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How to Calculate Poker Outs – Outs in Examples

Outs in poker are the first step to learning poker math. So first of all you have to learn to count outs. In fact, their calculation is quite simple and takes only a few seconds at the poker table, which is enough to make the right decisions. But first, let’s understand what is called outs in poker.

Outs are the remaining cards in the deck that, if drawn, can improve your hand. That is, if the cards are drawn, they will help you to collect a strong combination and defeat opponents. If you wish, you can use special online software that calculates outs, pot odds, and odds of winning at the table of the poker room.

Outs calculation in examples

Example 1

Suppose you have 7 ♠ 7 ♦, and the flop is K ♣ 10 ♣ 8 ♦. To improve your hand you have to collect a set, i.e. you need 7 on the turn or river. Since the deck of cards has only four 7s, and you hold two of them, you have two outs (4-2 = 2) in order to collect a set (7 ♣ 7 ♥). According to the outs chart (see below), you will have 8.4% to catch set on the turn or river.

Example 2

Let’s say the flop is 2 ♣ Q ♥ J ♣, and your starting cards are 10 ♦ 9 ♣. In this example, you will have 8 outs to make a straight, i.e. you need either a king or 8. Since the deck has four kings and four 8s, 4 + 4 = 8 – it is your outs.

Example 3

You hold 6 ♥ 7 ♥, the flop is 10 ♣ 9 ♥ A ♥. In this example, you will have 12 outs to improve your hand.

9 outs (2 ♥ 3 ♥ 4 ♥ 5 ♥ 8 ♥ 9 ♥ J ♥ Q ♥ K ♥) to make flush. Since the deck has 13 cards of each suit, and you hold 2 of them and 2 are on the flop, therefore, 13 – (2 + 2) = 9. And 3 outs to make straight – 8 ♦ 8 ♣ 8 ♠. At this we do not count 8 ♥ as we have counted it in outs for a flush.

Example  4

Suppose that you have A ♣ K ♣, and the flop is Q ♥ J ♣ 5 ♣. In this example, you have chance of making following hands – top pair, straight or flush.

In this case, you will have 6 outs (A ♥ A ♦ A ♠ K ♥ K ♦ K ♠) to collect the top pair, 9 outs (2 ♣ 3 ♣ 4 ♣ 6 ♣ 7 ♣ 8 ♣ 9 ♣ 10 ♣ Q ♣) to collect flush and 3 outs (10 ♠ 10 ♦ 10 ♥) to collect straight. We do not count 10 ♣ as we have counted it in outs for a flush. Thus, you have a total of 18 outs to improve your hand that equals to 62.4% to make the best hand on the turn or river, and 39.1% – on the river.

Example 5

Let’s look at another example of counting “unnecessary” outs.

For example, you have 10 ♣ J ♣ and your opponent has 9 ♥ 6 ♥. The flop is 9 ♦ Q ♥ A ♥. In this case, you will have 4 outs to collect the top pair – 10 ♦ 10 ♠ J ♦ J ♠ (we do not count 10 ♥ J ♥, as they will help your opponent to make flush), and 6 outs to make straight – 8 ♦ 8 ♠ 8 ♣ K ♦ K ♠ K ♣ (we miss 8 ♥ K ♥ again, as they will give your opponent a chance to win). So, in total you have 10 outs (10 ♦ 10 ♠ J ♦ J ♠ 8 ♦ 8 ♠ 8 ♣ K ♦ K ♠ K ♣), to win this hand.

Outs chart in poker

poker outs chart

  • Number of outs – all the cards needed for the improvement of the hand.
  • Turn-River – percentage of the likelihood of the right card on the turn or river.
  • River – percentage of the likelihood of the right card on the river.

It is pretty hard to remember all the numbers in the chart, so there is a very simple way to calculate the percentage of the needed outs likelihood.

To calculate the percentage of the likelihood of cards on the turn and river, just multiply outs by 4; and if on the river – multiply by 2. Although the results will not be accurate, they will help you to quickly and roughly estimate your chances.

In example 5 you have 10 outs, that according to the chart equals to 38.4% on the turn and river, and 21.7% on the river. If to count under the rule “four-two”, you will get 40% on the turn and river, and 20% on the river. As you can see, the difference is minimal, so during the game one can quickly enough calculate their chances of getting any particular combination.