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Difference Between AutoCAD and Solidworks

Difference Between AutoCAD and Solidworks
Are you interested in learning more about CAD software? One of the biggest questions we hear concerns the difference between AutoCAD and SolidWorks. Many times, preference is the answer to questions like these, but with CAD software, that isn’t always the case. Below, you’ll find a description and details of the two systems.


AutoCAD is one of the most well-known 3D CAD systems available. It offers a way to create designs that are flawless. Detailed designs are easy with use of the tools available through the software and TrustedDWG makes sharing quick and effortless, as well. Compatibility Manufactured by Autodesk Inc., AutoCAD is compatible with Mac and Windows computers. Pricing AutoCAD costs $1,680.00, which puts it $685.00 more per year than average CAD software. Intended User 
  • Engineers
  • Architects
  • Industrial Designers
  • Students
  • Casual Users
  • SSOE Group
  • Shaw Industries
  • Notable Customers
  • Engineering
  • Education
  • Construction
  • Castro Mello Architects
  • Automotive


Increasing productivity and rendering quality designs without error is just a few of the things this software can provide. There’s an automated system that populates most used tasks so that you’re able to streamline development and workflow. Share designs easily and define or validate form, fit and function clearly, as well. Compatibility Works well with Windows computers only. Pricing With a licensing fee of $1295 per year, this subscription is more cost effective than AutoCAD. Intended User 
  • Engineers
  • Industrial Designers
  • Students
  • Casual Users
  • Technology
  • Medical
  • Manufacturing
  • Engineering
  • Energy
  • Electronics
  • Consumer Products
  • Construction
  • Computer
  • Automotive
  • Aerospace
The Differences? One of the biggest differences between the software systems is that only AutoCAD is compatible with both MAC computers and Windows. SolidWorks is only able to run on Windows machines. Below, you’ll find several more ways these two are different:
  • AutoCAD offers a free version of software for students, military veterans, school faculty and those who have worked in the CAD industry at some point in the past. The downside to the free version is that watermarks aren’t allowed.
  • AutoCAD works only in 2D while SolidWorks deals with 3D.
  • AutoCAD works best with electrical, mechanical and plumbing project designs.
  • SolidWorks works great for non-architectural drawings.
With the differences above, it is fairly clear that those hoping to design anything dealing with building or constructing will want to use AutoCAD. SolidWorks is better for innovations that need to be tested before production. We hope this question has been answered in a way that helps you decide which software might be best for you. If you have anything to add to this discussion, feel free to leave a comment, below!

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If you’re more interested in learning about outsourcing engineering services, consider working with one of the top AutoCAD outsourcing companies in the world – Indovance! Sometimes, making the decision to outsource might be easy, but selecting the right partner for your business can be the hardest part of the overall process. Thankfully, companies like Indovance are here to offer quality resources to help ease your fears about hiring an outside vendor. To learn more about Indovance and all the outsourcing services we offer, give us a call! We also offer CAD services, BIM, architecture services and more. Let us help your business with costly planning, designing and constructing. Our goal is to provide you with cost efficient, quality, and timely results.
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