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Wordfast Classic versus Pro
Thread poster: njweatherdon

njweatherdon
Canada
Member (2011)
French to English
+ ...
Oct 25, 2011

Hi,

I'm finally going to do it. I'm going to spend some money and time now to make my life easier later by purchasing a CAT tool (that's how it works, right?)

So, I think I'm going to go with Wordfast, 'cause I downloaded it and it seems simple to use at first. But, now I have to decide whether I want to take the Classic or Pro version, and the advantages of one or the other, or having both (an option when buying it) are not clear to me.

Any thoughts?

Also, I'm open to arguments for why I should actually buy Trados, but I won't even consider doing that until I they release a demo for 2011 (the old one became unavailable, apparently mid-download, a few weeks ago).


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Heinrich Pesch  Identity Verified
Finland
Local time: 08:55
Member (2003)
Finnish to German
+ ...
You get both Oct 25, 2011

You get both and can use them simultaneously. Classic has still more functions and runs inside Word.

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njweatherdon
Canada
Member (2011)
French to English
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Doesn't it cost more to get both than to get just one of them? Oct 25, 2011

But it costs more to get both, right? If Classic has more functions and runs in Word, then why would I want Pro?

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Samuel Murray  Identity Verified
Netherlands
Local time: 07:55
Member (2006)
English to Afrikaans
+ ...
Both costs more Oct 25, 2011

njweatherdon wrote:
But it costs more to get both, right?


Yes, until recently you got both for one price, but the current situation is that you can buy either WFC or WFP or both, but if you buy both, then you pay for both (with a slight discount).

Wordfast will cost you EUR 650.00. See also: http://www.proz.com/forum/cat_tools_technical_help/206282-latest_position_on_cat_tools-page2.html#1795280

The CAT that currently offers the best value for money, is Metatexis (but I don't use it).


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Diana Coada  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 06:55
Portuguese to English
+ ...
Wait for a TGB on ProZ Oct 25, 2011

My advice would be to keep learning how to use both of them until you decide on which one is more suitable for the files you normally work with/more comfortable for you to work with. Don't forget that the demo versions can be used for free for as long as you want.

Once you've made up your mind, use the Translator Group Buy to buy one or both of them at a discounted price.

That's what I did!


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Epameinondas Soufleros  Identity Verified
Greece
Local time: 08:55
Member (2008)
English to Greek
+ ...
Both are lacking and obsolete Oct 25, 2011

All different 'flavours' of Wordfast (and there are too many of them) are behind the times, I think, and they are simply not worth the time learning them. Plus, because of this multiplicity of 'flavours', development goes at very slow pace.

The best option you have, I believe, is to download memoQ (from www.kilgray.com) and learn it while using the trial version, which then turn into a 4Free version, which you can use in real projects of a small scale.

I can't see Wordfast going anywhere. memoQ, on the other hand, is the future of CAT tools, and I believe it will be bigger than Trados in the not so distant future.


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Alex Lago  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 07:55
Member (2009)
English to Spanish
+ ...
Not the same Oct 25, 2011

Classic and Pro are very different.

Classic is a macro in word and can handle a few other files formats (i.e. you can translate excel files, power points files, etc.).

Pro is a stand alone program based on Java and can handle a lot more file types that Classic can.

Problem is Classic is better than Pro, so if you are mostly going to translate file formats that Classic can handle I would go for Classic, if you are going to need more file formats go for Pro.


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njweatherdon
Canada
Member (2011)
French to English
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Thanks Oct 25, 2011

OK, so if 90% of the work I do begins and ends in Word, then there's no particular advantage to Pro? I don't expect to be doing a lot of large collaboration projects that Pro would also support. In that sense, Alex's response is very useful.

I think I'm actually more interested in CAT tools because it makes it more convenient for agencies to have me take on projects with them than the actual benefit of the CAT tool, although I expect to find that they will pay off unto themselves in future convenience.

I.e., I want to learn it to get more jobs more easily, so I can eventually be more choosy on the jobs I take. Also, i.e., these are the only CAT tools I'm interested in because those seem to be the ones that outsourcing folks want us to use. Until I start seeing 10-50% of job requests specify "please use xyz software" I'm not going to take the time to learn it.

Most of the projects I do these days are highly original though. To the extent that I absolutely notice if there's a sentence that even says something similar a few times in a 15-20k document. So, I think the prospective technical benefits of CAT tools are not so striking for me. It's really just about the ease of accessing more work that is interesting for.

And good point from Diana about waiting for a group buy. I watched the numbers roll down on the recent Trados one, but I'm simply not going to pay that much for something that I can't sample extensively.


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Michael Wetzel  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 07:55
German to English
Wf Classic Oct 25, 2011

Hello,
I use Wf Classic, which (as has already been said) functions as a macro within MS Word. I actually only translate Word documents and in this niche, Wordfast is a unique and excellent CAT. Wordfast may also be more compatible with Macs than any other CATs, but others who works with Macs themselves or with Mac-users would have to confirm that.

I bought Wordfast in a group buy and got a substantial discount (and it was not very expensive to start with) and I also bought it before they started selling both versions separately. My understanding (I've still never had an occasion to use it) is that Wf Pro is a very conventional CAT and probably not as good as the competition. I also think agencies that care which CAT you use rarely prefer Wordfast, but I generally work with direct clients, so, once again, I have to defer to others on this point.

I would strongly recommend Wf Classic if you generally work with MS Word. I also do work where TMs are usually almost useless, but the concordance and glossary functions get very helpful after you have been working with the program for a while. Other functions like Placeables and the basic setup of always having the original accessible and visible are also more helpful than I would have expected beforehand.

Sincerely,
Michael


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Samuel Murray  Identity Verified
Netherlands
Local time: 07:55
Member (2006)
English to Afrikaans
+ ...
Wordfast going anywhere Oct 25, 2011

Epameinondas Soufleros wrote:
I can't see Wordfast going anywhere.


How many translators on ProZ.com mention MemoQ on their profile pages and not Trados or Wordfast? A mere 66. Compare that to 8800 for Trados and 2200 for Wordfast.


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njweatherdon
Canada
Member (2011)
French to English
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Terminology consistency Oct 25, 2011

Michael,

Yeah, I think the main technical benefit I'd expect would be consistency for rare field-specific terminology and tables, and not having to search through old documents to find how I said stuff before. I think that might make it worth the cost, together with the possibility that the odd project might come out of it as well. If that were the interest though, I suppose Trados would be the one to go with? (Which would involve more time for learning too ...)

That you mention it's suitability for Word is promising though. I have found some decent manuals, including the one from the site, and have started working with them. Aside from that, are you aware of a particular guide that's fantastic? For example, I know that anyone learning Latex must work through A Not So Short Introduction To Latex. Although, at first glance it seems pretty straightforward.


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njweatherdon
Canada
Member (2011)
French to English
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Appears that Classic it is, for me Oct 25, 2011

So, sounds like, for me, Classic is the way to go for the time being. Once I've got that down I might look into experimenting further with some other options.

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Dominique Pivard  Identity Verified
Local time: 08:55
Finnish to French
Classic + Pro is 500 euros, not 650 Oct 25, 2011


A small correction: when bundled together, Classic and Pro cost 500 euros, not 650 euros. That price is for Classic + Pro Plus, but Pro Plus is overkill for most freelance translators.


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Dominique Pivard  Identity Verified
Local time: 08:55
Finnish to French
Classic is an excellent all-round tool to start with Oct 25, 2011

njweatherdon wrote:
So, sounds like, for me, Classic is the way to go for the time being. Once I've got that down I might look into experimenting further with some other options.

I would say it's a wise choice. Also note that once you're comfortable with Classic, you will find the free Anywhere very easy to use (see how to translate a PPT with it: http://youtu.be/66qZTGmtCQ8).


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Dominique Pivard  Identity Verified
Local time: 08:55
Finnish to French
Metatexis vs. Wordfast Oct 25, 2011

Samuel Murray wrote:
The CAT that currently offers the best value for money, is Metatexis (but I don't use it).

It's true Metatexis is inexpensive, but it has more limitations than Wordfast. For 350 euros, the bundle Classic + Anywhere + Pro demo will give it a run for its money: it supports a much wider range of formats (you can basically translate any format supported by Pro with a Classic-like interface in Anywhere for free) and you get access to a very powerful server for free if you want to team up with colleagues (with Metatexis, you need to purchase or rent the server product for an undisclosed fee).


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