Shuffling cards properly requires practice, nimble hands, and a bit of natural finesse. If you love playing card games but possess none of these things, then the best card shufflers can help you run a fair card game smoothly, without having to fumble with cards yourself (Source).
Card shufflers, otherwise known as shuffling machines, are either automatic, continuous, or manual. Automatic shufflers will use a weight or laser mechanism to detect the presence of cards in the bay then interweave them at random.
Continuous card shufflers will shuffle cards until you tell them not to, and manual card shufflers require simple action, like a crank (Source). Operating any of these is as simple as dropping in the full deck, or splitting it into halves and dropping them into separate slots.
The best card shufflers allow you to improve the longevity of your decks of cards by avoiding hand moisture and by being gentle on the cards. Shuffling machines can also keep game play at a quick pace. For that reason, card shufflers are perfect for amateur card game players, as well as more experienced players.
Prior to purchasing a card shuffler, you’ll want to consider what game you’ll be using it for and how many decks of cards it can shuffle. You’ll also want to think about if it requires a wall plug or batteries, as well as what types of cards it can accommodate.
Turn your rec room into a mini casino with one of these top-rated card shufflers.
How Does a Card Shuffler Work?
Card shufflers promote fair randomization in all kinds of card games. Whether you’re playing with a group of friends or gambling in a casino, a card shuffler takes away the tedium and uncertainty between deals.
To operate a traditional shuffler, place two stacks of your deck(s) on either side of the machine. Next, activate the shuffle by pressing a button (for electric shufflers) or turning a crank (manual shufflers).
The machine shuffles the deck by taking a card from each side and alternating them into a new deck. This can be repeated multiple times to achieve player satisfaction.
There are two kinds of card shufflers: automatic or “batch,” and continuous.
- Automatic “Batch” Shufflers — These kinds of machines can shuffle a single deck of cards or more depending on the model. Once the shuffling is complete, the machine stops, and you can take your freshly randomized deck to resume your game.
- Continuous Shufflers — These models select discarded cards and randomly place them in an active deck. Since cards are not shuffled with the entire deck, continuous shufflers are often less-desirable because some players have been known to “shuffle-count.”
Card shufflers powered by computers have also become popular. With more accuracy in its randomization, these electronic shufflers are beginning to be used by casinos.
Comparing The Best Card Shufflers
1. Laser Sports Casino Deluxe 4-Deck Card Shuffler – Best Overall
The Casino Deluxe is our top pick when it comes to the best card shufflers on the market. It’s reliable, efficient and comes at a very friendly price. If you want a card shuffler that can deliver quick and thorough shuffling every time, then this is it.
It has a simple but sturdy construction, and although some parts are plastic, they are not the cheap ones, they are thick. So, it will hold up pretty well to constant usage. The device is easy to operate too. It features a fingertip control and all it takes to get started is a simple push of a button.
What puts this Laser Sports shuffler ahead of the others is that it’s able to consistently deliver thoroughly shuffled cards without jamming up. Its super-fast and you get freshly shuffled cards each time. It can efficiently handle up to four decks of cards
Another great thing about this shuffler is that it doesn’t restrict you to using particular cards. It can take almost all sorts of card sizes. So, it won’t ruin your cards. You can use it for a bridge or poker card. The best part is that unlike many other electric shufflers, this one operates very quietly, especially when placed on a soft mat or surface.
Generally, the Casino Deluxe is a fast, handy and reliable card shuffler that can provide years of service. If you want to fully automate your card shuffling process, then this is the device to get. It’s an excellent choice for poker, blackjack, rummy, bridge, canasta, gin, war or pinochle.
- Durable, sturdy construction
- Easy to operate
- Fast and thorough shuffling
- Much quieter than other electric models
- Accommodates all card sizes
- Can efficiently shuffle up to 4 decks
- The battery holder is poorly designed
2. Classic Game Collection Card Shuffler – Best Manual Card Shuffler
From the packaging to the unit itself, everything about this shuffler looks amazing. The design and finish are simple but quite elegant. The whole unit feels very solid and lightweight. It’s not something that’s likely to break down easily even with regular usage.
As far as shuffling is concerned, this Classic Game Collection shuffler will deliver excellent results every time. It’s quiet and shuffles cards smoothly and thoroughly without hardly ever jamming.
You can shuffle up two decks of cards and it’s very simple to use. You just put the cards in and with just an easy rotation of the crank, you get freshly shuffled cards. The unit can accommodate all kinds of cards whether poker or bridge sized.
The only slight setback is that the handle is not that strong. Turning it too fast or forcefully can cause it to break. So, it will need a bit of care when using it. The good thing though is that the manufacturer has included two extra handles in the package. Thereby, you are quite covered in case it breaks.
This Classic Game Collection model is by far the best manual card shuffler out there. If you are a fun of hand crank models or just want a quality manual shuffler that can get the job done every time without a hitch, then you should strongly consider this unit.
- Looks very attractive
- Well-built and can last for a long time
- Smooth and thorough shuffling
- Easy to operate
- Works on all sizes of cards
- Very quiet
- Handle not that strong
- The manufacturer stopped production, so you might want to grab one while you can before they all sell out.
3. Trademark Poker Casino 4-Deck Card Shuffler – Best Automatic Electric Shuffler
The Trademark Poker Casino 4-Deck shuffler is another quality model and the best automatic electric shuffler on our list. If you are looking for an efficient unit that can shuffle cards quickly without any hitches, then this is another good option to consider.
It’s simple and compact. But even much better, unlike the other two units above, it features a removable plastic tray that holds the newly shuffled cards. So, you get to easily unload and collect the cards once shuffled. No cards are going to be thrown around by this shuffler.
Regarding its performance, the unit shuffles the cards evenly and it operates very fast. It gets the cards shuffled in a matter of seconds. The lever is very responsive and easy to use plus the unit can take up to four decks of either standard or bridge sized cards at once.
You will, however, need four AA batteries to get it up and running. Inserting the batteries though seems to be a problem. Like the Casino Deluxe, the battery holder on this one also not that well designed.
Nonetheless, this Trademark Poker Casino 4-Deck shuffler is more than capable of quickly and thoroughly shuffling cards whether it’s bridge or poker. This is another great option aside from the Casino Deluxe if you are on the hunt for an electric shuffler.
- Simple, compact design
- Easy to operate
- Shuffles quickly and evenly
- Fairly quiet
- Easy to unload cards after shuffling
- Accommodates both standard and bridge sized cards
- Batteries are somewhat hard to insert
4. CHH Hand Cranked Card Shuffler – Best 2-Deck Card Shuffler
This Hand Cranked card shuffler may seem rather cheap when you consider its price and look, however, don’t confuse inexpensive with cheap. This is one of the best 2-deck card shufflers currently on the market. It’s lightweight, easy to operate and very dependable.
In terms of construction, this shuffler is strong and will not break down quite so quickly. It can last for a long time even with daily use. Like the Trademark Poker above, it also features a plastic tray for catching the cards when shuffled hence makes it easy and fast to retrieve them.
The cards slide into the designated area easily and once you begin turning the crank, in a matter of seconds they are all evenly shuffled. Occasionally, the cards tend to turn sideways while in the collection chute, but that you shouldn’t be much of worry. If you turn the handle slowly, then you won’t have any problems. Reversing the crank slowly also helps to fix the cards in the case they snag mid-shuffle.
The unit also operates very quietly. However, the manufacturer failed to include rubber stopper feet, so it tends to slide when using it. Nonetheless, if you place it on a slip-proof mat then it will stay put. In general, you will not have worry much about shuffling with this CHH Hand Cranked shuffler. It’s very reliable and easy to use plus it comes at a very inexpensive price.
- Strong and durable construction
- Easy to operate
- Can evenly shuffle up to 2 decks
- Operates quietly
- Plastic tray for catching cards
- Very inexpensive price
- Might not stay put while turning the crank
5. Trademark Poker 6-Deck Card Shuffler – Best 6-Deck Card Shuffler
This Trademark Poker 6-Dec model is yet another attractive option for those who don’t compromise with quality. This is the most reliable machine when it comes to randomizing a large number of cards.
The unit performs exceptionally well when it comes to shuffling cards. It has smooth gears that evenly and thoroughly shuffle the cards and doesn’t throw them away like in other flimsy models. It can efficiently shuffle up to 6 decks which is the largest capacity on this list.
The machine can also hold almost any size of cards. You only have to load one half on the left side and place the other half on the right side. Once that’s done, you just have to press a button and the machine starts to shuffle the cards.
Unloading the shuffled cards is quite easy too. The unit comes with a removable card tray that holds the freshly shuffled cards. The only setback is that it’s somewhat noisier than the other models above. But if you want to shuffle more than just a few couples of decks for a multi-deck game, then this is the model to choose.
- Solidly built unit
- Shuffles cards faster and evenly
- Offer great capacity
- Very simple to use
- Shuffled card collection made easy by the tray
- It’s rather loud compared to other models
What Card Shufflers Do Casinos Use?
Casinos rely on a variety of automatic shufflers to provide quick gameplay and help combat unfairness and cheating. Most card tables have built-in electric shufflers.
A popular shuffler model sits flush with the card table surface. Dealers will open the clear plastic cover, place their decks into the receptacle, and press a button to shuffle. These shufflers will often have multiple settings for longer or shorter shuffles.
Casinos also use larger automatic shufflers that can hold many decks. These machines use a slotted turbine, or wheel, to shuffle the cards. Cards are placed in a long tray to begin the process.
When activated, the shuffler feeds the cards into the slotted turbine at random. Once all the cards in the tray have been slotted, the turbine shuffles the cards into a lower receiver. The operator places a plastic container over the receiver into which they push the shuffled decks.
Automatic card shufflers aim to provide casinos with speed, proper randomization, and a fair experience for all players.
Factors to Consider Before Buying a Card Shuffler
1. Mode of Operation
Card shufflers typically come in two modes, electric and manual. The electric ones are battery powered and require pressing of a button or pulling a lever to start the shuffling process.
Electric shufflers or rather battery-powered shufflers are fully automatic. They are easy to use and shuffle cards much faster than manual models. However, they tend to jam more often and some are very noisy to a point that it could be uncomfortable for some people.
Manual card shufflers, on the other hand, are semi-automatic. They usually feature a crank which you have to manually turn in order to shuffle the cards. They are very durable and much quieter.
However, they are a bit slower than the electric ones because you have to manually turn the crank. Basically how fast the cards get shuffled will depend on your speed. Nonetheless, they are less likely to jam.
Both modes are reliable when it comes to shuffling cards. There, it’s a matter of preference. If you don’t mind a little turning of a crank, then you can go for a manual shuffler. Likewise, if you don’t mind some noise, then an electric shuffler is most ideal
2. Size and Material of Cards You’ll Be Using
When selecting a card shuffler, it’s important that you pick the one that will work with the type of cards that you are planning to use. Some machines will work with only particular sized cards. However, most models can handle standard sized cards.
In this case, the best move would be to get a machine that will accommodate different sizes of cards. This will give you the flexibility to use whatever cards you prefer. The material used to make the cards is also something that you want to consider while shopping for a shuffler. Some models work better with plastic cards while others do well with paper cards.
Either way, to avoid damaging your cards or the shuffler, you should pick a unit that can work with both types of cards. You should ensure you get high-quality cards to reduce the chances of flipping and jamming.
3. Shuffling Capacity
Every card shuffler has a limited number of decks that it can handle at one time. All models can handle at least two decks. Generally, here your choice will depend on the type of games you play. Most games like canasta or hand and foot require only two decks but others such as casino games or blackjack use several decks.
You should pick a shuffler that will suit the type of games that you play very often. However, it’s worth noting that the more decks a unit can handle, the faster the gameplay will be. This is because you will always have fresh cards ready to go.
For that reason, consider shufflers that can accommodate more decks, probably four decks or six.
Finally, you would also want to consider a model that is easy to take with you especially if you usually vary the location of your game night. In this case, select a unit that’s not too bulky and weighs less than half a pound.
Ready To Buy The Best Card Shufflers?
While shuffling machines can make card games more enjoyable and fun by improving the shuffling speed and efficiency, a wrong choice can end up ruining your experience.
Take your time and evaluate options that only match your preferences. And remember, a quality shuffler should be portable, quiet in operation, and simply get the job done.