Tourney T- Base Preference for Tournaments

Which Base Chip Do You Prefer in Tournaments?


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AnteAndy

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Always have been curious on people's preferences on the T chip-base (lowest denomination) for poker tournaments, whether ones they throw themselves or others they simply play in. The most common I've seen is T25 base, but the other ones usually seen are T5 and T100 base.

Feel free to explain why certain ones work better for you, if they would contain certain ante types, and what starting stack sizes/breakdowns. Maybe some you always wanted to try putting together. Or give good recommendations for people who are new and/or those trying to put togther a tournament for the first time and take in input.

Personally, I now prefer the T100-base structure. First played it at a local social poker league that made the transition from T25 base, around the time with the BBA tournament structure was taking off. Not taking consideration with BBA, I liked T100 more (especially if hosting a rare tournament myself) where it's easier to keep track of stacks and pot, don't need as many physical chips (have 400 ct. that can be used for nearly two full tables), all bets rounded to the nearest hundred, and not worrying about coloring up until at least halfway through the blind levels. Played with antes and BBA in T100 Base but just not a fan in terms of tourneys I would throw.

I will admit the T5 base is my second favorite since the T5's would be in play longer. Not that I don't mind playing them, it took me playing more T5 and T100 to realize that in T25 base, the T25's only stay in play for roughly 4 levels until they're no longer needed, outside of regular ante tournaments. Only downside for me personally for hosting a T5 is that you'll need a good bit of the first three denominations where we usually have 10/10/7/x starting stacks for 1k+.

I've seen a few before that have high-roller type tourneys with T1k, and heard someone wanting to do T5k base for a 1M starting stack size.

What's your favorite chip-base tourney structure and reasoning behind why?
 
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raynmanas

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I have a feeling that I'm going to be in a large minority choosing T5, but it is my favorite. 5-25-100-500 is a perfect transition with no semi-redundant double denom necessary. But all of my own tournaments are T25 now to conform to what people are used to; I didn't even get a T5 chip for my set.
 

DeeVee8

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My players like big stacks (and they cannot lie?). More people seem to show up when we played with 25-30k instead of 10k. As a math guy, I hate to tell them that its the same, given the proportion of the starting blinds. :)

giphy.gif


Next game: 1,000,000 Stack. Blinds start at 5,000-10,000.
 

Jeevansluck

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I prefer the T25 base...

However, I do have a tournament set capable of T5. I'm interested in adding T5 events to my game.

I have 2 other Tournament sets, without a T5, and I hope to add them someday.

Even though I voted T25, I'm interested to use my sets differently and add denoms as necessary.
 

LotsOfChips

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I prefer the T25 base...

However, I do have a tournament set capable of T5. I'm interested in adding T5 events to my game.

I have 2 other Tournament sets, without a T5, and I hope to add them someday.

Even though I voted T25, I'm interested to use my sets differently and add denoms as necessary.
LOL - then you'll need to stock up on T25k, T100k & T250k chips, so that you can run the super deep stack T500k tourneys with a T1000 base! I'll be there in a heartbeat!
 

kmccormick100

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I detest T5 tournaments. Players always complain about denoms being so small

T25 have been our standard, but t100 bases with big blind antes seem so much more efficient, less coloring up, less annoying bets of like T1775 and huge stacks of 25s getting knocked down all over the place
 

Jeevansluck

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but t100 bases with big blind antes seem so much more efficient, less coloring up, less annoying bets of like T1775 and huge stacks of 25s getting knocked down all over the place
This is very true. Just before COVID, I ran an STT T100 base, featuring my AS Tournament HS set. It was glorious! Nobody complained. I heard some moaning and groaning about 100/100 but couldn't understand what was so difficult to grasp about the level. LMAO!

My AS HS set is going to be my crown jewel for my Tournament games for sure.
 

Yoyahoo

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I learned with T25 but in french casinos, T100 is the new standard, maybe with BB ante is easier now.
The same in my Home game, and in prefer.
 

redeagle

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We've played T5 games for years and it has worked fine for a regular single table group. No complaints. We moved later to T25 mostly because somebody had a second set we used for side cash games as people fell out of the tourney or if too many showed up at the start of the night. As long as you get enough Big Blinds and a decent blind schedule I don't think any of us care much about the denominations in play. However, since a lot of the local charity or casino tourneys use T25, people did like playing T25+. Not really any chippers in the group so laziness ruled for a while as nobody wanted to buy more chips just to move up.
 

Coyote

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The most "rational" bases are either T1 or T10 or T100.
The most popular and wide-spread one is T25, sadly IMHO.

I 'd like a tournament set which could securely double as mini-cash set, with the T units costing exactly the same in cash.
This means either T5 (5c in cash) or T10 (10c in cash) or T1 (1dime in cash).

All this coming from the idea that tournaments's main goal is to provide financially safe learning for players and hence should be cheaper than cash games.

If "you" and your players are rich enough and still would like some tournament over cash game, why not have a T25 base costing exactly the same in cash (ie $10,000 for the T10,000, 200BB starting stack).
 

Saoliver

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T100 is best...but I have tourney sets that are T5, T25 and T100 base. I use to use a cash set for T1 base tourneys, but I have matured. :cool
 

Eloe2000

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I introduced tourneys to my group after learning from PCF. I used a T25 base as it seemed the most common. Everyone is a fan. So I started playing tourneys more often locally instead of cash and every local casino I play at has a T100 base. I still seem to “like” T25 more for some reason. Not sure if it’s the additional chips or the level progressions, but I was trying to get my group to try T100 but then Covid hit. I have a t100 set now to try with them when things resume but the tournament set I am building now and excited about is T25.
 

Peter Gibbons

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I opted for a T500 base T100K starting stack with the Crown Plaza group buy. I know a T500 is not the most efficient but we start level one with a T500 SB, BB and BB ante so they get in play. Plus they’re great looking chips.

After the initial 100% increase, the progressions are pretty smooth and flexible if you want add more levels in a few spots.
 

grantc54

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I use a chip sets starting denom as one of the unique characteristics, allowing me to justify buying more chips and sets to cover different structures.

Right now I can support tournaments with T1, T5, T25, T1k, T5k, T25k, T100k, and T500k base chips. Clearly I need to look at sets that cam accommodate a T100 and T500 base chip.
 

Frogzilla

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I have 25 chips in my tournament sets, but am liking T100 base more and more. Pre covid was noticing casinos also leave out the 25s as they switch to BBA format
 

BGinGA

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I use a chip sets starting denom as one of the unique characteristics, allowing me to justify buying more chips and sets to cover different structures.

Right now I can support tournaments with T1, T5, T25, T1k, T5k, T25k, T100k, and T500k base chips. Clearly I need to look at sets that cam accommodate a T100 and T500 base chip.
You need to add a T.25-base option so you can offer cash-value stack events. :)

Our $50 re-buy event (100bb, with .25/.50 opening blinds) was a big hit with the players. Best part is that you can also just make it a 3-hour timed session and finish without having to play down to just one player (all remaining players cash in their stacks).
 

Taghkanic

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For the first 10 years of my poker life, my local home and social hall tourneys all began at 100/200. So that is what I’m most used to.

But with the advent of a couple casinos in the area, which were running T25s, I switched my home game over to starting at 25/50. Some grumbling from the regs, but we all got used to it. It still feels kind of off to me, but it’s just familiarity.

Then shortly before COVID, my closest casino switched to 100/200. Swell.
 

Teddy

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You need to add a T.25-base option so you can offer cash-value stack events. :)

Our $50 re-buy event (100bb, with .25/.50 opening blinds) was a big hit with the players. Best part is that you can also just make it a 3-hour timed session and finish without having to play down to just one player (all remaining players cash in their stacks).
Tell me more about this....I might like to try this. How often do the blinds go up and by how much?
 

BGinGA

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Tell me more about this....I might like to try this. How often do the blinds go up and by how much?
We used a standard (avg 41% increase) T25-base structure designed to last roughly 4 hours, but altered to reflect and accomodate the T.25-base denomination chips (T.25 T1, T5, T25). Using cash chips is fine, since they are used at actual value.

10 players
T50 ($50) starting stacks (12/17/6)
20-minute blind levels

lvl sb bb
L1 0.25 0.50
L2 0.25 0.75
L3 0.50 1.00
L4 0.75 1.50
remove T.25 chips
L5 1 2
L6 1 3
L7 2 4
L8 3 6
L9 4 8
remove T1 chips (optional fixed-time EOT)
L10 5 10
L11 5 15
L12 10 20
L13 15 30 est EOT
L14 20 40
L15 30 60

The event typically finishes in roughly 4 hours plus breaks, although it can be used as a fixed-time event by ending it early (3 hours at L9 after color-up recommended) and cashing out the remaining players (or letting them simply transfer the chips to the cash game, if there is one).

required chip set:
120 x T.25
170 x T1
100 x T5 (includes 40x for T.25/T1 color-ups)
10 x T25 (allows up to 5 re-buys)
---------
400 chips
 
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BGinGA

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Always have been curious on people's preferences on the T chip-base (lowest denomination) for poker tournaments, whether ones they throw themselves or others they simply play in. The most common I've seen is T25 base, but the other ones usually seen are T5 and T100 base.

Feel free to explain why certain ones work better for you, if they would contain certain ante types, and what starting stack sizes/breakdowns
I've tried just about every reasonable tournament configuration. I don't particularly care for T1- or T5-base events (due to the awkward math), and generally run T25-base with at least 200BB starting stacks (some with antes, some without).

But I have ran T.25-base events using actual cash value chips, and am a big fan of T500-base tournaments (very flexible configurations available for a 400-chip set, easily covering 50BB to 300BB events). I also run occasional high-roller events using T1000- and T5000-base sets, where T500k and 1M chips are able to be used.

I've also experimented with T00-base events, including with either a BBA or SBA (my preference, if using a table ante at all).

I suspect the T25 chip will eventually fade from common/popular use (similar to how T1 and T5 chips are rarely used today) within 5 years. I also predict the high cost and scarcity of high-denomination aftermarket casino chips will likely result in a lot of T25 chips being repurposed as T25000 in many future T100-base sets.
 

andy699669

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I've tried just about every reasonable tournament configuration. I don't particularly care for T1- or T5-base events (due to the awkward math), and generally run T25-base with at least 200BB starting stacks (some with antes, some without).

But I have ran T.25-base events using actual cash value chips, and am a big fan of T500-base tournaments (very flexible configurations available for a 400-chip set, easily covering 50BB to 300BB events). I also run occasional high-roller events using T1000- and T5000-base sets, where T500k and 1M chips are able to be used.

I've also experimented with T00-base events, including with either a BBA or SBA (my preference, if using a table ante at all).

I suspect the T25 chip will eventually fade from common/popular use (similar to how T1 and T5 chips are rarely used today) within 5 years. I also predict the high cost and scarcity of high-denomination aftermarket casino chips will likely result in a lot of T25 chips being repurposed as T25000 in many future T100-base sets.
Inflation in a nutshell.
 

DeeVee8

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I opted for a T500 base T100K starting stack with the Crown Plaza group buy. I know a T500 is not the most efficient but we start level one with a T500 SB, BB and BB ante so they get in play. Plus they’re great looking chips.

After the initial 100% increase, the progressions are pretty smooth and flexible if you want add more levels in a few spots.
Triton Series does a 250k starting stack and each increase is between 20-33%, even the first one. Check this structure out.
 

Poker Zombie

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My first set was T5. I really didn't know what I was doing, but it worked.

Before buying my second set of chips, I did a very in-depth analysis and found that a T25 base was the most economical. I guess that's why all the casinos were using it. I now have 5 tourney sets with a T25 base, though one of the sets has been used as a T100 base on occasion, as it's purpose is to duplicate a casino structure, and casinos are moving toward a T100 base.

When I was building a set could use T1,000,000 plaques, I built the blind structure so the game would end with the plaques on the table and then worked backwards. Based on my time considerations and blind structure, the first chip I would need was a T500.

Although I dislike antes, I decided to build a set around the BBA. This set also ended up as a T500 set, with the BBA kicking in when the blinds hit 1500-3000 (3000). I have not gotten this set into play yet, as we are playing shorthanded tables during COVID.

I also have a base .25 for our "Survivor" game. Similar to @BGinGA's cash-value stacks game, once we get down to "in the money" the game ends and everyone cashes out for whatever is in their stack.

I voted T25 as my favorite, but each T-base I am familiar with has it's advantages and disadvantages.
  • T.25 - Low buy-in cash value games. Also works as a cash set. Not common though. I think Dave and I are the only two that have run such tournaments.
  • T5 - Great for a learning game. New players love to limp into every pot, and a T5 base allows for a T25 type structure with an hour of T5 play. Limping won't cost them a significant portion of their stack, and our records show that when a first-timer plays, they fare much better (often min-cashing) when we use the T5 base set. Players that cash their first time are far more likely to be lifetime poker players. Downside - about 20% of your set will spend 75% of the tournament in the case. The percentage is even higher if attendance is not at maximum capacity.
  • T25 - The economic value plus the commonality of the T25. No real downside
  • T100 - It's ease with a BBA, combined with it's rising casino popularity. Downside is similar to the T5. You are buying 10-15 chips per player that don't get used if you are not at max attendance.
  • T500 - Sets have a maximum player limit, determined by how far you can spread the lowest denom chip and not be making constant change. The T500 allows incredible flexibility for starting players, as a T500 structure doesn't need big piles of these "blinds-only" chips. Also, if your players are the type who, in an all-in situation, count out their T500s in stacks of 2, the T500 base virtually eliminates this dilemma, as there are few stack counts needed while the T500s are still in play. Downside - it just seems odd to many.
The only T-bases I don't care for are the "lots of zeros with no real meaning" sets. If you are running a T100,000 base, and everyone calls it "one hundred", then why ugly up a chip with extra zeros? Make it a T100 and get on with it.
 

AnteAndy

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Before buying my second set of chips, I did a very in-depth analysis and found that a T25 base was the most economical.

  • T25 - The economic value plus the commonality of the T25. No real downside
Curious on your analysis on the economical benefits of T25 base in more detail.

For me, although for my rare hosted tournaments and trying to be economical, I became more in favor with T100 base since for T25s you'll basically need the same quantity as the T100s, and would mostly be out of play after the first 5-6 levels (unless you do regular antes). I found for T100 base you need just a bit more T100s with not as many T500s. That was my analysis when I thought about which T base to use. It came about when doing the math between the chips needed for different starting stacks of the max amount of people that usually come, and having enough maximum of buy ins worth with as few possible physical chips to achieve it.

Still I'd like to learn more on benefits for T25 base. Before getting a tourney set, I was going to just use my cash set for T0.25 base tournaments. Very glad to know I'm not the only one here to consider that. Just wish the Blinds Are Up! app had fracs for blind levels.
 

Taghkanic

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I too am unclear why T25 would be more economical. If the number of BBs is the same and the blind progressions equivalent, shouldn’t it require the same number of chips regardless of the stakes? You still need enough of each denom in the progression to run the tourney.
 

raynmanas

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T5 - Great for a learning game. New players love to limp into every pot, and a T5 base allows for a T25 type structure with an hour of T5 play. Limping won't cost them a significant portion of their stack, and our records show that when a first-timer plays, they fare much better (often min-cashing) when we use the T5 base set.

So are you saying when you use a T5 structure, you use T25 starting stacks? Because all that really matters regarding the ability for early round limping is the number of big blinds in the starting stack. Or do you think it is somehow a psychological thing?
 
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