From the computer chess magazine Selective Search

by Eric Hallsworth

I maintain a 'Top Ten' coverage on the Internet, updating it from time to time. The Selective Search Magazine Listings have more details, including Ratings from games/matches v. human opposition, so I hope Internet users will consider subscribing to it, as income I receive fromSelective Searchis an important part of my livelihood!

Selective Search Ratings

Each computer/program's rating figure is calculated bycombiningits computer-v-computer results WITH its results against graded players in proper tournaments. Thelevelof the finished List is determined by the results v graded players. More computer-v-computer games are played than those v-humans, as it is physically and financially impossible to obtain the number of games of the latter type that we would wish.

Gradings from computer-v-computerresults do not always match those of acomputer-v-humans, because a program CAN be prepared specifically to do its best against other computers, OR it can be programmed to do its best against humans! The latter is what USERS want, but programmers inevitably have one eye on our Rating Lists, and are aware of the preponderance of computer-v-computer games which helps produce them! Even so, my view is that to have this type of Computer Rating List as an attempted measure for the programmers and other interested parties, and as a guide for prospective purchasers, is BETTER than to have no list at all, andSELECTIVE SEARCHdoes combine both types of result!

Please also note that the results on which my Ratings are based do include (with permission) the valuable SSDF scores and, as the calculations combine SO MANY results, I hope that they achieve a high level of accuracy. The Ratings are initially calculated in British BCF figures, before being converted to Elo figures using the formula (BCF * 8) + 600 = Elo.

The TOP RATINGS, including as far as possible all of the NEWEST PC programs and dedicated CHESS COMPUTERS, are:


Ratings are calibrated toPentium Pro/MMXmachines running at 300MHz.

  • BCF Elo Program
  1. 257 2657Deep Fritz
  2. 254 2638Shredder5
  3. 254 2636Gambit Tiger1.0
  4. 254 2633 Fritz6a
  5. 251 2611 Rebel Tiger12.0
  6. 251 2609 Junior6a
  7. 248 2591 Hiarcs732
  8. 248 2590 Nimzo8
  9. 247 2580 Shredder4
  10. 247 2577 Hiarcs 7.1
  11. 246 2572 Nimzo 732
  12. 246 2569 Gandalf 432
  13. 245 2567 Fritz 532
  14. 244 2557 Rebel Century 3.0
  15. 244 2555 Chessmaster 6000/7000
  16. 243 2550 SOS (Young Talents CD)
  17. 242 2535 Crafty 17.07
  18. 241 2530 Hiarcs 6
  19. 241 2529 Goliath Light (Young Talents CD)
  20. 238 2505 MChess Pro 8
  21. 238 2505 Genius 5 - Genius 6 and 6.5 estimated to be about the same


Here I show the Computer, Elo grading, and a code to indicate the type of board. w=wood, auto-sensory, ps=press-sensory, pl=portable plug-in, pc=portable calculator.

  • BCF Elo Computer
  1. 221 2372Tasc R30-1995(w) UK1199
  2. 217 2341Mephisto LONDON 68030(w) UK1299
  3. 214 2312Mephisto LONDON PRO 68020(ps) UK649
  4. 210 2285 Mephisto RISC2 (w) UK949
  5. 205 2242 Kasparov SPARC (w) UK899
  6. 204 2232 Mephisto ATLANTA* (ps) UK379 - MAGELLAN (w) UK749
  7. 204 2232 Mephisto MONTREUX (ps) UK449
  8. 202 2216 Kasparov RISC 2500 (ps) UK399
  9. 194 2152 Novag DIAMOND2 (ps) UK279 - SAPPHIRE2* (pc) UK225
  10. 189 2117 Mephisto MILANO PRO* (ps) UK249 - SENATOR* (w) UK 649
  11. Port plug-in #1: 177 2021 Kasparov COSMOS* (pl) (ex Travel Champ 2100) UK99
  12. Port plug-in #2:175 2004 Novag AMBER* (pl) UK139 (pl)

Subscribing to Selective Search

The annual subscription (6 Issues per year) is £20 in the UK, £25 elsewhere. Payments can be made by cheque in pounds sterling, postal order, or credit card (Access, Visa or American Express). Write to Eric Hallsworth, The Red House, 46 High Street, Wilburton, Cambs CB6 3RA, or e-mail

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