Editors note: This review was provided by forum member Nitty OMC. You can find his original post here.
Just two weeks after being made available for shipping, I was able to get my hands on a couple of set ups of desjgn’s newest offering of playing cards. This iteration is a bridge size card on a blackjack index, which is just between a standard and jumbo index in terms of card pip size. Let’s get down to it!
Purchasing link: https://www.ebay.com/itm/294057021524?chn=ps&mkevt=1&mkcid=28
Manufacturer: Desjgn Playing Cards (Dal Negro)
Case: Cardboard double deck custom box
Price: $42 including shipping and taxes for two setups of two decks each: $16.95 plus $7.75 shipping and tax for a single set up. Shipping costs are the same whether one buys one set up or up to four set ups.
Feel: If you’re a fan of the previous iterations of desjgn’s Grand Victorian poker size jumbo index offerings, you’ll be a big fan of these. The cards are printed on the same textured, slightly stiff stock that the Grand Victorian line is printed on. Though not confirmed, these cards are most likely printed on Dal Negro card stock with desjgn’s custom artwork. The card stock, although on the stiffer side, seems to be slightly more malleable and flexible than their poker size counterparts. The card stock is textured on both the card backs and faces, but does not make the cards sticky to leave them prone to misdeals or sticking on top of each other. The texture is very grainy, which makes the card feel luxurious and different from the standard offerings. The stock is definitely a bit on the thicker side when placed side by side with other market comparables. Regardless, these cards are a pleasure to shuffle and riffle and can be done easily over the course of a long tournament or cash game session.
Looks and design: The card back artwork is simple, bold, and to the point in a retro diamond shaped recurring pattern. The red and black card backs are bold and can be easily be distinguished apart from each other. The design is very similar to some of the older and more retro card back designs of some poker rooms back in the day. desjgn’s proprietary card face and pip artwork is a refreshing change from the standard Copag/Kem font and artwork that most casual poker players have gotten accustomed to. The “blackjack” index is a nice compromise from the standard index that is too small to be seen from across a standard eight foot long 10 player oval poker table and a jumbo index that some may complain is too large to be able to properly peek at hole cards without having to peel back half of the card to view properly. The pips are large enough to be seen clearly by most from across the table, but can be a small challenge from an individual that has a degree of visual impairment. The black pips are nice, dark, bold, and defining, while the red pips are able to be told apart nicely and are not too bright that they are almost orange looking or too dark looking that they look almost black in poor lighting. The cream colored centers of the number cards and aces also add a touch of class to the front card design.
Durability: One deck has been shuffled, riffled, and pitched for over 30 minutes. No sign so far of any marking, chipping, or creasing as of yet. The cards arrived wrapped in cellophane individually and did not arrived bowed or warped, which is a good sign.
For reference, this is my personal scale when determining card quality that can be used as a basis of comparison for future reviews:
8.5 or above: My dream, ideal card that I would use every game if I wanted to
7.4 to 8.4: An excellent card that I would buy a couple of extra set ups of when the first set starts to get worn down
6.4 to 7.3: A good card that I would be happy to use with my home game
5.0-6.3: A passable card that I would use for a home game if I had no other better options available to me
3.0-4.9: A not so great card that I would carry with me in my travel bag that I wouldn’t care if it got damaged or lost
0-2.9: Wouldn’t use in any game. Fodder for my 2 year old son to play with and destroy.
Do not hesitate at all to buy these. desjgn has an excellent track record of quality and customer service. These are great for anyone looking for a quality playing card that thinks that both standard and jumbo index cards have drawbacks. This is a nice compromise that brings the best of both worlds and rolls them all into one card.
Design Classic Diamond Bridge Size, Blackjack Index
Wonderful textured feel on both card faces and backs
Unique yet functional proprietary card face and card pip art
Excellent vendor/manufacturer track record of delivering quality products to the market
Shipping is a bit costly for a single two deck set up, but becomes less of an issue if buying multiple set ups or in bulk.