When comparing Spectacle vs Amethyst, the Slant community recommends Spectacle for most people. In the question“What is the best window manager for Mac?” Spectacle is ranked 5th while Amethyst is ranked 7th. The most important reason people chose Spectacle is:
Spectacle is licensed under MIT with source code available on [GitHub](https://github.com/eczarny/spectacle).
Ranked in these QuestionsQuestion Ranking
Pro Free and open source
Spectacle is licensed under MIT with source code available on GitHub.
Pro Simple hotkeys
Spectacle offers easy-to-remember preset hotkeys.
All windows in Spectacle can be controlled with keyboard shortcuts, so no mouse is needed. This makes for a fast way to control windows.
Pro Low footprint
Spectacle only uses up 18-19 MB of RAM, which means there is not much overhead by using this app.
Pro Great UX
Spectacle is easy to use and configure. It's plug and play.
Pro Multi-monitor support
Pro Recently updated and rewritten in Swift.
The application was written in Objective-C, but was recently updated and completely rewritten in Apple's new native language Swift.
Pro It's free and open-source
Amethyst is published under the MIT license making it open-source and id offered completely free. This allows anyone to give the tiling window manger a try, which is great.
Pro True tiling means never losing track of windows under a huge pile of others
Pro Works with keyboard shortcuts, no mouse needed
As it's designed to work closely to how xmonad, Amethyst uses keyboard shortcuts to control the windows being used, meaning no mouse input is necessary. This can make for a faster way to control windows.
Pro Multi-monitor suppport
Pro Under active development
Pro Has Many common layouts to choose from (fullscreen, floating, row, column, wide, etc)
Pro Can switch between tiling and floating mode
Con Breaks on macOS High Sierra / Chrome or Firefox
Doesn't support side by side windows.
Con Impossible to add new functions
While keyboard shortcuts can be changed for the available actions, there is no way to add custom actions which in turn limits the functionality of the app.
Con Limited window sizing capabilities
You can use 1/2 of the screen vertically and horizontally (divide into 4 parts). You can also use the screen in thirds too, but only the left and right third: you can't use the 1/3 in the center. There is no way to do a more granular distribution.
Con Not maintained
The software is free, but no longer seems to be maintained.
Con Doesn't work with any Adobe products
There are some apps like Adobe Reader that do not work with Spectacle. Basically, any app with a heavily customized UI that breaks OS X accessibility will not work correctly under Spectacle.
Con There are more user friendly window managers available
There are certainly more user friendly window managers available for MacOS, such as Divvy or Moom. Amethyst, however, is more powerful and customizable than the more user friendly options available and therefore may be a better choice for a user looking for more advanced capabilities and customization.