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Using Octave vs. Matlab

  1. May 22, 2009 #1
    Has anyone here used the open source Octave as opposed to Matlab? I dont have access to Matlab right now and Octave claims to be compatible to a high extent. Will I run into trouble if I learn Octave thoroughly then have to switch to Matlab for collaborative reasons?
  2. jcsd
  3. May 22, 2009 #2
    I've used octave a bit over the last year or so. As far as I can tell Octave can parse all Matlab code, but Matlab cannot parse all Octave code. For example, Octave accepts both double and single quotes for strings, but Matlab only accepts single quotes. So, as far as I know, Octave is a great alternative.

    Having said that, I now run a UNIX version of Matlab because it's plotting features are superior to Octave because they are native whereas Octave uses GNUPlot.
  4. May 22, 2009 #3
    Most of the functions are compatible, but Matlab's plotting, help documentation, and GUI are worlds above octave. This sounds like trivial stuff but it really makes a big difference IMO.
  5. May 22, 2009 #4
    I've used octave, and I think it's terrible. There are a lot of functions that it doesn't have (ode solvers for one) and it tends to crash and gnuplot tends to plot things incorrectly. In addition, sometimes I've been calculating things and have gotten incorrect answers because octave is buggy (the same code pasted into matlab would give the correct result).
  6. Aug 30, 2009 #5
    /agree with roeb

    I am only a few hours deep into the Matlab/Octave world and already the ratio is >1.

    Matlab wins because Octave doesnt have a complete package for controls. Biggest missing tool is the symbolic laplace transform... Its really unfortunate. If I had more time, or didn't have to work so hard this semester I would consider attempting to write some code for a laplace transform... then maybe... just maybe they would be a bit more evenly matched.
  7. Dec 19, 2010 #6
    This response is maybe a bit late but for all who want to know more about that theme:
    I tested both and for me the winner is matlab. The GUI is a big advantage and the Graphs are nicer and better to handel.
    An other reason is that matlab is much faster than octave. Where Matlab takes 430 sec for a certain calculation octave takes 1000 sec. remarkable!
  8. Dec 19, 2010 #7
    Use python with scipy, numpy & matplotlib instead?

    For a lot of things, its got most of the same functionality as matlab and octave and is better behaved than octave. I've debugged matlab in octave without much trouble before, so I don't think you'll run into much trouble learning on it.
  9. Dec 9, 2011 #8
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