Carbon Poker Review

  • Bonus CodeCARBONPK
  • Sign-up Bonus200% up to $5,000
  • Rake Calc MethodVIP Cashback Only
  • Bonuses DeductedNone
  • Tournament Fees IncludedYes
  • Rakeback PaymentsCash Rebates Only
  • RakebackVIP
  • NetworkMerge Gaming
  • Max TablesUnlimited
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Carbon Poker is an online poker room on the Australian based Merge Poker Network.  It is currently the leading skin on the network, and caters to poker players worldwide. Carbon Poker was formed in 2007 and was once apart of  Carbon’s servers are based in Kahnawake, Canada, where they are licensed and regulated by the Kahnawake Gaming Commission.

Also, Carbon holds a gaming license in Malta, where they are regulated by the Lotteries and Gaming Authority. Due to actions by the US Government’s crackdown on online gambling Carbon Poker was forced to change domain names.  In July 2011, Carbon moved from the .com to the .ag domain,  this change was seamless and did not interrupt operations for players.

Carbon Poker Software

Carbon has some of the best software in the industry, which improved even more so in June of 2012, when they released Version 6.0 of their poker client. Carbon’s software is now even faster and smoother than ever, even when multi-tabling large numbers of tables.  The lobby filters are upgraded in the new version, and now offer a ‘quick selector’ option for filtering tables – something made popular  by Full Tilt Poker.  So, finding a particular game type is now much easier for players.

In addition, they have a new advanced search field in the lobby that will allow players to search for table names, tournaments, player nicknames, and much more.  Making it much faster to track down any additional information players may need.  Other new features include a new tournament lobby and game list expanders, giving players all the available information on a cash games or tournaments in just one click.

Also, tiling and cascading tables are both available for multi-tabling layouts. Overall, Carbon Poker has done a fantastic job on their poker client.  Other unique features include a “Deal it Twice” option, in which players can decide to deal the turn or river cards twice.  Also, players can expose one card to their opponents after the hand has ended.

Though these are not game changing enhancements, they are intriguing features for players to try out. Player statistical tracking programs such as PokerTracker and Holdem Manager have Carbon Poker support and the room allows players to use them.  The site also introduced their own custom odds calculators for their No Limit Holdem and Pot Limit Omaha tables.

Customer Support

Carbon Poker has 24/7 email support and has excellent customer support.  The site promises to respond to all emails within 48 hours, but they are usually much faster.  Response times can almost be instant during daytime hours and rarely is support even remotely close to missing their 48 hour deadline. Carbon also has reps at most of the larger poker forums online, which are available for player feedback and support. Overall, Carbon Poker’s support staff is one of the best in the online poker industry.

Carbon Poker Deposit Options

Carbon has a number of different deposit options depending on what jurisdiction the player resides in.  International players will have more options than US players because of the US government’s laws against online gambling.  Though, getting money online is harder for US players these days, the room does a superb job of giving US citizens options to deposit.

On the other hand, international players will have a lot more options at their disposal.  Just some of the options include Instadebit, Neteller, Skrill, personal credit cards, and bank wires.  It definitely pays to be playing outside the United States on Carbon Poker solely because of the ease of depositing and withdrawing funds.

Western Union Money Transfer (Most Popular)

The last option available for US players and abroad is a money transfer aka Western Union.  This allows players to send a Western Union or MoneyGram transfer to a customer service rep at Carbon to fund their account.  This is the most time consuming method, but it is guaranteed to work.  However, once players send the transfer it can take up to a day for funds to available, so this method is not instant.  However, most players report cash transfers credited to their account within a few hours.

The minimum deposit for this method is $100, and the maximum is $1000.  Players who deposit $300 can get their deposits refunded by Carbon by emailing them the receipt. Withdrawals for US citizens are much longer than most of the rest of the world.  This is not a Carbon issue, but rather an industry wide problem. US citizens only have one payout option, which is paper check.  Checks cost $15 per check and have a $2500 maximum amount.  These are currently taking 4-6 weeks to reach players, which is around the industry standard.  Also, the $15 fee per check is among the cheapest for US players.

Credit Card Deposits

A personal credit card is probably the best option, as this method is instant.  Though, while this may seem effortless many credit cards will not be accepted and simply will not work due to post-UIGEA complications.

Players can try disposable or prepaid cards (also known as green-dot cards), if their personal credit or debit cards do not work.  Another option for depositing is Click2Pay, which is an e-wallet similar to Neteller, but not nearly as widely used.  Click2Pay charges fees to fund the account, but Carbon does not charge anything for players to deposit using it.

Top International Methods

Generally, the top choices among international depositors are e-wallets Skrill and Neteller.  These basically function as online bank accounts and can fund poker accounts instantly.  Withdrawals to these methods are simple as well and take about 48 hours to process. US players will not be allowed to use most of the deposit options available to other players worldwide, and will have to settle for more traditional methods.

VIP and Bonus Structure

Carbon Poker offers a 100% bonus up to $600 for new depositors.  On top of that, the room offers frequent reload bonuses every few weeks to give players another chance to earn more money by just depositing. Carbon also has the best VIP program available on the Merge Network.  The program has six tiers of rewards, and players are rewarded for how much they play.

The rewards become unbelievably generous at the higher levels with players earning 35% daily cash back, and a 10% VIP to Cash exchange, which totals 45% overall cash back.  In addition to being paid back nearly half their rake and fees, players will be able to unlock other rewards. VIP Points are earned for tournaments and ring games and will determine a player’s VIP Tier.  In both ring games and tournaments, $1 in rake paid equates to 10 VIP Points.

Points can be used for cash exchange with the rake being dependent on the player’s VIP Level.  At higher levels, Carbon offers big time grinders a variety of additional rewards, such as a concierge service, free coaching, and the chance to win seats at live tournaments.

A flat rakeback percentage of 35% is also offered to players.  While this beats the lower VIP levels’ cash back rate, the higher tiers are certainly better than the flat 35% rakeback.  Players will need to determine their skill level and amount of rake (VIP Points) they generate to figure out which is the best deal for them.

Player Traffic and Competition

Carbon Poker and the Merge Poker Network, during peak hours, can have 7,000 or more players online.  Merge Poker has over fifty skins, or other online poker rooms on its network which combine to form the Carbon/Merge player base. Carbon is one of the biggest rooms for US players and in turn, has a fair amount of grinders.

Though, there are many professional type players, Merge has a lot of sportsbook based skins so there is still always steady streamof fish coming in. Overall, Carbon is not the fishiest room on the internet, but it certainly is beatable.  Game selection and taking advantage of bonuses will help players to start off strong.

Cash Games

All the usual games are offered, including a few more obscure ones.  No Limit Hold’Em and Omaha are by far the most popular, but the room offers Omaha Hi/Lo, Stud, and Five Card Draw. Action at No Limit is consistently popular nightly at the micro levels ($10NL, $25NL and $50NL) all the way to medium stakes tables at $5/$10 and $10/$20 limits.  Above $10/$20 is hit or miss, as bigger games form occasionally but not as often higher grinders would like.

Heads-up, 6-max and full ring tables all normally have plenty of action at mostly all limits.   Limit Hold’ Em is also popular, with Carbon certainly being a top option for US LHE players.  Low stakes games runsnightly, normally up the $10/$20 level.  Occasionally, games will get to $30/$60 or higher, but usually there is just one table of $30/$60 or higher.  Pot Limit Omaha has a decent player base at Carbon Poker as well, with games going daily up to $5/$10.


Carbon Poker offers US players the most options for tournament action.  They have a plethora of multi-table tournaments throughout the week and have a $100K Guaranteed Sunday Tournament each week. There are tons of tournaments each day for players, with buy-ins ranging from $2 to $2000 and tons of variations.  VIP Freeroll Tournaments are available weekly for players, and there is a daily freeroll for new depositors.

Sit N’ Go Tournaments or SNGs have consistent action up the $50 level.  The buy-ins run from the micros all the way to $2000.  SNGs at Carbon have many varations, including Bounties, 50-50s, Turbos, Double-or-Nothing and Super Turbos.  There is action at most levels for heads up, 6-max, and normal 10 handed formats.  Also, management just redid their SNG structures and used player input as a guide.

Overall View of Carbon Poker

Carbon Poker is an excellent option for players worldwide and is the best option for US players.  They offer a VIP and a rakeback program, a lucrative deposit bonus and most importantly are trustworthy.  Player funds are kept separate from operating expenses, and Carbon has always paid players in a timely fashion.