Carbon Poker Review
|2015 update – Carbon remains open but no longer accepts affiliate signups, so we can no longer offer support or exclusive promotions. For a rakeback-friendly room, we recommend Americas Cardroom.|
Update July 15, 2014 – Carbon has removed its VIP program – all VIP levels, VIP bonuses and VIP points detailed below are no more – to focus instead on promoting to recreational players and improve game quality. Read more here.
Carbon Poker is the Merge Gaming Network’s flagship room. Noted for its excellent software and payout speeds, it’s one of a handful of rooms where American players are accepted.
Carbon Poker’s software is lauded on forums as the best of the U.S. facing sites, comparable to that of PokerStars and Full Tilt in functionality and speed. Carbon has both a Windows Client and a Mac Client.
Carbon has consistently processed cashouts to U.S. players quickly and reliably where other rooms have failed. Checks are received in 1 – 3 weeks, with a $2,500 maximum and no fee. For up to date withdrawal times see our U.S. Cashout Report and the forum threads linked therein.
RoW players are paid out faster with more withdrawal processing options e.g. VISA and Skrill.
Merge is the second largest network serving U.S. players for cash games, behind Bovada and above the Winning Poker Network (WPN, mainly Americas Cardroom and Black Chip). Cash game traffic has been trending down after recent rake increases, however it is still reasonable with a 7 day average of 450+ players (PokerScout.com figures).
MTT and SNG traffic is very healthy, Carbon’s schedule considered the second best for U.S. players behind Bovada’s – however as mentioned on Bovada all tables are anonymous.
Carbon increased the rake percentage in cash games from 5% to 5.56% on May 1, 2013. Caps also increased – the 50 cent HU cap became $1, caps higher than $3 were introduced, and caps were hit with fewer players dealt in. See the previous rake structure here.
Carbon’s cash game rake became the highest of the U.S. facing rooms, with the exception of playing at WPN tables with a Beast drop (the network’s progressive rake rake).
Rakeback is low by industry standards, with 10%, 15% and 35% tiers, the last being invite-only. Limits are imposed on the number of points for cash exchanges per month. Points can be used for MTT entries (10% value).
Carbon Poker Rakeback Tiers
Of the U.S. friendly rooms Carbon is in the middle of the pack, with lower rakeback than Americas Cardroom – which offers 27% flat weekly by default with no limits – yet higher than Bovada which offers no rewards.
Freerolls run with prizepools of up to $5,000. Reload bonuses are frequently offered, e.g. 75% up to $375. The Bankroll Builder payouts out cash and bonuses for meeting daily VIP Point targets.
Bankroll Builder Points Targets & Prizes
During Happy Hours 1.5x VIP Points are earned in cash games – so players with 10% rakeback earn 15%, players with 15% earn 22.5%, etc. Remember to opt in. SNG players earn 1.1x VIP Points during Sit & Go Boost hours, and compete for $20k in monthly prizes from the Sit & Go leaderboards.
While rakeback is low, Carbon’s monthly rake races can offer a significant boost to rakeback. Check out our rake race analysis report for the latest data across the industry. Below is an example week long race with a $6,250 prizepool – one of four that month for a total race value of $25,000.
Carbon Poker Example Rake Race Leaderboard
High volume players typically earn anywhere from 3 – 35% additional value from rake race leaderboards paying out 75 spots.
- Player to Player (P2P) transfers are not permitted at Carbon Poker
- The Carbon Poker review above also applies to Aced Poker – the two rooms are identical in all but name and color scheme
Free download securely from official Americas Cardroom server