Autodesk Inventor vs. Autodesk MeshMixer

Overview
ProductRatingMost Used ByProduct SummaryStarting Price
Autodesk Inventor
Score 8.3 out of 10
N/A
Autodesk Inventor 3D CAD software offers professional-grade 3D mechanical design, documentation, and product simulation tools. These blend parametric, direct, freeform, and rules-based design capabilities. Inventor includes integrated tools for sheet metal, frame design, tube and pipe, cable & harness, presentations, rendering, simulation, and machine design. It also features TrustedDWG® compatibility and Model-Based Definition capabilities for embedding manufacturing information directly in…
$300
12 days over 1 year via Flex pricing 100 tokens
MeshMixer
Score 7.9 out of 10
N/A
MeshMixer is a 3D design and modeling tool for 3D printing or scanning, supported by Autodesk (acquired 2011). While not discontinued, the product will not receive updates and Autodesk states they intend to include all functionality in updates of Fusion 360.N/A
Pricing
Autodesk InventorAutodesk MeshMixer
Editions & Modules
Subscription - Monthly
$305
per month per user
Subscription - Yearly
$2440
per year per user
Subscription - 3 Years
$7320
3 years per user
No answers on this topic
Offerings
Pricing Offerings
Autodesk InventorMeshMixer
Free Trial
YesNo
Free/Freemium Version
NoNo
Premium Consulting/Integration Services
NoNo
Entry-level Setup FeeNo setup feeNo setup fee
Additional DetailsAlso available for limited use through tokens on a Flex plan.
More Pricing Information
Community Pulse
Autodesk InventorAutodesk MeshMixer
Top Pros
Top Cons
Best Alternatives
Autodesk InventorAutodesk MeshMixer
Small Businesses
Onshape
Onshape
Score 9.0 out of 10
Onshape
Onshape
Score 9.0 out of 10
Medium-sized Companies
Onshape
Onshape
Score 9.0 out of 10
Onshape
Onshape
Score 9.0 out of 10
Enterprises
AutoCAD
AutoCAD
Score 8.8 out of 10
AutoCAD
AutoCAD
Score 8.8 out of 10
All AlternativesView all alternativesView all alternatives
User Ratings
Autodesk InventorAutodesk MeshMixer
Likelihood to Recommend
8.6
(25 ratings)
9.0
(1 ratings)
Likelihood to Renew
9.2
(2 ratings)
-
(0 ratings)
Usability
10.0
(1 ratings)
-
(0 ratings)
Support Rating
8.1
(12 ratings)
-
(0 ratings)
In-Person Training
6.0
(1 ratings)
-
(0 ratings)
Implementation Rating
10.0
(1 ratings)
-
(0 ratings)
Configurability
10.0
(1 ratings)
-
(0 ratings)
User Testimonials
Autodesk InventorAutodesk MeshMixer
Likelihood to Recommend
Autodesk
Autodesk Inventor is a great tool for students and faculty for engineering areas that don't require great precision or development of more thorough scientific results. Is you are conducting research, or deal with very intricate and complex systems I would recommend a more robust platform that complies more to industry standards.
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Autodesk
Autodesk MeshMixer is best for repairing STL files and basic modifications toward 3D printing. It is excellent for hollowing out models and adding escape holes for SLA printing or lost-wax casting. Its CSG (Boolean) functions to combine different meshes are good too and seldom cause the program to crash. There is even an integrated algorithm to optimize the layout of multiple files on a print bed in case of small-batch production. Autodesk MeshMixer's sculpting tools are there yet limited and there are a few better alternatives. Best of all, it is completely free.
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Pros
Autodesk
  • The program is very good at simplicity. Each of the buttons, menus, and options has an explanation of exactly what the feature does, and even a more advanced description if you desire to learn more about what each one does.
  • Autodesk Inventor is a very fast program. Everything renders extremely quickly and there are no delays when examining a 3D model, part, or assembly. This is especially useful when giving a presentation about a product or design, and you need to be able to show a concept to an audience in real time.
  • The software has an extremely accurate simulation feature that lets users do stress analysis on a 3D model. It can calculate precisely where the stress concentrations are going to be in a particular model and even give you an accurate depiction of where the part could likely fracture and/or fracture during loading.
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Autodesk
  • Auto-repair function works fast, and if it does not completely cover all problem areas, manual fixes will work 99.5% of the time.
  • Remeshing algorithm is fairly slow but does a wonderful job in creating meshes with homogeneous or adaptive triangulation.
  • It contains a comprehensive set of tools to optimize and prepare STL files for 3D printing, such as hollowing and support generation.
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Cons
Autodesk
  • Inventor demonstrates a lack of fluidity in the process of transferring data between programs.
  • Inventor shows some lack of sophistication that certain features that are readily available in other design software packages are limited in use in Inventor.
  • Inventor can often have difficulty in creating models that show true color, as in blacks can come out as dark grays in certain renders, even when the material and appearance settings are the same from part to part.
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Autodesk
  • The remeshing tool needs to be faster, as in some cases it takes up to a day of waiting time.
  • The sculpting tools need the addition of a proper brush for creating sharp creases and ridges.
  • The standard shape library is rather limited. It would be nice to have this connected to online repositories such as Thingiverse, MyMiniFactory, or Cults3D.
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Likelihood to Renew
Autodesk
Inventor continues to meet our enterprise needs. I don't see a need to change unless we change our business model significantly.
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Autodesk
No answers on this topic
Usability
Autodesk
It’s easy and very good for mechanical design
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Autodesk
No answers on this topic
Support Rating
Autodesk
I'm giving the overall support rating a 5 only because I rarely have to use it. Trying to find the answer on the help pages hardly ever helps me because any problem I have is usually too deep for what the help offers. Given the popularity of Autodesk, I have always been able to find an answer online after doing enough looking!
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Autodesk
No answers on this topic
In-Person Training
Autodesk
I got the training during college, so mostly i learned on my own
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Autodesk
No answers on this topic
Alternatives Considered
Autodesk
When it comes to solid modeling, the bad choices died out years ago. So we looked at the total ecosystem and chose Autodesk Inventor because of the integration with Nastran, HSM (machining), Autodesk CFD, MoldFlow, and AutoCAD. This means our legacy data (2D) is still a valid part of our design methodologies going forward, and we have the full breadth of engineering tools at our disposal. Other solutions in this space have similar offerings but not nearly as potent of a portfolio in total. It's worth saying that we do not consider Inventor in the same space as CATIA or NX, but that the entire Autodesk portfolio (e.g. Alias, PowerMill, etc) includes a total toolset that exceeds these industry giants.
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Autodesk
Using Blender for STL file preparation is like swatting a mosquito with a wrecking ball, plus its boolean functionalities can be glitchy. ZBrushCoreMini proved too limiting as a sculpting tool, but so did Autodesk MeshMixer, so I am sticking to Sculptris. Materialise Magics and Netfabb are somewhat better at STL file repair and offer more advanced functionalities. But Magics does not remesh as well and Autodesk MeshMixer is far more compact and faster than Netfabb, so remains my weapon of choice.
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Return on Investment
Autodesk
  • Working on a project designed with Inventor provides a modular design platform that can quickly be configured or changed as required. This allows for the quick turn around time for the design and revision of drawings.
  • We've used Inventor over the years (since 2013) and the updates and newly released versions of Inventor do not require re-training or restrict use.
  • Autodesk follows an intuitive approach and users or designers who have worked on other design platforms like SolidWorks can transition easily to Inventor.
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Autodesk
  • It speeds up projects by streamlining the CAD-to-3D-printing workflow
  • As an advanced user, I have written a few tutorials about it as well
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