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Considering leaving Ninjatrader behind. Alternatives for futures trading? Tradovate?


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Considering leaving Ninjatrader behind. Alternatives for futures trading? Tradovate?

  #1 (permalink)
LaissezFaire
Oslo + Norway
 
Posts: 224 since May 2016
Thanks Given: 224
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Hello guys,

This is a hard decision to make and I haven't made it yet, but I'm considering leaving Ninjatrader + Ninjatrader Brokerage behind. I own a lifetime license and have several custom indicators, so I do feel invested, but really it's just a sunk cost and shouldn't influence my future that much.

An alternative is that I keep Ninjatrader for charting, but use some other broker + software for trading and trade executions.

Can anyone make any recommendations?

The first on my list is Tradovate which seems to generally get good reviews. I'm a very big fan of their electronic/online performance center. In comparison, with Ninjatrader you need to wait until EOD and download a PDF.

Thanks in advance!

-

I'll add why I consider leaving NT:

1. Slow and unstable and various issues.

For a very long period of time I didn't understand the complaints about Ninjatrader as a platform as it seemed to work great for me 99,5 % of the time.

After updating to NT8 I started having issues. During the covid plunge with high volatility it worked great most of the time, BUT, lately (earlier this year) there's just been too many times where it's either lagging or even freezing.

Right now there's something wrong with my workspace such that it doesn't load properly. It's just loading and loading. I'm not trading actively right now so I didn't yet fix it, but I know the "solution" is to probably un-install completely and re-install NT. I already did this a few times already.

If you complain to NT support about any of this, they will usually say it's because of custom indicators or that you have too many chart windows open. Right. It's probably true that you may never or rarely have issues if all you have open is one naked chart, but what use is that to a trader? If that's all we needed it wouldn't matter what software we used anyway.

2. Slow or no implementation of user requests.

There's a ton of basic stuff that's missing and which should be implemented. Ninjatrader will usually comment that this is now submitted as a request, but NOTHING ever happens. I'm told that Sierra Charts in comparison tends to implement new features FAST. Like in days.

3. Lack of online account management/performance summary

The only way to track your performance (net performance) is by downloading a PDF by end of the day. So, you have to wait for it AND you have to plot this information yourself manually into Excel if you want to track your performance.

This to me feels very dated in 2022. I thought that when NT launched their own brokerage in this modern age they would do something about the dated PDF-system, but no...

In comparison, Tradovate is light years ahead with all this data available online.

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  #2 (permalink)
 
Tasker_182's Avatar
 Tasker_182 
Cedar Rapids, iowa
Legendary Market Wizard
 
Experience: Intermediate
Platform: Ninjatrader
Broker: Ninjatrader - Continuum
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LaissezFaire View Post
Hello guys,

This is a hard decision to make and I haven't made it yet, but I'm considering leaving Ninjatrader + Ninjatrader Brokerage behind. I own a lifetime license and have several custom indicators, so I do feel invested, but really it's just a sunk cost and shouldn't influence my future that much.

An alternative is that I keep Ninjatrader for charting, but use some other broker + software for trading and trade executions.

Can anyone make any recommendations?

The first on my list is Tradovate which seems to generally get good reviews. I'm a very big fan of their electronic/online performance center. In comparison, with Ninjatrader you need to wait until EOD and download a PDF.

Thanks in advance!

-

I'll add why I consider leaving NT:

1. Slow and unstable and various issues.

For a very long period of time I didn't understand the complaints about Ninjatrader as a platform as it seemed to work great for me 99,5 % of the time.

After updating to NT8 I started having issues. During the covid plunge with high volatility it worked great most of the time, BUT, lately (earlier this year) there's just been too many times where it's either lagging or even freezing.

Right now there's something wrong with my workspace such that it doesn't load properly. It's just loading and loading. I'm not trading actively right now so I didn't yet fix it, but I know the "solution" is to probably un-install completely and re-install NT. I already did this a few times already.

If you complain to NT support about any of this, they will usually say it's because of custom indicators or that you have too many chart windows open. Right. It's probably true that you may never or rarely have issues if all you have open is one naked chart, but what use is that to a trader? If that's all we needed it wouldn't matter what software we used anyway.

2. Slow or no implementation of user requests.

There's a ton of basic stuff that's missing and which should be implemented. NinjaTrader will usually comment that this is now submitted as a request, but NOTHING ever happens. I'm told that Sierra Charts in comparison tends to implement new features FAST. Like in days.

3. Lack of online account management/performance summary

The only way to track your performance (net performance) is by downloading a PDF by end of the day. So, you have to wait for it AND you have to plot this information yourself manually into Excel if you want to track your performance.

This to me feels very dated in 2022. I thought that when NT launched their own brokerage in this modern age they would do something about the dated PDF-system, but no...

In comparison, Tradovate is light years ahead with all this data available online.

It sounds like you've made up your mind so try tradovate and come back and post your observations (in an appropriate thread).

In terms of NinjaTrader, my experience has been different. I've used NinjaTrader since it was NinjaTrader 6.5. NinjaTrader8 was built based on client feedback (feature requests) over the years of NinjaTrader7 which presented technical limitations that have been overcome in NinjaTrader8.

Today they try to add feature requests where possible. If you review the release notes for each version you will see where they list the incorporated feature requests. https://ninjatrader.com/support/helpGuides/nt8/NT%20HelpGuide%20English.html?release_notes.htm True, these are not quickly done and to be honest I would be hesitant about any program change that is quickly done.

You can also see where the support staff have provided some help towards feature requests by providing tools (indicators and add-ons) in the freely available downloads: https://ninjatraderecosystem.com/user-app-share/?fwp_new_usa_category=ninjatrader-8-misc&fwp_sort=title_asc Some particular standouts that are commonly requested as feature requests are Labeled Lines, resizable drawing objects, auto labeling of plots, auto coloring of plots, text output of the entire chart and more. Here are a few links to these:

https://ninjatraderecosystem.com/user-app-share-download/chartmarkersplus/
https://ninjatraderecosystem.com/user-app-share-download/charttocsv/
https://ninjatraderecosystem.com/user-app-share-download/labeled-lines-drawing-tool/
https://ninjatraderecosystem.com/user-app-share-download/addplotnames/
https://ninjatraderecosystem.com/user-app-share-download/colortheplot/

There are more but you can see these were provided by the support staff as a means to get the functionality without waiting for it to be incorporated.

In terms of performance, I run about 15 tick based charts, several others with time based charts, each with 5 days of data, a superdom and a market analyzer in one workspace and I use a number of custom and standard indicators. I also have a couple of other workspaces that contain charts with much larger amounts of data sets and are the longer view type, these I look at first thing in the mornings and then close for the day as that is what works for me. I rarely see or experience lag. I also know that potential areas for lag are when there is an expected news announcement and in most cases i simply do not trade during these periods. If I wanted to trade during these periods, the steps I would take would be to create a minimal workspace (minimal number of charts, short days to load, fewer indicators or set indicators to bar close, etc) and close any other workspaces just before the announcement.

In terms of performance summary, you should be able to use the built in Trade performance window in NinjaTrader and select just your real time account to see your performance and this can be at any time. (unless you are resetting or deleting your data base).

I know you are looking for other recommendations and sorry I don't have any to provide so all I can provide is my observations over the years.

Be yourself; everyone else is already taken. Oscar Wilde
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  #3 (permalink)
 
bobwest's Avatar
 bobwest 
Western Florida
Site Moderator
 
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LaissezFaire View Post

The first on my list is Tradovate which seems to generally get good reviews.

Since you didn't mention it, you may not know that Tradovate has been bought by NinjaTrader.

It is, of course, still a distinct platform, but this may be relevant to your search.

https://ninjatrader.com/NewsReleases/NinjaTrader-Acquires-Tradovate

Bob.

When one door closes, another opens.
-- Cervantes, Don Quixote
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  #4 (permalink)
LaissezFaire
Oslo + Norway
 
Posts: 224 since May 2016
Thanks Given: 224
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Tasker_182 View Post
It sounds like you've made up your mind so try tradovate and come back and post your observations (in an appropriate thread).

I haven't fully decided yet. The most convenient would be to stay with Ninjatrader.


Quoting 
In terms of NinjaTrader, my experience has been different. I've used NinjaTrader since it was NinjaTrader 6.5. NinjaTrader8 was built based on client feedback (feature requests) over the years of NinjaTrader7 which presented technical limitations that have been overcome in NinjaTrader8.

Today they try to add feature requests where possible. If you review the release notes for each version you will see where they list the incorporated feature requests.

Interesting.

It's possible that they do follow up on user requests, but they do not follow up on the ones I'm missing.

Two basic examples where NT7 was better than NT8:

- Even after NT8 was officially launched there was issues with the cross-hair. I think it lasted for a year or so. I had no issues with NT7.

- Plotting daily, weekly, monthly bars using RTH session templates. Perfectly possible with NT7. Not possible with NT8. And still not possible. Many users requested this and it's still not possible. The solution? A script created by a user on the NT boards. I would be much more happy if NT could implement it directly.


Other important stuff would for example be to get the chart trader up to speed. As it is now it's simply not sufficient for live trading in a fast market. I had to buy an add-on to be able to do "1-click" order entry on my charts. As far as I know, most or all other software providers have this as basic functionality.


Quoting 
In terms of performance, I run about 15 tick based charts, several others with time based charts, each with 5 days of data, a superdom and a market analyzer in one workspace and I use a number of custom and standard indicators. I also have a couple of other workspaces that contain charts with much larger amounts of data sets and are the longer view type, these I look at first thing in the mornings and then close for the day as that is what works for me. I rarely see or experience lag. I also know that potential areas for lag are when there is an expected news announcement and in most cases i simply do not trade during these periods. If I wanted to trade during these periods, the steps I would take would be to create a minimal workspace (minimal number of charts, short days to load, fewer indicators or set indicators to bar close, etc) and close any other workspaces just before the announcement.

That's certainly less than my workspace. And my computer should be way sufficient in terms of hardware.

Are those 15 different instruments or 15 tick based charts of the same or a few markets?

One of the problems with NT8 is that unless you're charting different instruments they're all running on the same core. So, 15 charts on ES = all running on the same core. At least that's how I've understood it.


Quoting 
In terms of performance summary, you should be able to use the built in Trade performance window in NinjaTrader and select just your real time account to see your performance and this can be at any time. (unless you are resetting or deleting your data base).

That's also a problem since resetting/deleting the DB is one of the things that's recommended to maintain good performance on NT. I don't think the trade performance will be entirely accurate anyway. A good approximation, but not entirely accurate. NT Brokerage even told me directly that I have to rely on the PDFs and that the Trade Performance report can't be fully trusted...

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  #5 (permalink)
LaissezFaire
Oslo + Norway
 
Posts: 224 since May 2016
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bobwest View Post
Since you didn't mention it, you may not know that Tradovate has been bought by NinjaTrader.

It is, of course, still a distinct platform, but this may be relevant to your search.

https://ninjatrader.com/NewsReleases/NinjaTrader-Acquires-Tradovate

Bob.

Hi, Bob,

Yes, I'm aware. So far, it doesn't seem to have any practical implications for customers of either company.

As a compromise for the lacking trade report /performance report functionality I was hoping I could possibly trade with Tradovate and still use NT for charting/execution, but it's not available yet.

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  #6 (permalink)
 
glennts's Avatar
 glennts 
Corpus Christi, TX / Westcliffe, CO
 
Experience: Advanced
Platform: NinjaTrader
Broker: DDT / Rithmic / Kinetick / IQ
Trading: 6E, ES
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Use NT7 instead of NT8. NT8 has an advantage of faster calculations if you are crunching large amounts of data as you might in the research and development of your methods. But once you have finished with your back testing that speed advantage is no longer relevant. An NT8 1 min bar is not going to close any faster than an NT7 1 min bar.

And in my opinion the NT8 graphics suck.

"If you don't want random outcomes, don't make random decisions."
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  #7 (permalink)
 TrendTraderBH 
Detroit, Michigan
 
Experience: Beginner
Platform: Ninja Trader
Trading: Futures
Posts: 315 since Nov 2011
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glennts View Post
Use NT7 instead of NT8. NT8 has an advantage of faster calculations if you are crunching large amounts of data as you might in the research and development of your methods. But once you have finished with your back testing that speed advantage is no longer relevant. An NT8 1 min bar is not going to close any faster than an NT7 1 min bar.

And in my opinion the NT8 graphics suck.



I second this recommendation and use NT7 and have less issues lately than I've ever had - quite stable. I created a thread about the NT7/NT8 ups and downs here:


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  #8 (permalink)
lightsun47
Toronto, Canada
 
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TrendTraderBH View Post
I second this recommendation and use NT7 and have less issues lately than I've ever had - quite stable. I created a thread about the NT7/NT8 ups and downs here:




And I third this: NT7 is far more stable than NT8. No intermittent crashes, bugs, etc.

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  #9 (permalink)
LaissezFaire
Oslo + Norway
 
Posts: 224 since May 2016
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Very interesting with regards to NT7, guys.

Like I mentioned already, my issues pretty much started with NT8. I don't recall ever having any issues with NT7 and I was fairly often defending NT when it would get the occasional bad review or comment on various boards.

The only advantage or new feature I really liked with NT8 is the ability to have tabs/Excel style on the bottom of my charts.

Switching to NT7 means that I may have to convert some of the indicators I use with NT8 to NT7, though.

Hmmm...

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  #10 (permalink)
LaissezFaire
Oslo + Norway
 
Posts: 224 since May 2016
Thanks Given: 224
Thanks Received: 104


Just started up NT8 and my machine which have been running quietly all night is now making noise like a jet engine on booting and it does take some time to start up...

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