Tuesday, 20 February 2007

Poker Tracker and PA HUD (what does it all mean)

Using Poker Tracker and PA HUD
It occurred to me recently that everyone advices you to use Poker tracker and PAHUD but no one tells you how.

I remember when I first started using them all these pretty numbers appeared on the screen telling me god knows what about the opposition.

Well I will go through a few of the main statistics and how I use them and would be really grateful if any other experienced users would share there thoughts and how they use to statistics to help them win.

PAHUD allows you to define exactly which numbers you see on screen through the layout manager but I will just cover the default numbers and how I use them.

Firstly the most important number you will see is VP$IP this is short for Voluntarily placed money in pot and gives an indication of how loose (or tight the player is.This will let you know whether you can even attempt to place this player on a hand, if the number is below 25 then the opponent has some idea of hand value preflop and if below 15 then they are very tight, you should be looking for players with VPIP of 40 or more if you really want to swim with the fish.
Be aware though that if a player has a high VPIP then they are very difficult to put on a hand and you will only make money of these players by consistently starting with good cards and showing down.

Next the PFR stands for Pre flop raise and is very useful when deciding whether to limp with speculative hands, that is if the players still to act behind you have a low number here then you can regard them as passive preflop and a limp has a high chance of not being raised.If someone has a high stat for PFR and for VPIP then you can consider them a LAG ( Loose aggressive ) and you should tighten up and showdown with premium hands.

Next we have The overall aggression figure. This is very useful as it lets you know how likely a player is to continue raising postflop, low figures here indicate weak tights and loose passives which are your prey at the tables.

Next we have how many hands played and this should not be taken lightly, if this figure too low then you cannot really rely on the other stats as you haven't seen enough hands to really rate them.

On top of that I also like to add the won at showdown figure to the screen, and I look for people with stats of 80+ as these people tend to be weak at the river, that is you can float them and bluff them at the river.

When looking at all these these figures we should perform a sort of somatyping and decide what mistakes this player is likely to make and then we would look to take advantage of that.For example someone with low vpip, low PFR, low total aggression and high win at showdown can be seen as a weak tight and we beat these people by simply betting into them post flop.

People with High VPIP , High PFR and High total aggression are maniacs and we should tighten up and play back at them when we have a premium hand.

People with high VPIP , Low PFR and low total aggression are loose passives and we should see more flops against these people and use position as a hammer to punish there weak play.

There are as many player types as there are people though so prepare to be surprised and always learn.

One other thing I do is set PAHUD to only look at the latest 2000 hands as we may run into the mistake of underestimating an improved player, remember people do learn.

Hope this helps and I look forward to any insights any of you have on this. I am after all just learning myself.



razor ramon said...

nice article on how to use this tool, i had always problems to understand and use it in the right way, since there was no good guide, not even on their website ! thats why i stopped using PT and choose a tool called holdem indicator, its really good, you can attach it to any pokertable and you have all the stats righ in front of you, also the after a specific number of hands the other players get automatically categorized with the hellmuth poker animal system *funny* you also get live pot and win odds which really helps in difficult situations, it shows you the EV of you hole cards, the sklansky starting hand level, your outs, its really easy to use !

Peter said...

Hi Razor

I have looked at the tool you are talking about and agree it is quite good but beklive me it isnt a patych on Pokert tracker, the problem with these calculators is they turn you into an automaton and stop you thinking, you may as well be using a robot.
Also PT keeps the history from previous sessions and over a thousand hands on a plyer is better than just the current session.
The only other reason is screen real estate if you are multi tabling then these tools can really get in the way.

Anyway whatever works for you but Iwould reccomend giving Poker tracker another go even if only to track yoyur own play


razor ramon said...

well the calculator also keeps records of all the session and all the hands you play at any poker site, thats really a good thing

i know what you mean acting like a robot, but i dont always depend on the tool, i mainly use it to get stats of the other players, and to get a live starting hand rating, the problem is with the pod and win odds, playing with tzhe calc its really easy, but that way i will never be able to do that on a real table i guess, but maybe it will using the 4 - 2 rule

Peter said...

sounds good, though pot odds are really easy and should be second nature after a while.

what though is the 4-2 rule.


razor ramon said...

4 and 2 is just you count your outs before the turn and multiply x 4 so that is your percentage of winning, before the river you count your outs and multiply x 2 so thats your new percentage of winning, really easy to calculate and it works, you simly compare that percentage with the pot odds and can make easy winning decisions :) saw that in a phil gordon video :)

Peter said...


I use that method except I just never called it that.

Don't forget at limit to also count yourpartial outs though


razor ramon said...

HEY DOES POKERTRACKER ALSO KEEP RECORD OF THE HANDS YOU GET ... oooops .... well yeah so does it keep record of how many pocket aces you get at a pokersite ? or how often you win with a straight or a flush ?

plmk thx :)

Peter said...


S1ndr0me said...

Hi guys,
just gonna chip in on the PT article. I use poker office and hold em indicator. I find hold em indicator is much better at showing me pot odds win odds and what my opponents are likley to have. This is especially handy when looking at odds on flushes etc. But poker office is the daddy (very similar to PT. Where Office stands out is the wealth of data it provides. How you did on everyhand. The fact that I have only won 55% of AA. How that opponent whos playing tight and has beaten you every hand did it. Very powerful. I don't think you can play online without these tools.