What is CAD Software?
CAD software is used across a variety of industries to create technical 2D illustrations, mock-ups and 3D models. Digital representations such as these are used to aid creation of actual objects in the tangible world.
CAD programs included in the General-Purpose category offer a range of tools and functionality with products varying in terms of their strengths and capabilities. CAD products are not designed for specific industries, and can integrate with tools which are more specialised such as civil engineering and BIM softwares.
Top 5 General Purpose CAD Softwares
The experts at TechRound have compiled the top General Purpose CAD Softwares below.
AutoCAD offers specialised toolsets alongside industry-specific functionality and improved mobility. There are both web and mobile apps available with the latest feature updates and specialised features.
AutoCAD also offers libraries for architecture, mechanical design and 3D mapping through one interface.This allows flexibility to work on any ongoing products all over the world.
SaaS design platform Onshape aims to increase the rate of product development through a system combining CAD, release management, workflow and an API boasting over 50 applications for engineering. This allows extended design teams to collaborate quickly and enables executives to make informed choices with real-time data and analytics available.
Onshape helps to streamline and modernise product development through the use of an anywhere, anytime product design platform.
SketchUp is a modelling and design tool allowing users to model intricate designs. SketchUp can be utilised by all kinds of professionals with a toolset to enhance workflow across a variety of industries such as constriction, engineering and architecture.
4. Fusion 360
Utilised by mechanical engineers, machinists and product designers, Fusion 360 brings together design, engineering and manufacture through one platform. It enables companies to optimise the product development process to produce high quality products positively impacting the bottom line.
Available for PC and Mac, Fusion 360 is a completely integrated software including generative design, machining and advanced simulation.
5. AutoCAD LT
AutoCAD LT allows designers to create drawings rapidly through the use of drafting tools. Design data can be stored and shared through TrustedDWG technology and drawings can be edited and repurposed. Solutions are also available for colleagues to collaborate through desktop, cloud and mobile devices.
Do I Need CAD Software?
CAD software is usually used by engineers, allowing for them to merge fields with designers and draftsmen. CAD can be used to develop precision drawings as well as building models and 3D objects. Designs are digitally drafted and the software enables you to convey information regarding materials, processes, tolerance and dimensions.
Additionally, CAD software can be utilised in. variety of different industries such as construction and filmmaking to create 2D or 3D objects.
How Much Does it Cost?
The price of CAD software depends on the company offering the software as well as features and support packages which may be included. AutoCAD pricing is dependent on how many users can utilise the software, with the price for a single user package at £1655 per year.
Additionally, AutoCAD offers a support package which can be included priced at £195 or £295 depending on whether your business wants design or software related support.
Are There Free Trials Available?
Availability of free trials is also dependent on the company offering the CAD software. Fusion 260 and Onshape both offer free trials of their programs, allowing businesses to see the benefits of their software before fully committing through payment.
It is important to note when your free trial ends in order to avoid paying any unnecessary charges.