Hey there, i'm looking for some advice on socketing, particularly related to my low hit/stam. For all my red sockets i've been using hit/exp and my hit rate is still too low for my comfort. Also, I haven't been having any threat issues at all in ICC, so i was wondering if i should replace some of those red sockets with straight stam.
My big question is, what is the minimum hit that i should have and should i replace my red sockets with straight stam?
As a Tank the only time you want to use a pure Yellow Gem is if it is for Defense and only if you need it to reach the 540 defense "cap".
Also you never ever want to use an Orange Gem as a tank.
The only gem colors a tank should use are Green (Hit/Stam or Def/Stam), Purple (Expertise/Stam or Dodge/Stam), Red (only if you need Expertise BADLY), Yellow (only if you need Defense to get to 540), or Blue (Stam).
Helm: regem with Hit/Stamina.
Shoulders: regem wtih Expertise/Stam or Dodge/Stam.
Chest: might want to change one gem to Hit/Stam (I know dodge isn't a great socket bonus, but at least it gives you an excuse to gem for Hit).
Bracers: regem with Hit/Stam would be better than the Nightmare Tear.
Belt: regem wtih Dodge/Stam, change the Hit to either Hit/Stam or Stam.
Legs: regem wtih Expertise/Stam or Dodge/Stam.
The "target" number for Hit Rating and Expertise are 263 and 26. So you are over on Expertise, so as you replace those Orange gems with Purples, watch your Expertise to make sure it doesn't dip under 26.
As to Hit Rating, there are those that say Tanks don't need hit, I personally say try to get that Hit Rating to 263 if possible but don't sacrifice to get it, hence why you shouldn't use the Expertise/Hit gems. Use Hit/Stam for your yellow sockets (if any) to get your hit rating up.
As to when to gem for pure Stamina.
Basically look at the bonus you get from socketing for the bonus, vs how much Stamina you would have for going pure stam.
We will use your Helm as an example since I see a lot of people being idiots and going pure stam there.
+12 Stam socket bonus. If you gem for Hit/Stam or Def/Stam you get 10 Hit or Def and a total of 27 Stam vs just 30 stam. This one is a no brainer on gem for the socket bonus.
Here's a harder one with your shoulders, Red Socket with a +6 stam bonus.
You could do dodge/stam or exp/stam to get 10 dodge or exp and 21 stam vs 30 stam.
I personally went with the exp/stam but that is because I needed the exp, with your tanking weapon, you could actually gem pure stam there.
Generally if it is a single socket and the bonus is a +9 stam bonus, socket for the bonus. If it is +6, don't bother, unless you need something that color gives you (i.e. Hit, Def, Dodge, or Exp).
If it two sockets with a bonus of +9, go for it as long as one socket is blue, if neither are blue, usually it is best to gem pure stamina.
For three sockets, as long as two of the sockets are blue, it is generally good to socket for the bonus. If it is only 1 blue socket, generally don't socket for the bonus, and just go pure stam.