After many months of extensive searching, and reviewing, I believe I have identified the best SQL client out there. This review is going to consider three of the top SQL clients in three main areas:
- Ease of use (UX, UI, accessibility)
- Cost (Value for money/time)
Datagrip, made by the great team over at JetBrains, is a very comprehensive database tool. Datagrip is available across all three platforms (Windows, Linus, macOS).
If you are familiar with JetBrains’ other tools (think Webstorm, Rubymine, etc.), then you will feel right at home with Datagrip. Unfortunately being a diehard VIM user, Datagrip was my first introduction to the unique JetBrains UI /UX.
Overall Datagrip is the most comprehensive of the tools reviewed, with the most features, but also the hardest to get up and running and the most expensive.
- Handle’s almost every database type that you can think of (except redis)
- Helps with writing SQL
- Good ability to save and retrieve queries
- Expensive! $199 the first year, with an ongoing annual fee
- Complex. Found it difficult to set up new databases
- Confusing UI. Very non-standard UI, with non-intuitive UX.
Easy of use: ★ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆
Features: ★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
Cost: ★ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆
Sequel Pro is the only fully open sourced app compared here, and it’s a beautiful example of what great work can happen in the open source community. It’s only available for macOS and has a smaller limited feature set compared with the other two. On the plus side though, it feels like a natural extension of the finder, like it was made by Apple to solve all your SQL client needs.
You can add and save new connections, and everything else is extremely intuitive. The primary downside is that SequelPro only supports MySQL.
- Simple, pretty and clean UI
- It's FREE!
- Easy and intuitive use
- Ability to save favourites and connections
- Ability to save and run previous queries
- MySQL only
- A little bit limited in features compared with the other two.
- Reliance on open source community (this isn’t necessarily a bad thing, often the opposite, but sometimes means that there is a delay in updates for new OS etc.)
Easy of use: ★ ★ ★ ★ ★
Features: ★ ★ ☆ ☆ ☆
Cost: ★ ★ ★ ★ ★
TablePlus is the most recent SQL client that I have tried out of the bunch, and I have regularly been using for the past three months or so. I am pleasantly surprised by the amount of functionality it has. It is available for both Windows and macOS (I have only used on macOS). Overall’s it’s an excellent, well-built piece of software, that effectively combines the functionality and the simplicity required in a SQL client.
- Simple to use, good UX, pretty unique UI
- Well priced, freemium or $49 premium
- Easy and intuitive use
- Lots of different database support, including Redis!
- All the features from SequelPro and more
- Different lock/editing modes. Choose to get warnings before any write operations.
- CMD + P, open anything shortcut. Handy to open particular DB/tables
- No Linux support
Easy of use: ★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
Features: ★ ★ ★ ★ ☆ ☆
Cost: ★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
If I had to pick just one to use for the foreseeable future, it would be TablePlus, finding a good SQL client that supports both Postgres and Redis I have found is near impossible. If you only ever needed to deal with MySQL, I would probably stick with SequelPro, but if you need more then TablePlus is a great choice!