- The blinds in cash games are the same. This makes it easier to calculate how many chips each player will need. Two denominations of chips may be sufficient. It is possible to have three denominations.
- Blinds increase at every level of tournaments. You will need more chips and denominations depending on the level and how many players you have. You will need to determine the amount of chips required for each structure.

## Cash game

The blinds are the same in traditional poker.

If it’s a $1/$2 match, the small blind will always remain at $1, while the big blind will remain at $2. This makes it much easier to calculate the number of chips required.

Each player chooses how much to buy in at a casino. There is no minimum or maximum buy-in.

The minimum amount could be $50 and the maximum $500. Players have the option to leave at any time and cash out their chips.

You could play the exact same way for a home game (if permitted by your country/state) or you could make it more friendly and easier with:

- Fixed buy-in that goes into one pot. The pot is divided between players at the end of each night based on the number of chips they have.
- Fixed number of chips per player. No real money. The blinds remain the same and the winner is the player with the most chips at end of game.

### How many poker chips are needed for 2 players?

Let’s assume that the blinds cost $1 and $2, real money or the chip value.

Two chip denominations might be sufficient to have 150 big blinds, which is quite reasonable.

Each player could win twenty $1 chips (one stack), and 56 $5 chips, which is almost three stacks.

Assuming you are not allowed to buy in twice, the total number of chips would be 152.

Each player could have 150 big blinds and three denominations. You could then use 20 $1 chips, 36 $5 Chips, and four $25 Chips — a total of 120 chips.

### How many poker chips are needed for four players?

You would need approximately 240 chips to play the same stacks as the one before. Each player will require sixty chips.

Let’s say the blinds cost $1 and $2, and each blind comes with 200 large blinds ($400).

You could break it down into four $25 chips, one $100 chip and 36 fivers. There are also singles stacks, which would give you 61 chips per player for 244 total.

These could be issued with higher denomination chips such as the hundreds, even if other buy-ins are made during the game. The lower denominations won’t be necessary as there will already be enough money on the table.

If you have 300 chips, it’s likely that you can provide enough money for four players if there are enough denominations available and you don’t play too deep.

It is necessary to calculate the total chips, based on the blinds and the buy-ins. Also, you will need to determine if it is a single player buy-in or multiple.

### How many poker chips are needed for 6 players?

You want to ensure you have enough money — enough low-denomination chips — as you increase the number of players.

If the blinds are 1/1 to 1/2, you can probably play ten singles per person (three stacks if playing six-handed).

Personally, I would not use less than this as it could lead to insufficient change which can cause serious problems for experienced dealers.

## Poker tournament

Tournaments are quite a different story. Not only will you need to calculate the number of chips, but also the *structure* for the tournament.

What length do you expect the tournament to last? Will there be a freezeout or players being allowed to rebuy? Will there be a chip-race?

Assuming you don’t play poker tournaments with more than three players, here’s my plan if there were 4.

### How many poker chips are needed for four players?

The value of the smallest poker tournament chip denomination is 25. Next, you’ll find the 100s, 500s and so forth.

If you have four players and each player has a stack of 5,000, then you will only need 100 chips.

Here’s an example.

#### Poker chips per player

Chip value | Number |

25 | 8 |

100 | 8 |

500 | 4 |

1,000 | 2 |

#### Total poker chips

Chip value | Number |

25 | 32 |

100 | 32 |

500 | 16 |

1,000 | 8 |

All | 88 |

You’ll be fine, even with rebuys. Most poker sets include at least 300 chips.

Remember that you don’t need to issue many chips for rebuys if you have enough change.

### How many poker chips are needed for 8 players?

It gets even more exciting when there are eight players. It’s still just one table, but this tournament is more formal.

Let’s take a look at the possible structure of this tournament. It would take approximately three to four hours. This is ideal.

- Eight to nine players
- 15,000 Starter Stack
- 20-minute blinds (no big jumps).
- Every three/four levels, short breaks
- It’s easier to have no ante or button (easier).

#### Poker chips per player

Chip value | Number |

25 | 8 |

100 | 8 |

500 | 8 |

1,000 | 5 |

5,000 | 1 |

#### Total poker chips

Chip value | Number |

25 | 64 |

100 | 64 |

500 | 64 |

1,000 | 40 |

5,000 | 8 |

All | 240 |

As you can see, even with the rebuys, a regular poker chip set is sufficient.

You can use a larger starting stack (e.g. You would need to add a few thousand or 5,000 chips to get a larger starting stack, such as 20,000. It’s that simple.

### Chips for 10 and more players

Consider getting more chips for bigger tournaments. A 500-chip set, or even a 1000 chip set is possible.

You will need two tables if you have more than nine or ten players. If the blinds are extremely fast, the tournament will likely last longer.

While 300 chips might be sufficient for one table, you will need more for larger tournaments.

A larger poker chip set will give you enough chips and change and possibly one or two additional denominations.

This will allow you replace the smallest chips by larger ones when the blinds go up (called *Chip Race*).

## Final thoughts

There is no set amount of chips that you will need to start a home game.

Once you have decided what type of game or tournament structure you want, you will be able to estimate the number of chips required as well as the denominations.

Remember that *unmarked* chip can be used — you are not playing in a casino. This means that you can assign a value to your chips based on their color.

If you aren’t sure how much you have, you can get larger chips sets. This will ensure you have enough denominations and change available. It can also slow down the game.