# Discount Gambling

## Counting CSM Blackjack (+EV)

Posted in +EV, blackjack, csm by stephenhow on July 27, 2012

A few people have asked me about the countability of blackjack dealt from a constant shuffle machine (CSM). I’m a big advocate of counting the CSM, especially for card craps, because of the ease of the windowed count. Even if the dealer collects no muck (i.e., immediately shuffles completed hands back into the CSM), you’ll still be +EV more than 8% of the time for good BJ rules. It’s a lot easier to count a CSM than a shoe. I call it counting for the ADHD crowd. All you have to do is pay attention to the last 16 cards (or the collected muck) fed into the CSM before the hand is dealt. Plus, you’ll probably never get backed off from CSM blackjack, even when wildly varying your bets.

#### EV vs. Windowed Count

I use my model of the ShuffleMaster 126 (source) CSM in the blackjack simulations for this post. I’ve talked in detail about this model before, in my posts on card craps. Basically, there’s a buffer of at least 16 cards in the chute (so the dealer never waits for a card), which introduces state into the system. If the dealer collects no muck, you simply use the running count of the last 16 cards fed into the shuffler. Use the simple hi-lo count (2-6 are +1, 10-A are -1). If the dealer collects a lot of muck, and feeds it all into the shuffler right before the next hand starts, then use the count of the entire muck.

For these simulations, I used 6 decks in the CSM, and typical-good H17 blackjack rules (3:2 BJ, late surrender, re-split Aces 3-times, double-after-split). My blackjack analyzer calculates the ideal EV for these rules at -0.445% for 6 decks. I ran the simulator head’s up against the dealer, and kept track of the 16-card windowed count and the subsequent hand outcome. I plotted the next-hand EV vs. the windowed hi-lo count in the graph below.

The graph shows a very linear relationship between the 16-card windowed hi-lo count and the EV of the next hand. When the running windowed count is +5 or more, the next hand from the CSM is +EV. The windowed count is ≥ 5 about 8.2% of the time.

Frequencies of 16-Card Windowed Counts
Count Frequency Approx. BJ EV
0 11.5% -0.44%
1 10.8% -0.34%
2 9.36% -0.24%
3 7.46% -0.16%
4 5.46% -0.05%
5 3.67% +0.04%
6 2.25% +0.14%
7 1.25% +0.22%
8 0.627% +0.29%
9 0.280% +0.43%
10 0.111% +0.49%

#### Conclusions

Serious card counters will tell you you can’t count a CSM. But the data above shows that a CSM goes +EV more than 8% of the time. Plus, it’s infinitely easier to count a CSM than it is to count a shoe. You can lose track of the count for a hand or two. As soon as you regain attention, you’ll know what the count is. You can probably vary your bets wildly without attracting any attention or interest from the floor. You can probably even Wong hands when the count is bad. Or less than +5.

Counting a CSM is great for the casual counter. It’s basically short-attention span counting. If you see the last 16 cards into the CSM prior to the deal are low (have a running count of 5 or better), then you’re +EV for the next hand. Even if you just see a net +3 count for the last 16 cards, you still know the next hand will be better than average. You can start/stop paying attention on a per-hand basis (unlike a shoe, where you have to wait for the next shoe if you lose the count).

At it’s simplest, CSM counting will tell you when the next hand will be better-than-average (half the time), or worse-than-average (half the time). So, if you Wong half of the time, you’ll only play the better-than-average hands (EV better than -0.45%; the above curve to the right of count=0), and miss the bad hands. That’s a quick way to reduce the house edge from 0.45% to 0.22% (only play 53% of the hands; wait until the count is ≥ 0).

### 93 Responses

1. oyster625 said, on July 28, 2012 at 6:01 am

Could this principle apply to CSM games like Pontoon? or Switch Blackjack?

• stephenhow said, on July 28, 2012 at 9:46 am

Yes, you can apply a windowed count to any game dealt out of a CSM. The effectiveness of the count depends on the strengths of the EORs (effect of card removal) for the particular game. I’ll definitely look into Blackjack Switch; that’ll be interesting!

• Wilson said, on June 17, 2014 at 4:44 am

Dear Stephen, my friend has visited 23 trips in 2014, 20W 3L, made HKD 300k++ (HE = +0.9%) by card counting for 16 cards. He bets at 1x (RC = 1), 2x (RC = 2),…8x (RC = 8), do you think his methods working?? I use a BJ software to run, House edge is -0.1% (lost to casino). Please check whether your simulator running the same with me, i believe he was lucky….

• sanja amanovic castro said, on June 17, 2014 at 4:29 am

Stephenhow,, I face in Europe no soft doubling for the rest the same. Are this numbers still valid or does it change it a bit. could you compute this with a simulation based upon European conditions. Dealer hit soft 17, double 9-10-11 Surrender allowed, No hole card.

2. J said, on August 23, 2012 at 1:59 am

Hi, you alluded to the fact that serious card counters will tell you that you can’t count a CSM. That’s definitely the conventional wisdom. How sure are you about your assumptions re: windowed count? Might you be wrong? If you are right, why isn’t this info more widely known?

Sorry to sound skeptical but it feels like you must be missing something, somewhere.

• stephenhow said, on August 23, 2012 at 7:11 am

Serious counters will concede a CSM is countable to a degree, but they’ll say it’s not worth counting. My numbers are correct, and the windowed count works as stated. I also argue that it’s easier to count a CSM, because you can vary your bet wildly (\$5 to \$100, a 20x swing would get no attention; Wong-ing would get no attention), and you can lose the count temporarily.

I’m correct about all of this. I think it’s good to know about this effect, but I don’t think it’s very profitable in the scheme of things.

The effect is stronger for 4-deck CSM Pontoon, which I’ll publish later.

3. Josphe said, on September 18, 2012 at 12:32 pm

I’d agree that’s a way to loss less at least, pretty good for leisure play.
Just wondering if the card just inserted have the same probability to reappear at the end of the buffer as the other cards or not. I think that depends on the mechanic, IIRC one of the selling point of the ShuffleMaster is that the shuffle is not perfectly random, so I support the answer is no? Just a thought, might take that into consideration. But I guess it’s too hard to put that into the equation even if it’s significant.

• stephenhow said, on September 18, 2012 at 1:06 pm

Right, the last cards fed into the CSM have *zero* probability of coming out in the N cards, where N is the minimum buffer depth of the chute (I use N=16). It’s hard to make an ideal (perfectly random) CSM, because it would slow down the dealing process. The N-card buffer in the card chute speeds up the dealing process, but affects the randomness of the cards out of the shoe (relative to the recent cards dealt). That’s the point of this post. I modeled the CSM with an N-card buffer in the chute, and showed how to use a N-window count against it.

4. flixo21 said, on September 25, 2012 at 5:58 pm

I know some casinos with very good rules (0,11% edge off the top) but using one2six shufflemaster
I want to play it but I didn’t understand everything of your post.
What is “buffer” and “muck”
it depend of the casino, they put back the discard sometime directely after each round, sometime after 2 or 3 round. My question is, when to begin counting hilo and when to go back to “zero”
for example ; if the count is +5 at the end of the first round
I bet for a RC of +5 or a TC of 0,5-1 in the 2nd round (the dealer put back the discard at the end of the first round) and count again from zero for the 2nd round ?
How do I do if the dealer decide to put back the discard ‘during’ a round and not at the end …

• stephenhow said, on September 26, 2012 at 9:43 am

The buffer is a minimum number of cards maintained in the front of the chute where the cards egress the one2six. The muck is the accumulated discards before it is placed back in the shuffler. For a CSM, you should use the running count of the muck plus the last N (buffer depth) cards fed into the shuffler. If there is no muck (it was just fed back into the shuffler), then only use the count of the last N cards.

• flixo said, on April 23, 2013 at 5:18 pm

I understand, but when the dealer put back the discard (muck) into the csm there is a time to wait in order to have these cards reshuffle. how to know when I have to reset my RC ? (when the muck is completely in the csm)?

• Wilson Fang said, on June 20, 2013 at 1:42 am

If only forfeited for original bet but not all bet for split or double down while house blackjack…the house edge is around 0.11%…Venetian blackjack in Macau…

5. flixo21 said, on April 23, 2013 at 5:22 pm

The cards putted back into the csm make time to be completely reshuffled in to csm, how to know when to reset EXACTLY my RC in the case with a muck of 1 deck etc… ?

• stephenhow said, on April 23, 2013 at 5:32 pm

In the above post, I describe the use of a *windowed* running count, that’s never reset. However, it’s often much more convenient (and practical) to reset the count after a round of hands, particularly when the muck = last round of hands. I’ll post soon on when conditions work for non-windowed (reset after each round) count with a CSM.

• Wilson Fang said, on June 19, 2013 at 11:08 pm

If the dealer waited for the CSM to shuffle, this counting theory doesn’t work….pls leave the table n stop to play…..cheers

• James said, on August 29, 2013 at 5:52 am

Steve, It’s not practical to use *windowed* running count that’s never reset. For example :-

Round 1, RC = +2, no of cards used =5,
Round 2, RC = +1, no of cards used =6,
Round 3, RC = +3, no of cards used =5,

RC for last 16 cards = +6

Round 4, RC = -2, no of cards used =5,

RC for last 16 cards = 1+3-2 = +2 !

So, before round 5, you must deduct the no of card used in round 1 and the releveant RC, IS IT PRACTICAL !?

Please post on when conditions work for non-windowed (reset after each round) count with a CSM.

• James said, on August 29, 2013 at 6:02 am

In order to maintain windowed count 16 cards, you may consider 4 players + dealer( average cards used/round = 5 x 2.7 = 15.5 cards !). Then you can reset RC after each round ?

• James said, on August 29, 2013 at 6:05 am

sorry, should be 5 players + dealer ! no cards used/round = 6 x 2.7 = 16.2

• Wilson said, on September 2, 2013 at 10:43 pm

Dear Steve, James asked a good question. He only counted when windowed cards = 16 by moving average. To simply the process, i refresh my memory and count on every round by playing 2 boxes. Is it more accurate by using James methods??? pls advise

6. flixo21 said, on April 24, 2013 at 4:55 am

Thanks you for your anwser …

Some casinos just wait 1 round before putting back the discard into the csm, some others don’t wait and put back during the round, but also I know some casinos where they wait 2 decks even more before putting it back. I’m pretty sure it can be profitable, espescially with good rules ? but I don’t know exactly how to count it, when to reset RC etc …

Is there any counting system better than other for counting a CSM ? or Does it exist some different strategy for CSM ? I ask you that because I know some pros who now play on CSM with succes and I don’t know exactly what they are doing …

Thanks you very much

7. Wilson Fang said, on May 12, 2013 at 7:31 pm

i used a 5m simulator by using 7 boxes data, stand onsoft 17, double on 9, 10,11, surrender allow, split for 3 times, no peek at blackjack, double allwoed after split, A split once, and CSM machines (house edge = -0.5%, -ve meant advantage for casino) averagely around 28-30 cards info to do the card counting,

2,3,4,5,6 = +1,
7,8,9 = 0
A,T,J,Q,K = -1

Bet 1x, count <+5
Bet 2x, count = +5
Bet 3x, count = +10
BEt 4x, count = +15

I prepared 1000 unit capital to fight with Casino, after 1000 hours played in Casino during weekend for 1 year ++, I made a small profit, around +0.1% from my total bet…I believe it works

• stephenhow said, on May 14, 2013 at 12:23 pm

Thanks for the confirmation on the countability of CSM blackjack. I’m probably going to upload a CSM BJ simulation kit to Github when I get around to it. There’s a few people out there that care about counting CSM blackjack, and want to evaluate custom strategies.

• Wilson Fang said, on June 19, 2013 at 11:03 pm

Sorry for late reply. Dear stephenhow….yes I implemented few new strategies…can make 0.5% house edge for players….just basic strategy, surrender at 14,15,16 vs house face card, 16 vs house 9 card, takeover our players’ bet when they made mistake in surrender…..play in Macau and phillipine casino….100 x 2 boxes….40 hands per hours….continue your good jobs on this web although u r lonely for nobody knows to read your efforts…..

• Daniel said, on July 29, 2013 at 6:39 am

I am eager to know it too. There is no way for me to play shoe games but csm games in a frequent basis.

• mackdad said, on October 11, 2013 at 12:41 pm

That sim would be cool to see. Last time I played against CSM, I found myself having luck just by sitting out hands after I saw the count go -5 or more. There’s no rule that you have to play the next hand when other people are at the table…or is there?

8. Wilson Fang said, on May 12, 2013 at 7:41 pm

somemore, u can takeover other players surrender’s bet. says surrender on 12 or 13 vs dealer’s face card, or surrender on 14,15 vs dealer’s 9 or didnt double down on 9,10,11 (please get approval becos 1 card allowed to be drawn)

• Wilson Fang said, on June 19, 2013 at 11:14 pm

Believe me, randomness is an order…..pls read the book by Nassim Talem, never fooled by randomness…..i like his sharp observation…..cheers

9. James said, on May 19, 2013 at 10:15 pm

Hi Steve,

It’s been a while since I’ve talked with you. Hope you are doing well with your Lunar Poker.

If the dealer put the cards into the CSM after every round, say after the 1st round, the total no of cards dealt = 9 cards and cards dealt in 2nd round = 12 cards, should we use 16 cards buffer or 21(9 + 12) cards windowed count ?

Do you received my email about the “special” basic strategy which will give the player an edge of +0.032% ?

James

• Wilson Fang said, on June 19, 2013 at 11:36 pm

I didnt notice that how to have player edge of +0.032%….I will compute lunar poker tonight…..but house edge for baccarat insurance when banker 6 vs player 5, banker 6 vs player 4, and banker 6 vs player 0(both 2 cards). Players are encouraged to buy insurance, if pay 3 to 1…..

• James said, on March 4, 2014 at 2:45 am

wilson, you can do simulation ? How to contact you personally ?

• Wilson said, on April 18, 2014 at 7:34 pm

James, sorry for late reply, I never provide simulation service for anyone….I counted blackjack for hobby, my ultimate goal is beat the house edge for fun and used for beers-money to drink freely at night, cheers!! I’m not a pro gamblers…You may look for wrong guy…

FYI, As maths aspects, I tested Stephen How’s idea for around 2 years. I concluded his method working in long run, I played for 12,000++ hours in 24 months ( 70 HPH, around 840,000 games, average weekly hours = 4.4 hours a week) by using his methods, I made player’s edge for (E.V. = +0.8%) so far….

Rules
– blackjack, pays 3 to 2 (1.5)
– early surrender allowed (14 vs 10, 15 vs 10, 16 vs 10, 16 vs 9)
– double-down (9 vs 3,4,5,6,10 vs 2-9,11 vs 2-10)
– double-down for any soft-hand, 7,8 vs 3,4,5,6; 5,6 vs, 4,5,6; 3,4 vs 5,6
– Split on A once; one card allowed
– split twice, up to 3 hands
– double-down allowed after splitting
– Original bet only on split or double-down, if encounter on banker’s blackjack.
– No insurance bet and No even money forever
– CSM usage.(Zero mucks)
– prepare 100-200 units on Wager Capital, place minimum wager (1 unit) when TC is +5 or less than +5

House edge of blackjack is 0.38%-0.48%

Note: Due to 6 decks in CSM,

i.e.
if RC (on 16 cards) = +2, TC = 2/5.75 = +0.35.
if RC (on 16 cards) = +6, TC = 6/5.75 = +1.04

* 5.75 = 23/4, easy to approximate

1 * 4/23 = +0.17
2 * 4/23 = +0.35
3 * 4/23 = +0.52
4 * 4/23 = +0.70
5 * 4/23 = +0.87 (I start wagering bigger bet here)
6 * 4/23 = +1.04
7 * 4/23 = +1.22
8 * 4/23 = +1.39
9 * 4/23= +1.57
10*4/23= +1.74

** Use 0.17 multiplied with n number of RC

use

To me, TC of +1 is equivalent to +0.5% house edge

** After reading this forum since 2012, get inspiration from Stephen’s idea, I started buying all BJ books (Theory of blackjack and Extra Stuff by Peter Griffin, Professional blackjack by Stanford Wong, beat the dealer by Erward Thorp and Gambling 102 by Michael Shackleford, wizardofodds.com founder) from amazon, read all probability and gambling books, purchase numerous simulator software (Qfit.com and Proficient blackjack) and test the idea.

Don’t be greedy, nobody able to win the casinos all the time, sometimes u may lose in 19 games consecutively…this game must be played in long run (N = 500-1000 hands) and set a max lost limit of a day (says, not more than 50 units a trip)!! Bear in mind, \$1000 only made \$8 in long run. You need to win 6.25 trips if you lost 50 units, and lastly this calcsheet is for fun purpose…can’t make as business (casino will bar u from playing, don’t waste time), cheers!!

• James said, on April 18, 2014 at 9:30 pm

Thanks, Wilson.

My bj game here with 0.168% house edge. I use REKO system and count 16 cards, So far, the results is acceptable.

• Daniel said, on April 22, 2014 at 5:39 am

Wilson, thanks for all your valuable simulation. Did you use qfit software to calculate? I found it needs penetration parameter. However, for csm games this can hardly larger than 1 deck. How do you do this using qfit? Thanks a lot.

• kevin84111 said, on April 29, 2014 at 3:40 am

wilson , nice simulation

u can make a BS running without counting as a reference.

10. Chanter said, on August 1, 2013 at 7:54 am

It appears that 16 cards is the minimum buffer size, but in fact judging from my data set, the cards just reinserted aren’t readily available for play beyond that level either. Does any one know the exact card level at which cards become available for play? Seems like this is a stronger play than Stephen thought.

• James said, on August 29, 2013 at 6:45 am

My source said the buffer is about 20 cards

• Wilson said, on June 17, 2014 at 4:50 am

James, can you teach me what is REKO system?? like to learn from you, cheers

• sanja amanovic castro said, on June 5, 2014 at 5:24 am

blackjack, pays 3 to 2 (1.5)
– early surrender allowed (14 vs 10, 15 vs 10, 16 vs 10, 16 vs 9)
– double-down (9 vs 3,4,5,6,10 vs 2-9,11 vs 2-10)
– Split on A once; one card allowed
– split twice, up to 4 hands
– double-down allowed after splitting
— No insurance bet and No even money forever
– CSM usage.(Zero mucks)
– prepare 100-200 units on Wager Capital, place minimum wager (1 unit) when TC is +5 or less than +5

Wilson could you do one computer simulation with this rules using high low Does it change a lot in the betting?

Thnks

• Wilson said, on June 17, 2014 at 4:15 am

Sure, sorry for late reply. Just visit this site today. can I have your email?? I do the simulation and send the report for you…I can send you all the BJ table photos we won for fun, haha…

• sanja amanovic castro said, on June 17, 2014 at 4:34 am

Hi Wilson thanks for your reply…………you can sent an email to sanja.castro@gmail.com

Thank you very much for the great help in advance…!

Rules are in Europe….

blackjack, pays 3 to 2 (1.5)
-dealer hit soft 17 / and sometimes dealer stand soft 17……………………..(can you do both simulation for me having the dealer hit soft 17 and standing soft 17?)
– early surrender allowed (14 vs 10, 15 vs 10, 16 vs 10, 16 vs 9)
– double-down (9 vs 3,4,5,6,10 vs 2-9,11 vs 2-10)
– Split on A once; one card allowed
– split twice, up to 4 hands
– double-down allowed after splitting
— No insurance bet and No even money forever
– CSM usage.(Zero mucks)
– prepare 100-200 units on Wager Capital, place minimum wager (1 unit) when TC is +5 or less than +5

• Daniel said, on June 17, 2014 at 4:30 am

Hi Wilson, can you do the same favor to me? Many thanks! My email is ytlo@outlook.com

blackjack, pays 3 to 2 (1.5)
– early surrender allowed (14 vs 10, 15 vs 10, 16 vs 10, 16 vs 9)
– double-down (9 vs 3,4,5,6,10 vs 2-9,11 vs 2-10)
– split up to 4 hands, including ace (ace 1 card allowed)
– double-down allowed after splitting
— No insurance bet
– CSM usage.(mucks of 16 cards)
– place 1 unit when TC is +5 or less, 2 units when > 5, 3 units when >10, 4 units when > 15, 5 units when > 20

11. michelle said, on September 5, 2013 at 9:13 am

james,I thing no need to reset Rs after each round(4 card 5 card or six card)you just need count 16 card(16 card =1 round)you must be 2 consecutive round(1 round =16 card)get 1 True count,than bet the big wager,but you get two round -1 and then get two round +1,you do not bet the big wager.for example(one round -1 and then two round +1 ,bet the big wager.two round -1 and then four round +1,bet the big wager)

12. michelle said, on September 15, 2013 at 7:06 am

just bet the big wager when you get two consecutive(1 round use 16 card) round with TC+1 or more,because you never know how many card surplus on the buffer.so count two consecutive round is guarantee certainly have Tc+1 or more than +1(As james say the cards is complete)but you will crazy to wait two consecutive Tc+……These day i juse play small miniman with strategy and observation,only get minority Tc+…it also does not matter,the most tragic thing,yesterday i findings the depth of the chute only 10 cards…..oh my god ……Steve!!!Where are you!!!We miss you!

13. michelle said, on September 15, 2013 at 7:28 am

sorry,one round use about 16 cards

14. HannuV said, on October 9, 2013 at 8:53 am

I’d be very interested if you could upload the program or source code, I’ve got a game in town that has 0,16% house edge off the top and is dealt from Shufflemasters 126 so would really love to try this out :).

15. mackdad said, on October 17, 2013 at 1:29 pm

This system could impact various side bets too.

16. flixo said, on December 22, 2013 at 5:32 pm

I have slight off the top advantage :

dealer wait to deal the second round and put back the discard just before asking for additionnal cards to the players…
My idea was to play 7 boxes to get about 2 rounds latency : 7x 1/5 of my max wager at 0 and put 7 x max wager at TC1 (7xmin table if negative)

To do it correct I’m questionning about few things :

example : first round I put 7×30\$ and my hilo RC go to +8 , so for the 2nd round TC= +1 and I put 7×150\$.
When the dealer deal on the 2nd round the 15 cards he then put back the discard in the machin, at this moment when do I have to reset my RC ? I have to keep a new RC of the 15 cards of the second round+ additionnal card taken from the players and use this count to bet for the third round ? etc …. etc …

Are you sure news one2six have a buffer of 16 cards in the chute ? I heard of 9 cards instead ? and how to use this addionnal information to my betting strategy above ?

Thanks stephen!

• Daniel said, on December 27, 2013 at 3:20 am

I can confirm that there is 16 cards in the chute of one2six.
Once I saw the dealer pulling the cards 1 by 1 out of the machine when it stopped working properly and need to be replaced with another one. After 16 cards there is no card in the chute.

• flixo said, on December 28, 2013 at 7:35 am

thanks you for your answer, can somebody confirm the way to count my game.

• Stuart said, on December 29, 2013 at 8:59 am

Hi Flixo,

Quote= “first round I put 7×30\$ and my hilo RC go to +8 , so for the 2nd round TC= +1 and I put 7×150\$.
When the dealer deal on the 2nd round the 15 cards he then put back the discard in the machine, at this moment when do I have to reset my RC ? I have to keep a new RC of the 15 cards of the second round+ additional card taken from the players and use this count to bet for the third round ? etc …. etc”

You may email me at thebarkingstorkonstage11@gmail.com Would like be in touch with someone doing the same I do. Great site though.. thanks to Daniel!

Myself I just count the first round than pick up the muck count and reset it right there. If the RC = +5 or bigger I make big bet I manipulate the boxes sometimes(2.7x cards dealt per player and use 6 boxes inclusive the dealer = 16.2 cards on average). If 7 boxes are played I use the entre muck count 16 cards+ and use that as the new count. I am resetting every round with a full table. If the 2nd round is an advantage bet than I will play that round and use the count from that round only. You could use 2 boxes to than play 2 rounds and if the count hit plus 5 or bigger play 5 boxes making it exactly 16.2 cards on average. Hope to hear from you.

• James said, on April 4, 2014 at 1:22 am

Hi Daniel,

Assumed your 16 cards in the chute is correct.

Here are my questions :-

Say after 1st round, the total cards used for that round is 9 cards, left 7 cards in the chute. Is the chute fill up immediately with additional cards to make the total to become 16 cards again before delaer put back the used card(9 cards) to the machine ?

OR

after finish dealt all 16 cards then the chute only fill with a new block of 16 cards at once ?

James

• Daniel said, on April 7, 2014 at 5:32 am

17. Stuart said, on December 29, 2013 at 8:40 am

Quote= ” 17 blackjack rules (3:2 BJ, late surrender, re-split Aces 3-times, double-after-split). My blackjack analyzer calculates the ideal EV for these rules at -0.445% for 6 decks. I deal with the following rules. 6 deck, early surrender, only hard doubling allowed( 9-10-11) , 3:2 BJ Do I have more or less than .445% here with this rules.

18. willis said, on March 31, 2014 at 5:58 pm

Hi Stephen how.are U still maintaining this blog?u did a good job I tried and been very successful for 11 session in a row. The last 5 session been up and down.Meaning I ended with more crappy hands (hard 13-16) while dealer face up is between (7-A). My question,is this simply a variance (the 0 22% house edge) OR is it rather the CSM mechanism been altered, is it possible?

19. Tisso said, on April 12, 2014 at 6:45 am

Stephen, hats off 2u! My further analysis shows that you CAN do something to attain EV > 0 slightly, when unsusp sitting out half the games.

Few questions:
*How does house advantage change per muck size. Eg this analysis was n=16. What does n vs EV look like for a given count ( which begs a 3D graph n vs EV vs count)? I’d expect dEV/dn >0.
*If muck is collected, can we add-on the previous muck count (if <=16 cards)? Tying back to question1.
*What is late surrender, and does dealer stand on A6 in the analysis above.

• Ken said, on April 29, 2014 at 2:10 am

Hi, happy to find this good website!

It’s a nice theory

Before I think CSM can maintain just a little profit

But in my home casino, all CSM around, the lowest house edge is -0.09%
somewhere have good rules such as five cards dragon, three7 & suit 678 got 3x bet at once, can lower the edge to nearly 0%
which can make a high profit? (but each hand discard 1 card before the dealer draw the first card)

BTW, I want to ask a question

if there is a over/under 13 blackjack game with CSM ( one2six ), can it be beaten???
house edge : 0.17%
u can bet any within the limit on OU13 regardless the original bet is a min

Can it be beaten? because OU13 is highly affected by the true count , each TC can enchance +2.7% even though the house edge of over 13 is -6.55%. we can get a +EV at TC=+3

20. kevin84111 said, on April 29, 2014 at 2:13 am

Hi, happy to find this good website!

It’s a nice theory

Before I think CSM can maintain just a little profit

But in my home casino, all CSM around, the lowest house edge is -0.09%
somewhere have good rules such as five cards dragon, three7 & suit 678 got 3x bet at once, can lower the edge to nearly 0%
which can make a high profit? (but each hand discard 1 card before the dealer draw the first card)

BTW, I want to ask a question

if there is a over/under 13 blackjack game with CSM ( one2six ), can it be beaten???
house edge : 0.17%
u can bet any within the limit on OU13 regardless the original bet is a min

Can it be beaten? because OU13 is highly affected by the true count , each TC can enchance +2.7% even though the house edge of over 13 is -6.55%. we can get a +EV at TC=+3

• kevin84111 said, on April 29, 2014 at 2:30 am

In addition, if we bet on under 13, an Ace or “2” is dealt. It’s sure win(100%). (all combinations of Ace or 2 with other cards must under 13 since Ace must be counted as 1)

If we bet on over 13, A “10” or picture cards is given as the first card (nearly 75% win)

If we can track Ace , 2 or face cards on CSM, which means 100%win?

• James said, on May 5, 2014 at 2:30 pm

There is very unlikely that TC will equal/go above +3 in CSM game

21. Stuart Wild said, on May 26, 2014 at 1:42 am

This is a response to the first post of Stephenhow I would love to hear a response from to clear something up what confuses me. thanks in advance for your great post.

“If the dealer collects no muck, you simply use the running count of the last 16 cards fed into the shuffler. Use the simple hi-lo count (2-6 are +1, 10-A are -1)”

“If the dealer collects a lot of muck, and feeds it all into the shuffler right before the next hand starts, then use the count of the entire muck.”

I have a question about this line of thought cause I am not sure if I understand it right. Now it would be great if you could add an example, required so I can be confirmed I am doing the right thing.

I have two situations here relating to the quotes above…..

Situation one…………dealer collects no muck…..
I am playing head up playing one spot.

In this situation does it mean that because dealer returns every card immediately back in the machine I have to count 16 cards, than if the count is +3 by example I remember +3 and if count of the next 16 cards is +2 making it totally + 5 than count. and so on subtract and add. Every time the running total is equal or more than 5 we play the +ev?

If this line of thinking is right than knowing 2.7 is the average card dealt to each player we could play 3 rounds playing one hand (6×2.7=16.2 cards) or two rounds of 2 hands ( also to a total of 16.2 cards) This shortcut would be easier to play.

Situation 2………….

Dealer collects muck after hand is played.

I am not sure if I understand when you say use count entire muck. Can you give me an example just to vision it better in both situations? That would be very helpful.

If by example count is plus 3 and entire muck is 23 cards with 5-7 players on the table than are you telling it does not matter how much cards there are counted 16 or more, just count the much and add and subtract that way comparing two rounds with each other?

Thanks very much Stephenhow

Stu

22. nickolay said, on June 9, 2014 at 7:29 am

Hey Wilson Fang or anyone else who’s playing in Macau. Is the blackjack ev still -0.09% percent at the wynn and mgm? -0.16% at the others… I read Pharaoh’s Palace playing the wizard’s BS house edge is 0%. Has anyone had success there?

• Wilson said, on June 17, 2014 at 4:27 am

Dear Nickolay, you may try in Venetian Macao?? I like the rules of “double-down at any soft hand” and “original bet only on double-down and split” when Banker’s blackjack. I will check with MGM and Wynn rules and get back to you

• nickolay said, on June 18, 2014 at 6:34 pm

Hey Wilson! Thanks for getting back. Thanks for the info. I’ll be in Macau mid next month and I’m looking forward to it. How are the dealers in Macau? Any hole-carding and/or dealer mistakes you’ve witnessed while playing?

• Daniel said, on June 17, 2014 at 4:32 am

Yes it is still 0.09% house edge at Wynn and MGM

• nickolay said, on June 18, 2014 at 6:38 pm

Sweet! Thanks for the update Daniel! How are minimums looking? I’ve heard you can’t get a game at Wynn or MGM for less than 300 HKD?

• Daniel said, on June 18, 2014 at 7:27 pm

You can hardly find a table with HKD300 minimum except weekdays.

23. nickolay said, on June 18, 2014 at 9:42 pm

:( How a normal mainland-er dishes out so much cash to play is beyond me. I at least hope they are playing proper basic strategy? Macau’s gambling patrons can’t all be high ranking government officials can they?

• Wilson said, on June 21, 2014 at 6:50 pm

by using the junket or shadow bank via ShenZhen or GuangZhou…. The officers need to apply permits from superior if they need to go out of China… It is uneasy to apply it recently

24. sharil said, on June 30, 2014 at 5:13 pm

hello, i am new at BJ so if say count for first 16 cards are +6 and CSM has 6 decks, do we divide by 6 to get positive 1 countor is it still +6 count? thanks

• nickolay said, on July 3, 2014 at 6:04 am

You would only need to convert the window’d count to a true count if you are going to use index plays. Other wise just know you have an edge at +5 windowed count with the above posted rules. If you are playing with an even lower house edges/better rules you will gain an advantage with a even smaller windowed count, so again no need to divide unless you will use index plays.

25. Hooi said, on August 31, 2014 at 7:52 pm

What are the windowed counts for an 8 deck csm???

• nickolay said, on September 2, 2014 at 7:37 pm

windowed count is derived from the amount of cards in the chute. Not the number of decks played. So it is the same.

26. Hooi said, on August 31, 2014 at 8:48 pm

So let me get this straight. You count as normal for every 16 cards the count has to be +5 and over, then you play the next consecutive hands until the count drops down to less than 5 you “Wong” it. If the last 16 cards is less than +5 you reset your count and count the next set of 16 cards being dealt out until your count reaches +5 then you hedge your bet or start betting. Am I correct?

27. gary said, on October 18, 2014 at 12:12 am

Kevin84111 or anyone else that knows of an over/under 13 game. I have a fool proof method to beat this game against any form of BJ including CSM, ASM or hand shuffle. Please message me here and perhaps we can discuss things further.

Gary

28. Gary said, on October 19, 2014 at 8:13 am

I couldn’t find anything in your links that divulged the whereabouts of the OU13 game you know about other than it’s overseas somewhere. This is a bit of a catch 22 as i’m not willing to tell you how to beat it until I know where the game is.

• DDKL said, on November 4, 2014 at 7:39 am

Gary, if you have a “fool proof” method of winning than you can afford to invest 20k in travelling the world to find OU13.

29. Marvin said, on November 1, 2014 at 10:19 am

Foolproof way of beating CSM OU13 without cheating? I am curious.

30. gary said, on November 4, 2014 at 9:30 am

Haha, thanks for that DDKL, however to scout every casino to find one specific game might need more than 20k in travel expenses. Marvin, it is without cheating. I never do anything underhanded. You can email me at garyronstadt@live.com and perhaps we can chat. No, it’s not my real name before anyone asks. I’m also interested in hearing from people from AZ.

Cheers, Gary

• nickolay said, on November 11, 2014 at 12:05 am

Gary what is your expected edge on the ou13 bet with your method? Are you beating just the over or both the over and under?

31. garyronstadtGary said, on November 11, 2014 at 9:57 am

Hey, the edge on the unders is a 100% guaranteed winner because if you get an Ace or a two you can’t lose. I’m sure you can work out that even getting a face card in your overs isn’t necessarily a winner. I prefer to go for the guaranteed winners as anyone would. When I bet I do know what card I’m going to be getting. How I know this i’m not going to say at the moment. Maybe I should come and visit you in Macau ;o)

32. DDKLa said, on November 14, 2014 at 10:32 am

If you know the next card is Ace, then 100% edge if you bet on under. If you bet on normal blackjack, then the edge is 50%. Alright so you make half as much plus a insignificant level of risk.
Gary, why don’t you start with normal blackjack which you can find anywhere.

• Gary said, on November 14, 2014 at 11:46 pm

Hi DDKLa,

I’ve been a professional blackjack player for many many years. The edge if you know your first card is an ace is 52%, 14% if it’s a 10 and 24% on every hand if you can direct a 5 or a 6 to the dealer. I’m not starting with normal blackjack, I’ve progressed way beyond that.

I don’t want to sound like a know it all, because i’m not, there are far better players than me, my forté is finding the best edge out of a game, if i can. Conventional counting methods are easier to track for the casino so finding a way to play that is less obvious produces a higher win rate, less time at the tables and less likelyhood of getting barred for counting.

If i could give you one piece of advice right now, hide those chips, squirrel them away out of view, not the large denominations, the smaller ones they don’t track. You have to conceal your win.

Gary.

33. George said, on November 19, 2014 at 9:58 am

What are the limits the typical limits on the O/U 13 game?

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35. jerricchong said, on June 11, 2015 at 1:13 am

if the games in macau is -0.09 House edge, then at RC of +2 the player will already has advantage.

If using a big bankroll say \$50K and bet spread of (\$50 – \$500) and willingness to put in the long hours, should be profitable. You can gradually ramp up the bet amount with regards to the RC or you can choose to bet min when RC is less than 2 and put your big bet whenever RC is more than 2.

I believe the low house edge also make the variance lower.

• nickkolay411 said, on June 11, 2015 at 1:14 pm

I just did 4 trips to Macau all profitable in the last year (US based) You won’t find a .09 HE game for 50 dollar minimum. You’re looking closer to 600+ hkd min for that game (weekdays) Just shy of 100 USD. And on weekends 1000+ hkd for that game.

Yes the HE lowers the variance on a per hand basis. But a high bet spread like 1-10 will increase your variance and risk of ruin. :( I’m not sure if a bet spread of 1-5 will be profitable unless you are wonging.

• Daniel said, on June 11, 2015 at 6:22 pm

On weekdays you sometimes can have 300hkd min bet. On weekends all are 500/1000hkd.

• Daniel said, on June 11, 2015 at 6:25 pm

But recently, all cards are put back to csm after every round. So counting it no longer have an edge.

• Heaven said, on June 11, 2015 at 9:54 pm

1000hkd is too high man…haha..are there other blackjack games in wynn and MGM with lower limit but slightly higher house edge? or does other casino in macau offer lower limit with 0.16% House edge?

• Heaven said, on June 11, 2015 at 9:58 pm

Daniel, you still can get an edge even the cards are put back into csm every round. If you play full table on a -0.09% HE game, about 70% of the time you get -ev hands, 30% of the time you get +ev hands, this is using steve’s windowed running count. As long as during the 30% of the time when you have +ev you are betting around 3 times bigger than the 70%, you should be near breakeven/slight profit in the long run.

36. Tom said, on August 26, 2015 at 9:04 am

thanks for the work. Stephan,

as recommended by Eliot, i read the articale carefully.

here are some things,

1 by my guessing, the N should be about 52 cards,

2 if only running account, i will appoint cards by this: 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 A at 0.8 1 1.2 1.6 0.9 0.6 0 -0.4 -1 -1.2 based on articles i have found on internet about card removal effect on player. but do u think it is a most right points or each one can be 0.1 more or less?

3 I will try it in Macao. i guess i can wong hands at bad ev.

4 do u think if EV is 5+, i best play 4 players or so?

thanks again,

there are really kind people who would think and help. their joy is is to share and help. God bless.

37. Dario said, on December 27, 2015 at 4:34 pm

I noticed that there are a lot of places where they will use one2six with only 4 decks. This should give more edge to the player due to higher TC, but how will the distribution look like? Do we still get the same 8% hands with +EV?