Both NinaTrader 8 and Amibroker are capable of advanced charting and analysis, as well as auto-trading, algo-trading support. It is very difficult to choose one over the other for every kind of analysis. It depends on your purpose of analysis, your style of analysis and functionalities that are very crucial for your analysis. In some areas, NinjaTrader is far ahead of Amibroker and in the other, Amibroker beats NinjaTrader 8 by a great margin. Before we get to the final word, we will look at two major points. First, NinjaTrader 8’s advantages over Amibroker and second, Amibroker’s advantages over NinjaTrader 8
NinjaTrader’s advantages over Amibroker:
Complex charting functionalities are more robust and visually appealing in NinjaTrader such as Order Flow charts. Renko chart based studies and Point and Figure chart based studies are relatively easy to do in NinjaTrader 8 as compared to Amibroker. NinjaTrader also provides free data feed (US Markets) as a trial for a fixed time.
Another major advantage of NinjaTrader is, NinjaTrader is itself a broker (US Markets), so firing order directly from the NinjaTrader from a chart is very easy to implement. Whereas if you want to place an order directly from Amibroker to your broker’s terminal, some custom AFL’s and add-ons are required.
NinjaTrader uses NinjaScript for creating custom indicators and systems, which is a C# based language. A lot of advanced programming functionalities are provided and complex systems can be designed with some ease in NinjaScript. But this doesn’t mean Amibroker’s AFL is inferior to NinjaScript. Here to depending upon the desired result, both NinjaScript and AFL have their strengths and weaknesses. The community of NinjaTrader is very good and the customer support of NinjaTrader is very responsive and quick. Whereas, Amibroker’s community is also good, but if you are stuck at something while coding in AFL, you can seek help from Amibroker’s official community only if you have a licensed version of Amibroker. If you have a trial version of Amibroker, then it is very difficult to get help directly from the Amibroker’s team.
Amibroker’s advantages over NinjaTrader:
Amibroker is very fast in execution as compared to NinjaTrader. If your trading plan includes a lot of scanning for particular conditions or particular stocks or portfolios, then Amibroker is a perfect choice for you. Amibroker can scan 100s of instruments in seconds and can give customized information as the output of the scans.
Amibroker uses AFL for creating custom indicators and trading systems. AFL is a subset of C language. So, familiarity with C would considerably shorten the learning curve of AFL. One of the major advantages of Amibroker is its very sophisticated backtest engine and backtest report. There is a lot of room for customizability in backtesting with Amibroker.
It is very easy to load historical data in Amibroker. Also the file format required to import the data into Amibroker is widely available. In NinjaTarder on the other hand, you first have to convert the files containing data into a particular format before importing from it.
It really depends on your end goal as to what are you expecting from your analysis tool. Both have their strengths and weaknesses over the other in some very particular areas. You should try them both and then decide which respond better to your style of analysis. For me, if I don’t have a requirement or use of advanced indicators like market profile, order flow or Renko based studies, then I would go with Amibroker because it is fast, scans great and has a good backtest engine and most importantly it suits my style of trading.