When comparing HexChat vs AdiIRC, the Slant community recommends HexChat for most people. In the question“What are the best IRC clients for Windows?” HexChat is ranked 1st while AdiIRC is ranked 4th. The most important reason people chose HexChat is:
HexChat is available as a free download with source code licensed under GPL v2 and available on [GitHub](https://github.com/HexChat/hexchat).
Ranked in these QuestionsQuestion Ranking
Pro Free and open source
HexChat is available as a free download with source code licensed under GPL v2 and available on GitHub.
Pro Simple, clear interface
HexChat's default interface is clear, well-organized and intuitive. Channels can be laid out as both tabs and in a tree structure. All components such as user lists, topics bar or even menu bar can be hidden to provide a clean way to interact. Conversely the interface can be configured to show quick access buttons for changing channel flags, sending files or performing operator actions.
Pro Functionality can be extended with plugins and scripts
HexChat has a great list of plugins and scripts and is compatible with most XChat plugins. XChats library is incredibly extensive. There is a wide range of both useful and fun plugins. It's possible to add an RSS feed, play a game of chess or control an mp3 player via chat while translating everything written to l33t speek.
Pro Actively developed
GitHub repository shows active development.
Pro Works for any level of user
HexChat is an advanced IRC client that is good for beginners as well as those users who like to get under the hood. It is easy to get up and running, but has all the advanced features that a power user would need.
Pro Highly scriptable
HexChat supports scripting in Perl and Python. Both languages can be used to extend functionality of the software - bots can be written, automation can be added, new dialogs can be created.
Pro Highly customizable look
While most clients allow changing the theme or style of a window, HexChat gives complete control over what it looks like. It's possible to set a custom image as the background, changing font, or syntax colors.
Pro Available in multiple languages
HexChat has either complete or partial translations in over 50 languages.
Pro The Win10 Store Trial Is actually the full version
The Win10 Store "trial" is actually the full version and is not time limited - the pay version is simply there to give Windows Store users the ability to donate to the project, because the Windows Store doesn't support a donate button
Pro It has all needed features
It works perfectly with Windows 10, has all the needed functions like:
1 - handle all irc:// links.
2 - start with windows.
3 - start minimized.
4 - close to tray icon when pressing X(close button).
5 - it can open all the channels in one window or open each channel in new windows (it is up to you).
6 - tons of options to pick up from.
Pro Actively developed
AdiIRC is constantly being developed and improved. It's among the most actively developed IRC clients nowadays, with a great beta team behind it. The changelog shows multiple substantial releases every month.
It's a free IRC client supported by donations.
Pro Receptive dev
Feature requests, suggestions and bug reports get prompt feedback.
Pro mIRC themes support
miRC themes also works well in AdiIRC.
The client weighs less than 1MB.
Low CPU usage. Almost no CPU usage, in fact...
Pro Non-disruptive installation
Configurations, scripts and snippets are saved within the installation folder, allowing you to easily move them to a different installation. It also means that nothing is changed in your system.
Does not create registry keys.
Does not create any other folder than it's own on any other location.
Even when the installer is used, you can make it portable by just moving the folder around, don't need to worry about anything else.
Pro Simple Layout or Complex Layout
You choose, Simple or Complex layout. Check the screenshots section in here.
A portable version is also available in the download section. It can be run without installation allowing it to be run off of external devices such as USB sticks.
Pro Now playing support for most popular media players
Supports Foobar2000, Winamp, QCDPlayer, iTunes, MusikCube, MediaMonkey, XMPlay, Spotify, VLC Media Player, Media Player Classic, MusicBee, PotPlayer and SMPlayer.
Pro MSL support
The vast majority of mIRC scripts/snippets work in AdiIRC, with compatibility constantly being improved.
Inline support for custom emotes and icons. Adding , removing or editing images replaces whole chat buffer tags in real time. AdiIRC makes your irc experience much more fun.
Pro Built-in spell checker
Spellcheck for over 120 different languages is available. Full list of languages can be found here.
Pro Multi language interface
GUI translation available in several languages with contribution by users around the globe in an online web interface found here.
Pro It has a notification window built-in
(unlike hexchat which needs to manually add a script)
Pro Ability to save themes, including custom icons into a single file
Con High CPU usage on some Windows 8.1 & 10 versions
HexChat has a long-standing unresolved issue with high CPU usage spikes on key-presses that is noticed in some Windows 8.1 and 10 versions.
Con Bad character support
Writing normal apostrophes and certain characters is not possible without a certain plugin installed.
Additionally, it does not render all glyphs like most other programs would.
Con Not free for Windows 10
It costs 10$ in the Windows store. The Desktop version can still be downloaded for free from the website.
Con Poor high DPI display support
Text is blurry and hard to read on HDPI displays. Both in Windows and Mac.
Con Bad proxy support
Supposedly supports proxies but it can be difficult to get it to work with some proxies. HexChat works with it, but not AdiIRC.
Con Unintuitive interface
If you come from a mIRC, Xchat or Hexchat background, the interface seems unfamiliar and complex.
Con Ugly defaults
Ugly defaults with only one theme preinstalled.