A comprehensive review of Merge Gaming Network online poker room Carbon Poker. Includes bonus codes, rake-back, signup, payout, tournament, cash game and software information.
The Merge Gaming Network is the second largest online poker network as rated by both cash game volume and multi-table tournament volume that services the United States of America (USA) poker market. This well funded Gaming Network also services the majority of countries worldwide and thus, is not only a great spot for US players, but for European and Rest-of-World (ROW) players as well. There is a thriving sportsbook and casino that is full of casual and recreational players who also play at the attached poker network, insuring soft game play.
Professional Rakeback has a long standing relationship with the Merge Gaming Network's flagship poker room, Carbon Poker. Carbon Poker is owned and operated by a dedicated company and staff, offering timely payouts, secure deposits, promotions, VIP programs, etc. Their former sister skin, Aced Poker, was bought by Carbon Poker in June of 2014, making Carbon Poker one of the biggest poker rooms available to US players. Carbon players can also wager and place bets at CarbonSports, a trusted and secure sportsbook.
Cash Game Offerings:
A variety of cash games are offered including the ever popular online game, No-Limit Hold'em (NLHE), in all the popular formats such as full ring (FR), six max (6m), heads up (HUHU), and fast tables. Carbon also offers a variety of variations of Omaha including Pot Limit Omaha (PLO), Pot-Limit, Fixed-Limit, and No-Limit Omaha Eights or Better (PLO8 | FLO8 | NLO8), and Fixed Limit Omaha Eights or Better (FLO8). In addition to the aforementioned games, other popular and trafficked games that are offered include Fixed Limit Holdem (FLHE), Seven Card Stud Hi/Lo (7CS HL), and HORSE. One might even be able to find or start a niche game such as Pot-Limit Five Card Stud (PL 5CS), Deuce-to-Seven Triple Draw (PL 2-7TD), Ace-to-Five Triple Draw (PL A-5TD), or even Fixed-Limit Razz or Badugi. Where can I play holdem | NLHE from USA?
Most forms of "big bet" pot and no-limit games on the Merge Network are offered in a wide range of stakes. Games start as low as $0.02/$0.04 penny games for the casual, recreational poker player and go all the way up to $3/$6, $600 maximum buy-in midstakes games. Fixed Limit games range from $0.05/$0.10 all the way up to $20/40 games.
Fixed Limit Hold'em games at Carbon are unique from most other card rooms. The blind structure of many game levels use a two-thirds blind structure leading to more action packed games. For example, the small blind at $15/$30 LHE is $10 and the big blind is $15. Carbon and the Merge Network are the only places with regular action available for US players to play FLHE other than Bovada. Where can I find LHE games online?
Multi-Table Online Tournament Game Offerings:
Merge offers a wide array of tournaments ranging from daily freerolls all the way up to $530 buy-in "High Roller" tournaments and a dozen stakes in between. The types of tournaments include regular speed, turbos, deep-stacked, rebuy and add on events, knockouts and more. At least one real money multi-table tournament (MTT) is offered every 15 minutes, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Each month the Merge Gaming Network offers $7,000,000 USD worth of tournament guarantees!
Tournament "Guarantees" also vary considerably. A small stakes $1.10 buyin tournament at 3am EST might only have a $100 GTD, while the flagship Sunday Major tournament, "The Big Ticket", with it's $215 price tag, has a staggering $125,000 USD guarantee! You can learn much more about the tournament offerings at Carbon Poker and all our other fine poker room offerings in our MTT Overlay Reports.
This network also runs approximately eight special tournament series each year. Every quarter a special Micro Online Poker Series, or MicroOPS, is staged for the small stakes players with a six-figure overall seriest guarantee. Also, four times a year, the Online Poker Series (also known as CarbonOPS, AcedOPS, or Poker Maximus) is held. This later series of exciting MTT events sports an overall guarantee exceeding $2,000,000 USD with a main event topping a quarter of a million dollars! You can read about the most recent OPS here. Curious how Merge handles cancelled Tournaments? Merge Gaming Network Tournament Cancellation Policies
Sit-and-Go Single-Table Tournament Game Offerings:
Sit-n-Go tournaments, or SNGs, are offered in abundance on the Merge Gaming Network. Two types of games are offered in the SNG lobby, NLHE and PL08. PL08 SNGs range from $1.10 to $11 buyins. SNGs of the NLHE variety have a much wider range of buyins ranging from $1.10 to $215. NLHE single table tournaments (STTS) come in a variety of formats including Regular Speed, Turbo Speed (turbos), Hyper Turbos (hypers | supers), as well as Knockout (KO) and Double-or-Nothing (DON | DUPS).
Each month, Carbon Poker gives $21,000 USD away in prizes on their SNG leaderboards. The SNG LB gives everyone a chance to win a prize with it's unique structuring. Prizes are awarded for each stake offered between the $1.10 and $33 level buy-in games. LB is further segregated between regular/turbo games and hyper-turbo game structures. Thus small stakes $1.10 regular speed SNG players do not have to compete with players grinding games $33 hypers. This allows a much more even distribution of prize money and keeps the game economy healthy. There are four races and thus four sets of prizes are awarded each calendar month in each game stake and game category. The top 10 players in each category are paid. SNGs are offered at Carbon Poker all the way up to a maximum of $1,050 buyin games.
Many sites discourage heads up players. Merge Gaming however has a rather large selection of heads-up sit-n-goes (HUSNG) to offer. Stakes available for play range from the lowly $1.10 buyin all the way up to the high stakes $1,050 buyin games! Carbon offers the highest buy-in HUSNG available to USA poker players. HUSNG on Merge Gaming come in three flavors, regular speed, turbo speed, and hyper turbo speed.
The network further encourages HUSNG play by running a HUSNG leader board. Over $12,000 USD each month is given away to the top volume HUSNG players. The top 20 spots are paid in four weekly contests each month. Twentieth place pockets a quick $25 bonus, while first place each week takes home a hefty $750 in cash!
Poker Initial and First Time Deposit Bonuses:
Our partner poker room, Carbon Poker, offers a staggeringly large deposit bonus. Unfortunately it doesn't clear very fast. However, it clears in $5 chunks and one has 3 full months to earn as much free money as possible. Use initial deposit bonus code CARBONPK when making your first deposit to the poker site. The aforementioned bonus codes will grant you a 200% up to $5,000 USD bonus! ** Please note that occasional web browser glitches could cause the system to reject your bonus code when you make your deposit. If this happens simply go to Live Chat (go to carbonaccount.ag, log in, and scroll to bottom left of the sidebar) and they will manually apply the bonus on the spot.
Account Creation and Signup Instructions for Carbon Poker:
STEP 1: Clear your cookies - This step is mandatory to insure that you recieve your initial deposit bonus! Click the links below for instructions.
Step 2: If you've previously installed the software, you must uninstall it now before continuing.
Step 3: Click the Carbon Poker logo below or listed text link provided.
If you use ad blocking software the banners above may not be visible. Try clicking this direct sign up link instead! Carbon Poker
Step 4: Download the poker client, same link for both Windows and Mac users
Step 5: Install the poker client.
Step 6: Create a user account.
Step 7: Skype or Email us your Client Identification Number (CID), table name / screen name, and registered email address so that we can confirm your account is properly set up.
NOTE: Your CID number appears on your cashier screen, under the player admin section. CID can also be found in an email sent to your registered email address by Carbon once you've signed up.
Step 8: Verify account for CarbonPoker - One can not withdraw until one has completed both email and ID verification! Successful verification also yields higher credit card deposit limits.
Step 9: USA Players: We recommend depositing with "cash transfer" methods such as WU and MG. Fear not if they request that you send money to a foreigner in another country, that is standard practice!
ROW PLAYERS: Deposit on Carbon Poker using Skrill and/or Neteller! If you do not have an account, sign up for a Skrill account here, and sign up for a Neteller account here.
Optional: ProfRB recommends subscribing to Poker Table Ratings to optimize your edge on Carbon Poker.
Payout | Cashout and Fee Information
Checks (avg wait of 2-3 weeks to receive)
Min cashout: $50; Max cashout: $2,500;
There is a 3% fee to withdraw via check.
Other withdrawal methods available to long-term customers include WU, MG, and Bank Wire.
Cash Transfers (Western Union | Moneygram)
This preferred deposit method has a Minimum: $50; Maximum: $1,000
One deposit allowed per day, 7 allowed per month up to a total of $5,000
Transaction fees are automatically credited to your poker account.
Credit card (CC) and debit card (DC) deposits are also accepted via VISA, limits vary and may be raised by talking to live chat support after account verification.
***Unfortunately Merge Gaming Network has discontinued flat rakeback deals | rake back | cash back programs | rake races | rake chases and as such Carbon Poker, nor Professional Rakeback, can offer such a deal here any longer. There is however a lucrative VIP program worth 10 - 25% rewards when combined with VIP Happy Hours and/or Game of the Month, in exchange for tournament tickets.
Please note that all references to "server time" on Carbon Poker coincides with EST during the winter and CST during daylight savings time.
Carbon Poker is not able to accept players from the following US states:
Delaware, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Missouri, Nevada, New Jersey, New York (certain zip codes are allowed), Utah, Washington State, Washington D.C.
Carbon allows players from Guam, Puerto Rico, Saipan, and the Virgin Islands.
Carbon does not accept players from the countries of Bulgaria, France or Hungary.
Is Carbon Poker Legitimate though?
If they were not legit, PROFRB would not put our name behind them. We've worked with them for over seven years now. In that time, they have paid out, literally, thousands of our players. Not a single player has ever been stiffed in that time. We know of multiple poker professionals players who have won and withdrawn upwards of a half of a million dollars off of this poker network in that time frame. Carbon Poker is legit :)
Is Merge Gaming Network Legitimate though?
Merge makes its own proprietary gaming software. Merge's poker-software has undergone very strict quality and safety testing. That testing was carried out third-parties, i.e. external auditors. The RNG was tested and verified free of errors and bugs and is as random as a live poker deal! The poker client adheres to all security standards that are mandated by all major processing networks. Merge's business, formerly regulated by the Kahnawake Gaming Commission, is now licensed and regulated in Curacao. Their websites and servers are secured by industry leading security firm, Thawte.
A more in depth article on the legitimacy topic of both the network and the poker room can be found here