Ellusionist Or theory11

Discussion in 'Product Questions and Reviews' started by Deadman, Nov 6, 2009.

  1. Well i'm not a big fan of ellusionist for no particular reasons, but i wanna know, from people who bought products, mainly decks, from E, what's the main difference when compared to T11, is it better or worse.
  2. I've never bought any decks from T11, mainly because I don't care for the looks, but E decks are great. The ghost deck is really the best, I have had mine for about two months and it has brown edges, but still fans better than any other deck I've had. I'm more of an E guy myself (Because of their products and the forums), but still love going to other sites. If we all stayed in one place though, we would have a very limited outlook on magic.

  3. Difference? Mostly design. Do they feel different, sure. Will it cripple your magic, no.
  4. Oh Ellusionist. Definitely Ellusionist.

    Seriously though, Hit and Miss from both companies. Ellusionist's 1800's look nice, but handle like a ten-pack of sandpaper. Likewise, Theory11's Guardians have a certain appeal, but do not wear well, and seem to be cut with a blunt woodsaw.

    On the other hand, white Ghosts handle phenomenally, and the newly released white arcanes kick butt as well. Ellusionist cards are generally thicker than Theory11 cards - though in many instances they purportedly use the same stock. Perhaps it's the extra hype that thickens them up?

    Stingers and White Centurions also handle surprisingly well, the Stingers being the better of the two. And for some reason Stingers are hard to warp. I spilt a bottle of water on a deck of mine a few weeks ago and absolutely soaked them. I shook the excess water off, jammed them back in the box, and had pretty much written them off, until I took them out of the box the other day - and they handled just like new. Impressed.

    I have found for some reason though, that an order made from both companies, same time, same delivery option, same package weight (eg, 12 decks) will have the Ellusionist order arrive up to a week before the T11 order - but this comes down more to the size of their workforces then the cards, obviously. Likewise, I've found Ellusionist's customer service to be better, and much faster, but this only comes down to the fact that they have a large customer service base, and don't rely on people like Raiker and Bayme to personally respond to queries. Nice personal touch from T11 though. Best service I continually receive is from Jeff and Brandi at MJMMagic. Wonderful, wonderful people.

    Don't limit yourself to just Ellusionist and Theory11 though. You've got places like CardShark.de, Magicnetwork.com and BigBlindMedia.com that also do custom cards that you can look into.

    All the best,

  5. It's the veterenas vs. new age youth.

    You get the best of both worlds if you don't separate them.

    Just buy away, only you can tell what decks are better for you.

  6. In my opinion, a good trick is a good trick, no matter where it comes from. E's had tricks I use, Theory11's had tricks I use, MJM magic's had tricks I use, haven't ordered from penguin yet, for no particular reason. Being a big music person, I tend to like Theory's music a little better than the others. :p.
  7. JS -

    Just to chime in - all orders are shipped from our warehouse within 24 hours. No one ships faster than we do, but once it's in the hands of the USPS / UPS / Fedex, they play no favorites. Once shipped, delivery time depends on the exact destination, time of year, weather conditions, and how efficient the postal service is feeling on that particular day. It's our responsibility to make sure your order is shipped as quickly as possible. After that, it's out of our hands (and hopefully into yours soon).

    Regarding support - I'd put our support team against anyone in any industry. To clarify this 100% - our support is not at all handled by Raiker (our vp interactive) nor myself. Do we chime in on the forums alongside our artists as much as we possibly can? Absolutely. Regardless of their position in this company, we prioritize our members first. If that means I have to chime in on the forums at 4:00 in the morning on a Saturday when I know our support team (and everyone else's) is out of the office - we will always do our best to go above and beyond. The real kudos here goes to Bryant, who leads our support team and has since the very first day we launched.

    Sounds like you got a badly cut deck of Guardians - the ones in my hands now are smooth, with a sharp cut. Contact our support crew and they'll be glad to check into this ASAP. Mistakes do happen on the printing presses, as the printing process is extremely complex.

    We take great pride in our playing cards in quality, feel, and finish - not just looks. That extends to the processes we have in place to ensure it - including soliciting opinions from this industry's foremost experts on playing cards; guys like Jason England, Chris Kenner, etc. In the end, it's an evolutionary process - and we are privileged to work closely alongside the USPCC on special projects that extend well beyond what you see on this site already. Lots more coming, and we try to advance and improve whenever possible.
  8. In terms of "Who's better?", my answer is: they both take Visa.

    They offer different products, so it's hard to compare head on. Both offer a variety of decks that perform as good or better than standard bikes. T11's prices are slightly (read: much) more reasonable than E's, but E has more selection (gaff decks and whatnot).

    I can't say enough good things about the support team here. I've dealt with them a few times (mostly through my own fault) and have had great experiences with them every time.

    When I first bought guardians, I thought they were printed off-center (well, the were slightly, but it was intentional to create a subtle 1-way back), so I complained and they sent me a replacement deck, free of charge. When I realized that it was intentional, I was extra thankful that support a) didn't chastise me for not knowing and b) was extremely fast and willing to help. This caused me to keep buying at T11, multiple times.

    Recently, I bought a whole slew of decks, but only ordered 2 each of the smoke and mirrors v3. I didn't realize they weren't the same as the previous versions until after i ordered (I usually keep an unopened pack for my running collection), so I wanted another pack each. I got in touch with support and they modfied my order accordingly before it shipped.

    Both times (and a few others that escape me), they've always been fast, courteous, and most importantly, HELPFUL.
  9. They are both just as good in my opinion if you dont mind the shipping at T11. I dont order from theory11 because of their expensive shipping. If it wasnt for that I would say they are the same.

    Oh and E does sell other helpful accesories than just tricks and decks. They also sell trick decks, wiregrams, books, spongeballs ect. They dont limit themselves to selling only things that they make.
  10. For me it seems any trick Ellusionist is offered they will take whilst theory11 on use the best of the best. Which is good.

    Tricks - Theory11
    Cards - Ellusionist
    Overall website - Theory11
  11. i have no T11 decks, as of yet. however E's decks are thicker than normal (if anyone wants to send me some T11 decks, ill do some serious scientific comparisons).

    both have GREAT customer support, i made a mistake on a E order, called in the morning (it was like 2am when i placed it) and i got a call back within two hours to make the change to which the woman on the phone replied, its good i got your msg, the box was almost shipped out, thats nuts fast.

    i had a problem with a T11 download , send out the ticket after hours, it was fixed by morning.

    i bought the t11 stuff on a friday afternoon, so it probably wasnt shipped out until monday (not sure if they work all weekend) and it showed up by the next friday, about the same shipping time as E.

    both have great things in their stores i like T11 for the direct downloads of 1on1's and i like E for the other things they sell.

    if you want card magic, stay here, if you want to venture out, support your local magic shop.
  12. From someone who's bought from both sites, I beleive theory11 is better. I'm not any type of fanboy or anything, that's my opinion. I'm not big on custom decks (besides S&M), and I don't really like eluusionist's or theory11's cards. But if i wanted some bikes, bees, or tally's, the last place I would go is ellusionist. Also, many of their tricks are mediocre and overpriced. I'm not saying theory11 has the best tricks, but they definitely have the best selection of artists. They focus more on cardistry. I feel like the forums are better on Theory11, and the media section is a great place to watch and share your ideas. I think if someone is a beginner, this is a great site to go to.

    But that's just my opinion.
  13. Really?.... that says a lot... i got a few decks i ordered from E on friday and the white deck is misaligned, so i contacted E's support and they decided i should PROVE they're not right...... to me that is a pathetic excuse for customer service, what makes it worse is i bought 13 decks so it's hardly like i'm trying it on to see if i can get another.... anyway not pleased
  14. #14 magicman123-2, Nov 22, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 22, 2009
    Whoa......you guys need to look at the overall picture. The fact that you guys can even compare ellusionist to theory11 is very impressive for theory11. Theory11 has been around for a mear 2 years compared to ellusionist's 9 years. As for comparing their decks...each company has a different style of deck,with a different feel, stock, finish,ect. It's like comparing chinese food to Mcdonalds, it can't be done.

    Just my two cents-
  15. Out of interest mate...what was the proof they asked for? A picture of the misalignment? Or something else?

    As to the topic in question:

    Will this never go away? Xntrix said it best; one shouldn't limit oneself. If I only ever bought clothes from one store...I'd look like one of the models in their advertising all year round (apart from the fact that the models would probably...nay, most assuredly, be better looking than me...buggers). S'why I shop around...as everyone does. So this should surely be applied to our magic purchases...no?

    As an aside...neither site sells enough books which is something that should be rectified across the board...but God knows that's just another can of worms waiting to be set loose upon the world.

  16. I'm sure Theory11 would do exactly the same thing asking for proof, why should they send out free decks to someone who could be lying?

    Its taking a photo, get over it
  17. I think the important question that has NOT been asked yet is: I will only use the Arcane deck for my discussion because of how much hype they have had.

    How many of you actually perform a regular gig? The reason I ask is because to me, popping $7 on one deck of Arcanes is absolutely nuts. I have a couple decks of Arcanes and bought them for my collection, but would NEVER use them in my regular bar gigs. Is it the quality? No, they are actually very nice to handle. Is it the look? No, they actually DO look GREAT...though mine were cut very bad...

    Anyway, for me the choice is DEF Bee Stingers. I grabbed a pack like 2 weeks ago and I used the same deck for a performance just last night. Laymen recognize the BEE branding, as they do with regular bikes, but sometimes have a hard time believing that a fancy black deck of cards are anything BUT tricky...so that goes for playing cards for both sites. Stingers...

    As far as products are concerned, I am almost positive that when Ellusionist came out, they were only selling their products. Mr. Brad "bridge deck" himself selling Ninja this and Ninja that...And now they are selling other products. Theory11 has a strong following fan base and because of that, does not need to sell other people's products to be successful. So yes, to someone else's comment from an above post, yea that is pretty amazing that Theory11 gets compared to Ellusionist.
  18. Its tough but I'd probably say Ellusionist in terms of cardistry because they offer more variety in their XCM section. Other than Theory11 which only has 2 dvds on cardistry.
    Overall Ellusionist has more variety in everything compared to Theory11.
  19. Not to add fuel to this fire - as I feel it's a bit apples to oranges - I did want to clarify this point. I'm not sure which videos you're referring to, as I counted a grand total of four cardistry videos available today on Ellusionist. None of which were produced by Ellusionist, which is a point worth making if you're objectively comparing the two companies as content creators - not stores. This is not to say that those four are not heavy hitters - I believe xB and xB2 in particular are outstanding DVD's and some of the best that have ever been released in the cardistry genre.

    theory11's cardistry products: Genesis v1, Dangerous - Motions, Trilogy v1, Trilogy v2, Trilogy v3, andthensome, Elevator Cut, b4cut, Cardistry 101, Backpack, Inflight, Static, Asybil, Rebel, and five other 1-on-1's derived from the Trilogy.

    While it is true and valid that our overall selection is far fewer than most other online retailers, our production pipeline is second to none in both magic effects and playing cards - tricks and cardistry. It is our intent (not our shortcoming) that we focus on quality and not quantity, as the latter is provided by many other retailers already in existence. Providing more of the same doesn't excite us - we would much rather bring you selective, unique items (both videos and products like the 125's). And we do so as much as we possibly can.

    In summary thoughts on this thread - I think to each his own. This is an artform with a plethora of great resources at your disposal for study thereof. There are countless books. There are countless videos. And there will only be more and more. What's important is not where you buy, but what you buy - and the student of magic you become. One could argue that I am less than objective given my history (I was at Ellusionist for six years before resigning as President in 2007) - and my current role in theory11. I am completely transparent about that and in the interest of full disclosure, I put that on the table.

    But I think that my point is valid and my conclusion is sincere. We try to be the best we can and work with the best creators this industry has to offer, but we would be naive to proclaim that we are, or should be, the only source for your education of an artform. Expand your boundaries, soak in everything you can, meet the greats, read, read, read. I guarantee that your knowledge, skills, and expertise will benefit as a result.

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