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Whether you're playing poker online or live, there are tons of great tools you can use to win more money and have more fun. In this video we list the five best.
These poker tools and apps will help you improve your poker strategy, run smooth home poker tournaments and make fair deals and chops.
The first entry is the legendary free software program PokerStove, an equity calculator that can give you exact equity match-ups for ranges of hands both preflop and postflop.
Next are two tools that are must-haves if you're running your own home tournament: Blind calculators and tournament clocks.
Blind calculators will help you create a perfect blind structure to make sure your game lasts the right amount of time and has the right sized stacks and levels. A tournament clock can run on a tablet or computer where everyone can see it and displays important information like the current blinds, level time and payouts.
Number three on the list is an ICM calculator which is useful deep in tournaments when you're negotiating a chop or a deal. A free ICM calculator like ICMpoker.com uses the stacks sizes and payouts to calculate a fair chop.
Next on the list is a mobile app called SnapShove from poker pro Max Silver. This is a great tool to help beginner and intermediate players get familiar with good push/fold strategy. It can also tell you whether to call all-ins and offers an interactive training mode.
Topping the list are Hold'em Manager and Poker Tracker, two programs integral to all serious online poker players. These programs let you use your hand-histories to do deep analysis on the way you and your opponents play.
It also comes with powerful tools like a heads-up display that can be a huge advantage online.
Whether you're playing poker online or live, there are tons of great tools you can use to win more money and have more fun.
These are the five best.
#5 – Pokerstove
Pokerstove is totally free and it's one of the most powerful tools you can use in your poker studies.
It's an equity calculator and it's important because it helps poker players think in terms of hand ranges instead of just specific poker hands.
Most poker players know the rough equity between most specific hands but it gets a lot more complicated when you're trying to figure out your equity against a range of hands. Pokerstove makes it really easy.
Just enter your hand and the range of hands you think your opponents could have and Pokerstove will calculate the equity for each hand. Pokerstove can assess preflop matchups and you can also do post-flop calculations by entering the board cards.
Once you know the equity in a given situation you can compare it to the pot odds to see if your decisions are giving you positive expected value.
#4 – Blind Structure Calculator and Tournament Clock
These two tools won't help you with strategy but they will make your poker games run way more smoothly.
If you're hosting a game, make things easy on yourself and get a blind structure calculator to create a tournament that will last the right amount of time with the right stack and blind sizes.
There are lots of free options online but we use PokerSoup.com. It's free and really easy to use.
Just enter the basic tournament details and it will generate a blind structure.
You can play with the stack size, the length and how long the levels last to make it a turbo or more deep-stacked.
The next step is to find a tournament clock and enter your structure information. There are free options like freepokerclock.com that you can run in your internet browser, or more robust pay versions like thetournamentdirector.net.
Play it on a laptop or tablet where everyone in the game can see it.
#3 – ICM Calculator for Deals and Chops
When you find yourself shorthanded at the final table of a tournament, chances are someone will suggest a deal.
Sometimes running the numbers can be confusing, or a certain player might be trying to push a better deal for themself.
Using a free ICM Calculator like ICMpoker.com as a starting point for negotiations will help make sure everyone gets a fair deal.
Just enter the payouts and stack sizes and the ICM calculator will figure out the chop based on everyone's current equity.
#2 – Snapshove
Snapshove is an app developed by poker pro Max Silver. It's main use is to decide to move all-in or fold preflop when you're shortstacked in a tournament. It can also tell you whether to call after someone else has moved all-in.
Just enter all the hand details and Snapshove will tell you whether to push or fold. It also offers interactive training programs to help you get familiar with push/fold ranges.
In the spirit of the game we don't recommend using snapshove in real-time to make decisions but it's a great tool for learning how to make better decisions on your own.
#1 – Hold'em Manager or PokerTracker
At the top of this list are the two biggest players in the poker strategy software world.
Hold'em Manager and PokerTracker are a must-have tool for serious online poker players.
By saving all your hand histories from your online poker room and entering them in these programs you can analyze you and your opponents' play in detail.
You can find out whether you're winning or losing money with pocket fives under-the-gun or figure out how often a particular opponent is folding when you 3-bet him in position.
Both programs have tons of features but one of the most important is the heads-up display that shows you key stats in real-time while you're playing online.