If you’re just getting started in the world of CAD design, you’ll want to find the most cost-effective software to experiment with. Free 2D drawing software can a great tool for introducing designers, architects and other professionals to the valuable commodity that is computer aided design, but sooner or later you’ll need to upgrade to be able to make use of a wider range of features.
When you upgrade your 2D CAD software, you’ll likely have access to an extended range of drawling tools – including pens with various thickness settings for display and printing, as well as increased copy and paste options. An upgrade should also give you a Mono Print option and added change tools such as Break, Explode and Stretch.
Not only that, but you’ll also be able to create your own templates, enabling you to speed up your work and take advantage of new features, such as customisable line thickness and datum dimensioning. This can be incredibly useful for professional designers.
Your new software will also present you with a range of more input options, meaning you can use your arrow keys to specify distance and direction, making your software easier to navigate.
A brand new ‘Select All of Type’ function will allow you to select all entities belonging to a specific colour, layer or style, saving you time on your designs. You will also receive best free drawing software more drawing aids such as Direct Input, X & Y Snap Filters, and Entity Info and Measure options.
Most basic upgrades will be low-cost. You can expect to pay something in the region of £20. This should be a one-off payment and will last you a lifetime, so is definitely worth the small investment. More specialist upgrades will be costlier, but come with a multitude of benefits of their own.
Perhaps you’re an architect, building designer or estate agent, and you’re ready to upgrade your free software to something specifically designed for your industry. Upgrading to Architectural CAD software will cost you around £200, and will equip you with a range of features to enhance your design work – it’s a one-off payment, so will be yours for life.
You will be able to take advantage of vastly improved wall drawing functions, as well as hundreds of built-in industry symbols, such as those corresponding to Electrical; Furniture; Heating, Kitchen fittings; Landscape and Plumbing trades.
You will also be able to view and rotate an automatic 3D model viewer calculated from the plan, which is ideal for demonstrating prototypes to your clients. The software will allow you to zoom in and pan around your design with your computer mouse.
You will see an increase in speed and function of your software, as well as a range of features to make creating building plans simple and efficient. Design features will include the ability to automatically add dimensions to walls and create wall breaks, as well as providing superior wall joining and teeing tools. Architect CAD Software will also enable to you place doors in walls quickly and easily.
You will then be able to create a 3D DXF model from your drawing to export to other systems.
Upgraded software will generally be much faster and more powerful than your earlier version. But don’t worry; it will be easy to use. These upgrades are designed for users of all experience levels and abilities, for use either commercially or in the home.
You will probably find that there are a range of upgrade options available at varying prices. If you need something bespoke to your professional requirements, there are a range of reputable CAD developers on the market who can create software that if unique to your needs.