curious as to the way most people count using the high/lo method. Do you count each card as the dealer pulls it from the shoe or do you wait until all hands are delt then do the table or do u do each hand at a time?
I think most people wait for the dealer to deal the second card of each hand so that they can cancel as many cards as possible. Some people just wait for all the cards to be dealt and cancel out the hands then. Here is a link to an older discussion about this:
Are you saying the entire word "minus" or "negative" in your head? If so it probably would be faster if you switched to a monosyllabic word. For example you could say N1 to represent negative one, 0 could be Z, and any positive number would just be the number.
Also just as a note it might help you to create a visual image of the number in your mind. Saying the numbers in your head is called subvocalization and although that method is fine and it is fast enough to beat any dealer, visualization is still faster. Eventually if you practice long enough when you see the cards numbers will flash in your head and you'll know the count without having to say anything.
One thing i do sometimes is when a card comes out i wont count it UNTILL i see the next card that has a point value, if the card negates it, i just skip it and move onto the next card to come out, its liek counting in pairs which i do sometimes, but this is for when you are counting the cards as they are dealt not after they are already in pairs on the table.
In terms of how fast you can count, i personally have trouble physically dealing out a deck in less time than 27 seconds, so idk if some of the crazy numbers people say you must be able to get to, like 15-20 seconds are neccessary 100%, if your slow, just play at third base as it gives you extra time to count or recount if you have to before its your turn.
In general you should be able to count in terms of the final product only example: +12,+13,+14+13+14 as the cards are dealt, it important to practic counting in the double digit range as you will sometimes find rc in the 30s in 8 deck games while as your practice with a single deck may only yeild numbers as high or low as 12ish so if your practicing with a single deck, try starting the count at 22, and returning it to 22 or some other higher or lower number than 0, just to get used to ading and subtracting numbers in the teens and twenties efficiently.
I've always wondered if anyone else does this, but I start my count at 20. that's my 0(zero) I just found it easier when learning, so I know when the running count is at 14, 15, 16 whatever that it's negative, but I don't have to think about it being negative, and I have no trouble figuring it out when it hits the hump, and I have to go from counting backwards to forwards, anyone else do this?