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Topic: The Raven, Highly Overrated.
Message: Posted by: ChrisMagic52 (Apr 12, 2003 06:24PM)
Honestly, when I first bought the Raven, I thought it was going to be really cool. But when I tried it, it stunk! I hate setting it up, and it's so useless in my routines. What a bad trick this was. :angry:
Message: Posted by: Franfran (Apr 13, 2003 01:43AM)
I think it's pretty good,

Try the video released for the Raven, it's really giving more dimension to the trick.

Franfran :kermit:
Message: Posted by: MacGyver (Apr 13, 2003 01:52AM)
Well everyone has an opinion....

What did you expect for 20-30 bucks?

This is the CLEANEST way to change one coin for another, or to vanish a coin known to magicians. Its there, then its gone, that simple. The Raven doesn't do 3 Fly or coin matrix, it does a vanish / change, and its the best at that.

Try practicing more, both with your setup and your handling, I use it a lot with no problems and the effect is always amazing!
Message: Posted by: redstreak (Apr 13, 2003 10:52AM)
You really have to practice with the Raven to get really good. My first day, it took me 30 seconds to get setup while I turned around and even then a lot of people saw the gimmick. Now it takes me about 4 seconds with my hand behind my back. The Raven video helps a lot, mainly for the "empty hand move".
Message: Posted by: Rival11 (Apr 13, 2003 02:02PM)
The Raven Is "ok" - you have to keep in mind that it if you want to do a longer routine (instead of just walking up to somebody, placing a coin on their palm and making it disappear) you need to utilize the break to it's max, It's not that hard but you should practice a lot to make it look as smooth as possible.

FranFran -well said, the Raven video will help anybody out tremendously with their routine.
Message: Posted by: manipulator (Apr 13, 2003 02:15PM)
I agree that the Raven is not a very good trick. I was really disappointed when I first saw it. It might not be that bad, but since most people are saying that the effect is extremely good, I was kind of expecting more. I think this effect is overrated. :hmm:
Message: Posted by: RandomEffects (Apr 13, 2003 05:12PM)
The effect is great!! However, saying that, I must point out that I do not, nor will I ever likely use my own Raven for any show. It takes too long to reset and use, and it has to be done right away after set up, it cannot be used as a closer without revealing the gimmick. SO neat, but not very effective.

Message: Posted by: Steve Friedberg (Apr 13, 2003 06:56PM)
I believe that's known in the industry as "damning with faint praise."
Message: Posted by: nostromo (Apr 14, 2003 12:05AM)
If you don't like to use the Raven as a vamishing device, why not take advantage of the fact that it's a powerful m****t that you can do great PK with? Since it's got the perfect attachment points with a strap built in, it shouldn;t be too hard to strap to your knee or even pin it to the inside of a trouser leg. I'm going to be using my Raven for some seance type effects- making a jewlery box lid close, moving a piece of jewelry, etc.

When I got the Raven, the freindly shop owner (are there ANY surly ones?) insisted that the video was a must-purchase at the same time. He was right. The directions are clear and the pictures very helpful, but the video puts it all together.
Message: Posted by: MacGyver (Apr 14, 2003 01:04AM)
The raven isn't very powerful....

It has trouble with a steel shell coin at about 2 inches, I doubt it will work for any PK effects, just buy a M5!
Message: Posted by: redstreak (Apr 14, 2003 01:13AM)
On 2003-04-14 02:04, MacGyver wrote:
The raven isn't very powerful....

what?!? You don't get much more powerful, you show your hands empty, put a borrowed coin on their hand, and simply wave your hand over it and it vanishes without you ever touching it. All you do is borrow a coin and do a shuttle pass.
Message: Posted by: dpe666 (Apr 14, 2003 01:25AM)
As I have said before, The Raven is a very long way to go just to make a coin disappear. If one magician used The Raven, and I used a Retention Vanish, a spectator would say each one made a coin disappear. Two weeks later they would swear we each did the same trick. So, I do not recommend The Raven. :devilish:
Message: Posted by: MacGyver (Apr 14, 2003 02:28AM)
what?!?!?!?!? You don't get much more powerful, you show your hands empty, put a borrowed coin on their hand, and simply wave your hand over it and it vanishes without you ever touching it. All you do is borrow a coin and do a shuttle pass.

I was refering to the m*g**t, which someone said:
[quote]If you don't like to use the Raven as a vamishing device, why not take advantage of the fact that it's a powerful m****t that you can do great PK with?[/quote]

and I don't think it is very powerful for a m*g**t.

I think it is a great effect, though if you are only using it for a coin vanish you need to get the video and an imagination.
Message: Posted by: HuronLow (Apr 14, 2003 06:27AM)
I too feel it is overrated. Once I used sleight of hand to vanish a count which appeared in my pocket. And my friend thought I was using a raven. =) It's a beautiful effect, but there are gaffless methods for similar effects.
Message: Posted by: HiraseMagic (Apr 14, 2003 07:49AM)
With "appropriate use", RAVEN is very very good! Comparing to Retention Vanish, one advantage is that it can happen in spectator's hand!

Yet, to do it appropriately is not very easy, you need tonnes of practice. Frankly, it is very difficult to show your hand empty, the move is not an easy one to master.

I do not own M5, so I cannot compare it with Raven. Personally, I do like its idea.

Message: Posted by: magicmanr (Apr 15, 2003 07:10PM)
It's all in the finesse...I personally don't use my Raven, however, a close friend has mastered his...He can show his hands empty very deceptively, and he can set it up right in front of you in a split second (with proper trimming & adjustments of the device)
Message: Posted by: absolute (Apr 18, 2003 07:12PM)
I absolutely think that the Raven is overrated. I tried it, not very impressive. Maybe I didn't do it well enough. Not a trick for me though. :hrmph:
Message: Posted by: TheNightBringer89 (Apr 19, 2003 01:39AM)
I bought the raven, didn't like cause of the set up time so I bought the M5. I LOOOOOVE IT! One of my greatest magic purchases!!!!
Message: Posted by: Gidon (Apr 19, 2003 02:07AM)
What advantages does this have over the pro pk?
Message: Posted by: Amadeus_Magi (Apr 19, 2003 03:56AM)
Well at the first, Raven seems to be impractical to use, but if you find a way and routine to use Raven properly, it'll be the first weapon in your arsenal in vanishing coin magic effects...believe me.
Message: Posted by: Harvey Nerzof (May 15, 2003 04:37AM)
HN Review 10: The Raven set + video – Chuck Leach


The Raven has been called one of the best tricks of the last decade! Perform visual vanishes like you've never seen. Make coins appear, disappear, shrink or change to a different coin or an entirely different object! There are no funny moves or sleights. Simply show your hands front and back, then wave one over the other and a coin appears or vanishes! It is that easy and natural (and amazing)! Many additional effects with bills, matchbooks, playing cards and a variety of coin effects, as well as the valuable 'Empty Hand Move,' are taught on the video. Perform in a coat, even a short sleeved shirt.

The ad is a bit misleading, since the “short sleeves” technique is quite different from the jacket method – the range of motions is obviously limited, and you can’t do the “empty hands move” (i.e. showing you hands front and back before beginning).

With a dark jacket and shirt, the effect looks great even though the angles feel a bit uncomfortable. I only use it as a secret gimmick to reinforce other effects, such as Mike Powers Cap in Bottle.

As a side note, I can’t remember where I saw such a physically “arguable” lady in a magic video - but the real beauty lies within, as Mr. Leach reminds us all.

Overall rating: acceptable

Message: Posted by: tdowell (May 16, 2003 12:10AM)
I bought this when it first came out. Used it once and dumped it. Buy a PK.
Message: Posted by: cardican66 (May 17, 2003 11:16AM)
I agree with tdowell. A PK would serve better than the raven. I used mine twice, and haven't used it again in a long time. I get more use out of my vernet magnetic TT!
Message: Posted by: MacGyver (May 17, 2003 02:34PM)
a PK might be stronger, but how could you say it perform what a raven can do?

The raven is the cleanest coin vanish in magic and does its purpose... it is not meant to be the best thing ever, but when it comes to a gimicked coin vanish, this does the best!!!

It's both amazing to see, and fun to do... I still say this is what of the best tricks out there, considering that for 4 times you money you can get something that you will never use and looks obvious, while with the raven it is ONLY 20-30 dollars and really delivers.
Message: Posted by: djvirtualreality (May 17, 2003 05:41PM)
The raven is OK like many say. I read a lot before I bought this trick and a lot of people said it was great! When I got it, it came in a little box........I was looking for more lol. I couldn't believe that was it! Setup is ok for street performances because I just walk up to a person and have it ready.
Message: Posted by: Fast Eddie P. (May 18, 2003 07:41AM)
I think the vanish is great but did not like having to be set up all the time. Chrismagic52 please pm me in reference to your list I can't seem to get an email or pm through to you.
Message: Posted by: Showmethatagain (May 4, 2004 10:00AM)
The video really gives ya some nice ideas I love how visual it looks an I don't think it's to difficult to set up
Message: Posted by: Fraser Gould (May 5, 2004 08:28AM)
Recently started using my Raven again after a six year hiatus. I use it as a follow up to Dreamweaver. After the spec examines the safety pins used in the Dreamweaver routine, I put two safety pins back in my pocket then vanish the final one from the back of their hand. The examination of the pins gives just the right time/misdirection for setting up the raven...
Message: Posted by: Turk (May 5, 2004 05:02PM)
One downside to the Raven (IMHO) is the fact that the vanish into your sh**t really only works well for magicians that are dumping the coin from their left hand into their right hand. That gives a straight line shot for the disappearance into your sh**t. For us non-ambidexrous magicians who are right hand domiminant, dumping the coin from the right hand into the left will not work for the vanish up your sh**t because the mechanism is "bent" and will not cleanly go up into your sh**t. Of course, you can "solve" this problem by having your left hand way to the right of center but then the hand positions become very constrained and unnatural in appearance.

Since I don't wear a coat when performing, the alternative option was not an option for me. So, I traded my Raven for something else.

Additionally, I agree with dpe666. IMHO, a Retention Vanish or other properly performed vanish can be just as strong in the minds of the audience as the use of the Raven. True, you cannot necessarily immediately turn over both hands as you can with the Raven but, there are many reasonable and viable aternative. (i.e., "Wiped Clean", "Back Clip" sleeving, ditch in front shirt pocket, "Downs Palm", etc. to name just a few such possible options).

Message: Posted by: Bill Hegbli (May 5, 2004 06:31PM)
Raven is not for amateurs it is for magicians that want to do the best coin vanish ever.

These above comments sounds like the package was opened and after looking at the gimmick. They just closed the box and put it in the drawer. Then thought of all the reasons why not to practice or perform it.

That is perfectly okay. I have looked for a clean coin vanish for many years and Raven fills all the voids.
Message: Posted by: Dougini (May 5, 2004 08:30PM)
Best $20 investment I could have made. My reputation was kicked up a notch because of it. Short and sweet. I would do sleight of hand, end with the Raven, and leave. people still talk about it.

I'm an amateur, Bill, but the Raven IS for me! :bg:

Message: Posted by: Karl Miller (May 29, 2004 11:40AM)
The Raven is a great tool if used properly. There are many things you can do with it becides the basic vanish if you really put your mind to work.

It was worth the money to me because when I work on a new effect or set out to improve an existing routine, I always look for the best possible method, no matter what it is. I don't care if it is self working, a knuckle buster, or gaffed to the hilt as long as the effect is clear to the spectators and it is the best possible method. The Raven solved a problem for me, and to me, that was worth the thirty bucks.
Message: Posted by: Tiki (May 31, 2004 11:00PM)

Do you use the Raven with a jacket or do you use the belt method? From your other posts, it seems we have similar tastes in effects (mostly Sankey's) and I am curious about how you use the Raven. I bought one about a year ago and must admit I haven't practiced with it enough to take it public. I can fool my wife with it, but I can't get over the fear of getting caught with it dangling in front of me for the world to see.

Thanks in advance.

Message: Posted by: Four Jokers Magician (Jun 2, 2004 04:59PM)
Maybe to you its not a good trick but to the lay man its the coolest thing they have ever seen.
Oh ya if its such a bad trick why did David Blain use it in his special and the previews for the special.
Hey I'm not a fan of David Blain eather but he new enough to use such a great trick on his TV special so ill give that to him. But you are correct it is not much of a table hopping effect but it has so many street aplications. I have been known from time to time as to vanish a large spoon off of the dinner table useing the raven. My advise to you is to give it a second chance and to be imaginative.

Oh one more thing about set up, you can illuminate the o-ring that comes with it just by stringing it threw your belt loop!!! this should save some time now that you illiminated 2 pins.
Message: Posted by: Kent Wong (Jun 2, 2004 06:20PM)
On 2003-04-14 02:13, redstreak wrote:
On 2003-04-14 02:04, MacGyver wrote:
The raven isn't very powerful....

what?!? You don't get much more powerful, you show your hands empty, put a borrowed coin on their hand, and simply wave your hand over it and it vanishes without you ever touching it. All you do is borrow a coin and do a shuttle pass.

I think he was talking about the actual power of the gimmick and not the power of the effect.
Message: Posted by: Dougini (Jun 3, 2004 06:49PM)
On 2004-06-01 00:00, Tiki wrote:

Do you use the Raven with a jacket or do you use the belt method? From your other posts, it seems we have similar tastes in effects (mostly Sankey's) and I am curious about how you use the Raven. >-snip-<...[/quote]

Well, Tiki, It's way too hot to wear a jacket. Florida doesn't get below 90, after May...at least until Dec or Jan...Southwest Florida, anyway...but, if I know I'm going "out"...that is, to perform in some way (rare these days), I'll wear a light blazer, the one that has it already installed. It's in the right sleeve, with the loop just about 2 or 3" above the cuff.

At the appropriate time, I just reach up, "hook up", and start. Usually, I'll do something like Coins Across, Pen Thru Anything, or a packet trick (NFW, Twisted Sisters, Skinner's Monte, or Flushtration), then, as I'm getting ready to wrap it up, I usually pretend to have an afterthought, and show 'em "one more"...The Raven.

I have a steel-core Half, and Quarter that work perfectly with this, then the shimmed E ] Half, or English Penny, to make it "shrink" (mini-coins)...just one or two quick ones, then bye-bye! A wave of the hand...(jaw drops)...oh, and I also do the "show both sides of the hand"...something you cannot do in the T-shirt method.

Quoting you again..."...I can't get over the fear of getting caught with it dangling in front of me for the world to see...."

That's something you never have to worry about with the jacket/sleeve method...if you have the video (a MUST HAVE!), learn that move...showing both sides of the hand...I mastered that almost immediately...just use your first finger. Let your fingernails grow a tiny bit (keep 'em CLEAN, tho', LOL), as you'll need that extra bit of "bite" if you know what I mean. Just move your thumb out of the way, and raise your hand vertically. It stays out of sight. No need to hurry...easy does it.

Sure hopes this helps, without tipping too much...

Message: Posted by: kihei kid (Jun 4, 2004 05:59AM)
It is best when used in conjunction with other magic, coins or not.
Message: Posted by: MagicbyCarlo (Jun 18, 2004 12:50AM)
I don't currently use the Raven, but have in the past with success. The tool is only as good as the technician wielding it. The Raven is a tool. Like any pull, it doesn't fit every situation. No jacket, tee-shirt or golf shirt are not situations for the Raven. But those situations don't alow for sleeving either, doesn't mean sleeving is bad. One draw back I had with the Raven was it talked when attracting the coin. I added an extra piece of felt and corrected that. The Raven gets a high B as a magical tool. It isn't a trick in and of it self and if that's what you're looking for stay clear of it.
Message: Posted by: MagicCarisio (Oct 7, 2004 12:59PM)
Hi Carlo,
I second your thoughts!
(I also had the same problem and used extra felt.)
Message: Posted by: whizzomagic (Oct 25, 2004 12:49AM)
I actually enjoy the Raven. The looks of astonishment you get with it are well worth the price.
Message: Posted by: Regan (Oct 25, 2004 07:03AM)
I like The Raven too.

Carlo and Gerard, Does the extra felt 'weaken' it very much? I've thought about trying this for a while, but I was afraid it would not work as well.

Message: Posted by: caubeck (Nov 21, 2004 07:00PM)

Here in Spain it gets pretty warm and most of the year I wear long sleeved shirts, without a jacket.

Does the Raven work just as well in long sleeves?

One more thing (referring to the m used): anyone know which N this is? I'm guessing it's small but a higher N might improve the effect.

Message: Posted by: rikbrooks (Nov 21, 2004 09:50PM)
The Raven works fine with long sleeves. In fact, mine is hooked up in the more traditional way, inside my duster (overcoat for you Spaniards).

Posted: Nov 22, 2004 1:14am
...Also, think what a Raven could do for a chop cup! The ball is in the hand, in the pocket, the hand, the pocket. Then it's in the Specs hand... but back in yours.

I've only done it once, but the reaction was stupendous. I always have the Raven ready for it, but the hookup during a performance, right under the spectator's nose has proven a bit more than I can handle yet.
Message: Posted by: caubeck (Nov 22, 2004 12:07PM)
On 2004-11-21 22:50, rikbrooks wrote:
The Raven works fine with long sleeves. In fact, mine is hooked up in the more traditional way, inside my duster (overcoat for you Spaniards)

Well, I'm English but I'm just as glad you clarified what a duster was! Otherwise I'd have imagined you making fluff disappear around the house in a wholly remarkable way.

Message: Posted by: tony4938 (Dec 2, 2004 04:22AM)
I've just ordered the Raven X2 with the DVD how does this differ from the first Raven?
Message: Posted by: Daegs (Dec 2, 2004 04:21PM)
Very very bad...

I have both the raven and the raven X2 setup in jackets...

I use the raven all the time, and I never use the Raven X2...

It is way too bulky, and there are major issues with it moving freely and in a timely mannor without too much force.

I do like the idea about having a holdout on the gimick, however in practice this is more of a detriment than a bonus.

1: The X2 is way too bulky to move in and out reliably. This is a very big issue, because I use the raven all the time with no problems, however I shudder to use the X2 in public because it is so bulky... not visibility, but if you have the original, the "retraction" is *extremly* problomatic.

2: A nice feature of the Raven is the smoothness of the handling, how the hand doesn't touch or pause. With the X2 there is touching, and usually friction has to happen to "unload" whatever your unloading.

Anyway, Stick with the original Raven, it is by far the best.

Also, I think vanishes are better served by this gimick than switches.... there is not much point to the X2 other than switching.
Message: Posted by: tony4938 (Dec 3, 2004 02:26AM)
Thanks for that Daegs,

The reason I got an X2 was because I was told 'it is everything the Raven is only better'!

I will have to get the original Raven and see what suits me I suppose.

Cheers Guys
Message: Posted by: Daniel Faith (Dec 21, 2004 07:12PM)
The Raven is not a trick. It's not a no brainer self working type of thing.
You have to work with it and practice with it. Oh no the P word!
There are many ways it can be used. And it does create apparent miracles.
Basically it's used as part of a routine. It's doesn't stand alone well.
I suspect a bunch of people bought a Raven because they knew David Blaine used it.
It may not fit your style and you may not like it but that doesn't make
it a bad utility device.
Once you say that then you close your mind to creativity and the game is over.

I do think it was poorly engineered if at all.
The magnet did not need to be as large as it is. I opened up the felt on one side and with a knife trimmed it down on the edges making it 1/2 the width it started out. Then I closed up the felt. Now it is far more functional slipping into places it would get hung up on before. Give it a try.
Message: Posted by: TaylorTheGreat (Dec 21, 2004 08:49PM)
Bottom line guys, should I buy it, or spend $20 on coffee and stay up all night learning the sleights to replace it? Please, clear this up.
Message: Posted by: tony4938 (Dec 22, 2004 10:07AM)
I would buy it it's a great accessory. I'm very happy with mine.
Message: Posted by: TaylorTheGreat (Dec 22, 2004 03:39PM)
Thanks, I think I'll talk to santa about that...

Happy hollidays all!
Message: Posted by: Devilix (Jan 2, 2005 06:20PM)
I think that when you put time to master the Raven...you will have a beautiful effect of magic. I know, my did do this all the time...

Message: Posted by: Bill Hegbli (Jan 2, 2005 07:26PM)
Raven, the most fantastic, revolutionary re-invention of 'Ken Allen's Scoop' that has appeared on the market in years. If you want self working tricks buy Tenyo, Fun Inc., and Adams beginners tricks. If you want to blow your spectators away. Buy good utilities and practice. Yes, it requires set up. There is a price to pay for performing miracles.

Raven is a good investment for people that wish to do real magic!
Message: Posted by: AlmostAmazingJames (Jan 2, 2005 08:17PM)
I've disliked the raven since I bought it at a magic shop along with a video, and it damaged the video.
Message: Posted by: Mystician (Jan 2, 2005 09:42PM)
On 2004-12-22 16:39, TaylorTheGreat wrote:
Thanks, I think I'll talk to santa about that...

Happy hollidays all!

Did you get it ?
I'll put in a vote here for the raven.
It's a neat tool, the best pull I've ever seen as yet.
Like many others here have said, it's a tool, not a standalone trick. You need to use your imagination. It's not that stiff of an investmant either, relatively speaking.
Message: Posted by: Dizzy (Jan 15, 2005 06:03PM)
Worse thing magical I've bought, still in its box in my bottom draw, but glad others use it and find it useful,

Message: Posted by: Loual4 (Jan 24, 2005 01:47PM)
Just got my raven a couple of weeks ago... Personnaly, I love it! The DVD does show quite a few ideas that are very good. But to tell you the truth, if you have a little imagination, there are hundreds of ways to work the effect in a routine... Here in canada, most of our coin currency will stick quite well to the raven, so you don't even have to find steel core coins!

What more could you possibly want? It does take a little pratice to handle correctly, but then again most things in magic do.

Have a nice day!

Louis :rabbitfromhat:
Message: Posted by: Gede Nibo (Jan 24, 2005 03:06PM)
Yeah, its true, people complain oftentimes right of the bat...
practice with any tool 1008 times, then make a judgement....
the raven gets hung up sometimes, but I simply hold my elbow close to my waist as I show the hands empty, and I walk away in a flash...but most of the times its fine.

just because something takes a little work, doesn't by any means mean that its no good.
I give the raven two TT's up....
Message: Posted by: Review King (Jan 28, 2005 03:34AM)
Caw, Caw, Caw!!!!!!!!!!!!

( sorry, no ravens, only bats on the codes;-)
Message: Posted by: Carlo (Feb 25, 2005 08:04PM)
I don't understand the complaints. Is there a better method for making a coin disappear from a spectator's open hand without your even having touched it?
Message: Posted by: blsorg (Mar 5, 2005 12:16PM)
Has anybody here heard of the "Unicorn" ?
This was some kind of m**net** device which you could use to vanish and produce. I believe it was sold over in Great Britain several years ago. The company apparently is no longer in business.
Not sure though. It sounded very interesting.