MestreNova versus iNMR
People keep asking me which program to buy for the Mac: iNMR or MestreNova? There are many other alternatives (NMRPipe, Jeol Delta, NMR Notebook, NUTS, VNMRJ plus, in the future, TopSpin and SpinWorks) for Mac OS X, but the first two products are so far ahead of competition that you must be eccentric or masochist to even consider something different. If I start speaking about the difference between iNMR and MNova, I can go on for a whole day, telling you the whole story and philosophy of both. Something fascinating for me but no other human being can stand a whole day listening to it. If I start writing, I could write a book, like Rodgers and Hart. Why should people read such a book when both programs can be downloaded and tested in less time? The truth why I can't write that book is that I am too much involved, it's so dangerous. If Mestrelab goes out of business, I go out of business as well. How much dependable am I for you? Don't get me wrong, both products are so nice and stable and offer such a wonderful customer support that there is no concern of going out of business. I simply wanted to demonstrate that I am the most biased source of information that you can find.
Last year I explained in detail that I didn't like the old Mestre-C. MestreNova is much more usable, most of the problems have been fixed but the philosophy remains the same and I'll never like it. The MestreNova document is not a spectrum, but a container. Even if you always populate it with a single spectrum, you are still facing the container concept. There are 5 omnipresent green handles to remind it and they are something I can hardly bear. The more I see them, the more I hate them. They belong, however, to the second impression. The first impression arrives when you launch the two programs. One of them is 10 times faster than the other. Just to open the program; a whole order of magnitude. It's well known that Apple has always cared a lot about first impressions. You can see it from their packages. They say: "if the first impression is negative, there will be no second impression". What's fundamental for Apple can be less important for Mac users, but is still worth mentioning.
If you have also read the rest of the blog, you have found other comparisons. I have written enough. Let's other people speak. They did! You can find a lot of engaging reviews here:
They are all real people, sometimes even famous scientists, sometimes from prestigious research centers. If you are at least a mediocre detective, you can retrieve their email addresses. The other page to read is:
They don't come, however, to directly compare the two products on those web pages. I have other sources. Paul Brémond, a French PhD student, wrote in his email:
"iNMR is so simply intuitive to use! I would like to have a Chemdraw so easy for example! I have tested MestreNova (Windows Version) and it seems to be a renewed MestreC and that's all...".
This is what they say, but what are they doing? Where do they put their money? The case of the Scripps Institute of Florida is an instructive... swinging mystery. Last year they bought a package of 20 licenses of iNMR version 0 (it used to be extremely affordable; today is available for free; next year probably not). Subsequently they purchased a site license of MestreNova. Final decision? Not at all! This week they ordered 3 copies of iNMR reader. I ignore what's behind each single decision. I know the reported facts and nothing else.
A similar case is more documented and I also received the permission of reporting it. Troy Ryba recently moved from the same Scripps institute to the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard, where he found another site license of MestreNova. He asked me the terrible question: "How does iNMR (the full version) and MestrecNova differ?" which, in the case of somebody already owning a fresh license of MestreNova, sounded like an SOS call. I offered him both a tip on how to make a better use of MNova and a complimentary copy of iNMR, for him to perform the comparison directly. He kindly refused the gift and ordered a paid copy of iNMR instead. You can really say he digs iNMR! Troy wrote:
"At any point if you would like an endorsement/testimony for simplicity and ease of use of iNMR, I would be happy to provide one."
Dear Troy, an act like yours is worth one million words! That "point" has come a few lines ago.
This blog is open for discussion...