Need a decent paid chess server

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Need a decent paid chess server

Post by kingsmasher1 on March 4th 2012, 11:19 am


I am bored playing on free chess servers, facing dilettantes and free abuses and foul play and ofcourse huge blunders by opponents.

I am a player of around 1500 strength in most of the chess servers. Can anyone suggest me a good one you have used?

There is much hype about ICC (Internet Chess Club), but heard that most are GMs, so does it mean i won't be getting competitive opponents of my playing strength? Please share your experience about ICC.

Also playchess.com is there, but a year membership is too costly.

Please suggest me a good one, which can help me improve.

Thanks in advance.

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Re: Need a decent paid chess server

Post by PawnCustodian on March 5th 2012, 10:43 am

I had a free membership with palychess for a while, but dropped it. I'm sure it's ok, but I really didn't like the training videos which seemed to mainly provide advertisement lead-ins to their Chessbase training programs.

I've belonged to ICC for a couple of years, mainly for their video training programs. I've played their training bot from time to time but avoided the online playing in favor of playing longer time controls against my home computer.

I'm a big fan of the ICC videos and find them to be instructive. Additionally, I like their coverage of major chess events, (Tata Steel, US Championships, etc.). There's plenty of content for club level players, in particular Dan Heisman's collection which is targeted at precisely that level. Additioally Alex Yermolinski's weekly program is interesting and instructive and I believe within the reach of a 1500 level player.

Most of my competitive play this past year has been on the ICCF server. If you can tolerate games at 10move/50days you can play very cheap but deep games. There's no training material, but you can download their correspondence archives and study the presumably very deeply analyzed games. I personally find it an ideal forum to try out strategical ideas presented in the ICS course, just be aware that computer analysis is allowed on the ICCF so check your tactics.

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Re: Need a decent paid chess server

Post by kingsmasher1 on March 5th 2012, 11:42 am

@PawnCustodian: Thank you so much. ICCF is totally new to me, haven't heard or even though there is a chess server dedicated entirely to correspondence chess. I will explore it.

But, why did you say:
I've belonged to ICC for a couple of years, mainly for their video training programs. I've played their training bot from time to time but avoided the online playing in favor of playing longer time controls against my home computer.

What made you not play standard (long) games (not blitz/rapid) in ICC? Is it because people are more pooled into the blitz part? Sometimes back i was addicted to blitz, but saw in course of time that if i need to improve, i will have to concentrate more on standard ones. So, don't you recommend ICC for long games(at least 15 10, or 15 mins)? confused In terms of getting good competitive opponents?

Also, sometimes back, Blue Devil Knight said, ICC becomes damn slow as they aren't upgrading their server code. Is that problem still there?

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Re: Need a decent paid chess server

Post by PawnCustodian on March 5th 2012, 12:42 pm

I suppose that Blitz is ok, especially for drilling on new opening lines, I use 10 minute time controls against FRITZ when doing the opening training. But I never really enjoyed quick chess.

As to long games, I have a sensory board connected to my computer and prefer that interface. There may be an interface to use it on ICC, but I really haven't investigated it, I suppose I should - certainly would be cheaper than travel and entry costs for OTB play.

Someone else will need to comment server performance - I know they updated their "Dasher" interface a couple of months ago but I can't say that it's good or bad.

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Re: Need a decent paid chess server

Post by kingsmasher1 on March 6th 2012, 10:15 am


@PAwnCustodian: Thanks, it was helpful.

I have a sensory board connected to my computer and prefer that interface.
Which is the one you have connected?

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Re: Need a decent paid chess server

Post by PawnCustodian on March 6th 2012, 1:05 pm

DGT Bluetooth.

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Re: Need a decent paid chess server

Post by Chemwong on March 6th 2012, 1:15 pm

chess.com is quite ok but the diamond membership....
I think the chess mentor's quality is questionable...

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Re: Need a decent paid chess server

Post by kingsmasher1 on March 7th 2012, 12:39 am

Chemwong wrote:chess.com is quite ok but the diamond membership....
I think the chess mentor's quality is questionable...

@ChemWong: I like chess.com tactics and material. I had been a diamond member there (a year back), and it's quite good and their videos too. However, the quality of their players are too amateurish, however this is the way it works on most free chess servers.

I am looking for one, which has good players as well as rich materials.
I may prefer membership at chess.com again, because of their materials, but for playing purpose i will prefer some other servers, mostly paid one.

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Re: Need a decent paid chess server

Post by Chemwong on March 14th 2012, 8:04 pm

My diamond membership is close to expiration so I am rushing up to finish the remaining Chess Mentor courses... Than I will get a platinum one...

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Re: Need a decent paid chess server

Post by HangingKing on March 21st 2012, 6:20 pm

I have only played on ICC so my judgement is biased.
However i like the videos too and globally people are polite and level is fine.
I especially like the 15-min pool which is not to quick, not too long games with pretty accurate rankings and most of the time people seem to play seriously (not the case for 5-min and quicker games).

But it tried FICS also, which is free, and you can get good games there too, so the plus is really the videos and tournaments coverage.

Anyway ICC lacks of a good forum, the chat system with multi-canal is fine but discussions there are a bit superficial...


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Re: Need a decent paid chess server

Post by BorgQueen on April 3rd 2012, 8:37 pm

I have really only used chess.com, but I have also never found a reason to bother trying another... there is so much there, I really would need another lifetime to get into it all.

But yes, Chess Mentor is sometimes a bit strange, but it's still beneficial. The problem is that it was designed to be released as a CD application and the online version doesn't quite cut it for the content, so sometimes it does things like refers to variations that you just can't get to.

And @ChemWong, good luck "finishing" all the mentor courses!! lol

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