Vectorworks 2015: First Impressions


VW-Arch-R-Box

Vectorworks 2015

I first used Vectorworks in a much earlier incarnation, when it was still called MiniCAD. I believe the new appellation was a wise move, as there was nothing mini or Mickey Mouse when it came to power and features.

I’ve also had the pleasure to review this program through the years in an official capacity, especially when I used to write Software Reviews for Cadence Magazine around the turn of the century. This current review I’m doing for fun, mostly for personal reasons to keep abreast with the CAD World, and get a feel for what you can expect for under two thousand dollars. The threshold VW sets is amazing. I’ll share tips as I have more time to experiment with the latest release.

Finally, there is one obvious thing that caught my eye this time. It’s something I’ve noticed before, but it was clearer than ever yesterday: The free content that is available looks amazing! This is probably a great justification for current users of older versions to upgrade to the latest.

In fact, the content out of the box (well after a huge download–but the more the merrier…) makes me feel like putting it to work. It’s like when you bought a new bike as a kid, but it was late at night, and you really wanted to ride it as soon as it was light out.

Nicely organized high quality content, from entourage, to furniture and equipment, and lights and great diverse planting and trees…. It’s just begging, “Use me, use me!” 😉

It’s interesting to compare this with Autodesk’s “We are not in the Content-Creation Business” approach. I haven’t tracked whether that is still Autodesk’s official line. Their content out of the box has improved steadily in the past few years, but it’s surprising how it just doesn’t seem as polished and accessible as what you get with Vectorworks.

Let’s explore the content quality of different CAD programs carefully to see which one is the best.

I often feel that we CAD pros get paid for our familiarity with where to find the content we need MUY PRONTO (very quickly and soon), or know how to create it accurately from scratch based on cut sheets, specs or 3D scans.

If you’re a Vectorworks user please share your favorite tips. I will see if Nemetscheck has a full working trial demo version available or not so everyone can play, if interested. In the meantime, please share your all-time favorite tips, or your 2015 favorite new features here. At a minimum, it will be a source of inspiration for everyone. In fact, one of the things I love to do with AutoCAD, is to make it emulate features in other programs. But it’s nice to find features that work so well you don’t want to replicate them, but simply use them and put them to work.

So much great CAD software, so little time…

@Vectorworks @VectorWorking http://ow.ly/Cguwc #CAD #Vectorworks 2015 First Impressions. Please share your favorite tips & features.

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