Poker Chips – Quantity

You play poker, you need poker chips. For a home game with 10 players, 500 chips is a good amount to launch a standard Texas Holdem tournament. Each player would receive $1,000 in chips, and the breakdown would be something like this:

Red ($5): 20 chips
Green ($25): 16 chips
Black ($100): 5 chips
These colors and denominations are pretty standard throughout the poker world. So, if you add up these dollar values, you end up with $1,000 in poker chips for each player. This is a good starting point for a Sit n Go type tournament. However, if you’d like the duration of the tournament to last longer, you may want to start each player with $1,500 in chips (like PokerStars), in which case you may want to add:

Black ($100): 5 chips OR
Purple ($500): 1 chip

I prefer using the additional 5 Black chips, and busting out the Purples later on in the tournament. It’s always kind of fun to color up when it’s down to the money round. Also, having one Purple chip can be deceiving, it’s not easily noticed.

Now, if you add up the number of poker chips per player, you end up with a range between 41 and 46 chips per player. So with a 10 person tournament, you would need 500 chips. And you can also see that once you have more than 10 people, you should probably go ahead and get that 1,000 piece poker chip set.

I would recommend investing some money into a good set of poker chips. You never regret playing with nice chips, stacking them, performing poker chip tricks with them. Poker chips are important to the game – in a long, multi-table tournament, all you have are the chips in front of you to play with, might as well make them look nice, sound nice, and feel nice.

Poker Chips – Quality

Today, poker chips are made up of a variety of different materials, often combined into secret formulas for a unique feel, sound, or weight. However, in general terms, there are two types of poker chips – clay (clay, clay composite, clay/ceramic) and composite (plastic mix).

The composite chips are really a plastic composite that may be mixed with some sort of clay, but feel and sound like hard plastic. These chips are often weighted with a metal disc inside to give them the weight of authentic clay chips… even though authentic clay chips weigh less than these. The composite poker chips are often weighted to 11.5 grams, where clay chips are usually weighted around 10 grams. The composite chips are commonly sold with the four suits, diamonds, or dice around the edges, and these are the types of chips you can find at CostCo or online for very good prices (as low as $.12 each).

Clay chips are more valuable, and more sought after. These are the types of chips that most casinos use, and players tend to want the same look and feel. Clay poker chips have a softer look, sound, and feel than the plastic composite resin chips. These poker chips may not be as heavy, but weight does not determine the quality of a chip. Paulson’s James Bond set of chips are often considered the gold standard for home game poker chips – but they are much more expensive at $1/chip. These clay chips hold their resale value much better than composite chips, and are overall more unique and distinguishable than the run of the mill CostCo type of chip.