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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Tricks & Effects » » REVIEW: The Charming Chinese Challenge by Troy Hooser and Vanishing Inc. (1 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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Profile of StraightTalkMagicReviews
REVIEW: The Charming Chinese Challenge by Troy Hooser and Vanishing Inc.

RATING: 9.5 out of 10


FULL REVIEW: A Charming Chinese Challenge by Troy Hooser is one of the best close-up sleight of hand routines around. This is not new, but it is a revamped version with a new instructional video taught by Troy Hooser and new top quality Chinese coins.

Years ago, I purchased this trick from Vanishing Inc. after watching Joshua Jay perform it during a close-up set. The coins that came with this trick then were a muted bronze color, thin and were different than what you get with this purchase. The new coins are heavier, a better quality and stand out more with the black and gold color which accentuate the Chinese characters.

With your $40 purchase you get the “new and improved” Chinese coins, the perfect red ribbon and a link to a streaming only 21 minute instructional video that you cannot download. The coins and ribbon come in a beautifully designed box with individual compartments for each coin and a space for the ribbon. It is a hard black box which you can use for storage of the props because even though you don’t need to keep the box, you will feel guilty throwing it away because it is so nice. The video contains a studio performance by Hooser which takes less than 2 minutes. Then, Hooser teaches the instructional segment and how to perform the routine. The teaching is very clear and Hooser goes over the various moves and sleights necessary to perform the Charming Chinese Challenge.

The production quality of the explanatory segment of the video is excellent. It is what you would expect from Vanishing Inc. The close-up camera work and different angles make it very easy to watch and learn the routine. This routine is not for a novice, but one can pick it up with the appropriate amount of practice, which may differ depending on your prior experience with coin sleights.

During performance there is some angle sensitivity for a few moments and Hooser highlights these moments. In addition to the basic routine, Hooser teaches some alternative handling. This is not the most comprehensive place to find all the moves and phases you can do with this routine, but it is a darn good start.

The Charming Chinese Challenge is a beast of a close-up routine and it is easy to highly recommend this fantastic product.
At Straight Talk Magic Reviews we tell it to you straight and do not sell any product. Visit us for magic product reviews only at or at
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New user
Montreal, Canada
55 Posts

Profile of mandrax
Agreed it is an excellent routine, very magical and not so difficult to master. Highly recommended!
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Inner circle
NY then AZ now
1627 Posts

Profile of Neznarf
I like the reveal on the table instead of the spectators hand.

The flick is a great way to end the routine.
"Life is not about waiting for the storms to's about learning how to dance in the rain."
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Maryland! Back home and Thrilled!
869 Posts

Profile of mikenewman
For this new version, some are saying that the teaching is not that good. Misses points and leave you hanging with "How did he get to that point".

Anyone have this and had any issues with the explanation?

I have the old version, and that was hard to follow as well....
Was hoping with the various angles on this one, it would be improved...


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Inner circle
Columbus, Ohio
3305 Posts

Profile of emyers99
I have the half dollar size and just picked up the new dollar sized version from Vanishing Inc at MagiFest. Dollar sized coins are very nice and the training is clear. Not beginner level but not difficult if you are proficient in basic coin sleights.
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Profile of mrjinglesusa
I picked up the dollar size from Vanishing Inc. as well and am waiting on some half-dollar size coins to arrive because the dollar is too large for me to comfortably handle cleanly.

I agree with emyers99 - the dollar size coins are very nice.

I disagree (slightly) that the training is clear.

I mean, he explains the routine and all the slights involved, but there are a few points where he shows a move and then moves on to the next step, realizes he should show the previous move more clearly, and goes back and shows it again.

I got the overall impression of: he knows this so well it's hard for him to slow down and actually teach it.

So yeah, I would agree with those that say he misses points and leaves you hanging with "How did he get to that point". Not the best instruction I've seen.
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Inner circle
2278 Posts

Profile of warren
I only have the old version but added a couple of phases from here and there and changed the coins for some much nicer half dollar size coins but overall I thought the explanations were crystal clear on the dvd that I got many years ago hence me not bothering with the update as it didn't seem to be an improvement over the original.
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Loyal user
233 Posts

Profile of mwmagic
The new CCC updated, custom dollar sized coins look exactly like the Black Ike Dollar Size coins by Royal Magic.

Be aware that having a dramatic difference between head and tail design, as nice as they are, can be a complication to manage.

I have been performing Troy's version one for years with dollar sized coins, but ones that look antique and authentic. So with little or no flash or light feel, with definitely no plastic or laminated look. These superior coins are from a related effect called, recharmed I'm sure. Just that one of the moves in this version, is tricky to get down from written instructions alone. Trust this helps fellow coin magicains decide what's best. Feel free to contact me if you want advice. I have tried many versions, sizes and materials. The latter is a factor that experienced workers know afford an extra benefit in this charming routine. I own two sets and NOT selling.
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Special user
844 Posts

Profile of indomagic
So this new version CCC is coming with half dollar size or dollar size chinese coin ?
The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Tricks & Effects » » REVIEW: The Charming Chinese Challenge by Troy Hooser and Vanishing Inc. (1 Likes)
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