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The Red 7 Card Counting System offers blackjack players something that is rarely found among card counting methods today. It combines simplicity with professional-level efficiency. Anyone familiar with basic blackjack strategy and the general rules of card counting can, with a minimum of practice, master the Red 7 card counting method.

The man behind the method is Arnold Snyder, a legend in the blackjack world. Snyder’s landmark blackjack book titled Blackbelt In Blackjack was the book that put the Red 7 card counting system on the map, and serious players have made millions of dollars with Snyder’s method. Another system he developed is the ZEN Count!

Before you dive into the Red 7 count you need to take a little time to familiarize yourself with blackjack strategy . This is because the Red 7 incorporates that strategy into the decisions you’ll be making at the blackjack table.

The Basics of the RED 7

If you already have a basic familiarity with card counting you will immediately grasp the principles upon which the Red 7 is built. The method is used to create a running count which will tell the player when the deck is in their favor and the player can bet more when playing blackjack at the casinos.

In other methods the running count is the sole indicator of when you should raise and lower your bets. This isn’t always the case with the Red 7 counting method. As we stated above, elements of blackjack strategy are combined with the running count in the Red 7 to make informed decisions at the blackjack table.

The Red 7 is an unbalanced system—it does not always yield a running count of 0 when all the cards have been dealt. This actually makes the Red 7 more accurate when it comes to determining how favorable the deck is to the player.

Many variations of the Red 7 count can be found online, but we recommend that the beginning player stick with the method as we have detailed it on Counting Edge.

Card Values in the RED 7

Each card in the Red 7 is assigned a point value which is used to determine the running count. Here are the values for each card in the Red 7 card counting system:

Card Value

23456Red 7Black 78910JQKA

You should notice a couple of things about the Red 7 card values. The most important one, however, is that the count for the 7’s in the deck is what is called suit-specific. This means that the 7’s receive a different value based upon their color. Red 7’s are valued at +1, and black 7’s are valued at 0.

This may seem a little bit intimidating for the card counter, but with a little practice assigning the different values to the 7’s will become second nature. Some players have attempted to simplify the Red 7 counting system by giving a value of +0.5 to all 7’s regardless of the suit. The problem is that when you begin to tinker with the method as Arnold Snyder originally intended it, the efficiency of the Red 7 count goes down.

Also note that aces in the Red 7 card counting method are given a value of -1. The Red 7 does not mandate that you keep a separate count of the aces in play. However, in any system it is always beneficial to maintain a side count of aces to determine your chances of receiving a blackjack.

Blackjack Strategy and the RED 7 Counting System

We mentioned earlier that one of the things that make the Red 7 counting method different is that it incorporates blackjack strategy alongside the running count. Let’s examine this this in detail.

First, you need to be aware of what is known as a pivot point. In card counting there comes a time when you need to increase your bets to take advantage of a favorable deck. This is done when the running count reaches a pivot point. A pivot point is meant to indicate when a deck has turned in the player’s favor.

In most counting systems the pivot point would be +3, +4, or +5. In the Red 7 system the pivot point is different because you do not begin the count at 0. You begin the count by multiplying the number of decks in play by -2. In other words, in a six deck game your starting count would be -12 (6(-2)=-12). The pivot is reached when the running count crosses over into positive territory (+1, +2, +3).

This is what makes the Red 7 such an effective and powerful card counting method. Because the deck must become very favorable before you reach the pivot point there is very little chance that you will be fooled by a temporary swing in the cards.

There are a few other specific strategies which apply to the Red 7 count:

  • When the running count is 0 or higher, stand with 16 against the dealer’s 10.
  • When the running count is 0 or higher, stand with 12 against the dealer’s 3.
  • When the running count is +2 or higher, stand with 15 against the dealer’s 10.
  • When the running count is +2 or higher, stand with 12 against the dealer’s 2.
  • When the running count is +2 or higher, double down a total of 10 against the dealer’s A.

These are the basic variations in strategy you will need to know when you use the Red 7 card counting method.

Summing up the RED 7 Card Counting System

The Red 7 is actually a simple system to use and can be learned quickly. It is a suit-specific count and also depends upon your knowledge of blackjack strategy to work, but these added wrinkles should not deter you from mastering the Red 7 counting method.

The best way to learn this method is to take three to four decks, shuffle them together, and use them to practice in your own home. Remember, when you play live your money is at risk. Get comfortable with the Red 7 method before you apply it at the blackjack table. To play blackjack for money online we recommend that you try one of the recommended & trusted casinos.

5 Response Comments

  • JamesNovember 12, 2013 at 11:19 pm

    Have been playing Red7 online, live dealer.

    But with a six deck game, it takes a long time to go positive.
    And also I think the deck is shuffled after about 50% anyway.
    Would it be valid therefore for me to start the count at -6 ?

    (because only half the cards are used).
    Would value any advice…

    • RichDecember 29, 2016 at 5:51 pm

      Was there ever an answer about lowering the pivot point because a whole shoe is never played out — was wondering the same thing

      • countingedgeJanuary 7, 2017 at 3:20 am

        Thanks for your question, James, and for being a Counting Edge reader. And we’ll include Rich in this as well since we seem to have overlooked a proper response. Our sincere apologies!

        The Red 7 counting system is indeed a beast. In a six-deck game, starting the count at -12 can be daunting. What makes the Red 7 so powerful, though, is its lower pivot point. The count is started that way mainly for simplicity. A positive count means a hot shoe. Period. There is no real guesswork about when the player should start upping their bets. Because of that, we would be hard pressed to advise changing the starting count or adjusting the pivot point. In our opinion, it would be better to opt for a less complicated counting method such as the Kiss II rather than tinker with the Red 7.

        With that being said, we actually think its kind of cool that you are thinking along these lines. The best card counting methods evolved in just this way, by a player taking an existing method and tweaking it to make it better. Give it a try at your favorite online casino with live blackjack dealers and see what happens. Just keep your bets low while you test it out. And, remember your friends here at Counting Edge when you perfect that new system! Seriously, let us know how this works out if you give it a trial run and maybe your counting method will end up on our site!

        Good luck at the tables!

  • RaySeptember 6, 2014 at 1:05 pm

    red 7’s are counted as +1

    • countingedgeSeptember 6, 2014 at 8:01 pm



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