Count the cards on the blackjack: the complete guide

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Counting the cards at Blackjack is one of the most used strategies by expert players who try, through this system to take some advantage over the counter. It is also one of the main searches on the web by the less experienced players who perhaps attracted by some important Blackjack movies, try to find out how this system works and how to learn to count the cards in this game.

Since there is often enough confusion around this topic, We thought of making a complete guide on the subject, so as to give you all the necessary information, both on how the various systems work and on their strong points. During these paragraphs, then, we will try to also give you some tips that can certainly make the system to count the blackjack cards more effective.

Before starting, however, it is necessary to focus primarily on a very important point. Counting the cards is absolutely not illegal, also because as we will see shortly, it is a totally mental operation. Nobody, therefore, will be able to report you for something like that. This, however, does not mean that the managers of online casino or traditional are happy to have Blackjack players at their tables that count the cardsnull And that’s why, if for example you are counting the cards in a terrestrial casino, you should not surprise yourself if a safety officer or the manager of the room, invites you to leave the structure and never set foot again. Consider, that being private structures, they have every right especially if, according to them, you were betraying the covenant pact between the player and manager of the room.

In some cases, then, the ways may not be so kind.

We believe that knowing this kind of information is right and, above all, necessary when approaching the world of counting cards.

Why count the cards in Blackjack online and live?

Many people have heard of this system in which it is important to count the cards in Blackjack online and live, But in reality they did not understand its actual functioningnull If you are among them too, you absolutely don’t have to worry because it happens often. You have to know first of all that counting the cards It will help you limit the advantage of the counter and increase your potential possibilities of victory at Blackjack.

The basic mechanism to count cards online and live, but as we will see there are several systems that change, it is very simple. In a nutshell you have to count the cards that come out and therefore have a fairly clear idea If there are still many high cards in the deck, and therefore that help make a blackjack, or low cards, which are always a risk.

Of course, you can’t remember every single card that came out, So the cards are divided into groups and each group is given a specific valuenull This is then added or deducted to the count and so it will always be known whether at that moment the cards that remain there are more with a high or low value.

As you already understand alone, knowing this kind of information is really important because it will allow you to decrease the advantage of the counter and obviously increase your possibilities for victory.

According to some experts, in fact, to use the best way this game system, not only will it allow you to limit the advantage of the counter, But you can also completely cancel it and get a small bonus for your gamesnull All this depends on different variants, including for example the number of decks of cards you are playing with and the presence or absence of some particular rules, between that of the 17 soft.

It is therefore estimated that counting the cards can lead to having 1% more at each tour by bringing on your side the chances of winning against the counter.

Few terms to know absolutely

When approaching the cards to the Blackjack and non -Blackjack cards, there are some terms that it is essential to know. These, in fact, will resort both in this guide and in all guides on the counts of the Blackjack cards. Here are almost:

  • Running count or counting: It is the operation of counting the cards during the hands.
  • True Count: It is used when after normal counting of the cards, further operations are carried out that make it more precise. Among these, for example, there is the division of the score with the decks of remaining cards, or the adjustment of the axes that we will see in the hi-opt I and II systems.
  • Adjustment of the axes: We mean the operation that is carried out on the score released at the end of the running count to which they subtract or add points based on how many axes they have come out.
  • Balanced count: It means that by counting the values of an entire deck of cards, the final score will be 0.
  • Non -balanced count: Unlike the previous one, the final value in counting the cards of the whole deck is not zero. It can, in fact, be both superior and lower.

Ten systems to count the cards

Let’s now move on to the fulcrum of our topic, that is, what are the main systems designed over the years to count the cards at the Blackjacknull Although everyone has a fairly simple mechanism, there are still particular differences that make them different and suitable for all types of players. Let’s see what they are, how they work and some little advice to use them at best.

HI LO system

It is the best known and popular system of all, probably because it is quite simple. In fact, it must be considered that the cards are divided into three groups. Here’s how they are divided:

  • 2, 3, 4, 5, 6: we must add +1 to the count.
  • 7, 8 e 9: the score is 0, So we must not add or remove anything.
  • 10, J, Q, K e Asso: in this case you have to subtract 1 point to the score.

The system, therefore, is really simple quite simple compared to other strategies used to count the Blackjack cards, in which, for example, There are the half units.

To put this system into practice, all you have to do is start from the moment the dealer mixes the cards and starts with a whole deck. As the cards come out and that they are distributed to you, to you and the other players at the table or the dealer, in fact, you will have to count the cards according to the points we have just spoken.

However, there is an important aspect to be considered, that is, the number of decks of cards used by the casino. As we saw before, in fact, the terrestrial casinos are trying to use six or eight decks, so as to create a lot of problems with the players who want to use the strategy of counting the cards. So you have to make sure you know how many decks of cards are there and, to have a real score, Also called True Count, you have to divide the score you have for the number of remaining decksnull This means that you will also have to keep the account of the exit cards (remember that each deck has 52) and then divide by the score you got at that moment.

The greater the score, the higher the episode should be because it means that in the deck there are still many high cards that can lead you to do blackjack or in any case to have a high score.

K.O. System

This method to count the cards in Blackjack online and not, is among the simplest ones and suitable for all players.

Also in this case we divide the cards into three category:

  • Dl a h: we must add 1 to the count.
  • 8 e 9: In this case their value is 0.
  • 10, J, Q, K e Asso: must be removed 1 at the score.

How can you see, it is very similar to the previous system and therefore does not involve great difficultiesnull You just have to try to keep the concentration high during the distribution of the cards and do not miss the countnull In general, however, as well as the system to count hi lo cards, despite being among the simplest also the one that offers the least precision.

Also in this case, then, to have a slightly more reliable True count, it is necessary to divide the score for the number of decks of cards even at stake. The greater the score, the more possibilities there are that a high card comes outnull On the contrary, however, if the True Count score is low, it means that the deck is unloaded and therefore there are very few possibilities that a blackjack will come out.

Ten system

This is another typical system used by players who do not have a particular experience in this field but want to count the cards at the blackjack, trying to have an advantage. The method is based on an important fact, namely that in this game the figures and the 10 are essential to create a blackjacknull In each deck, there are sixteen cards that are worth 10, namely the 10th, J, Q and K. The remaining, instead there are 36 and therefore there is a ratio of 2.25. Your goal, if you want to use this system, is to always recalculate this relationship after each handnull If the relationship rises, in fact, you will know that there are more possibilities that a 10 or a figure emerges. If, on the other hand, it lowers, it means that more cards have come out that are worth 10 than the others and therefore it is more difficult to expect one.

As you have seen, therefore, there are no groups of cards and value to have to add or remove during the various hands, and this makes it a really simple method and, as mentioned, suitable for everyone. But be careful to know how to do the calculations quickly so as not to lose the pace.

Hi Opt 1 e 2

With these two systems, compared to the previous ones, we begin to enter the field of strategies to count the slightly more complicated blackjack cards. Their name derives from Highly Optimum, so they are strategies that allow a more precise result and therefore potentially more efficient than the others.

For the first system we must divide the Carter into the following groups:

  • 2, 7, 8 e 9: These four cards are worth +1.
  • The map Dl Alinstead they are worth 0.
  • 10, J, Q e K are worth -1.

As you can see, the first difficulties begin to present that we have in the same group both the 2 and 7, 8 and 9. But so far only a little practice is enough and then you can proceed shipped. You will realize, however, that a card is missing, among other things one of the most important in the Blackjack game, or the ace (click who To find out more about this card which has a double value). It’s not a mistake, but it’s simply a choice, Since the axes must be calculated separately and then they will be considered for the final true count.

To count the cards with the blackjack with the hi-opt 1 system, start from a running count of 0 and add or subtract the scores. Then to have a True Count, you have to divide by the decks of remaining cards in the sabot.

And the axes? As mentioned just before, the Axes must be counted separately and this calculation begins to become truly complicatednull In practice, it must be considered that in each deck of cards there are four axes, so in two decks there are 8 and so on. If you are playing one hand of blackjack with three decks of cards and, more or less, about 50 cards have come out and therefore a third of the complete sabot, you can start doing that which is commonly said “adjustment of the axes”. If 4 axes came out in the first 50 cards, then you will not have to add or remove anything from your initial count.

This is because, given that a third of the cards came out, four axes are likely to come out. If, on the other hand, the axes are less, then you will have to add a point to the True Count, since you know several possibilities to make a blackjack. On the contrary, however, if more than four axes came out in the first fifty cards, then you will have to remove a point from the count. This, of course, because the chances of making a blackjack are minor.

Are you starting to notice some more difficulties than the first two systems to count the cards? And think we made an example with three decks of cards. Imagine how difficult it will be with six or eight decks together. Of course this method of counting the cards is actually quite difficult to acquire, but on the other hand its level of precision is high compared to the two previous strategies.

Hi-opt II: even more complex

At this point, if the first system seemed complicated to you, then this will require even more attention. The hi-opt II method, in fact, is the complex and most advanced version of the first. Let’s see the score to add or remove the cards immediately:

2, 3, 6 e 7: we must add +1 to the count.

4 e 5: these two cards, however, are worth +2.

8, 9 and ace: their score is 0.

10, J, Q, K e Asso: when these cards come out you have to deduct 2 dal Running Count.

We start making the first considerations on the score we find in front of us. For the first time, at least so far, we find the value of 2 which can be removed or added to the running countnull This is a detail not to be underestimated.

The other aspect to pay attention to, then, is the presence of the ace that is worth 0. Does this mean that you no longer have to count the axes? No, on the contrary, it is necessary to consider the ace in the count, and count them separately and carry out the adjustment of the axes, as seen in the previous method.

Both in the hi-opt i and II method, the running count starts from 0 and when the value is high, it can be focused strong because there are many tall and axis cards. When, on the other hand, it is low, then it means that you have to go slowly.


If the two hi-opt I and II systems have not yet seemed so difficult for you, perhaps we have the method to count the cards for you since it is even more complicatednull Let’s see immediately how the cards are divided and what their score is.

  • 2, 3 e 7: when these cards will be discovered you will have to add +1 at your score.
  • 4, 5 e 6: in this case it is necessary to add +2.
  • il 9 vale +1.
  • il 10, J, Q K e Asso instead they are worth -2.
  • The 8 and the axes are worth 0.

Only from a first reading of this division of the groups, therefore, It is clear that there is a beautiful difficulty are in memorizing the various groupsnull Then consider that the 9, for example, is alone, and that the axes are inserted at 8. Then there are both the +1 and +2 value, so this makes the count even more complicated.

But the difficulties are not limited to this. Although in the groups there is the ace, in fact, this must be counted in any case separately. Subsequently, then, you will also have to provide for the aging of the axes. The running count for this system starts from 0 and as seen it is really among the most complicated in circulation.

Red 7

Do you know why this system is called this? Because the 7 red color are counted differently than the 7 black color.

Here’s how the cards are divided:

  • 2, 3, 4, 5 6 and 7 red: are worth +1.
  • 10, J, Q, K e Assi: -1.
  • 8, 9 and 7 black: 0

It is evident, in this case, that there is a return to the simplicity that we have seen in the first methods. In fact, there are only three groups and there is no +2, but only the +1. The only difficulty, however, is given by the fact that the red 7th and black color they have a different value to which you still have to be careful during each handnull This count is not balanced, since it starts from +2.

Zen Count

The method Zen Count is among the most complicated especially because there are five groups of numbers in total and in addition to +1 and -1, there are also cards that are worth +2 and -2. Let’s see in detail how the subdivisions work:

  • 2, 3, e 7: these cards are worth +1.
  • 4, 5, e 6: in this case, however, they are worth +2.
  • The Axes apply -1.
  • 10, J, Q e K: are worth –2.
  • 8 e 9, on the other hand, are worth 0.


This is one of the very few systems for count the blackjack cards which also provides for the half measures. Here’s how the cards are divided:

2, 7, 9: are worth 0,5

3, 4 e 6: are worth +1.

5: vale 1,5.

8: vale 0.

10, J, Q, K e Asso: these cards, instead they are worth -1.

The main difficulty of this system is immediately clear since There are five groups of cards and value like 0.5 and 1.5 which make it very difficult to count cards in mind.

When not to count the cards at the Blackjack

Count the cards as we have seen during this article, It can be an excellent system for increasing your chances of victorynull This method, however, is not always usable for any game of Blackjack or anyway for all playersnull We therefore see some cases in which it is better not to use this system.

Software games

The first case in which you never have to use this game system, but alternatively you can use the basic strategy, it is for the Blackjack games from software. Let’s talk, just to be clear, of those in which you play against a computer or more precisely, a softwarenull This is because in each hand the virtual dealer will mix the cards and therefore count the cards makes no sense. Counting the cards in Blackjack online, therefore, becomes really complicated if not in the live version, as you can see in the next paragraph.

Watch out for live games

Instead, you can use this method when you play the online blackjack games with live dealers. In this case, in fact, you must first check if the dealer connected in a study uses an automatic mixer or not. In the second case, in fact, it means that a manual shuffle (mixing of the cards) will be carried out And then do it only when the deck of cards has come to the usual black plastic card that is positioned at the point where the deck of cards is cut. If, on the other hand, the dealer used an automatic mixer, will make a shuffle in each hand, thus making it useless to count the cards with the blackjack.

Little experience in counting cards

If you don’t know how this system works and you don’t know exactly how to count the cards on the blackjack, You absolutely don’t have to try to count the cards at the blackjack by aiming real moneynull In addition to being able to be discovered at any time, an eventuality that will force you to abandon the casino, You will risk making a mistakenull This means that not only will you not help you, but risks being counterproductivenull In practice, instead of increasing your possibilities of victory, you risk lowering them and therefore obtaining more losses of how many you would have obtained previouslynull Our advice, therefore it is to learn to count the cards in the right way. To do this, for example you can try to play a few trial game.

Difficulty in mental calculations

Another case in which you have to wonder if it is the case or not to try to count the cards, it is when you do not have a certain predisposition to calculations in mind and you have no memorynull As we have seen, in fact, all systems require a lot of attention and above all a particular ability to add and deduct the Card scores in a few moments and also to follow the number of cards released and then divide them for the current countnull It is therefore not a very simple way of doing and, therefore, there is a need to be sure to know how to do it. The dangers, in fact, are the same when you have little experience, that is, you risk being driven out of the casino. In addition, an incorrect count of the cards can lead you to make too high or low episodes and therefore ruin your game.

Some tips to count cards

Now you know the most popular systems that are often used to count the cards with online blackjacks and notnull However, there are a series of tips that can help you improve the execution of this strategy and avoid problemsnull Let’s see in detail which they are and why they are really important.

Safe online game

As we have already seen before, count the cards a Blackjack online It is impossible if you play against the program created by one of the various professionalvider software. This is because the game will mix the cards in each hand and therefore make it practically impossible to use this systemnull However, it may be possible to count the cards in games with live dealers and potentially it is also more comfortable, since you may also have a sheet of paper with you and a pen that will help you keep the count. In this case, however, we advise you to choose only the absolutely legal game platforms in USA and therefore authorized whonull It is the only system you have to be sure that nobody can ever cheat you and that your potential winnings are always paid.

Also, consider that if some Non -legal online casino in USA should hypothesize that you are using one of the systems we have seen to count the cards, could safely invent some excuses and block your account. Obviously, he will not be able to do it only because you know how to count the cards, But surely it will agree any excuse to not pay.

Counting cards in association with the basic strategy

Another useful advice to increase your potential blackjack victories is to use one of the systems we have just seen to count the cards, together with the basic strategy. Quest’ultima represented the simplest method that players have at their disposal when they want to play at the game of 21null It is a very comfortable table in which there are the various possibilities that can happen during a game (i.e. your score and that of the only charter of the dealer) and the best actions to follow from a statistical point of view.

According to very expert in the sector, to be able to combine this strategy and learn to count the cards, can allow you to totally cancel the advantage of the counter.

Make so much practice in counting the cards

When you decide to want to play Blackjack and count the cards, you have to take into account that it will take several hours to devote to the exercise. Do not believe, in fact, that counting the cards is very simple Also because during a single hand you have to pay attention to all the cards that come out on the table and, sometimes, there are also five or six players next to you. In addition, the dealers are prepared to be very fast, and this does nothing but complicate the situation even more.

You must then divide the score you got for the number of decks of remaining cards, and this means that you also have to keep up with the number of cards that came out. And finally, you must also focus. All this, then, without risking being caught by some security officer who notices your strange behavior And you suggest you to stop playing and go away.

As you have seen, therefore, we are talking about a very difficult system to put into practice. That’s why I advise you to do a lot of practice. Many players, for example, usually train at home. In practice they use several decks of cards and turn around once at the game table, trying to keep the countnull Once this is done for quite a few cards, they check that the count is correct.

Manco is not practicing, then, the number of cards and speed increases, so as to hope to get prepared when you try to actually use the strategy to count the cards at the Blackjack.

Organized if you play online

If you can find a blackjack game with live dealers in one of the Legal online casino in USA, then we advise you to prepare in the best way to count the cards with Blackjack online. While playing, for example, keep a sheet of cards and pen, or a Word or Excel document open during the gamenull In fact, in fact, it will be much easier to keep the account of all the cards you will go out and therefore ensure that your calculation is correct.

You will avoid many problems, such as that of running into a wrong count that not only will not bring you advantages, but will really create many problems.


Let’s now summarize what has been said so far, answering some of the typical questions That American players are placed regarding the techniques that include the cards?

Is counting the cards to the blackjack illegal?

No, it is not in any way illegal even if you have to know that i traditional casinos And online they will not be very happy to have players who use this system. Therefore it is necessary not to be noticed, also because otherwise, you risk being expelled. In the past, it has already happened many times to really important characters, such as Ben Affleck, the known American star.

How to learn how to count cards in the blackjack?

Learning to count the blackjack cards online and not, it is not very simple, Also because there is a need for memory, concentration and practicalitynull In addition, it is also necessary to have a certain control of emotions, because considering that we must put this system in the land casinos in front of many people in practicenull The system most used by the players is usually to try home this system by putting various bouquets of cards together and turning them one by one trying to follow the scorenull Gradually, then, you have to increase the speed and see how precise you are in counting the cards.

Can you count the cards in Blackjack in online casinos?

It is possible to count the cards with online blackjack only when playing in a table with live dealers. You must know, in fact, that in software games, or those in which the dealer is a computer, The mixing takes place in each hand, so counting the cards is practically impossible.


We have reached the end of our complete guide on how to count the cards with Blackjack online and live, as always made by our experts in the sectornull We tried to pay attention to all the most important aspects of this technique, so as to make all players understand how to use these systems, their main features and especially if they are really useful or not.

When you choose to count the cards in Blackjack, then, you must know that you can do it mainly in a terrestrial casino. Alternatively, then, it is also possible to do it on an online table with live dealers, always as long as the latter does not use an automatic mixer.

Despite the confusion that often generates about players who are used to counting the cards, then, it is right to reiterate Two important conceptsnull The first, is that This system is not illegal, otherwise we would not have proposed and deepened it. The second point, then, is that However, casino do not appreciate players who know how to count the cards at the blackjacknull So they will do everything to find out who they are and prevent them from entering the structure. And since we speak of private properties, know that they can do it. In the Las Vegas casino, for example, can safely ban you for years or even forever from a casino.

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