Peachtree vs. QuickBooks

Despite the fact that this topic has been beaten to death, I'm having troubling finding information that's current/unbiased/verifiable. Can anyone outline some of the key differences between QuickBooks and Peachtree? Or point me in the direction of someone who's already done this? I'm not asking which one is best, just curious how they differ from a features perspective. Thanks in advance.

  • Peachtree (now Sage 50) has a year end close process.  It keeps 2 years open at a time so you have plenty of time to get year end adjustments done before you have to close.  Quickbooks does not have a year end close procedure, but it does allow you to set a password to lock everything prior to a chosen date.


    Sage 50's inventory supports FIFO, LIFO, and average in the Pro and Complete versions.  Move up to Premium or Quantum and you will also get the option of serialized inventory.  QB only offers average costing unless you are using Enterprise and add on their Advanced Inventory option for an additional annual fee.  It adds FIFO, serial and lot options as well as inventory locations.  I've never worked with Advanced Inventory so I can't say how well those features are implemented, I just know they are on the spec sheet.


    Sage 50 gives you greater ability to customize your forms (invoices, sales orders, etc) and financial statements. 


    As far as ease of use goes, they are very similar and you really need to look at both of them to decide for yourself.  Personally, I think Sage 50 is better organized and easier to navigate.  But in talking with QB users that have gotten jobs in Peachtree offices I have met people on both sides of that argument.  It really comes down to who's programmers you think like.  Just don't get scared off by people who tell you that Peachtree is impossibly hard to use and Quickbooks is so easy that anyone can use it.  They usually fall into one of three groups: (1) those who are just repeating what they have heard, (2) those who's Peachtree experience was with the DOS version 15 or 20 years ago and are comparing that with today's Quickbooks (3) those who do their job by memorizing steps without understanding what they are doing - to those people, whatever they learned first is easy and right  while anything else is difficult and wrong.


    The reports in Sage 50 are much more traditional than the reports in QB.  At times QB's unconventional approach to reporting works in their favor, other times it does not.  But this is another area that comes down to personal preference.


    I'm sure others can add more, but from a high level perspective, those of some of the main differences.  Are there specific features you need to know about?


    I'd be happy to give you a demo of Sage 50 if you want to contact me directly.  Also here is a link to a page on my web site where I give a detailed breakdown of Sage 50's features

  • I've used both for about 20 years.  In the past, I've always preferred QB for job costing, Peachtree for inventory.  Today, they both handle either task well.  I have some clients using QB online and I *hate* it.  Mainly because I cannot open more than one screen at a time.  Recently I was told I can open more than one by logging in using Firefox *and* IE. 

    Really, when you get opinions, those are based on user preferences and what a person gets used to.  Being more familiar with one product than another will of course be the reason. 

    Setup?  Hands down, QuickBooks is dummy-proof for the non-accountant but when the accountant sees the setup, he or she may very well scrap it either way and start over.  The set-up should *always* be performed by an Accountant, no matter which product you choose.

    Payroll for either is frustrating...after-the-fact payroll can NOT be managed in QB.  At year-end, you cannot key in totals and print W2's.  Instead, you have to key-in every single check for the year.

    But what I hate about Peachtree's Payroll is paying all that money and then paying even more just to electronically file the 940 and 941.  That is a cost that I find ridiculous and I've had my clients stop buying the payroll updates because it's not worth the cost.  I can create my state forms online so that's too much money for simply the ability to print a 941 each quarter...there's PDF's for that if all you need is a nice typed copy.

    Another frustrating thing about Peachtree's Payroll is that every single time I went to use it for quarterly filing?  I had to sit through a download.  When the screen comes back, the quarter and year are changed and I cannot tell you how many times I've sent a dept of labor return with the wrong quarter on it (I failed to remember this because I rarely use it).  When you are in a hurry and have a slow internet connection, this is incredibly aggravating.

    My preference is and always will be Sage.  Why?  Because it's what I'm more familiar with, what I learned first.  Which is exactly why any answers you get on this will be biased...according to familiarity with the products.

  • Regarding QB online - you can open multiple windows in the same browser.  In IE, if you do Ctrl-N, it will open a new window.  Or you can just click on a new tab, go qbonline and since you're alrady logged in, you'll see the company you're logged into in the new window.



    Another big difference is that in QB, jobs have to be tied to a customer which is problematic when you have multiple customers affecting one job, like with an event or a class.  In Peachtree, the job is a completely separate bucket. 


    Peachtree has more flexibility in customer invoicing in that you can do an invoice directly to a revenue account without having to use items. 


    Peachtree will let you put a credit hold on a customer so that invoices can't be entered for a deadbeat.  (would be nice if it would also prevent order entry)


    Sales orders are included in PT Complete, in QB you have to use higher level Premier to get Sales orders


    I find that QB prior period locking is better because you can still allow people to edit open estimates, sales order and purchase orders from prior periods while locking down any posting transactions.  In Peachtree, you can lock down a prior period, but it usually isn't practical because you can't even reprint an invoice from a prior period if you don't have rights, or edit a sales order or purchase order.





  • I beleive Ptree to be a stronger accounting system.  As mentioned, its inventory valuation; its behind the scenes accounting; its flexibilty in reporting; the work flow system; etc


    One oddity that I discovered when I bought QB Enterprise.  I am often logged into Ptree in several stations throughout the day.  QB will only allow one use with my id logged in at a time.  As an accountant, I understand the control, but in practicality, it is annoying.


    One area that QB is superior is its customers section.  QB allows for unlimted buyers roll up into a company.  This gives you the history/status of the company as a whole and the individual buyer.  A huge advantage when you are dealing with a large organization such as the Centers for Disease Control or a university.


    Ptree added contacts in 2010 but did very little with it.  You have unlimited contacts (with only 20 ship to addresses), but you can't track the buyer's history without running reports with filters on their name.  It has been suggested that I should set up a customer for each buyer, but what is the purpose of having unlimited contacts?  Also, you can't "roll up" an organization for sending statements or other purposes. 


    Also, when you sync contacts to outlook, it only updates the "bill-to" contact and none of the others.


    Don't get me wrong, I still use Quantum 2012, but wanted you to know, in case CRM was a deciding factor


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