level 2 count?
  • Hello fellow BJ plays, I've been using HiLo to great success, with 11/13 sessions ending with significant profit.

    However the Hi-Lo count is getting a little monotonous, plus the fact that its the easiest to track, and I draw heat really quickly for betting the true count. (I'm not very good, been barred from 2 casinos already.)

    While I18 is pretty good for throwing them off, (espcially the 10s splitting), upon reading Fred Renzey's Blackjack Bluebook Chapter on the Mentor Count, I've grown quite interested in upgrading my counting system for purposes of better PE/BE, and for cover.

    I have some questions about the system though. The truing to 2 decks kind of messes me up, as all this while I've been truing to 1 deck. Is this just for mathematical simplicity? If I were to adopt the count tables for basic strategy deviation for a single deck true count, would just diving those numbers by 2 be fine?

    I noticed that there is only 1 set of charts for the shoe games. I18 play differs for the number of decks in play. Shouldn't this be the case for the indices charts as well? Please advise, as I play SD/DD 95% of the time.

    Also, has anyone adopted this system and tested it out @ the casinos yet? How does it compare to hilo and other systems like hi-opt I, and hi-opt II.?Although there are simulation charts, these usually deviate from real world implementations.

    Thanks :)
  • MILK, here's a few thoughts.

    Its better to be a master of a good level-1 system, like the Hi-Lo, than be just ok at a level-2 system. In other words, playing the Hi-Lo perfectly like you're doing is better than adding the complexity of a level-2 and making mistakes... just something to consider before making the switch. Plus if you're that comfortable with the Hi-Lo, maybe you can sip a beer while playing without losing count, this will help as camouflage.

    Splitting the tens could be causing you "heat" problems. Actually, splitting tens was almost left off the list of I18 exactly because of that reason. If you look like a knowledgeable player and are splitting tens with big bets on the table, its gonna raise suspicion.

    I've never tried the Mentor Count but from what I've read I believe Renzey trueing to 2-decks is for mathematical simplicity only. If you are comfortable using 1 deck then I wouldn't see it as a problem. Plus Renzey developed the Mentor to perform well across all games, 1-8 decks for playing efficiency and betting correlation. I don't believe he recommends making any alterations to it based on how many decks you're playing.

    Hope this is helpful.
  • If your a H/L player the real payoff to switching to Renzeys Mentor
    Count is what you gain in single or double deck. Gain, one over the other,
    for say 6 deck shoe games is so small that it want justify the effort. The
    idea of truing to two decks improves the accuracy of the index numbers
    because of rounding. You can limit the effort to just counting by retaining
    all the H/L index numbers and just true in the normal way. When you
    true, just realize that a +4 is H/L +2. The counting is a little different, but
    there are 20 cancels that would help some.

    The numbers for H/L are 97/51 and Mentor are 97/62 so if you retain all
    the H/L methods and don't add 30-40 more variations you may not gain
    anything. If your fluid with H/L, I don't think I'd change, it's just to much

  • thx guys
    i'll definitely be using the hilo while betting big for awhile to come
    and i'll make sure i brush up my mentor @ the nickel tables before trying anything foolish

    it probably is worth my while to upgrade my counting system as ray put the stats down, 97/51 and 97/62. there's a 11% increase in playing efficiency. These might seem like small stats, but they can make a big difference espcecially when the count is high. I'm guessing that the small % difference might be partially due to the rarer occurences of high count play.
  • Another nice thing about the improved efficiency is the fact that you're playing SD & DD most of the time. Playing efficiency is a more important consideration in pitch games than shoe games. If you were playing mostly shoe games then I'd say its not worth the effort to learn Mentor given they have the same betting correlation.

    The 11% increase in efficiency comes mostly from the way aces are counted. In Hi-Lo they carry the same weight (-1) as a ten. This can be misleading for playing purposes because an Ace may be used as a high or a low card (1 or 11 obviously), and so the playing efficiency decreases. In the Mentor count the aces are -1 while a ten is -2. Since the Ace is given less value the playing efficiency increases.
  • I was wondering if you had any idea of Playing Revere's Advanced Point Count (12222100-2-2 counts for 23456789XA respectively). Almost as good as Wong Halves (12232100-2-3 as above). Thoughts about this choice appreciated.

  • i'm not sure
    although the charts listed on most sites cite the unbalanced zen lvl II as the system with the highest all-round playing and betting efficiency.

    in renzey's book the zen II is about on par with his mentor count, which is prolly true based on his simulations, except that not that many know of his mentor count as of yet.

    1 advantage it has is that it's a balanced system. that makes me feel more comfortable for some reason, but that is irrelevant.
  • Revere is 98/55; Wong is 99/56. Going from level 2 to level 3, I'd say
    that is about as close as it gets. If you play short deck games, Zen
    looks better than Revere and is about the same as Wong. Spread
    accross all games, Mentor may have a tiny advantage over all three.

  • Sigh... all this difficulty and perplexity of card counting, just use Walter Thomason's progression with quit points and problem solved!

    Take ADVANTAGE of the fact that streaks will happen in this game!

    That's how I BENT the casino for $10000 this past weekend, no haphazard betting either!!

    Who's the man?!?!?!?!!
  • u b da man

    either they will ask da man back for a chance at even $, or throw him out. I'd hold out for a SWEET invite.

  • Yup, streaks do happen. Do they happen more than the math says they will? I don't know. Does Thomason claim his system works better than counting? Not to my knowledge... I believe he only claims it falls somewhere between flat betting and counting.

    Revere's point count is good, almost as good as Wong Halves. But then again not much better than Hi-Lo. And a good unbalanced count like KO or Renzey's KISS-3 will put you on par with Hi-Lo in a shoe game. I think you want to look to use systems with a good playing efficiency in pitch games, but it in shoe games its not as important and unbalanced counts will also perform well.

    I think the simplicity of a level-1 is undervalued. In my opinion mastering a level-1 is better than pushing up to level-2 and starting to make mistakes. The less mental strain can also allow you to play longer, and chat with the person next to you, and have a beer, etc. But if you want to eek out every little bit of advantage and have the brain cells to handle it, then by all means go for level-2.

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