Blackjack Card Counting

Discussion in 'Games of Chance' started by JackT, Apr 20, 2006.

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  1. njmalan

    njmalan

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    106
    Gave it a shot last night but had to stop when I turned into the table mentor to 3 novices.... I'm trying to use the chips to count 5s and Aces but they just woudn't stop asking questions. "Should I double, should I split, should I hit," on and on.. It didn't help that the dealer would refer them to me since she didn't want to be responsible for their losses yada yada...

    It seems simple enough but it was actually pretty tough to do. Kept losing count... I was concentrating so much on counting that I almost hit on 17.

    Finished up $600 without counting so it was a pretty good night nonetheless. I'll try it again next time.
  2. Daddycool

    Daddycool

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    3,952
    That is what I am saying. You are doing fine. Just watch though because as you become better at counting it becomes more obvious to the CASINO by how your betting seems to change.
  3. JackT

    JackT

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    2,351
    I do. As my "rules" above state:

    "I then vary my bets based on the running count….
    whenever the count is <1, I simply bet 1 “unit” (e.g., $10 at a $10 table)
    whenever the count is 1 or 2, I bet 2 “units”
    whenever the count is 3 to 7, I bet 3 “units”
    whenever the count is >7, I bet 5 (or more) “units”"

    Therefore, although I've never played limits that high in reality, if I'm betting 50 per hand normally, my bets would become $100 per hand when the count is 1 or 2, $150 per hand when 3 to 7, and $250 per hand when 8 or higher.

    (I think this is what you are saying? or are you saying that I'm STILL not increasing my bets enough?)
  4. Daddycool

    Daddycool

    Messages:
    3,952

    This is why you may not turn 500 into 7500 because when you have that kind of advantage you should bet a lot more. For example, if you are betting 50 a hand and you get a the cards in your favor, you need to start betting 100 or 150 a hand.
    Last edited: Apr 21, 2006
  5. Daddycool

    Daddycool

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    3,952
    Never bet more than the table min the first 3 hands. The house has a huge advantage for the first 3 or so hands.
  6. JackT

    JackT

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    2,351
    Regarding the 2-6 vs. T and higher count:
    I've tried that one as well, but, as you say, sometimes the beers get in the way.... ;) Ace-Five is simple enough for me to do, and still have fun playing.


    On penetration:
    If we assume (as we have to) that Aces and Fives (or High and Low cards) are randomly distributed throughout the remaining shoe...
    ... then the deeper into the shoe I am (penetration), the more weight I give to my count.

    Practically speaking, it doesn't alter my bets all that much...
    maybe if we're nearing the end of the shoe and I have a Count of +4 or something, I may throw another unit or two out there.
  7. biglarry1

    biglarry1

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    4,743
    Beers will have that effect.
  8. njmalan

    njmalan

    Messages:
    106
    I'll give it a shot. I tried the basic counting system of +1 for 2-6, 0 for 7,8,9 and -1 for T and above but the beers kind of got in the way.

    As with all counting systems, I would think this would be relevant when you get deep into the deck. How are you betting earlier on ? Conservative house min ?
    Last edited: Apr 20, 2006
  9. JackT

    JackT

    Messages:
    2,351
    Blackjack Card Counting

    As a VERY recreational BJ player with an aversion to making drastic –EV (negative expected value) bets, over the years I’ve toyed with a system for card counting… I’ve heard that most of the "good" shoe-based games will have a house edge between 0.25% and 0.50%, which is really not that much. Just learning perfect basic strategy is a great start – spotting +EV opportunities and varying (increasing) your bets to exploit them is the name of the card counting game.

    My system is probably nothing like the pros use; just a simple system adapted from an “Ace-Five” system that has allowed me to think I’m reducing the house advantage somewhat.

    I’d be curious whether others have devised their own systems, or what people think of my system….

    Note: this only works in casino blackjack… don’t even TRY it online, where they conceivably re-shuffle after every hand.

    I also only play tables where the dealer STANDS on soft 17.

    The simple premise is that the more 5s in the deck, the worse for the player (dealer hits 16 and makes 21); and the more Aces are in the deck, the better for the player (more chance for blackjack which pays 3:2 in the player’s favor).

    I start out with a count of -2 (signifying house advantage)… As the shoe is dealt I simply add 1 for every “5” card that I see, and subtract 1 for every “Ace” I see, and keep the running count in mind until the deck is shuffled again. (I may shuffle or stack my chips in such a way to help me keep track of the running count… trying to be as un-obvious as possible).

    I then vary my bets based on the running count….
    whenever the count is <1, I simply bet 1 “unit” (e.g., $10 at a $10 table)
    whenever the count is 1 or 2, I bet 2 “units”
    whenever the count is 3 to 7, I bet 3 “units”
    whenever the count is >7, I bet 5 (or more) “units”

    I may make some slight variations 'on the fly' based on "penetration"... i.e., how deep into the shoe we've gone.
    I always double down, split, etc. when basic strategy tells me to, regardless of how many “units” I am betting.
    Last edited: Apr 20, 2006