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I'm going to purchase this app, just a question of which version. I need help determining the functional differences between the two. Iíve read the comparison chart but much of that doesnít really mean anything to me.

Iím a small business owner. Iím not a web designer or someone who will make heavy use of this app. I donít make a lot of charts, but when I need to do so I think this will be a great tool.

When I look at the comparison chart, the features that look like I might miss if I donít go with the Pro version include multiple page docs, presentation mode, workplace save and restore, saving drawing styles and the advanced text position and auto layout settings. But I honestly donít know the real world impact of those features on the casual user.

Some advice from OG vets would be much appreciated. Thanks.
multiple page docs, and saving drawing styles are making my life easier
and i am a totally end user like you seem to want to be :)

edit: multiple page docs saves the need for stencils; I just have my first page/canvas containing all the graphical elements I need.

Last edited by Vincent22; 2007-01-01 at 06:13 PM..
OmniGroup offers 24 hour trial licences for their apps so you can test out the full functionality of each. Easiest thing would be for you to test drive OmniGraffle for a while then OmniGraffle Pro for comparison. FWIW, I believe that the upgrade fee for OmniGraffle to OmniGraffle Pro is only the difference in the pricing of the two versions, so if you get OmniGraffle but find that you need (some of) the features of OmniGraffle Pro, you aren't losing any money so-to-speak.
thanks Vincent.

JKT....given the learning curve of this app, playing around with each version for 24 hours isn’t going to give me a proper appreciation for the differences between the two apps. That’s why I was asking more experienced users if those specific enhancements would make a functional difference for a user like me.

Turned out I had an old OG 2.x bundled license from a prior machine so I used that to buy an upgrade to the current Pro version. The multi pages functionality sounds useful, as well as the drawing styles and workplace save/restore.
I should have pointed out - you can get as many 24 hour licences as you want (within reason) so long as there is a pre-determined period between each (48 hours I think).

FWIW and for the benefit of anyone else reading this thread in the future with a similar query, as someone who only uses the Pro version it is a little difficult to know which of the Pro only features I do use a lot aren't in the basic version so giving you a valid and objective response to your original question would be difficult. My implication was that you get the basic version of OmniGraffle and then, once you get used to the app, try a day licence for the Pro version to see if you did need or want the additional Pro features or not.
JKT....your points are valid, but they apply in the reverse direction, too. I realize I could get multiple licenses, but I run a business. I don’t have time to spend exploring the software to try to get a feel for this. It would take hours upon hours to not only familiarize myself with the differences in functionality but to figure out how to make use of them to determine if they are advantageous to me.

I figured someone out there used to use the regular version and switched to the Pro one, and thus has helpful perspective on this.

I’m obviously not asking for comment from someone without such perspective.
My fault - I made the assumption that people had only ever used either the basic or pro version without electing to go the update route. Doh! ;)
I first used OmniGraffle 2.x (I think that's the right version) because it was bundled with my 12" PowerBook G4. I recently started working on a project that involves a whole lot of diagramming (information architecture for a large web site) so I looked at 4.0's regular and pro versions and went for the pro version, and I'm very happy I did.

Here's what I use from the Pro feature set frequently:
  • Master canvases, to share common background layer stuff across multiple canvases in a single document
  • Multiple page documents (canvases), to group related diagrams into a single file
  • Multiple editing windows, to see other canvases from the same document at the same time. This wouldn't really be useful if I weren't using mutliple canvases in the same document since I'd just have multiple documents open at once, but the reuse from master pages & the conceptual grouping of multiple canvases makes multiple editing windows for the same doc a necessity.
  • Manual guides. This is like the Photoshop guides feature (or really any other drawing program's manual guides feature) and helps me make sure my drawings look consistent and orderly, to prevent readers immediately bleeding from the eyes.
  • Drawing styles. Yeah I could manually copy styles from object to object but this is faster and again keeps my drawings from inducing ocular distress.
  • Mouseless editing is sorta nice, I just have to keep reminding myself I can use it.

I haven't used the other stuff much; I want to try and use the inter-canvas hyperlinking with the HTML or PDF export because I hear that it works as Visio does, preserving links in the output so you can make a quick and dirty lo-fi HTML prototype that folks can use outside of OmniGraffle.

Oh, and I did use the Visio XML import, which helped me rescue an rather precious legacy document from years and years back that I thought I had lost. The line routing wasn't exactly as I had left it but the content was intact so it was no big deal to fix it.

Anyway, they're very fair about upgrade pricing (it's the same as the price difference between std and pro) so my advice is to just pull the trigger and get the standard version. If you find that you wish you had the pro version you can do that easily later. There's hardly any downside with that plan, vs. spending an extra ~$70 on the Pro version for features you might not want, or wasting time trying to do a thorough pre-sale evaluation.
Jamie, thanks for that great recap. Good stuff. I’m looking forward to spending more time getting acquainted with this app.
Jamie, thanks for that great recap. Good stuff. Iím looking forward to spending more time getting acquainted with this app.

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