Since the ChessBase website is rather unclear, I would like help regarding a few issues:

I have a few questions.

  1. What is the main differences between the Big Database and the Opening Encyclopedia?
  2. Does the Opening Encyclopedia require purchase of ChessBase separately, or is it a program in of itself?
  3. Does either of these below products require a DVD player or is there a downloadable version? ChessBase, Big Database, Opening Encyclopedia
  • 2
    I agree. The chess base products aren't explained clearly enough, atleast on casual investigation i couldn't figure it out either. Commented Jul 3, 2017 at 18:50

2 Answers 2

  1. Big Database is a large (6.8 million) collection of unannotated games. Opening Encyclopedia has slightly fewer games (probably games of lower quality are left out), but also contains 6000 opening surveys, 85 000 annotated games, and opening articles from older issues of ChessBase Magazine.
  2. It seems Opening Encyclopedia comes with ChessBase Reader 2013 included. This lets you access the whole content of the Opening Encyclopedia, but it doesn't have the full functionality of ChessBase 14. With the Reader you cannot modify the bases or add your own games and analysis.
  3. All the products you mention are available to buy and download from ChessBase Shop.
  • Thanks for explaining. So the main difference is actually the surveys?! It's not the case that the Opening Encyclopedia supports different types of searches/organizing etc? What functionality would I lose out on if I just got the Opening Encyclopedia with the reader? Would I for example not be able to create my own sub DBs, seeing as the reader is merely.. a reader?
    – acye
    Commented Jul 3, 2017 at 19:24
  • @YairElsner I'm afraid the reader is just a reader. You cannot edit or add your own stuff. Commented Jul 3, 2017 at 19:36
  • Opening Encyclopedia has a few other extras, I have added to the answer. Commented Jul 3, 2017 at 19:46
  • It could be that OE comes with a more fine grained opening key, this I'm not sure about. Other than that, both BD and OE are standard ChessBase databases that can be used and accessed in exactly the same ways. Commented Jul 3, 2017 at 19:50
  • Ok, gotcha! Thanks a lot for the answer! Sounds like OE is simply a better product then, certainly if intent is to.. well.. work on my openings! :)
    – acye
    Commented Jul 3, 2017 at 19:54
  1. I should add that, in addition, those surveys are very useful for chess players at all levels. So, worth a try! Many chess databases are available on the web for free, but surveys are not!

  2. Any chess software like Frtiz, Komodo, Houdini can open and read the databases for you. Consider the fact that Fritz is like $50 while ChessBase is more than $100.

  3. Yes, all of them are available via download!

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