CSMs good for BS players?
  • I've heard people say that Continuous Shuffling Machines are good for strict BS players -- the logic being that every hand is dealt from a (theoretically) complete and shuffled deck or set of decks, so the percentages are identical to those used for BS.

    But there are plenty of people out there who say CSMs are the bane of every serious BJ player's existence (and not just card counters).

    So which is it? I'm a strict BS player, plus Rule of 45, Dr Pepper, Mag 7, and a beginner with the A-10 front count (can you tell I just read BJ Bluebook II?). I'm going to Vegas next week -- should I seek out CSMs or avoid them like the plague? Thanks for your help.
  • Avoid them like the plague........Do not play them or 6:5 blackjack. That is the only means we players have to "make them go away".

    Grifter
  • Grifter, thanks for the quick response. Here's a follow-up.

    I understand why we should all avoid 6:5 tables -- because those hurt every player and help only the house. The more we avoid them, the more reason for casinos to discontinue using them.

    So I'm assuming that you recommend avoiding CSMs for a similar reason -- if we avoid them, they'll be more likely to disappear. However, that's for the greater good of the BJ community (ie, for the card counters who are hurt by CSMs).

    But what about from a purely selfish standpoint -- if all I care about is my situation and all I want to do is maximize my odds of winning (as the kind of player I described earlier), are CSMs good, bad or neutral?

    I'm not saying that I don't care about the greater good, but I'm still curious about what effect, if any, CSMs have on players like me.
  • Howdy all there :wink:

    I would like to know if Continuous Shuffling Machines are worse or better when using a progressions :?: ( I know this obvously depends on what one you use, I use PRO-1 ), as well as the question on are they good for strict BS players :?: they have started apearing in the Glasgow casinos here and there, just not the one I frequent yet :) so I would really love to hear peoples view on them as well, the same as jlc, I'm a strict BS player, plus Rule of 45, Dr Pepper, but I'm a non counter, take care and be lucky

    Cheers

    Colin
  • I'm not sure I believe it, but I remember reading a report a year or so ago where someone calculated that CSM's actually helped a basic strategy player......... But the gain was miniscule. and certainly not enough to justify playing them.

    I do not remember the exact figure, but I believe it changed the EV one or two thousandths of a percent. Certainly not enough that you are going to see any difference in your earnings as a recreational player. Perhaps one of our math whizzes has that number.

    Don't play them!

    Grifter
  • Has anyone read this guy's book on blackjack?? I play a lot and in the long run seem to do ok..... Just had a 3 day losing streak, but one can not win everyday.... I play in southern California... Soboba & Pauma...
  • I've got most of his books on blackjack and roulette, He tends to exaggerate a tiny wee little BIT :roll: :? in his claims for his systems but I suppose he educates the proper play for Blackjack to a non basic strategy-going by his gut feeling playing ploppie, it was his "Power Blackjack" and "Automatic Blackjack" that attracted me to Blackjack a way from Roulette, but I would't quite give up the day job just yet, keep your money for your bank roll to cover losing days, take care and be lucky

    Cheers

    Colin
  • You can use your basic strategy, Rule of 45, Dr Pepper, and Mag 7 with the CSM. The A-10 front count, or any other count for that matter, will be useless. The CSM will not improve your basic strategy percentages over a shuffled game... I think I read the same article as Grifter but as he said, if there is a gain to be had (and its debatable) its so small that its worthless.

    Many times you'll have a better EV with a CSM game simply because there will be less decks used, often a 4-deck game as compared to a 6 or 8 deck shoe. With all rules being the same, less decks offers a better EV.

    But even in that situation, the small advantage gained in EV is wiped out by the extra hands per hour you'll be playing because there's no stoppage in play. Remember, you're still playing a game with an expectation of losing a percentage of the amount of money you wager, so the more hands you play the more quickly you'll be separated from your money.

    Bottom line... CSM's are bad for everybody, don't play them.
  • The studies suggest that more 10's come out and a slight increase in
    blackjacks. Well, ain't that just wonderfull? If your a basic player and
    you win money it is because you had a favorable shoe or two. If the
    CSM is like playing every hand right off the top, there are no favorable
    shoes and your chance to win is less. The effect of card removal is
    important to all players and with CSM's there ain't any!!!
  • blackjacknorm said:
    Has anyone read this guy's book on blackjack?? I play a lot and in the long run seem to do ok..... Just had a 3 day losing streak, but one can not win everyday.... I play in southern California... Soboba & Pauma...


    I know Pauma, a nice little casino, but, never heard of Soboba, is that out Indio way?

    mh
  • Huh, I would have thought that it would hurt your chances, because it's almost like playing from an infinite shoe. I hadn't thought of the cut-card effect. But that would do it. Although you play 20% more hands per hour, as a BS player, even taking the extra advantage into consideration. that means you're going to lose ~19.95% more per hour than you would playing at a regular table.
  • A while ago i went into a casino (not one of my locals) had a look round my friends went off to play 5 card carribean stud poker. I made my way over to the bj table but at the low limit table there was a csm and the higher limit table was not open (not that i really had enough to play on it). So what do i do? I figured sod it i'd just play a little basic. I bought in for £30 (big money) and started flat betting £2 a hand. After a while i notice the dealer isn't putting the discards back into the csm after every round from what i could see he had no set way of when he'd put them back into the csm he seemed to do it when ever he felt like it. He was laughin and jokin with the crowd and the discard tray just kept fillin up till it got to about one and a half decks then he finally put them back in. How strange i thought whenever i've seen csm's in use before they put the discards back into the csm after every 1-2 hands played.
    After he put all the discards back in i played about 8-9 more hands nothing strange happened except the discard tray fillin up again. (now i wasn't counting but i was keeping my eyes open on what cards came out)
    All of a sudden we hit a massive run of high cards for about 6 hands everyone at the table (about 5 people) got 20 or 21 dealt to them as there starting hands and everyone won. What did the dealer do? He put them into the discard tray , i thought holy crap that must be a vast majority of the high value cards which are now just sitting in the discard tray. I got up went for a bathroom break returned and he still hadn't put the discards back into the csm. I played one more hand and left.

    I thought about this for a while and wondered if counting would have worked in a situation like this. But i don't think so the discards got up to about a deck and a half max before they were put back in. So i guessed the advantage if any would have been to small.

    But i did double up my buy in of £30 :)

    Usually i'd never play against csm's just on sheer principle but the casino offered so little choice in games. And i was bored.
  • Grifter wrote

    I'm not sure I believe it, but I remember reading a report a year or so ago where someone calculated that CSM's actually helped a basic strategy player......... But the gain was miniscule. and certainly not enough to justify playing them.


    This came out Jan 2004 from the Wizard of Odds. He does specify in relation to BS players only.

    http://www.wizardofodds.com/games/blackjack/bjapx10.html
  • Slimeo - Yep, that's the article I was referring to. Thanks for the memory jog.

    jlc - In response to your original question: Note that although your EV improves by 0.02, you are playing 20% more hands per hour; therefore, overall it is costing the basic strategy player to play at a CSM table.

    Don't play CSM's !!

    Regards.....Grifter
  • Luke24:

    This has happened to me also. In spite of whats said about not counting, consider that it WOULD have had an effect if 1/2 of a 5-deck CSM was dealt before loading. Some of the closer plays in 21 would swing one way or the other.

    Knowing this can happen, it IS wiser to track the count, anyway. If you get past a deck in the discards, you are prepared. I do this with Ace-5... I'm sure its more valuable for other methods.

    Good cards
  • Whenever a basic strategy player has a good night, I'm thinking that
    the cut card does not eliminate his advantage for X number of shoes.
    That's why he has a good night to begin with. You want get that with
    a CSM unless it is one of those unusual situations just described.

    A BS player can play most of a shoe and have an advantage over the house
    because the odds are shifting with the removal of cards, etc. I can't
    think of any reason to play a CSM because of some potential micro
    reduction in HA. If it exist at all!
  • Thanks for all the responses and insight. I'll stay as far away as possible from the Vegas CSMs next week.

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