When comparing Spectacle vs CodeKit, the Slant community recommends CodeKit for most people. In the question“What are the best power user tools for macOS?” CodeKit is ranked 20th while Spectacle is ranked 36th. The most important reason people chose CodeKit is:
Everything you need to get a project started is included with CodeKit. Thanks to the professional support, different components of the workflow pipeline are guaranteed to play nicely with each other without you needing to do the research on how to configure them. More advanced features that may require extra configuration to set up with other workflow wrappers are set up out of the box in CodeKit, like automatic browser updating, linting, and source maps.
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 Everything is set up for you
Everything you need to get a project started is included with CodeKit. Thanks to the professional support, different components of the workflow pipeline are guaranteed to play nicely with each other without you needing to do the research on how to configure them.
More advanced features that may require extra configuration to set up with other workflow wrappers are set up out of the box in CodeKit, like automatic browser updating, linting, and source maps.
Pro Provides a clean and modern GUI
CodeKit has a clean and intuitive graphical user interface out of the box. Most other tools in this category run as command line utilities or require unsupported third-party plugins to run with a GUI.
The CodeKit GUI makes it easier to navigate and manage the various components of your project with helpful UIs like dropdowns, and views that provide extra details without having to run a separate command.
Pro Live browser updating built in
CodeKit has live updating built in and will update monitored files across multiple browsers and devices, and refresh CSS without a new page load. Other workflow wrappers have live updating, but they require extra configuration. With CodeKit, everything is set up for you so you can get it up and running in no time at all.
Pro Interactively define how files compile with a GUI
You can navigate your project directory, and use a menu form to set up how it gets compiled without needing to read configuration documentation, or deal with configuration errors. On top of that, file watching and recompilation is built in with no extra configuration needed.
Pro Great value for money
At a one time cost of $29, it's a great deal considering how powerful and easy to use it is.
Pro Visual package management with Bower
CodeKit provides a clean GUI for Bower that makes it easier to navigate and get information about modules without having to deal with a command line interface.
Pro Connects with MAMP
You can use it to, for example, live-update server-side PHP by establishing a connection with your local MAMP server.
Pro Don't have to worry about vendor prefixes due to Autoprefixer support
Autoprefixer automagically adds vendor prefixes based on latest information.
Pro Reduces size of compressed images
CodeKit provides a powerful tool to automatically reduce the size of compressed images and production web code.
Pro Live pre-processor and script compilation
Pro Has over 6k componenets
Install 6,000+ Bower components with a single click: Bootstrap, jQuery, Modernizr, Zurb Foundation, even WordPress.
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 Mac only
This is a major problem for larger teams that have varied development environments.
You get only the tools that are provided by the application.