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Chip denomonation tells?

UntreatableFPSUntreatableFPS Posts: 1,004Subscriber
Ok, maybe I'm thinking too hard about this, but...

Some players might be giving away the strength of their hand based on what kind of chips they're using to bet.

Bart talks about how he likes to use big chips to spike the pot when he's value betting so he can make the pot look bigger and value bet larger amounts on future streets.

So by that logic, you can use big chips when you're value betting on the flop and turn and then a whole bunch of non-threatening red chips on the river to make your river bet look smaller and the pot look bigger.

And then when you're bluffing, you can use a whole bunch of red chips on the flop and turn and then black chips on the river to make the river look like a big scary bet relative to the size of the pot.

But if you don't always use the same types of chips for certain bet sizes, doesn't the kind of chip you're using become a kind of tell?

I've mentioned before that I insist on being balanced, even when unnecessary. So my standard is, if I have to use more than 14 chips, then I'll use the next denomination instead. If I'm betting $70, then I'll use 14 green chips. For $75, 3 greens. For $80, three greens and one red. For $350 I use 14 greens, but for any more than that I start using black.


  • JohnHashemJohnHashem Posts: 24Subscriber
    The most consistent chip sizing tell for me is when players who are up in a session, and you are pretty sure they are the type of player that really cares about booking "winning" sessions and completely shut down once up 2 buy-ins, and they bet with their "big special" chips on the river, or 3bet with them, it is for value. Likewise, when they call pre-flop with 2 stacks of reds, it is probably a run down hand.

    If the player loves to collect big chips, and has a stack of 100's then I will surely value bet with big chips as 1) he seems to like big chips, and 2)he readily has a bunch of them and can easily throw 2 or 3 chips in the pot and mentally mask the bad decision.
  • chilidogchilidog Posts: 2,427Subscriber
    I noticed a couple of years ago that I may have a tendency to use bigger denomination chips when value betting (I want to be called) , and $5 chips as bluffs. Though I think it would take an observant opponent who I play against often to make the correlation, it is obv not good to have chip demom tells. I have worked on it and feel ok about it now.

    Does two stacks of red chips, or 2 $100 chips seem more scary to rec players?
  • WackabrewWackabrew Posts: 400Subscriber
    Mostly being a 1/2 player, I have noticed that when people acumulate some "special" chips, they are hesitatant to use them without having "it". It's almost like they form some sort of attcahment to a black chip or a few greens. I have also noticed that many players don't like having just one of those chips, so will try to get you to color them up whenever possible (they think it's bad luck or something).

    I love players like that
  • UntreatableFPSUntreatableFPS Posts: 1,004Subscriber
    I think I used to do the same thing too, which is why now I have the 14 chip rule. I do think two black chips are generally subconsciously interpreted as a bigger bet than two stacks of red.

    Yeah, I definitely notice the "special chip" thing in some of the lower level games.
    Sometimes when certain players in 2/5 get a black chip and they put it in the pot, I can safely run away for dear life with anything less than the nuts.
  • ThehammahThehammah Posts: 7,090Subscriber
    If someone calls preflop with say 5 $1 chips that is usually a weaker hand .. I also think that many players use the smaller denomination to make the bet look scarier..

    Bart talks about using a bigger chip to help the rec players COUNT how much is in the pot.. In general I like using say a 100 chip to make a bet for $120 because its less likely I might make a mistake..

    What I think is more of a tell is if the player almost never speaks when making a bet and all of a sudden can say " One hundred fifty" If someone can usually vocalize a bet and its sounds clear they are usually not bluffing.. If a rec called out his bet I am much much more inclined to believe them. When someone bluffs all the muscles in their face tend to be much more tight and its alot hard to speak..

  • chilidogchilidog Posts: 2,427Subscriber
    Can u more fully define your 14 chip rule? I could probably go back and read it, but I didn't catch the details the first time around. Thx.
  • UntreatableFPSUntreatableFPS Posts: 1,004Subscriber
    Just for consistency, if I have to use more than 14 of a chip of a denomination to make a bet, I'll use the next one. And I do the same thing every time unless I don't have the right color chip

    Up to $70 red
    Up to $350 green
    But disregard for whites. I probably wouldn't use 10 of them for a $10 bet
  • Fish FryerFish Fryer Posts: 161Member
    Claire said

    Just for consistency, if I have to use more than 14 of a chip of a denomination to make a bet, I'll use the next one. And I do the same thing every time unless I don't have the right color chip

    Up to $70 red
    Up to $350 green
    But disregard for whites. I probably wouldn't use 10 of them for a $10 bet
    Clarie -

    Is this something you are thinking about while playing or just a habit that has developed over time? I'm curious.

    I was thinking about my own chip sizing and I generally just try to do whatever is the most convenient. While playing this afternoon I called an $80 bet and I am certain that I took 4 chips off of the top of a stack of red and put the rest in the middle. Now I am intrigued...
  • UntreatableFPSUntreatableFPS Posts: 1,004Subscriber
    It started 4 or 5 months ago when I first considered that there might be some tells associated with chip denominations

    When I'm calling a bet, I don't care. I can just toss in a black for the $80 call and get change or do what you said about just taking $20 off a stack of reds

    But after a while, it became a habit for when I was making the bet, that I would try to stick to the rule whenever possible.
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