I’ve played around with several reference managers over the course of my medical career. Mendeley was somewhat limited in its free option. Papers was nice, but then ultimately got purchased by ReadCube with a subscription model (boo!). EndNote 20, the “gold standard”, seems to still leave me unimpressed with its user interface and plethora of features which I simply won’t utilize.
Bookends has been the solution I’ve kept coming back to. It’s just powerful enough to fulfill my needs as a novice clinical researcher. It allows me to stay organized with the latest evidence in perioperative and critical care medicine by synchronizing my PDF library across iCloud Drive – the same cloud storage I use for my other documents. The recently released version 13.5 also brings a universal app binary making it “more” compatible with my MacBook Pro with M1 processor.
The elephant in the room – Bookends is only compatible with the Apple ecosystem (MacBook, iPhone, iPad, etc.) This tight integration is what I find appealing, but also limits its availability to those with a Windows or Android workflow. Nevertheless, it’s a great option for me.