What are the Mac equivalents to Windows Cad programs?

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by johnbro23, Dec 13, 2004.

  1. johnbro23 macrumors 6502a

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    #1
    I'm taking CAD in my high school for my third year now. I recently switched, and got a summer job at an architect's firm that happens to use Macs, so I'm very interested in what Cad programs Macs have to offer.

    All CAD programs are different, and are better for different things. For example, 3D Viz or 3ds Max are good for visualizing, while AutoCad is good for 2d drawings. We are working with these programs at school:

    AutoCad 2002
    3D Viz version 3
    Architectural Desktop
    Inventor 5.3

    The architecture firm that offered me the job mentioned that they use Vectorworks a lot. Which of those programs is Vectorworks most like? What are some Mac equivalents of the other programs?
     
  2. neut macrumors 68000

    neut

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  3. cluthz macrumors 68040

    cluthz

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    #3

    I'm not into CAD at all, but a friend of mine is into it a bit. He said that Vectorworks is a great app for 2d, but lacking on the 3d part, so it would be more like Autocad.

    There are probably someone whic can give you a better answer.
     
  4. johnbro23 thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #4
    I've been to that site. Its more like an in depth site for real Architects... I just want an overview of what kind of stuff there is for Macs. Plus, I would ask on their boards, but they don't have a CAD specific board. Their forum link takes you to macnn.com.
     
  5. Macky-Mac macrumors 68030

    Macky-Mac

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    #5
    for architectural work, VectorWorks is pretty good....it does both 2D and 3D, and for architectual work, the 3D component is fine.....there's a companion rendering program called RenderWorks for more advanced rendering than is available with just VectorWorks

    PowerCadd is a good 2D program for drawing

    Archicad is an excellent CAD program, both 2D and 3D...it's priced closer to Autocad

    There are architects that use formZ for 3D modeling but it's not for 2D drawing.....and there's SketchUp which is another 3D visualiztion program that's aimed at architects (again, it's a 3D program and not intended for 2D production drafting)......some architects who use Maya for 3D modeling


    one thing about learning ANY cad prograqm is that you'll learn what kind of tools exist and that knowledge makes it much easider to switch to a different program because you'll already have an understanding of what kind of tools will be available....you'll just have to find them!
     
  6. johnbro23 thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #6
    Thanks for your reply. Thats very helpful. Just one more question... is CAD on the Mac less advanced than CAD on Windows? I would assume so, because of the Mac's low market share.
     
  7. MisterMe macrumors G4

    MisterMe

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    #7
    By far, the most abundant form of life on Earth is bacteria. Just because there are more bacteria than human beings doesn't make them more advanced than human beings. Why then would you think that CAD on Windows is more advanced than CAD on the Mac? When you think of CAD on Windows, you think of one application. That application is AutoCAD. The traditional strength of AutoCAD has been its library. The application has morphed into a comprehensive project management solution. However, the primary use of a CAD program is to draw stuff--be they buildings, machines, or electronic circuits. At that, AutoCAD is notoriously difficult to use. CAD programs on the Mac, by contrast, sport the ease of use associated with other Mac applications. If you are required to use AutoCAD, you have to use it. If you have a choice, however, your choice is dictated by philosophy. Do you use a program that provides a tremendous amount power and functionality, but that also places tremendous demands on the user to harness that power? Or do you choose a program that unleashes the power within you and then gets out of your way?
     
  8. budugu macrumors 6502

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    #8
    Here we go again. What i fail to understand is that there is nothing wrong if a platform does not support a set of user base! When did mac have a decent CAD graphics card from 3D labs/nVidia or ATI? Today i attended the TIGER tech talk they are talking of managed code, support for SQLite, and core Data (read OLE-DB/ADO +metadata more than few years ago). Every platform has a strength if Mac CAD programs are not optimised or do not have a large base it is a fact. AutoCAD has libraries that can get it hooked to Oracle databases (create a demograpical map on the fly) and every damn thing that you can imagine. As apple lags in data handling, microsoft lags in compositors and other 2D graphics and so on... There are hardly any ...ANY GENERAL/MULTI purpose CAD tools better than AUTOCAD! if you are serious about CAD/CAM you are better off learning AUTOCAD especially if you are in civil (like me) or mechanical engineering.

    If you are constructing roads, terrain maps or bridges or a steel frame for an apartment complex, you donot get the values and then start drawing, final details yes. Most of the time you want to export the design values from your own programs. AutoDesk can easily integrate with visual studio, and many other softwares that do other work for you. Output files are more compatible and readable.

    the learning for good programs is bit higher and is well worth it. You might not be able to open the application and start drawing in 20 mins but a week of learning you will be drawing 10 times more faster than if you were using other simpler drawing tool. Just get over the learning and curve and you will not regret!
     
  9. budugu macrumors 6502

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    #9
    Oh btw... Bulk of ALL life forms on earth is made of the 4(of 6) most abundant elements in the UNIVERSE :eek: ! other 2 being Helium and neon! So i guess SIZE does matter. :D
     
  10. Macky-Mac macrumors 68030

    Macky-Mac

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    #10

    I wouldn't agree with that assumption. Is Mac OS X "less advanced" than Windows because it has a small market share? Is Internet Explorer more "advanced" than .....well, pick a browser, just because it has a bigger market share? Not necessarily. Is Chevrolet a more "advanced" car than Porsche because it has a larger market share? Market share isn't everything.

    Any CAD program is a just tool and you have to pick the right tool for the job you have to do. In your first post you pointed out that different programs do different things and that's true.

    The purchase price of the individual programs is often a factor in how "advanced" a program is....and CAD programs range from shareware to programs that cost thousands.....but what value is there in a lot of expensive "advanced" features if you don't need them?
     
  11. AdamZ macrumors regular

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    Feb 15, 2004
    #11
    OK Then...

    Vectorworks by far is the best cost/performance solution for the Mac. It not only does the typical 2D, lines & arcs, but also does a very good job with creating 3D objects. If you are a student, they have an excelent discount. I am going to school now and chose Vectorworks after researching a lot. Their website has many quicktime movies.
     
  12. bartelby macrumors Core

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    #12
    Don't ArchiCAD do evaluation copies any more? They used to, it was a full version, you're just not allowed to use it for commercial purposes.
     
  13. AdamZ macrumors regular

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    #13
    Archicad does have a student version that works only with the school's version
     
  14. Maxicek macrumors regular

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    #14
    Pro-Engineer
    Solidworks
    Solid Edge
    SDRC IDEAS
    CATIA
    3D Studio
    ...
     
  15. AmigoMac macrumors 68020

    AmigoMac

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    #15
    :confused:

    Never heard of those...
     
  16. BEET macrumors member

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  17. neilrobinson macrumors 6502

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    #17
    that is one fantastic x86 program.... still use it for bits
     
  18. Timelessblur macrumors 65816

    Timelessblur

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    #18
    in short the cad programs for Mac suck(the few that there are) and are years behind the ones out for windows.

    Reason being is Cad programs are designed for a very small user base of people. The people who been using them for years way back in the days of DOS. the big ones started out then. There just is no market for Mac cad programs because Artechs engineers are much heavier PC uses than mac users so it takes a double hit since the main users base use macs a lot less than the general public.

    If you want to do high end Cad or drafting work you really need to get a PC.
     
  19. neut macrumors 68000

    neut

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    #19
    sounds like he's already found a place that uses macs... isn't that what he really wants. "Go use PC ... everyone else does." that's BS.

    the CAD market will always be PC unless mac users like him sway the system. if he really understands the benifits of a mac why can he not pursue a career in Mac CAD? no doubt he should train cross-platform but telling him to go use a PC is a cop out... this aint no gaming thread ... this is real life; where what you do actually means something after you die. :)

    johnbro23 - stick with mac and find out more from these Mac architects you worked for (will work for?) over the summer. sounds like they're already doing it.. while people on this thread are just talking out their ass. ;)


    peace.
     
  20. Timelessblur macrumors 65816

    Timelessblur

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    #20

    I repeat my statement then, Mac Cad the few that existed are pretty much crap compared to the ones out for PC. Hence the reason for Cad work you get a PC. The best cad programs are for PC only. The rest of the post explian why they are not out for mac. This is one of the few times that the lack of software is a vaild argument for not going mac. Mac lack software in Gaming and the other section is stuff dealing with Cad work.

    For graphic design work you go Mac. For Cad work you go PC. those are both Pro leval uses of computers.
     
  21. neut macrumors 68000

    neut

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    #21
    sorry but that's retarded.

    i use a PC everyday for 'graphic design'. im considered a professional in my feild of work. i also use a mac at home for 'graphic design'. im considered a professional in my freelance.

    why are there architecture firms that use mac if the CAD world is PC? why don't you go to these offices and explain to them why they are not professional and why they need to use a PC so they can do some 'real' CAD work.

    next you'll be saying that doing anything on Linux is a waste of time because no one in the professional worl uses it ... :rolleyes: ... and last i heard, they still use Atari systems to do audio work in Europe.

    a mac can do just about anything ... would you want to work for someone who believes differently? i wouldn't .... i may use a PC at work, but the bosses know why i choose a mac at home ... and why we have several employees that choose to use mac outside of work.

    i almost chose a career in Architecture; i would definatley been all mac though ... **** PC. ;)

    so may i ask what you do and why your opinion should be trusted as a Mac CAD consult? just wondering ... 'cause i notice a lot of ass talking around these forums.


    peace.
     
  22. efoto macrumors 68030

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    #22
    Macky-Mac had this right I believe. Go check out Sketchup here. I downloaded the demo version on both Mac and PC and they seem very much the same.

    You should select the software that most effectively does the work that you need to do. I do not think that anyone will argue that all CAD programs are the exact same, they are not. Each program has its own little things that set it apart (ever so slightly) from the competition. Once you find the program you want and need, figure out which platform it runs on. Many new manufacturers are releasing their programs multi-platform. Browse the net and just see what is out there.

    I use Sketchup for some basic modeling and some around-my-house landscaping plans. The software works great! I have built the most basic doll-house style place and have seen a design co-worker who built one of the most detailed chairs I have ever seen (most Eng.s use Pro-E here) all in Sketchup. SUp has some some neat features that allow you to export your work in a sketched mode, which can give a cool effect, especially if you want to present something in a not-quite-solidified form. (read more about that on their site, but its really cool)
     

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