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Mac or Windows Version

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I would really appreciate some advice on whether to use the Mac or Windows edition from someone who has used both.

It's for PhD research involving the analysis of 30 interviews each 90 minutes long. The analysis consists of thematic analysis and qualitative content analysis. I'd like to use a fair amount of visualisations and charts for the analysis. 

I've listed below the main points of comparison that seem mostly relevant to me. 

There are only a few things that seem to be glaringly missing on the Mac edition that I would like, but I'm wondering if there are work around's that I am not aware of?

1. Coding

  • Is the Mac / Windows version slicker/better 

2. Charts

  • This seems to be where the Mac version seems to fall short for me. Mac only has hierarchy charts, Windows also has charts. Bar, pie, bubble, heat maps, all look very useful, nearing on essential. 
  • With the hierarchy charts does it provide the numerical data (or is it just visual, I presume not!) e.g.will it provide the percentage breakdown of coding at each particular node? The spread of all the coding?

2. Queries

  • Mac's queries seems extensive enough for me

3. Maps 

  • Mac only has mind maps while Windows adds concept maps and project map. I'm not particularly interested in the project map, but the concept maps looks useful. However, the mind map quite similar and able to act as a decent substitute?


  • Windows also has additional diagrams (cluster analaysis and comparison diagrams), social network analysis, and automated insights - but I think I can do without these. 

Also are there any practicalities I'm missing? Is the Mac version slicker, more enjoyable to work with? 



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Hi morgan616

I have used both the WINDOWS and MAC version and unfortunately the iWINDOWS is far superior in terms of the bells and whistles, which it sounds like what you need for outputs if you were just doing the coding it would be fine but if you want to present data with lots of visual then go WINDOWS. I hate working in WINDOWS but on this occasion it is better. Please see other responses below.


In my experience for coding and basic queries MAC is fine but sounds like you should go with WINDOWS version. If you are able to choose I would use WINDOWS. I much prefer working on a MAC over WINDOWS but when it comes to NVIVO the WINDOWS offers so much more. Also, please note, the option to spread coding in the results of a query directly is currently not available in NVivo for Mac.  


Windows better


Of note the MAC version will be doing a cross-tab query which is good but not until next year I think.


Windows better


The interface is different but you just get used to that.

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