CAQDAS for Text, Photo and Sound

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    Hi everyone,
    I am wondering if I can draw on your collective knowledge re CAQDAS (specifically NVIVO versus Atlas Ti).
    we are looking to use a software to analyse/ code audio files, photographs and text and possibly film. Those of you who have used either or both NVIVO and Atlas can you help:
    – can NVIVO and Atlas both be used for all three main types of data? (or am i right in thinking Atlas is better for visual)
    – what joys have you discovered which means you would use one software above the other?
    – which quirks/ frustrations/ limitations have you come up against?
    – what computer spec do you have and does your computer crash when using the software? (we are looking to buy a new laptop and have been told that 2gb is big enough yet the stuff I have read online suggests 4gb minimum (or at least 2gb RAM on top of any data you will enter). budget is tight but we want to make sure we get the right laptop to be able to fit the reality rather than the official software spec).
    I have heard about many limitations re NVIVO and also many stories of crashing and the software being unstable. I am trying to re-assure us before we choose. At present I am edging towards Atlas Ti which I have only heard good things about.
    yours in the hope someone will be willing to help/ advise


    You know for sure the Surrey page on caqdas, no need to repeat that

    You can try the demo version of AtlasTi, has all functionalities, limits: of primary docs etc.

    I personally prefer AtlasTi but this is a question of language as well (AtlasTi is made by a German company, so textbooks, tutorials, and courses are not hastily translated, making one wonder what is this all about).

    I would take a laptop with at least 4GB, two processors, etc. Both programs consume lot of resources….
    AtlasTi was until now VERY stable, but I do not work with hundreds of videos in one project or something…. I have no clue what would happen then.

    Now, this is from a user who looked around for software for content/text analysis, mostly for written data, and now as a result is going slowly in the direction ‘semantic web’ – learning ontologies and stuff.



    Hi Ramona,

    Thank you for your reply and useful tips. We wont be using hunderds of hours of films. Im estimating 1500 images, 30 mins of film and 120 hours of transcribed interviews that we would need to be able to use with the software. Ive had a bid from someone else that I shouldnt rule out transana.

    Ive seen the surrey site. very useful although I know that CAQDAS software is for ever being updated and improved and the surrey pages seem to deal with older versions of the software than are now available. I was hoping someone would be able to comment about the latest ones on the market

    I think my detective work is going to go on unless anyone else can tell me not to use specific software as it isnt comapatible/ best for our data.


    Hi Elisabeth,

    do you know this page?

    “The KWALON Experiment: Discussions on Qualitative Data Analysis Software by Developers and Users”

    this is NEW, 2011

    Hope you find something more close to your particular research needs

    all the best


    Fantastic. Thank you so much

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