PyQT vs Tkinter: Differences between Python GUI

This blog compares Pyqt5 vs Tkinter.

It’s true, without GUI Toolkits it’s not possible to give python programs a sleek or at least a front-end (UI).

But luckily, there are some useful Python GUI libraries available, for covering such weak gaps in python

In this article, I’ll compare the Pyqt5 and the Tkinter to find out which is more useful.

Tkinter is all about writing codes on your own to create a GUI for an app, easy to write codes, and simple to understand the widgets. Creating a simple GUI with Tkinter is very straightforward.

As compared to Pyqt5, which has been enriched with many features taken from QT (Designer). Beginners may find it a bit difficult to write codes. 

That’s said you can get the most out of PyQt5 if you get through its steep learning curve.

Differences between PyQT vs Tkinter.

ParameterPyQTTkinter
IntroductionIt’s a GUI toolkit for python programs, offers thousands of classes (widgets) to allow people to create beautiful GUI(s). Tkinter is also a GUI toolkit for python programs. but does not have many GUI widgets as Pyqt5 has- a bit outdated.
Learning CurveIt takes some time to use this like an expert- A steep learning curve.It’s easy to use because it does not many features.
DesignPyQt5 can build more appealing GUI apps.Tkinter can simple GUI design easily.
UI builderIt has a builder QT that can let us draw a design and later get python codes out of it.It does not have any builders for designing.
Installation It needs to be installed manually.Tkinter comes up by default in Python. No installation is required.

PyQt5

PyQT has been brought up by QT which is one of the well-known companies providing modules in different technological areas.

For instance, Qt includes network sockets, threads, regular SQL databases, SVG, GUI widgets, and the list of what this multimedia framework offers is impressive!

Thus, Pyqt is the combination of QT (GUI builder) and Python language.

Furthermore, there is a separate QT Designer for Python where you can draw your graphical Interface and get the python code out of it.

Not just GUIs but also if you want to add more flavors onto your Python program, you can do that too as PyQT has integrated many APIs. Including, Networking, databases, etc.

It uses Slots and signals mechanisms to let objects or Classes communicate with each other. Which are one the advanced ways to make functions communicate.

Advantages of PyQt5

  • PyQt offers rich-components out of the box than any other GUI toolkits available for Python. Including Buttons, menus, lists, tabs, and many other useful components are pre-added.
  • Separate Qt Designer- Its QT designer is a big plus for python developers to make things done sooner as well as in a less complex way; Get outstanding results!

Disadvantages of PyQt5

  • Somewhat Difficult- A compared to other GUI toolkits mainly putting line with the Tkinter. It is hard to understand.
  • It’s LGPL- You have to purchase a License if your app is not open-source. Moreover, many extensions for this Toolkit are also hiding behind a paywall. 

Tkinter

Tkinter is often known as the default Python GUI toolkit. You don’t need to install it externally as it comes pre-built in python. It’s an easy way to get started for a beginner, the coding structure is very straightforward. 

It’s fast and easy to way build GUI apps. It featured a powerful Object-oriented interface to build up your dream app.

However, creating GUI for large scale apps is not recommended. Because, it does not have advanced features, widgets, APIs, or something out of the box.

Tkinter can build you almost all basic shapes you intend for, use widgets as buttons, layouts, menu bars, and many other essential layouts are in the toolkit. 

However, it does not have a separate builder as the QT designer in Pyqt.

Advantages of Tkinter

  • A complete beginner can easily get through everything under the hood this toolkit provides.
  • It has the Geometry manager, places, grid, and packs. Most tasks hence become easier to manage.
  • The code’s syntaxes are simple, no need to scratch heads nor the advanced programming skills are required to utilize this GUI toolkit.
  • Widely famous for its simplicity. 

Disadvantages of Tkinter

  • It’s not the best choice for building an advanced GUI.
  • Doesn’t have support for any external designer.
  • It cannot make a complex GUI.

Which is better- Pyqt5 vs Tkinter?

They are both effective and provide useful resources for Python developers to create python Apps.

Specifically taking GUI widgets into account that are important to shape a GUI, then Pyqt has the upper hand to do more than what Tkinter can.

However, an app developed using Pyqt requires you to purchase a commercial license from the

GPL. Unless you keep your app open source this condition doesn’t apply. And apps built by Tkinter are entirely free, and the publishers are not obliged to purchase a license to make their apps public.

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