One of the main reasons as to why trading – and specifically, Forex trading – has been increasing so much in popularity in such a rapid manner is due to how accessible and convenient it has become compared to how it was. Due to the advancement of technology and internet tools, trading is now as easier and more convenient to get into than it ever was. One of the main reasons for this, as mentioned, is due to the advancement of technology, and in particular, the advancement of the software that is used to conduct Forex trading.
These pieces of software are now used extensively to not only make everything easier and more pleasurable to use, but also to increase the chances of making more profit and opening up doors to a lot more opportunities. Indeed, the technological aspects and the advantages that they bring are really noticeable in the world of financial trading. Having the ability to have a computer do much of the hard work that is related to analyzing hundreds of pieces of data points is something that can only be appreciated by those who have never had that luxury in the first place. If nothing else, the fact that you need a software to “interact” with the financial market in the first place, to conduct your trading endeavors directly with, is something that simply can not be ignored, and their virtue and importance doesn’t need much proving solely based on this point.
In this guide, we will be talking about and comparing, two of the most popular trading software – the Metatrader and CTtrader. These two software happens to be the leading ones on the market right now, and have been for around a decade now. Thanks to a combination of many different factors, which we’ll be discussing in detail below, these two pieces of software are market leaders right now and are used by thousands upon thousands of traders every single day. In this guide, we will be talking about what are some of the specific advantages and disadvantages the two have in comparison with each other after which, you will have a clear idea as to which one might serve your needs the best.
Compare cTrader vs Metatrader – A clash of titans?
Rather than talking cTrader vs MT5, this guide will be mainly comparing cTrader with MT4. The reason is that MT4 has been around for quite some time now, and as such, is used by a huge number of people, being significantly more popular than MT5. Considering this, MT4 will be the main – but, again, not the only – focus and point of discussion of this guide.
Although it may not seem so at first, there is actually a lot of subject material when it comes to discussing some of the specifics and differences between this two trading software. While both operate with the same goals in mind, their routes of achieving these goals can be different.
Metatrader and cTrader comparison of the visual side
For starters, speaking purely from the superficial standpoint – and you could argue that it’s not just superficial, as design plays a huge role in user experience and accessibility – the two software are quite different. Metatrader, being around for decades now, has quite an old-fashioned look to it. In a sense, this software aims to maintain its minimalistic looks and functionality.
On the other hand, cTrader is quite a bit modern-looking. Its various features and functions look quite sophisticated, and they also happen to allow much greater customizability and lots of different technical aspects that can be utilized to create a more uniform trading experience catered to one’s own preferences. Although, we would like to underline the point that this doesn’t necessarily make it “better” than Metatrader solely based on this one factor. It all comes down to personal preferences, and giving both a try is your best bet.
In a sense, it could be said, that MT4 deliberately took this retro-themed minimalism. When you take a look at the software, it looks and feels like an old computer software meant for windows 98. Though, once again, this is at no expense of functionality. It would be a very rare occasion that you would feel limited due to MT software functionality or lack thereof.
In general, MT4 and MT5 are both quite similar to each other. With both of them, quite a large portion of the screen size is taken by four different big charts on the right side, all displaying different pieces of information. Of course, these charts can be modified or replaced based on your interests and preferences. The left side of the screen is occupied by Market Watch and Navigator windows, which allow you to select your points of interest for research and observation. Naturally, things like trading instruments and assets are all displayed there. All of this info is neatly organized and ready for viewing at various places in the application. As an example, on the bottom, you can see the detailed history of your previous trades, along with other useful information.
As for cTrader, it definitely does look quite different. As mentioned, it is quite a bit modern-looking platform becomes instantly obvious once you look at it. The interface itself, besides looking more fancy and exciting, can also be customized to quite an impressive degree, like choosing different themes like dark themes, light themes, and many more.
In terms of the technical layout, with cTrader, charts don’t actually take as much of a real estate as they do with Metatrader. One of the main reasons for this is that you can only view one chart at a time, which can be an advantage or disadvantage, depending on your preferences. The left and right sides are respectively split between a watchlist for various instruments that you trade on and the control panel for your positions and trades. The bottom side, similarly to MT, is reserved for the history of your activity, as well as price change notifications and other similar pieces of data.
A brief look at the structural differences of MT4 Vs cTrader
We would like to mention, that the differences that we discussed above, do, to a degree, extend beyond the cosmetic context. What does this mean? Well, looks aside, in general, MT4 is considered to be more of “simple” software that is more beginner-friendly, while cTrader is considered to be a more “sophisticated” software that is best suited for traders who are more experienced, as well as have more of a general affinity for complex software and tools.
This can be seen in the fact that MT4 offers 9 different timeframes, while cTRader offers as much as 28; just to name one example. We would, however, like to mention, that this doesn’t necessarily mean that MT4 is this narrowed-down software that lacks any and all unique functions. This is definitely not the truth, as there are some features that MT4 has, but cTrader lacks. Two of the great examples are signals trading and built-in live market news.
Availability and prevalence of cTrader vs MT4
While all the points of comparisons that we’re drawing here are quite important and need to be taken into account when making your choice, one of the oft-overlooked points that you also need to consider is how much of availability your software of choice provides. As many people don’t actually know, not all brokers can offer all trading software capabilities. Most of the brokers – if not the absolute majority – will only be offering either Metatrader or cTrader, rather than both at the same time.
On top of this, it should be underlined, that cTrader is not widely available with many brokers. In fact, it is estimated, that the number of brokers that offer cTrader capabilities is just around 50, as compared to the number of brokers offering Metatrader 4, which is estimated to be over 1200.
Of course, this is one of the main things that you need to consider. Sure, you may love the customizability and multifunctional approach that cTrader allows, but at the same time, you have to also make sure, that you’re actually able to use the software with your preferred broker in the first place.
Although a decent number of major brokers should be able to offer you cTrader, it is doubtless, that in this “war”, this “battle” would be won with Metatrader. Essentially, it is something that you can expect with pretty much all brokers, so if you are looking for something safe and stable, of which you can always be sure that you can use safely, securely, and conveniently, then Metatrader is for you.
We would like to note, however, that a decent percentage of the authorities that are well-versed in this matter, very confidently believe that cTrader “is the future”. So, while you make sure that you’re going with software that will be available almost everywhere, also make sure that you’re taking into account how super-proof it is, especially if you are planning to stay in this business in the long run.
Chart capabilities of Metatrader 4 vs cTrader
From all the features, one of the main focuses of interest always is the charts. Charts, when used right, have the potential to bring you huge value. After all, trading, and the success on the financial market, to a very large extent, is dependent on diverse and multi-faceted data, and the better you manage to use said data, the higher your chances of success will be. Charts are an amazing tool helping you do just that – by taking the economic and statistical data and delivering it to you in the most straightforward and distilled manner possible.
If you are on the same page with us, then you will already know the importance of having access to good charts in software, so let’s not expand any more on that front. Rather, let’s talk about what are some of the specific ways that these two software deliver the functionality of charts, and let’s compare them so you can get a better idea as to which one has the best functionality personally for you and your goals.
If you are one of the people who prefer to have a lot of options and variety when it comes to the charts, then you will probably lean towards cTrader, as it offers 3 chart modes and 6 chart types, as opposed to MT4’s 3 charts. Although this is not to say that you will feel lackluster when it comes to chart usage with MT4. On the contrary, MT4 is known to have excellent chart functionality and can accommodate any needs of any trader, no matter their goals. As such, simplicity shouldn’t be confused with a lack of sophistication here.
When it comes down to what each programs’ charts are capable of, they are pretty much on a similar level. Both software allows you to do things like customization of colors, add/remove/displace elements, enlarge or minimize specific elements, and more. As you can see, the basic functionality is pretty uniform between the two platforms, so essentially, when it comes to bare essentials, you can expect one software to do almost everything that the other can do. Where the main differences start showing is with things like the types themselves of these charts, and timeframes. Obviously, these are major determining factors on what kind of trading experience you will have, and as such, should be one of the main things to take into account.
Which one has better auto trading capabilities? cTrader or Metatrader?
For quite some time now, this type of software has gotten so advanced, that there is even auto-trading software that does much of the work for you. This auto-trading software has gotten so powerful and useful in so many different ways, that it is loved by the beginners and veterans alike. On the one hand, it can be a saving grace for a beginner who may be confused and a bit overwhelmed by the technical aspect of Forex trading. For such people, this software can serve as a gentle introduction to the world of financial trading.
On the other hand, you have experienced and knowledgeable traders who trade at a higher level. For these people, having a sophisticated piece of software that can help them save time, money, and energy by allowing them to scale on a huge degree, can be absolutely invaluable.
Based on the above, it could be said, that auto trading is something that can provide a lot of value for all sorts of different Forex traders, whether they be beginners just entering the market or seasoned veterans that have “seen it all”. Due to this, it should be very easy to understand the popularity behind them. We won’t be delving too much into how these auto trading processes actually work since that would be outside the scope of this discussion, but let’s compare and examine the actual differences in regards to the two software’s actual auto-trading capabilities.
While, in general, with most of the features, it could be said that cTrader offers a somewhat more diverse functionality – with the word “better” purposely not being used here – this is actually not the case in this department. As mentioned, cTrader is more favorable towards the manual trading process, as it offers a lot of customizability and flexibility, which goes hand-in-hand for anyone who likes to assume more control. We would, however, like to make a disclaimer that cTrader’s auto-trading capabilities are still quite adequate, just not on the same level as MT4.
MT4, on the other hand, offers a diverse and unique functionality for auto trading. One such example is its Expert Advisors for auto trading. This is a very easy-to-use and versatile feature that lets one to essentially program their auto trading software based on their own preferences from the technical analysis. Of course, this kind of a detailed and laser-focused approach is much more likely to yield bigger and better results. One additional advantage is that Metatrader has been heavily involved with auto trading for quite some time now, and as such, it is much more likely to have larger support for auto trading than cTrader, which is not all that much focused on it.
Order capabilities of cTrader and Metatrader
For those who are interested in a more of a “manual trading” experience, the platforms offer excellent capabilities. This is especially the case for cTrader, as it has a very big focus on making everything especially accessible for the traders who have a more manual trading style, and not in the slightest at the expense of its auto-trading capabilities, as we’ll discuss below.
cTrader offers a very big diversity of advanced order types that can cater to almost all trading styles and preferences. Conversely, Metatrader 4 has a very basic set of order types like limit orders, stop orders, and market orders. As is the case with everything else we mentioned, this doesn’t mean that you will necessarily feel limited, but rather, that its focus is on simplicity, and helping you achieve your goals with fewer tools in a more simple manner.
Summing up the comparison of cTrader vs Metatrader
The above were just a few examples pertaining to the There is a lot of more depth to be covered before you can make a coherent conclusion as to which one is superior to the other, and why. We will do our best to cover as much ground as possible so you can form a well-informed opinion, but as always, you are encouraged to conduct your own additional research. With that being said, here are our opinions regarding the differences between the two software summarized in one section, and finish it all of with a short conclusion:
- Metatrader 4 and cTrader both offer great functionality that can provide excellent trading experience for any purpose, but they do it in different ways. The latter strives to provide a diverse and versatile set of options that can facilitate a very customized and personalized approach, while the former focuses on simplicity and ease of use;
- Metatrader is much more widely-represented than cTrader, and as such, you are much more likely to achieve a uniform trading experience with many different brokers by using it, whereas cTrader is available only with a few dozen brokers;
- Both platforms offer great auto trading capabilities that can be of great use to anyone interested in auto trading software, but MT4 is the one that excels at it more, with more useful features.
- Due to its old age, MT4 does fall behind cTrader when it comes to its unique features, but the trade-off is that it has a much larger community that assist you in case of need.
The bottom line – is cTrader better than MT4, or is there more to it?
As we have learned, these two software are quite different from each other and have their own unique “flavor”, so to say. While one offers simplicity and ease of use, the other is a bit complex but offers many more features and customizability. Considering this, it is quite hard to say that one is necessarily better than the other. Although they both aim to achieve the same goal, they do it quite differently, and the one to decide which one is “better”, as such, will be the user themselves; and this means that you will need to make this decision for yourself.
We are, however, more than willing to help you find the answer for yourself on which one may be better for you. Are you a complete beginner who just got started and feeling a bit overwhelmed? Then the simplicity and ease-of-use that MT4 provides might be a good choice for you. Are you technically-sophisticated and are not afraid to tinker around with the many features that cTrader has? Then saying no to the comfort of easiness and making the necessary effort to learn ho wot use it will pay you huge dividends in the future.
The point is, at the risk of sounding biased, cTrader does seem to be “better” than MT4 in almost all aspects when it comes to functionality, yet there are still thousands of people and their brokers who choose to stay with MT4/MT5. The reason for that is that MT has been around for decades now, and it has continuously managed to satisfy the requirements of the traders and brokers alike. Thanks to its simplicity, coupled with its undeniable reliability and software security, Metatrader has managed to maintain its position as a leader, and it doesn’t seem to be going anywhere anytime soon.
So, with this being the case, when you’re trying to decide between cTrader vs Metatrader 5 or Metatrader 4, you have to consider the fact that due to its age, Metatrader has amassed a gigantic community, and with so many traders and brokers actively using it, you are much, much more likely to receive better support and guidance in case of having any issues with it. cTrader, on the other hand, despite being a great software, is still in its “beginning stages”, with only around 40 brokers using it right now. So, naturally, Metatrader’s ecosystem is on a much higher level.
In closing, we would recommend that you give a try to both software, and make the choice based on whichever one feels the best. Remember, there are is no right or wrong choices to be made here. Rather, you are choosing the software which will best serve your needs, and realistically speaking, you can only do so if you “taste the pudding” for yourself.