To have sufficient chips to avoid excessive change-making, it it usually recommended to have at least 10-12 of the workhorse chips per player in play (absolute minimum of 8/player). Early-on, the workhorse chips are T25 and T100. In the middle stages of the tournament, that switches to T100 and T1000 chips (assuming T25-T100-T500-T1000-T5000 progression).

For those reasons, the number of starting T25 and T100 chips should typically be higher than the number of starting T500 or T1000 chips. If T1000 chips are used to color-up the T25 and T100 chips, then the starting numbers for that denomination can be slightly lower than optimum, since more of those chips will be added later (plus the number of remaining players will be smaller later in the event, which also helps create a larger ratio of T1000 chips per player). Larger fields require fewer T1000 chips per individual starting stack, because of the total number of T1000 chips in play across all tables (which will be sufficient once stacks grow larger as players are eliminated, by the time the T1000's become workhorse chips).

In general, T10000 starting stacks work best as:

12 x T25

12 x T100

5 x T500

6 x T1000

~or~

12 x T25

12 x T100

3 x T500

7 x T1000

The larger denominations are added as the lower denominations are removed from play. An optimal number of chips remaining at the end of a tournament is typically between 100-200 total chips (when three-handed or heads-up). Total chip counts outside of that range tend to either require too much change-making (if too small), or do not contain enough workhorse chips for efficient betting and slow the game down (if too large).