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Wisconsin, USA
89 Posts

Profile of Joey_Z
I prefer the astethics of the backs on Aviators and Aristocrats, but I just can't get used to the dark faces of the red Aristocrat cards. I am rally attracted to Tally Ho's and keep trying to switch, but I always end up back with Bikes. Maybe this is just because of the availability of gaffs.
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Regular user
112 Posts

Profile of Shadowstalker
I prefer phoenix cards, because they have loads of great built-in features.
one way, pokerbingo etc.

When a magician lets you notice something on your own, his lie becomes impenetrable.
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Inner circle
2263 Posts

Profile of DavidKenney
Most Blaine decks have a ton of built in features, reader backs and word forces etc, most of the Legends decks as well are loaded with extras for Magicians. The deck with the MOST is the GNOSTIC deck from Stuart Palm

You can do a 30 minute routine, soley from the tuck case and bells and whistles built into the design. Amazing deck
Ghost Counter
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Plymouth, England
29 Posts

Profile of Ghost Counter
It has to be Bicycle. Here in the UK they are much cheaper than Tally Ho and last ages.
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Considering Stopping At Exactly
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Profile of Poof-Daddy
On Oct 13, 2013, Poof-Daddy wrote:
Bicycle, main reason - spectators know them as "regular" decks. Anything else can create a bit of "maybe those were trick cards" type of thoughts. Also there are many gaffs if you so choose (bikes being most common and readily available). If you want improved quality in your bikes, buy the Richard Turner Gold Seal Bikes as they are printed on Bee Stock and Traditionally Cut for the Professional. Alternativly, Ellusionist sells the Masters Deck, which is also printed on better card stock than regular bikes. The main difference I find in the two is the Ellusionist has a very different Ace of Spades where the Turner decks are the same Ace as regular bikes.

I use the Turner decks regularly to perform with and wring in a standard deck if I am going to tear up cards or have cards signed. I find the Turner decks outlast the standard beyond compare during regular use and are a great feel while using them.

Nothing against other decks (I own several of each) I just prefer bikes and enjoy using the Turners and the Masters more so than the regular bikes.

This was my answer almost 5 years ago. I still stand by most of it but did change my "GO-TO" decks to Phoenix Brand by Feb of the following year.
Although Phoenix is my everyday deck, I have a couple that have really grabbed my attention and I use them for very "Special" or "Formal" occasions.

First of, I will introduce my thoughts on Fournier 605's Lee Asher edition. This comes in Green or Brown. I have 2 greens and 14 browns (I prefer the brown in this deck although I usually prefer green in most other designs). Thes are beautiful, classy looking and super durable with its perfect attention to details and its wonderful "exclusive varnish formula". These cards are VERY stiff and "Clumpy" right out of the box but if you follow Lee's free "Break in instructions" you will have a deck that will actually last many years (My 1st 4 decks are 8 years old and still like new).
The average deck takes about 10 hours of break in but he shows you how to do it over time using 20 minute drills. I use these methods and often go more than 10 hours but my decks last soooooo long it is totally worth it to me. These cards can even be washed (in extreme cases) without destroying them. Worth every cent to me.

Next up is "A new kid on the block" for me anyway. TEPCC Superior Brand. I have known about them for some time but didn't ever feel the need to try yet another deck brand. Then, I got lucky during a sale and grabbed a brick of their "Readers" (marked decks) and 2 ID's all for about $4 a deck. That said, I went ahead and grabbed a brick each of the Red back and the Black back along with a "FAKO" deck of 27 various gaffs for these color backs. The bricks were also on sale at for about $25 a Brick (and you get a really nice box with each brick for storage).

These cards are thinner than I am used to but they handle wonderfully. Faro right out of the box and have 2 really cool looking matching Jokers. The tuck case is made of a tear resistant material that will hold up really well over time unlike the regular tuck boxes most cards use that last about a week before something tears or folds funny. The "Classic Finish" is very much what magicians are used to (similar to Air-Cushion Finish). These cards are very easy to handle. Like the Fournier 605's, I plan on using these for more intimate, formal settings. The back pattern on both brands are very classy looking.

As for the "Readers", they match the regular Red back with only 2 markings (Value and Suit using alpha numeric marks for both). Very well done. The ID however, seems to have an issue staying in pairs (after separating the first time) unless you use a little more pressure than I would think you should need too. This can obviously be fixed over time by applying the R/S product of your choice as needed. There are no directions but they are set up like any other standard ID. over all odd/even then H/S and D/C equaling 13 with a J/J on one side as cover when deck is removed. Coverage of whatever R/S they use is full. Top to bottom, side to side on every card in the deck but you have to look really close to see it (and actually be looking for it) I am 95% certain a spec would NEVER notice. As far as feel, even that is hard to tell unless you are "feeling" specifically for it.

I like to use an odd deck from time to time. I like Walgreen Studs (The old ones) and I like the Bicycle Skull and Bones (also made by the Conjuring Arts Research Center) because - Who doesn't like Pirate Flags? Smile I hope this helps when looking for a "SPECIAL DECK" for "SPECIAL OCCASIONS". Both the Superior Brand and the Fournier 605's will class up any close up act.
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