need to keep in mind that it also chews through your mana. So it comes down to interpretation and experience. Personally, I've found ~800 haste is about the right place to be. It reduces your global cooldown to ~1.1 seconds raid buffed which is solid enough without raping your mana pool like being global cooldown capped does. I don't think there is a right or wrong answer here, I see a lot of priests who go for the GCD cap, and it works for them. Personally I don't find it worth the strain on your mana. I have some of the best gear in the game, and still stretch my mana pool to capacity on alot of fights. To reach GCD you have to use 20haste gems, so there is a trade-off between Haste and Spellpower to consider there.
Now... for things that there are right or wrong answers too:
Alrighty, so first of all you want to switch to Insightful Earthsiege Diamond. Some simple maths will prove the point, else just trust me
You've made a mistake with your tier gear unfortunately. You really want the t10 gloves, legs, head, shoulders... As the chest piece has a lot of haste options available, including the best in slot (togc25, princes 10 AND 25).
I recommend Reckless Ametrine in all red/yellow slots, Purified in blue slots where the bonus is 7sp or greater, and 23sp in blue slots with lesser bonus's. If you decide to push for GCD cap (which i dont recommend at your current gear level), you will want to put 20haste gems in your yellow slots.
As others indicated, gemming for Intellect is generally unnecessary at higher gear levels. I think there's a combination of causes for the misconception that it is useful, whether it's Elitist Jerks being horribly outdated, tools like Rawr vastly overvaluing mana regen, or Priests thinking they have mana problems when better cooldown management, spec, or spell selection is the real problem. Either way, a Discipline Priest generally ought to stop gemming for Intellect around the Ulduar gear level, and Holy can generally stop gemming for it around ToC level. In ICC gear, mana should largely be a non-issue, as the Intellect and Spirit on gear alone should be sufficient regen.
Another thing to keep in mind is that the values of Spell Power and Haste each become more valuable as you have more of the other. The thing is, just like Intellect, Spell Power comes on every piece of gear, so you eventually start to get plenty from gear alone and see more and more of a focus on Haste gemming. Ultimately, you'll find that favoring Haste (SP/Haste, Haste, Haste/Spirit) tends to become very attractive in higher end gear, especially as the ICC buff gets larger and larger. However, gaining more GCDs does have a mana draining effect, so I wouldn't recommend going straight from SP/Int gemming to heavy Haste gemming without at least some practice to see how it works out for you.
Anyway, you're well beyond the point where you should be gemming for Int. You'll probably be fairly surprised at how much more throughput you can get by trading unnecessary Int for Haste.