After 5 yrs, may switch off Tradestation, cheaper alternative?

Discussion in 'Trading Software' started by spup345, Jun 24, 2010.

  1. spup345


    Here are the things I've liked about Tradestation and why I've used it for years:
    -Color-coded linking b/w Level II, charts, time & sale
    -Customizable quote lines
    -Multiple tabs so I can have indices on 1 tab, stocks I'm trading on another, etc.
    -Speed: When it's up, it is quick, but once a month they seem to have some kind of data lag

    I'm paying $230/month for:
    -S&P index ($1)
    -Amex data ($1)
    -Nasdaq totalview ($16)
    -Enhanced market depth ($20)
    -Arca ECN book ($10)
    -NYSE data ($1)

    My goal is to try & save at least $100 off the above, if not more, per month while not sacrificing much in featureset & data speed/reliability.

    -Is there a free platform that offers similar features to the ones I listed above and accepts a cheaper/reliable/fast data feed which I'll pay for?

    I'll take a look at Ninja, sierra chart, DTN.IQ, & Multicharts to start, but any ideas/tips/hints/advice would be greatly appreciated!
  2. bstay


    i've used TradeStation too since 2006, but got the $99.95/mth fees waived by trading on it (meeting their volume criteria for waiver). i still find TradeStation cheapest since platform is basically "free" (by trading it) with $8 per 1000 shares commissions. IB is cheaper but you need to couple with a better charting platform like eSignal. yes, paying $230/mth on TradeStation is expensive.
  3. spup345


    I'm better off sticking with IB because the amount I save in commissions by using IB overcomes any savings for using tradestation for free (additionally, execution, hotkeys, etc. in IB is huge for me). I just checked esignal and it looks like it's $170 for a similar package to what I'm using with Tradestation so at least that's a step in the right direction...

    But if there is another platform for free that uses a data feed, that'd be much better obviously.
  4. just21


    Multicharts with IB datafeed.
  5. bstay


  6. davez


    Comparing eSignal to your TS likes:
    - color coded links - yes, eSignal has this
    - if by customizable quote lines you mean like RadarScreen, no, eSignal does not have this, and does not seem to have it high on the priority list
    - multiple tabs (like TS workspaces), eSignal will have this for the first time whenever the next release occurs (in pre-beta right now, so maybe early 2011?)
    - speed, eSignal is still single thread designed so if you use multi-monitors or many charts or complicated formulas, it can lock up. I gave up using eSignal T&S years ago - not even close to keeping up. The new release will be the first multi-thread version, in theory that should improve the speed.

    Hope that helps
  7. JackR


    I'm missing something here. I just get a total of $49/month for your list. Adding $100 for the platform gets me to $149. What am I missing?

    I'm an IB customer. I use relatively simple charts to sucessfully trade the ES on a discretionary basis. I use IB's TWS platform and IB's Book Trader for order entry and IB data to feed Medved's Quote Tracker(QT) for charting.
    See here for IB data fees. If you generate $30/month in commissions there are no other fees and you'll get "the non-professional bundle" $10 fee waived. QT is $120/yr or $14/month.

    IB's datafeed is not a sale-by-sale or quote-change by quote-change feed. It is a sampled feed. That is, their server sends you the current price/size at the instant of the sample. Sampling rates vary from 3 to 10 samples per second. They send total trades with the updates. TWS and QT work the math between the preceding update to give you the change in volume and price. If you trade during periods of very high market activity IB's data is current as there is no build-up in the data transmit queue, there is no queue. There are at least one to two hundred thousand words about this in various ET threads.

    TWS can handle many tabbed pages so you can set up a page for indicies and ETF's, another for stocks, another for portfolios, another for market technicals, etc.

    If you need to migrate EZ language stuff I believe Multicharts was compatible thru TS2000 but haven't looked at it in years.

    Hope that helps.

  8. spup345


    Every bit helps, thanks, i'm still hunting around, will post back with my final decision, going to test out a few platforms over the next few weeks along with checking into data feeds.

    But very quickly, TS is only $100 if you are a brokerage client of theirs. I am an IB client, not TS, so I pay more for the TS platform, hence the $229/month.

    Used to use Realtick ages ago, but found that TS's charts looked/felt better and trading is all about 'feel' and 'comfort' so it made it worthwhile to switch.
  9. Neoticker is $100 per month. Its more capable than TS in pretty much everything, but at the same time its way more difficult to use. Ii.e. EasyLanguage vs. the languages supported in Neo, or setting up and optimizing scans, but you can do more with it.

    Its not good for fast manual order-entry tho, ie its got no DOM ladder ala booktrader. But everything else is pretty good in my opinion.
  10. JackR


    Update -

    In the interest of full disclosure - The current version of IB's BookTrader has been badly crippled. You can no longer single-click to enter or exit a trade. You must click and then confirm. Not good if you need a manual fast single click capability. Automated entry is unaffected.

    IB just says it is a legal matter - whatever that means. My guess is that it is a patent thing. See
    #10     Jun 28, 2010