Friday, December 9, 2016

Best Diagram Software for Mac and Windows

Drawing and visualizing diagrams is quickly becoming a requirement for more and more businesses and activities worldwide. Thus the need for a high quality, yet affordable diagram software arises. Many business owners are aware of Microsoft Visio, the industry leading diagramming solution by Microsoft. It is undoubtedly a high quality and feature-rich diagram software, but it's very expensive and not available for the Mac. In this article I'm going to review Nevron Draw - a much more affordable, but still professional grade diagram software that works equally well on both Mac and Windows.

Features

Nevron Draw lets you quickly create professional diagrams by using one of the many preinstalled templates. You can then drag and drop shapes, reposition them, connect and layout them and so on. The diagram software comes with more than 700 shapes organized in 20 categories called libraries that you can use to create different kinds of diagrams like flowchart diagrams, organizational chart diagrams, floor plan diagrams, network diagrams, business process diagrams and so on. Some of the shapes are formula-based smart shapes like in Microsoft Visio and can replace a whole army of ordinary shapes because of their smart behavior and resizing. The diagram software also supports multi-page documents and printing.

Nevron Draw comes with support for its own diagram format, as well as the ability to export diagrams to PDF, SVG and a wide range of raster image formats (PNG, JPEG, BMP, GIF).

The unique features of Nevron Draw that make it excel over the competition are:

  • Support for automatic layouts that can be used to automatically arrange your diagram in order to produce more compact and visually appealing drawings.
  • Support for creating a large variety of linear (1D) and matrix (2D) barcodes in your diagrams including Code-39, Code-93, Code-128, EAN-8, EAN-13, ISBN, UPC, QR Code, PDF417, Data Matrix, etc.
  • Import of map data from ESRI shapefiles with support for different map projections and map coloring rules.

User Interface

The user interface of Nevron Draw resembles that of Microsoft Office 2016 applications (see the screenshot), so you'll be able to start working quickly. The main window of the diagram software contains a ribbon, a quick search box for ribbon commands, a library browser that lets you quickly drag and drop shapes to your diagrams, pan and zoom control, drawing view with page navigator and a status bar with a zoom slider. If you click File and then Options, the settings dialog of the diagram software will open. It lets you quickly switch from ribbon to command bars interface, to change the UI language and the active UI theme.

Nevron Draw comes with support for different UI themes, which completely change the look and feel of the diagram software. You can choose between Windows 8 (the default theme), Windows 7, Windows XP, Windows Classic, Mac OS Lion, Mac OS El Capitan, Nevron Light and Nevron Dark themes.

Nevron Draw also comes with translation of the user interface to multiple languages, including: English, Bulgarian, Chinese, Portuguese, Russian and Spanish. You can switch to any of those languages from the settings of the diagram software.

Pros

  • Good looking, polished UI, customizable with themes
  • Ability to switch the UI between ribbon and command bars (menus and toolbars)
  • The Mac version of Nevron Draw is exactly the same as the Windows one, so Mac users can enjoy the full functionality of the diagram software
  • The user interface is translated to multiple languages - English, Bulgarian, Chinese, Portuguese, Russian and Spanish.
  • 700+ shapes, including formula-based smart shapes like in Microsoft Visio
  • 100+ diagram templates, which let you quickly create professional diagrams of almost any kind
  • Export of diagrams to wide range of file formats including PDF, vector images (SVG) and raster images (PNG, JPEG, BMP, GIF).
  • Unique Feature: Support for creating more than 30 types of linear (1D) and matrix (2D) barcodes.
  • Unique Feature: A lot of automatic layouts that automatically arrange the shapes in your diagram in order to make it more compact and good looking.
  • Unique Feature: Import of map data from ESRI shapefiles.
  • All of this comes at an unbeatable price, multiple times lower than that of Visio.

Cons

  • No support for the popular Visio Drawing format (VSDX). According to the developers, support for this format will be included in a few months.
  • Shapes and templates for some kinds of diagrams like UML diagrams are not available, yet.

Conclusion

Until recently, creating professional diagrams required investing a lot of money in expensive diagram software. Fortunately, this is no longer the case. If you need to create professional diagrams, but you are on a budget or you simply don't want to spend a ton of money for diagram software, Nevron Draw got you covered. For a fraction of the price of other diagramming solutions, you get 700+ shapes, 100+ diagram templates, 30+ barcode types, automatic layouts, localization in multiple languages and much more. And best of all, if you are a Mac user, you no longer have to deal with crippled software versions ported to the Mac, the Mac version of Nevron Draw looks and works exactly the same as the Windows version.

To see for yourself what Nevron Draw has to offer, you can download a fully functional 30-day trial version from its official website (after registration):

Download Nevron Draw

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