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ChessBase 17 - Review

Thanks to the donor John82 I received ChessBase 17 in a beautiful box with DVD. Thank you very much :)

A commercial program developed for over 30 years by the company of the same name: ChessBase. A companion and computer partner for chess players and computer chess enthusiasts across generations.

Nowadays, chess databases are essentially crucial tools for working with lots of chess data. In the 21nd century, it is difficult to imagine any chess activity without the use of chess computer software. Once upon a time, back in the 1980s, this was not the case. And it was at that time that the product of the talented creators (Frederic Friedel and Matthias Wüllenweber) was born, with which the then world chess champion Garry Kasparov became enthralled:

"ChessBase is the greatest development for chess since the invention of the printing press."

ChessBase is one of the first advanced and pioneering program for the storing, organizing, analyzing, sharing, chunking, ..., etc. data - that is, chess games in many different ways. This is a program sold around the world, considered by many to be the best in its class - a benchmark for other competitive products.

Source: ChessBase (starter package)

In November 2022, ChessBase 17 was released.

This version will be reviewed.

First, let's take a look at some of the data in the table below.

Table of ChessBase 17 specifications. CCRL Rating: December 10, 2022.

ChessBase, along with the Fritz series programs, is the company's flagship product.

Dear Reader, you may be wondering reading this specification:

  • Why hasn't ChessBase been released for other modern platforms such as Mac or Linux computers ?

  • Is the developer planning to release ChessBase for Linux / Mac or Web ?

After all, ChessBase as a company has been producing and selling this program for over 30 years !

This is exactly the questions ChessBase supporters have asked repeatedly and over the years in the forums under articles on their site.

Unfortunately, to this day we have not received a response from ChessBase on their website.

These are legitimate questions, because in the ChessBase store on the ChessBase 17 program page, you can read (content highlighted in the image below) that everyone uses ChessBase.

Source: ChessBase Shop, 2022-12-03

Not everyone uses ChessBase because it is only sold for computers using Windows...

On November 22, 2022, I participated in a livestream with the developers of ChessBase 17. Taking the opportunity to contact them, I took the liberty of asking: "do you have plans to release ChessBase for Mac ?"

I received a reply from Mr. Lutz Nebe, quote: "we are working on this issue (to get a platform idepentend code) also for other reason, but wether there will be a Mac version at the end is not decided yet"

Well, the conclusions are not optimistic; it's sad that chess players using computers and systems other than Windows - are treated this way - by a company with a decades-long tradition in developing and distributing chess software.

At this point, I refer those interested in this matter to the introduction to the Fritz 18 review, in which I included my thoughts on the subject.

For those interested, here's a link to an article on how to use Windows system and Windows applications comfortably on a Mac.

In the meantime, let's revisit the ChessBase 17 and see...

  • Does the Deep Fritz 13 chess engine provide significant competition to today's chess engines ?

  • Are the database functions at such a level that they can be considered a standard - a reference point for the competition ?

  • Will the features related to the analysis and use of chess engines meet the expectations of the advanced user ?

  • At what level are the training functions available ?

  • Is ChessBase 17 the best tool for working with chess openings ?

  • Does ChessBase 17 offer useful web integrations / online apps ?

I will try to answer these and other questions in this review.

Let's start with...


On the blog, you will find a lot of content related to the ChessBase program. You will get the most information from the Course consisting of five parts describing the following topics:

  1. Efficient work with a chess database

  2. Preparing for an opponent

  3. Annotating games

  4. Using chess engines

  5. Search Masterfully

In these five parts, in great detail using numerous examples, I have laid out how to use ChessBase 16 to accomplish all the most common tasks.

I made it so that the vast majority of the capabilities of this program can be used in previous versions of ChessBase 12 through 15. (ChessBase 12 was released in 2012).

In addition, I described ChessBase 16 in the article "Tools in a Chess Player's Workshop - Windows - Part 2".

For this reason, this review will not include detailed descriptions of features that have existed in ChessBase software for, say, 10 years.

In this review, we will focus on new and most important features and capabilities that have appeared in ChessBase 17.