Jivaro HUD - An edge over PT4 and HM2?

Today we’re looking at Jivaro, a new HUD software dubbed the ‘Future of HUD technology’. When you spy a new piece of software on the market, and are wondering whether to shell out for it, you tend to ask yourself a few questions...

1)    Do I really need it?

2)    Is it better than the software I’m currently using?

3)    How much does it cost?

For poker players considering a new HUD (Heads-UP Display) the main question is…will it help me to make more money!

These thoughts were running through my head as I was considering the newly-released Jivaro HUD, a piece of kit which finds itself up against two huge players in the HUD marketplace – PokerTracker (PT) and Hold’em Manager (HM).

As someone who only ever plays on PokerStars and have used both HM2 and PT4, I’m not a newbie to HUD’s. I tend to play cash games, although I have started adding SNG’s with the occasional MTT thrown in. These last 2 were my staple diet a few years back - in my pre-HUD days - before the lure of cash games took over my focus.

Do I really need Jivaro’s new HUD?

The answer is 2 parts yes and 1 part no:

At the moment, I find myself lost in the mass of information which I am collecting with my HUD and its databases, graphs, leakfinders and Satan-only-knows what else!

I need something which helps me to focus on what is happening in the here and now, much more than I need the bells-and-whistles which PT4 offers. Jivaro seems to be offering me just that.

The on-screen displays I have at the moment with HM2 or PT4 are fine – I can access everything I need to – but it can be time-consuming to separate the wheat from the chaff.

Jivaro are telling me that their offering will tidy everything up for me and display what I need, when I need it, in a much more aesthetically-pleasing way! Hmmm…it certainly begs for a test-run to see if it’s true.

The one reservation I have is that I am used to the other HUD’s. I like them, and know how they work (although it took me a while to get there!) and it would be churlish to throw it them of the bed without good reason.

Will it help my play more than the current software I’m using?

Let’s see what Jivaro’s features can bring to my game…

In the Basic free version, only the coloured-disc shows, and the 2nd diagram above explains what you’re looking at. It’s a poker-players dream in my opinion – the 3 most basic stats overlay your avatar and are instantly recognisable – no need for an extra box with drop-down/right-click options. If you’re multi-tabling, you can tell at a glance how your opponent plays his basic stats.

The Premium version at the top shows extra information, my 3-bet/fold to 3-bet and cold-call percentages for example. Hover over the circle and the VPiP/PFR and AF numbers re-appear.

Very clever and beautifully designed.

Ingenious solutions

The ingenuity of Jivaro’s Icelandic creators and developers have made it so much easier to get the information I really need, when I need it. The pre-flop figures above are fine, but what use are they to me when we reach the turn or the river?

“There are around 300 different statistics used in online poker, but through careful analysis and discussions with top level professionals the Jivaro team has filtered out what are believed to be the most important stats.” Interesting claims, and potentially very useful if I’m trying to make my HUD pay its way.

With my current HUD I either have to configure it to show multiple stats (and thereby clogging up my screen and distracting me) or I have to open a new box with masses of information per street, but which I somehow have to find quickly myself. What do Jivaro say about this?

“Much care has been put into ensuring that Jivaro uses up as little space on your poker table as possible. We understand that our application is secondary to the actual poker playing and as such we try to have Jivaro stay as much in the background as possible”.

I can’t argue with that! See Jivaro premium in action below.

So, Jivaro’s solution has been very, very clever – they have pre-configured the stats which are relevant to which street the hand is on, and these automatically appear when that street is reached. (The rest of the stats are in the ‘background’ but don’t appear unless you’re really interested in them).

Street Awareness is its name and very clever it is too! The flop appears, and the stats of your opponents appear for the flop. I like it, it helps me to concentrate on my play – and one of the drawbacks of HUDs has almost disappeared.

Positional Awareness is another, similar, feature when I’m in the cutoff seat or on the button, the stats automatically change to show things such as ‘steal’ and ‘fold to steal’ numbers as shown in my 77 hand above. Very useful, and the other stats are again just a ‘mouse-hover’ away.

When it comes to the relevant stats which are needed, the developer’s say “think of Jivaro as your assistant which will hand you a hammer when you need it and not the whole toolbox”.

Command Centre

What else does Jivaro have which will increase my profitability at the tables? Well, apparently the Command Centre will help me.

Sounds promising, so what does it look like?

Here’s the MTT overlay (top) and the coming-soon cash game overlay (bottom)

It overlays the traditional ‘chat/notes/stats/info’ section and can be easily minimised –X marks the spot. It looks great and has pretty much all I would want to see. The (2) is the number of players needed to bust to leave me in the money. (The only thing missing is the time remaining until the blinds increase, which is on my Jivaro wish-list on their forum).

It auto-updates in real-time, which is fantastic, and the little card-shaped boxes along the top tell you which street you are on (and therefore which stats are showing) and you can click on any of them at any time to see the other stats. Clever, stylish and very practical.

So far, all these Jivaro innovations have proved extremely useful to me. I am missing the back-end, database functions of PT4 – but to be honest these were distracting me more than they were helping me. Others will feel differently, of course, but with Jivaro adding to their product on a weekly basis there is a very good chance they will introduce many of these things in due course.

Can I afford it?

●     Jivaro basic is FREE and Premium is $5.99 per month on a subscription. However, this gets you access to outstanding around-the-clock support and free updates and new features.

●     Compared to one-off fees of about $100 for PT4 and HM2’s Hold’em package. PT4 & HM2 offer a free-trial periods whereas Jivaro has a free Basic version available.

●     New features for the people - Jivaro have said that they’re working in a completely different method from PT4 or HM2 - They won’t release new versions and charge users separately, they’ll just keep improving what they’ve got and keep progressing to meet user suggestions and needs - That’s pretty cool.

For sheer ingenuity, scope for improvement and future utility I think Jivaro is the ‘new, big deal’.

Your subscription automatically sees new features introduced all the time, and the developers have many of these planned, and a forum wish-list and discussion board which is pushing the advancements along.

Here, for example, is the beta version of the cash game command centre which forum members are helping to design…

For sheer depth of product, PT4 and HM2 are still ahead at the moment. It can’t be denied that they give you more bang for your buck, but will this actually help you to make money? Well, in my experience, you can play around for weeks with its features, and often get too bogged down in complicated stats that you really don’t need.

For practical use - simplifying and focusing your game, thereby increasing your chance of being a profitable player - I don’t think Jivaro is any lower on the scale at all; in fact, its utility is massive with almost no input required from the player.

Overall, Jivaro Basic is a great place to start and Jivaro Premium will become one of the most useful tools in your arsenal.

Try Jivaro Now - the Basic version is Free and Premium costs Just $5.99 per month




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