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AutoCAD is an industry standard that is easy to learn and useAutoCAD is a drafting software that has both 2D and 3D applications. Currently, I am using both the 2D and the 3D applications and teaching students how to draft. The students draft many small projects that culminate in them designing their dream house. The program is the same that is used in the industry. This means that the plans that students make can be applied in the real world as they use building code specifications that are currently being used in the industry. On the 3D side we recently have been drafting simple projects to be printed on our 3D printer.,The tools are easy to use and the learning curve is fairly minimal to be able to create blueprints. The 3D application is very fun to use and it is nice to be able to see your product instead of having to imagine what it will look like. The speed and accuracy in which students can create plans is a huge bonus. Students can plan their industrial art projects out and use their own set of plans to build them.,Sometimes creating complex shapes can be difficult as you can only manipulate one spine or point at a time. Although this can be slow it also cuts down on errors, so overall maybe it's not that bad. It can take some people longer than others to learn the basics although, again, I think overall it is pretty user-friendly. Rendering 3D images sometimes isn't as smooth as it could be and there are render points that become an issue and tricky to fix.,9,As an educational institute there are no overall business objectives. As a negative, the licensing is expensive and we have to limit the number of computers we put it on. As a positive, many of our students will have a leg up when entering into programs or companies that use this software.,,Adobe Illustrator CC, PowerSchool Assessment, Adobe Premiere ProAutoCAD does it bestOur firm uses AutoCAD across all 3 of our offices. We mainly use AutoCAD to layout two-dimensional plans for various building design projects. We first implemented the use of AutoCAD over 25 years ago to produce high-quality ink drawings to present to our clients.,AutoCAD is perfect to use when the graphic representation of objects are shown in multiple drawing locations. Then this graphic can be changed once and all occurrences will be automatically updated. Using AutoCAD to draw plans is so much more efficient than drawing by hand. This is especially true when it comes to having to make changes. Everything can be done on the computer. There's no need to redraw or retrace the plan because with one command it's so easy to just make a digital copy of it. AutoCAD supports not only two-dimensional drawings but also three-dimensional drawings. With a three dimensional model, a user can actually create walkthrus and flybys of the project instead of having to create a physical model.,AutoCAD cannot produce a drawing file that contains the needed building information for construction. It only offers various tools to create the needed drawings to communicate the design intent but not more than what is graphically shown. Though AutoCAD offers many three-dimensional modeling tools, it is still not efficient. It is very difficult to stretch or modify three-dimensional objects especially after holes have been cut out of the object. AutoCAD is missing a very important feature where it can be linked to third party spreadsheets like Microsoft Excel. Currently, there is no option where changes in an Excel spreadsheet can inform AutoCAD how to change the graphic objects to match.,10,AutoCAD has helped our smaller firm produce lots of finished products matching that of a much larger size firm. With its many features, we have been able to do so much more and meet deadlines that much faster. Since we do use AutoCAD, we're able to work with many other engineering firms to collaborate together to complete various building projects. We have many clients now who expect us to provide for them at the end of a project not just printed construction drawings but also the digital AutoCAD drawing so they can in turn use it for future modifications themselves.,Revit,Revit, Adobe Photoshop, Veeam Backup & ReplicationSolid software, industry standard for design work.AutoCAD is used for our design projects. It is used along with other software that does the 3D portion of designs but AutoCAD does the 2D portions. It works well and the administration side of things is extremely easy to manage.,2D design work Compatibility which was a big problem in older versions of the software. It's what is taught in educational arenas which makes it easy to find employees with experience.,It can be a bit of a resource hog with multiple drawings open at once. Sometimes getting new licenses takes a few days.,9,The current licensing model requires subscriptions which forces money to be paid out every year even when it's not necessary for our needs. Costs could be cheaper (as with most software) however its not as bad as some others. Support is easy to deal with and the administration of licenses is easy from an administrator side.,AutoCAD - Good introductory Design Application.Our company uses AutoCAD to supplement other construction workflows. If and when digital plan files for projects are not done in a 3D workflow, we receive 2D DWG files. Survey and layout teams start with AutoCAD Civil files to establish points for project control. The Virtual Design and Construction Department uses CAD files from Mechanical, Electrical, Structural and Architectural disciplines for an overlay style coordination. Our Estimating Department will then have DWG files received from the design teams converted to PDF, so that they can do a quantity take-off review.,Layer management and organizing lots of information in one spot. This is helpful to see how things 'stack' up the various levels in a building. File size usually remains fairly small. External reference linking of other files, so that many people can work on different parts of a project at the same time.,For its primary use as a 2D design application, it works well. Autodesk has done a great job of improving the product over its very long product lifecycle.,7,I don't have access to provide a ROI value.,RevitThe aroma of first loveI have used AutoCAD since 1998 when I was finishing high school. I started with the version of AutoCAD 12 for MS DOS. I found it fascinating, when the Windows version came I loved it even more. I specialized, I got to develop routines and programs in AutoLISP. In 2004 when I used SolidWorks, AutoCAD happened to play a more specific and less preponderant role in my professional career. Today in our company the use of AutoCAD focuses on the development of 2D drawings in the .dxf format required for the CNC application of a TRUMPF punching machine, which makes it a very important tool for the manufacturing of sheet metal parts.,AutoCAD is one of the oldest CAD platforms, AutoDesk owes its success and prestige to it. Its use is very simple.,It is necessary to understand that AutoCAD is a non-design drawing platform. AutoCAD has evolved and matured but I think that AutoDesk must decide if it continues to strengthen its 3D modeling capabilities or if it definitely leaves those functions to Autodesk Inventor.,6,This is where AutoCAD is amazing, its license has been economic, but the number of products that we have manufactured and machined from its use has returned generously the investment.,DraftSight,DraftSight
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Mark Perry profile photo
January 03, 2019

Review: "AutoCAD is an industry standard that is easy to learn and use"

Score 9 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Review Source
AutoCAD is a drafting software that has both 2D and 3D applications. Currently, I am using both the 2D and the 3D applications and teaching students how to draft. The students draft many small projects that culminate in them designing their dream house. The program is the same that is used in the industry. This means that the plans that students make can be applied in the real world as they use building code specifications that are currently being used in the industry. On the 3D side we recently have been drafting simple projects to be printed on our 3D printer.
  • The tools are easy to use and the learning curve is fairly minimal to be able to create blueprints.
  • The 3D application is very fun to use and it is nice to be able to see your product instead of having to imagine what it will look like.
  • The speed and accuracy in which students can create plans is a huge bonus. Students can plan their industrial art projects out and use their own set of plans to build them.
  • Sometimes creating complex shapes can be difficult as you can only manipulate one spine or point at a time. Although this can be slow it also cuts down on errors, so overall maybe it's not that bad.
  • It can take some people longer than others to learn the basics although, again, I think overall it is pretty user-friendly.
  • Rendering 3D images sometimes isn't as smooth as it could be and there are render points that become an issue and tricky to fix.
AutoCAD is a great program to use to introduce real-life software that students could potentially use for jobs in the future. I used AutoCAD to design the house I am living in right now. If you aren't planning on doing anything in the future with 3D printing or drafting than the program is not something that I would recommend.
Read Mark Perry's full review
Paul Li profile photo
January 03, 2019

User Review: "AutoCAD does it best"

Score 10 out of 10
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Verified User
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Our firm uses AutoCAD across all 3 of our offices. We mainly use AutoCAD to layout two-dimensional plans for various building design projects. We first implemented the use of AutoCAD over 25 years ago to produce high-quality ink drawings to present to our clients.
  • AutoCAD is perfect to use when the graphic representation of objects are shown in multiple drawing locations. Then this graphic can be changed once and all occurrences will be automatically updated.
  • Using AutoCAD to draw plans is so much more efficient than drawing by hand. This is especially true when it comes to having to make changes. Everything can be done on the computer. There's no need to redraw or retrace the plan because with one command it's so easy to just make a digital copy of it.
  • AutoCAD supports not only two-dimensional drawings but also three-dimensional drawings. With a three dimensional model, a user can actually create walkthrus and flybys of the project instead of having to create a physical model.
  • AutoCAD cannot produce a drawing file that contains the needed building information for construction. It only offers various tools to create the needed drawings to communicate the design intent but not more than what is graphically shown.
  • Though AutoCAD offers many three-dimensional modeling tools, it is still not efficient. It is very difficult to stretch or modify three-dimensional objects especially after holes have been cut out of the object.
  • AutoCAD is missing a very important feature where it can be linked to third party spreadsheets like Microsoft Excel. Currently, there is no option where changes in an Excel spreadsheet can inform AutoCAD how to change the graphic objects to match.
AutoCAD is well suited for companies that need to mass produce lots of similar but different versions of a floor plan. With some minor tweaks and modifications, many floor plans can be generated that look very different graphically. But if you need to produce something that's very unique or an object that has a very odd and strange shape, then using AutoCAD would be less efficient.
Read Paul Li's full review
Tracy Burton profile photo
April 12, 2019

AutoCAD Review: "Solid software, industry standard for design work."

Score 9 out of 10
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Verified User
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AutoCAD is used for our design projects. It is used along with other software that does the 3D portion of designs but AutoCAD does the 2D portions. It works well and the administration side of things is extremely easy to manage.
  • 2D design work
  • Compatibility which was a big problem in older versions of the software.
  • It's what is taught in educational arenas which makes it easy to find employees with experience.
  • It can be a bit of a resource hog with multiple drawings open at once.
  • Sometimes getting new licenses takes a few days.
Works very well for our usage of the program. Compatibility and it being an industry standard makes it an easy choice.
Read Tracy Burton's full review
Nick Tanner profile photo
April 06, 2019

Review: "AutoCAD - Good introductory Design Application."

Score 7 out of 10
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Verified User
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Our company uses AutoCAD to supplement other construction workflows. If and when digital plan files for projects are not done in a 3D workflow, we receive 2D DWG files. Survey and layout teams start with AutoCAD Civil files to establish points for project control. The Virtual Design and Construction Department uses CAD files from Mechanical, Electrical, Structural and Architectural disciplines for an overlay style coordination. Our Estimating Department will then have DWG files received from the design teams converted to PDF, so that they can do a quantity take-off review.
  • Layer management and organizing lots of information in one spot. This is helpful to see how things 'stack' up the various levels in a building.
  • File size usually remains fairly small.
  • External reference linking of other files, so that many people can work on different parts of a project at the same time.
  • For its primary use as a 2D design application, it works well.
  • Autodesk has done a great job of improving the product over its very long product lifecycle.
Its a great application for quick sketches or basic layouts of something where simple linework would be the best scenario.
Read Nick Tanner's full review
Arlex Guzman profile photo
March 07, 2019

AutoCAD Review: "The aroma of first love"

Score 6 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
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I have used AutoCAD since 1998 when I was finishing high school. I started with the version of AutoCAD 12 for MS DOS. I found it fascinating, when the Windows version came I loved it even more. I specialized, I got to develop routines and programs in AutoLISP. In 2004 when I used SolidWorks, AutoCAD happened to play a more specific and less preponderant role in my professional career. Today in our company the use of AutoCAD focuses on the development of 2D drawings in the .dxf format required for the CNC application of a TRUMPF punching machine, which makes it a very important tool for the manufacturing of sheet metal parts.
  • AutoCAD is one of the oldest CAD platforms, AutoDesk owes its success and prestige to it.
  • Its use is very simple.
  • It is necessary to understand that AutoCAD is a non-design drawing platform.
  • AutoCAD has evolved and matured but I think that AutoDesk must decide if it continues to strengthen its 3D modeling capabilities or if it definitely leaves those functions to Autodesk Inventor.
It's simple, I see AutoCAD being introduced to users need to CAD and/or any industry where 2D drawing plays an important role, such as in the fabrication of sheet metal components.
Read Arlex Guzman's full review
Todd Butts profile photo
February 13, 2019

User Review: "AutoCAD - Love to hate it!"

Score 10 out of 10
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I use AutoCAD pretty much every day, whether it's for customers or something internally. We use it to for different reasons. Sometimes it's just to explain a process or steps to do something more clearly, and other times it's submitting to customers to solve a problem.
  • AutoCAD gives the user the flexibility to do whatever they want. It can be as simple as possible, or conversely very detailed and complicated.
  • AutoCAD pretty much does what you tell it to do. You have to know how to manipulate the settings, in order for AutoCAD to do what you want.
  • AutoCAD dimensions with 100% accuracy, allowing precise information to the user.
  • The help section is very detailed. Showing steps and images. AutoCAD has a huge learning curve, and a person just cannot remember it all. It's a really good reference.
  • One major flaw in AutoCAD is hatching. It gets confused when calculating the areas that you want to hatch. When the area is not closed, it hatches too much, or errors out. There should be a setting to be able to still hatch the area intended when it's not closed with a tolerance setting. Kind of like fill the gaps smaller than .0625".
  • When editing MTEXT, AutoCAD automatically edits in uppercase or lowercase, depending on what it was previously set to. Sometimes, you want the opposite. If you have a line of text in uppercase, but you want a word in lowercase, you have to hold down shift.
  • One of my rules is to never explode dimensions. But, sometimes you have to. There should be a way to explode a dimension, do your edit, then reattach all the entities of the dimension. This would be a really nice feature.
AutoCAD can be used for 2d drawings as well as 3d drawings for anything that you need to draw, in all levels of detail. It can be very simple or very complex. It's all up to the user.
A scenario where it would be inappropriate is collision detection. Entities cannot tell when another entity is touching.
Read Todd Butts's full review
Jake Karl profile photo
November 28, 2018

Review: "AutoCAD - A master at what it's good at"

Score 7 out of 10
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Verified User
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AutoCAD is used by all trades in my office (mechanical, electrical, plumbing, and fire protection) for the design of tenant renovation projects, new construction, and other construction jobs. It allows us to show diagrammatically how we want all of our piping, ductwork, sprinklers, electrical panels, etc. to be constructed in each space.
  • It has a great tool pallet so each project can use the same symbols to create a consistent product.
  • It has good options when it comes to styling different layers with different colors, linetypes, thicknesses, etc.
  • The ability to insert and reference other AutoCAD drawings for coordination works well.
  • When it comes to plumbing design, creating riser diagrams or any sort of 3D diagram can be extremely tedious and time consuming.
  • There aren't many "smart" aspects to AutoCAD so if something changes, it's all manual from there.
  • Some architects can put too many different objects on the same layers. If you have objects that are distinctly different on the same layers, it can get very time consuming to figure out what should go where and separate everything.
When dealing with larger, more complicated projects AutoCAD can be difficult. Because it is generally only 2D plans, it can be very hard to truly understand the size of objects, or how much room you actually have in an area.

For smaller, tenant renovation projects AutoCAD is great. It allows you to output a small job very quickly with little initial setup time.
Read Jake Karl's full review
No photo available
April 02, 2019

"AutoCAD Review"

Score 8 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
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AutoCAD is used extensively by our firm in all departments. We are a consulting engineering firm, and many of our clients require 2D drawings to be done in AutoCAD. This allows for the easy integration of various disciplines and, a lot of the time, different firms, to easily combine/overlay their respective models without having to use BIM.
  • Easy to use.
  • Used by virtually every consulting firm.
  • Offers a lot of the same functionality as Microsoft products.
  • Easily able to have different viewport scales on the same sheet.
  • It is a memory hog. You need a decent amount of RAM for AutoCAD to function smoothly. This is especially the case when multiple instances are open.
  • Referencing other models needs work. It should be more like MicroStation's referencing.
AutoCAD is great for single drawings and details, especially if the details need to be different scales. Having several viewports in paper space with various scales is a huge plus.
AutoCAD (in my opinion) lacks when there are references. The more references, the more it bogs down your computer. The references all come in on 1 layer and it is not user-friendly to copy multiple elements from the reference and paste into the open sheet file, if needed. This is a feature that MicroStation allows, and it is very useful.
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November 25, 2018

Review: "AutoCAD- The gold standard for those who want to be and look professional"

Score 8 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Review Source
As an Audio-Video Design/Build firm we need to be able to interact with architects and other contractors who are creating and editing drawings using AutoCAD and/or AutoCAD Revit. Our typical use of AutoCAD is to review drawings and add in the specifics that are needed to illustrate where AV equipment will need to be installed during or after construction.

It is used by our designers, our installation engineers and our support team both before, during and after construction as a result.
It allows us to be involved in every step of the process and to ensure that the design elements that need to be included are not overlooked.
  • AutoCAD is extremely powerful software, and its multi-layer capabilities are the industry standard that every other tool emulates.
  • AutoCAD has set the standard for "creation tools" for decades, and as such, there is a larger "talent pool" of qualified folks out there that can use it.
  • AutoCAD and AutoCAD Revit have phenomenally good 3d rendering capabilities, which is critical to a design firm looking to be able to "walk the site" before the first wall is put up, and the impact of all of the parts and pieces that go into new or renovation construction work.
  • The biggest downside of AutoCAD is absolutely the complexity of the product. Gaining proficiency (in my opinion) requires an in-person class with a skilled instructor that can guide a beginner.
  • You need a pretty beefy machine with a newer-generation processor and top-notch video card to really use AutoCAD. Don't assume you can run it on just anything, as it will take forever for files to load and rendering will mean a lot of waiting around otherwise. We use machines that are well suited for high-end gaming with 256GB of RAM and a multi-processor CPU motherboard, plus dual video cards, so it's not cheap, but time is money so its worth it.
  • You also need much larger than normal displays (like with any type of drawing work) and with a 4K/60hz resolution to reduce eye strain. Once again, not inexpensive but necessary.
  • AutoCAD is well-suited for where you need to interact with architects, general and others during a new or remodel construction event.
  • AutoCAD is well-suited for creating documentation for post-install of low-voltage and Audio-Video-Control projects, especially the more complex ones.
  • AutoCAD is less suited to smaller projects or projects where there is no interaction with other groups, or where you just need a "quick and dirty" drawing.
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February 15, 2019

AutoCAD Review: "Powerful and widely used modeling program for all of the engineering disciplines"

Score 10 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
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AutoCAD has been used for almost all of the engineering departments in my universities. Most of us use it for sketching and designing mechanical components, building and bridge structures, and other industrial components. It has been used for both 2D and 3D modeling.
  • AutoCAD has a full list of functions in modeling and its interface is user-friendly. All functions can be completed by just clicking, no coding experience is needed.
  • Since most engineers use AutoCAD drawings to do finite element analysis for post-processing the mechanic components or structures, AutoCAD drawings can be imported to mostly-used commercial finite element analysis software.
  • AutoCAD has been widely used in the industry, plenty of tutorials are available online for users to learn.
  • Since in the University, we have been using the education version of AutoCAD, printed drawings are labeled as educational drawings, which do not look professional especially when we use and report the drawings to project committees.
  • AutoCAD uses lots of RAM on my computer which slows the speed of the computer. If two or more AutoCAD windows open, the computer is easy to freeze.
For modeling and designing mechanic or structural components, AutoCAD is a good program to start and produce engineering drawings. But when doing 3D modeling, AutoCAD does not seem well suited and other software such as SOLIDWORKS is more widely used. Furthermore, SOLIDWORKS drawings can also be imported to most commercial FEA software.
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February 12, 2019

User Review: "Don't get mad, get AutoCAD"

Score 9 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
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I have used AutoCAD to ultimately to create 2D and 3D drawings. We create documents such as plans, elevations, sections, etc., importing information such as topography, MEP, etc., to create accurate drawings. Files are used to send to laser cutters for the purpose of creating physical models of the project.
  • Fast drafting program
  • Can draw with specific dimensions and details
  • Gives easy access to tools
  • Not the best software for complex designs
  • Requires a PC with a high speed and space on the hard drive
  • Good practice to save work frequently in case of a crash
AutoCAD is a great tool for drafting documents/images quickly and easily in architecture. It is excellent especially for applications such as basic floor plans, landscape studies, documentation, etc. It is easy to tidy up and keep layers organized. Its software is used globally and can reproduce 3D pictures. However, the over 3D experience is time-consuming and a large task. The program can take a while to learn. It would not be as appropriate for a largely detailed engineering project.
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January 30, 2019

Review: "AutoCAD: the most widely familiar and used"

Score 9 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Review Source
AutoCAD is our default or go-to drafting program for all things architecture, interiors, and sometimes even graphic design/signage wayfinding. We use it in all of our studios as our primary drafting or CAD solution for creating design, presentation, and construction drawings. It is the most universally used program by designers throughout our company.
  • Drafting clear drawings
  • Initial design exploration
  • Detail and design development
  • Annotative scaling automatically
  • Computer memory usage is often high
  • User interface and settings profiles are hard to set up and frequently get reset
We use AutoCAD for everything from urban and site planning to floor plans, sections, and elevations, to zoomed in design detailing, schedules and code documentation. It is well suited for setting up contract documents as well as initial design exploration including programming, site planning, and coordination of trades. I would say its less appropriate where 3D design consideration is required.
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Neha Chopra profile photo
October 03, 2018

AutoCAD Review: ""The great software for Architects, Designers & Engineers""

Score 9 out of 10
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We use AutoCAD for some 2D & 3D layouts and a lot of signal design schematics. As an engineering firm, AutoCAD is very useful for our designs and internal projects. As an Assistant Signal designer, without this software I think I could not work, it is really essential to use this software now in my life for my work, I have presented a lot of drawings for large and small projects by using AutoCAD. It has helped me in various projects and every day I learn more about the tools, which allows me to say that AutoCAD is the best professional quality engineering and architecture program for the design .
  • In AutoCAD,it can be easy to draw details of anything needed for projects. AutoCAD has a variety of detail levels, from simple stick line drawings to full detail wireframe 3D models.
  • Because AutoCAD is primarily a line drawing software, it will require editing and redrawing to get exactly what you want from it. But it's simpler and easier to jump in to, and will be more cost effective for smaller projects or customers with smaller budgets.
  • We can use AutoCAD by Commands like copy command, move command, stretch command.
  • Nothing, everything is just perfect with this software, the only thing I would just say is the performance and compatibility with RAM and the memory you need free on your computer. Also, the updates from AutoDESK are a little tedious and can slow down your performance but you then only need to downgrade your service packs and problem fixed.
  • It crashes all the time and I lose work and have to do it all over again. Also the fact that is a basic app for many people, to work in more specific subjects, AutoCAD is too simple, and there are other apps that can provide other new an advance tools.
  • It is expensive and it takes up a lot of storage space. The license of the program has a high cost and it requires a computer with a lot of memory space in to it.
  • Hatch processing is not good . It is slow and unresponsive at times.
It is well suited to create drawings with specific dimensions and details to present a clean plan for clients. We use it as a 2D and 3D drawing tool! We use it for our production technical drawings and also for 3D presentation to our customers.It can crash at random times or hangup on large files.
The ability to combine multiple tasks in one programmer, such as 2D drawings, 3D renderings, and schedules, is desirable as an architect when efficiency and coordination is key. AutoCAD falls down or less appropriate at this, as it does not have these multiple functions.
Read Neha Chopra's full review
Samantha Dross profile photo
June 26, 2018

Review: "AutoCAD - the greatest innovation ever!"

Score 9 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
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I work for a structural engineering firm. We use AutoCAD to produce structural, support of excavation, NYCTA, sketches and several other drawings, as needed. As a company, we use it as a whole. Even the simplest of opening up AutoCAD to print drawings by an office assistant. This addresses any structural work that needs to be completed by our office.
  • AutoCAD is great for drafting. Clearly you first draft before you engineer a building, so being able to draft out everything accordingly AND simply, is fantastic. It's super simple and anyone can learn how to use it!
  • Next, AutoCAD is great for adding electronic seals to. Some building filings here, especially in New York, are mainly done online. I think its great that AutoCAD has the option to add them in the title block. It makes it simpler this way instead of printing them, signing and sealing, and scanning the drawings to issue electronically.
  • Lastly AutoCAD is great because you can design ANYTHING no matter how big or small it is. There is so much space to be used in the model and layout spaces. It gives you endless possibilities on what you can draft or design.
  • I wish AutoCAD had more options for colors. I know they give a lot of colors to draft lines and what not, but they need more options so things can be more detailed.
  • AutoCAD really should have tutorials for when you first use the program to teach you the basics. I had no experience when I first starting using AutoCAD and I had to watch a lot of youtube videos to learn what to do.
  • Lastly, AutoCAD should have the option of modifying the title block in the layout space in each drawing. The only way you are able to revise the title block is opening the file itself. Sometimes I only need to change the title block for 1 specific drawing and I have to go through so much work just to do so!
AutoCAD is suited for anyone looking to design or draft. Whether it is an architect, engineer, a detailer, etc. AutoCAD is probably suitable for other areas but also not suitable for many. AutoCAD is not suitable for anyone who is looking to just draw. There's more to AutoCAD than that.
Read Samantha Dross's full review
Lisa Stumm profile photo
May 25, 2018

User Review: "AutoCAD ups & downs"

Score 8 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
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I use AutoCAD LT now that my AutoCAD software that I purchased awhile back doesn't work on Windows 10 therefore I was forced to a subscription format and can only afford the LT version. I prefer standard AutoCAD but the cost is out of reach for an independent consultant like myself.

I do basic space planning - test fits, block plans and furniture layouts for my clients.
  • AutoCAD can be as robust as you need. I don't do 3D so AutoCAD full version isn't necessary but I do like regular AutoCAD because I was used to they way it all works. The LT version had a few learning curves to overcome. I still don't know how to set up a drawing on AutoCAD LT since their Toolbar doesn't have the Units setup and I don't have time for tutorials. AutoCAD toolbars are excellent for making easier steps while working on a drawing.
  • AutoCAD subscription gives you products to download to your devices which is nice.
  • For what I do - space planning of office space, furniture layouts and test fits, AutoCAD is an excellent tool for sending electronic versions to others to mark up or a PDF for those that don't have the software.
  • AutoCAD LT doesn't have all the toolbars that the full version of AutoCAD has. I think that both versions should have the same toolbars so that one can work with either version. The only difference is that AutoCAD has the capability of creating 3D images, so I understand that those toolbars can be unique to that version.
  • AutoCAD LT doesn't have architectural symbols to pull from like AutoCAD which would be nice to have since the LT version is for 2D drawing.
  • Double clicking on a drawing seems to be an issue when trying to open. Not sure if it's my PC or AutoCAD. I have to remember to right click and hit "open with AutoCAD launcher". To me that's an extra step that is unnecessary.
AutoCAD full version is great for floor plans, elevations and 3D views of a space. Also, it's great for drawing mechanical tools or engines if you're into that industry. Basic drafting software is available if you only need to do floor plans or elevations. I chose to stay with AutoCAD since I was trained back in 2000. Surely I need a brush up on it as software does change over the years. Cost would be the deciding factor for a company when trying to choose drawing software. If you interact with the architectural design community, it's best to use AutoCAD since that is the software that most architects use.
Read Lisa Stumm's full review
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May 18, 2018

Review: "AutoCAD is the ideal design tool for planes and objects for engineers and architects."

Score 8 out of 10
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In the company, AutoCAD is used by the engineering department, which among many other functions is responsible for designing the plans required for the construction of our infrastructure.

The problems that the company solves through the use of AutoCAD is the process of planning the construction and remodeling required by the company for its installed capacity potential.

[We] Make designs from the beginning for decision making.
  • It is an ideal program for the design of urbanism, works aimed at improving the landscape, remodeling projects or construction.
  • It is a complex and quality software that can design maps and plans in multiple scales, angles, colors, and shapes.
  • I like it because it allows georeferencing and analysis of complex databases for decision making.
  • It offers excellent three-dimensional object design tools that allow you to project innovative and creative ideas.
  • Consider that in general AutoCAD must make an effort to facilitate the use of the system because it is very complex and difficult. It takes many hours for men to practice or go to an AutoCAD course to correctly handle the tool.
  • Consider that AutoCAD is the most used design system by engineering and architecture professionals but the most difficult to use.
  • If the owners of the program did a usability study aimed at improving the use of the system, I am convinced that it would be easier to apply the tools for the job.
AutoCAD adapts very well to the following scenarios:

1. Design of complex plans with many presentation details.
2. Design of infrastructure and structure scale projects
3. Presentation of cartography.
4. Rendering process.
5. Design of parts with many details and exact measurements.

AutoCAD does not adapt very well to the following scenarios:

1. Design of household pieces (appliances, appliances, brown line).
2. Design ideas of pieces or projects in three dimensions.
3. Activities with emergency character but that do not require precision.
Read Andres Meza's full review
Luciana Montivero profile photo
April 26, 2018

User Review: "AutoCAD, A Powerful but Complex Tool"

Score 8 out of 10
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AutoCAD is used for 3D modeling and to make technical drawings across my organization. It's not used across the whole organization, but only in the prototyping department, where we need to make this type of drawings. It helps when presenting a prototype, and to understand the model we are to take to business.
  • Is really functional and suitable for engineering drawings or representations
  • For 2D drawing, is still one of the bests in the market
  • The features are a great deal for this type of work. Is a really complete platform for 2D and 3D drawing.
  • Sometimes it can be a little tricky or hard to use. There's so much going on, with so many options that you can easily get lost in the tools.
  • You surely will need a powerful computer to use this soft, so don't be stranged if your computer overheats or gets slowed down.
For floor designs, or for mechanical engineers applications or functional electrical designs, this is a great and useful software. Maybe if you need a rather basic design, you should stick to easier to use software (like Fusion360), especially when it comes to 3D designing.
Read Luciana Montivero's full review
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September 11, 2018

User Review: "AutoCAD is a great 2D drawing platform"

Score 8 out of 10
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AutoCAD is being used to create 2D drawings for laser cutting components during prototyping. It was easy for me to get started and creating basic shapes and learning how to modify the shapes into functional parts. The dimensioning feature allows me to see measurements while flipping between drawings and making sure that everything lines up.
  • 2D drawings are very easy to create and quick to mock up.
  • Shortcuts enabled me to work a lot faster.
  • The UI was very aesthetically pleasing to work with which enhanced my experience.
  • The UI is very overwhelming for first time users due to all the various buttons.
I think AutoCAD is well suited for people who need to create 2D drawings for laser cutting. I have also seen it used for creating floor plans or even drafting.

AutoCAD can be very expensive though for any non-business users at $255 a month. There are other free drawing software out there that could be better suited for people on a budget.
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June 21, 2018

Review: "AutoCAD is the Industry Leader for a Reason"

Score 9 out of 10
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Autocad was used across the company by all members of the team except the Principal. We were able to address all areas of design from concept through construction with Autocad. It was also something that allowed us to connect with other consultants and use drawings from their offices.
  • Autocad is great for doing construction document sets
  • Autocad is ideal for collaborating across all construction disciplines.
  • Autocad was ideal for having precise drawings that allowed contractors to effectively do their jobs in the field.
  • Autocad's 3D aspects are still not as robust as others on the market
  • The rendering to photo realistic models can be done with add-ons but not something that is done natively
  • The price of this can be daunting now that it is not a one time price but rather per year.
Autocad is very well suited for any size architecture or construction office. It makes for easy times in the office if all members of the team know how to use it and can participate in larger projects. This is one of the best pieces of CAD software out there.
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July 13, 2018

User Review: "AutoCAD - Still a strong leader!"

Score 10 out of 10
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Our design and engineering departments use AutoCAD for in-house engineering.
  • User friendly with hot keys
  • Works seamlessly with Autodesk's Inventor
  • Great library of parts
  • I have serious crash problems even though I'm using all the Autodesk requirements. Other software programs don't crash on me as much as AutoCAD does.
Excellent for CNC machining or transferring raster images into vector files. I also use Illustrator to save the raster image to outlines. Then I output it as a DXF file.
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March 29, 2018

AutoCAD Review: "Still the go to option for a reason."

Score 10 out of 10
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Here at Safe Harbor Autocad is used both as a primary design software and by steel detailers to produce shop floor drawings. In addition, our production department uses it to generate profiles for CNC plate cutting equipment. The biggest problems it solves is providing a widely used drawing format that is easy to exchange with clients and is familiar with a wider number of users than any other cad software. It tends to be much easier to find proficient Autocad operators than any other software.
  • The biggest strength of Autocad is in its flexibility. It can be customized for almost any industry or drawing style. Granted the plethora of options, commands, & routines can make it a little intimidating for a beginner but experienced power users can make it sing. Even though it's parametric capability is limited a good user can even do excellent 3d modeling.
  • Almost every trade school, technical college, etc. teaches Autocad, this makes finding operators a lot easier than most other software.
  • Dedicated parametric design software such as Inventor & Solidworks may be taking over in the design realm but the fact of the matter is that 2d drawings will stay with us for a long time. Quite frankly when it comes to producing a good looking shop floor or construction site paper "blueprint" no other software does it better or easier. Even average users can take advantage of its extensive features & shortcuts for detailing drawings.
  • One of the things that makes Autocad so good is also a disadvantage and that is its complexity. It can be confusing for some. One of my biggest challenges is supporting experienced users who refuse to give up the classic interface as I've been using the ribbon since it was introduced and have forgotten most of the classic menu & toolbars.
  • The constant warnings when I open a dwg file created by another cad system are a pain. I know that this format was Autodesk's baby & I respect that but nobody needs these warnings and the extra step of dismissing them.
Steel Detailing, floor plans, M.E.P. (mechanical, electrical, & plumbing) diagrams are examples of where Autocad excels. When you get into design & analysis of moving assemblies or need to be able to update common components across a wide range of products without having to update every individual drawing using that component then you would be better off with parametric software.
Read Floyd Finch's full review
Gil Lopez CTS ING profile photo
January 19, 2018

Review: "AutoCAD, a must in your production tool box"

Score 9 out of 10
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AutoCAD has been our production tool of choice for many years and across various disciplines. It is a universal platform that works and integrates well with other industry leading software packages. It's compatibility with other platform file formats makes it ideal for prototyping and production. It is efficient for workflows specific to early diagrams that eventually make their way into Revit models.
  • For engineering tasks, AutoCAD is excellent for functional and schematic diagram production.
  • For project management, it provides a quick and easy way to export plans into sets usable by field operations, such as PlanGrid.
  • Its integration with Revit allows for mixed projects where AutoCAD and Revit families must co-exist.
  • Its adoption by the A/E industry at large make it easy to justify the investment in software and training.
  • AutoCAD is typically improved by using third-party companion applications. It would be nice to have these additional sets of functionality included with the base software.
  • Presets specific to certain industries are great (MEP, Electrical, etc.), however, there are some specialty industries that could benefit form custom presets not yet available.
  • The learning curve for new features is relatively steep even for seasoned users. A brief video of "what is new" would be a welcome addition to new roll-outs.
Great for 2D quick production, functional and electrical diagrams, and other data sets that do not require 3D production. AutoCAD does provide great 3D capabilities and rendering features, however, the industry (at least the A/E) continues to move towards Revit for 3D modeling and production. AutoCAD integrates well with Revit, making it a great tool to have in the production line.
Read Gil Lopez CTS ING's full review
Cesar A Siso L profile photo
January 09, 2018

AutoCAD Review: "The Best Software for Design and Planning"

Score 8 out of 10
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AutoCAD has been used in my organization for the design of social programs, specifically one dedicated to the construction of houses for people who live in neighborhoods at risk or ones that suffer natural disasters, such as landslides. The tool is used mainly by the Infrastructure department. Where infrastructure management has the responsibility to evaluate the terrain conditions and create the design houses for families of four members, with a limited number of resources and a low budget. This tools brings us the opportunity to do a design and constantly make the necessary changes. For this to be adjusted to a specific situation of the terrain and the materials to do the construction. Every design that we do is particular and specific measures to fixed points and to be built in that specific place.
  • The features of AutoCAD for design are endless, you can virually manage all the details of a design, from the thickness of the walls to the locations of the pipelines. The interphase allows me to put in my design every detail that I need, with precise measurements and all characteristics that I need to add.
  • The management of the layout features is another of its great virtues, you can handle simultaneously as many layouts as you want, this issue allows me to design every part in this case of a house in a separate way and have every part like floor, pipelines, walls, and any other spaces, in different layouts to consult and print whenever it needs to be.
  • The AutoCAD tools for design are very useful because it allows you to modify color, thickness and any other attribute that you considerate necessary to modify, the easy way of managing their tools, allows to make changes quickly and make the things ready to print when all the features have been corrected.
  • There are so many other features to talk about, like print options, the add of geographic coordinates, the interphase to make 3d digital models, and so many other things, but each one depends on you and the kind of work that you develop.
  • One of the big problems for people that is not usual of the software is it being overwhelming because of the many tools and options that appear in front of your eyes when you open the software for the first time. This happens even with architects who manage other software. It is extremely necessary to have an introductory course of use for this tool, and sometimes that can be extra money that the company does not have the budget for.
  • Another problem is related to the print options of the software for people who are not familiar with it. There are so many options for print and layout. I think this can be less complicated making a tool for printing more conventional like house prints or plotter prints, where you select in two or three options the dimension of the drawing and the size on the paper and everything is ready, for some people configuring a print in AutoCAD is a hard task.
  • This software demands a big range of RAM memory and card video, sometimes this can be a problem because it is consuming all the resources of your computer limiting other processes. There must be an option for use of low memory range or something like that, one option that allows the use of only the features that you need and maintaining in suspension all of the processes that you do not need.
AutoCAD it is the perfect tool for design, it does not have a comparison with any other. You can do virtually anything you want for a design with this software from a simple drawing to a 3D digital model/. To see how the design you created can be seen in real life. you can manage a big range of design and put into it every detail, precise measures and modify colors and many other features that you need. If you want to design a flat, a building, a park, a pool, or any construction that you have in mind, this is your software.

The weak point of AutoCAD, is the transition between it and GIS, in this case, with the loss of any information, because in AutoCAD in contradistinction to GIS the lines, points and polygons does not have any attribute they are only drawn, and when you need the transition between the two software you lose so much information that it can't be used for spatial analysis.
Read Cesar A Siso L's full review
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March 30, 2018

Review: "AutoCAD is the best tool for engineers on the market"

Score 10 out of 10
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AutoCAD is one of the best tools that all engineers need to learn. In the engineering and architecture departments of our business it is used to create or modify all type of design plans or drawings. We have used it to create piping and instrumentation diagrams of several of the largest industrial oil processing plants, it is such a complete CAD tool that it can address any type of drawing problem.
  • Working in AutoCAD is more practical that creating drawings by hand, plus the plans are much more precise and it saves a lot of time.
  • AutoCAD allows drawing both in 3D and in 2D, also the possibility of generating a 3D model from the 2D is excellent-
  • The program has excellent PDF compatibility since the engineer can transform the drawings to said format, and since PDF is a more commonly used format than DWG it is easier to share them without any issue.
  • The programs license is really expensive
  • Getting to an expert level can take a long time, since it has so many functions that are accessed mostly via command names, so you really need to memorize a lot of them for practical working.
  • It requires a lot of processing power to work correctly, it tends to overclock your computer or overheat it.
I don't see any real scenario where AutoCAD is not appropriate, is such an excellent drawing tool that once you get the hang of it and learn almost all of the primary functions is extremely beneficial for designing both 2D and 3D drawings or models. While doing Piping and instrument diagrams working with AutoCAD is a must, and the fact that Xrefs and dynamic blocks can be shared, you can make a new library just suited for the project you are currently working.
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March 29, 2018

Review: "AutoCAD a great design tool for multi purpose projects !"

Score 9 out of 10
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We currently use AutoCAD to do reviews and markups of the drawing sets of construction projects. We also use AutoCAD to make changes over the design landscapes and report the inconsistencies upon final revision of the drawings. Our team of project managers and estimator work closely using and sharing updates of the CAD file sets. All the drawings are being shared using A360 that allows us to get the most from the AutoCAD cloud add-in set. The TCO and the annual subscription of Autodesk impact the IT budget of software maintenance.
  • The ability to deploy shared licenses, and manage the end user subscription from the Autodesk web portal
  • Easy steps to deploy install and set up user accounts.
  • Allows to preview 3D drawings and send them to other Autodesk apps like Revit or Civil
  • The Auto CAD ADLM requires explicit rules for Internet access and firewall permissions to stay connected in company networks.
  • The Manuals to manage and set training path to end user are not available.
  • The amount of seats or end users may impact for ADLM services held in Auto CAD server.
Auto CAD meets the requirements as it's well suited to do reviews and build drawings sets and to create project standards, build an extensive catalog of drawing designs, merging new and existing concepts.

Auto CAD can read 3D and build new layouts within the standards of an existing or new drawing.

Auto CAD can't be used to replace Revit, Civil, or an Architectural Auto Desk program suites that have custom and specific features to bring an outstanding design of a catalog based drawing designs.
Read Victor Arana's full review

About AutoCAD

AutoCAD is a CAD product from Autodesk. It allows designers to work in 2D and 3D, and has extensive online collaboration tools.

AutoCAD Technical Details

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Mobile Application:No