Engineering CAD Software
Published August 19th, 2016 by

7 Criteria for Choosing the Right Engineering CAD Software

7 Criteria for Choosing the Right Engineering CAD SoftwareCAD system is now a constituent part of the development and innovations of various products. They aid in speeding up design process and at the same time helps reduce costs. CAD system is one of the most imperative technological innovations in the field of engineering and architecture. It has made the greatest impact in the design industry.

There are many engineering CAD tools on the market. To mention each of them and their offered features might take you hours as there are hundreds of them available. Choosing the right CAD software can be a difficult task especially if you are not familiar or have no knowledge about it at all in the first place. Picking the right software is crucial to the design process as a whole as it will be your workmate and the rest depends on the both of you.

This article provides a list of 7 criteria of a good CAD tool. At the end of this article, you will be able to know what to look for in choosing the right software. Read through the end and you will find it easier on how to choose the best one.


Efficiency in all field of career is highly significant. It is one of the main ingredients to productivity and success. Being efficient means you’re doing the job if not superb, just right. Same goes through when choosing an engineering CAD service.

According to an article by SolidWorks, in choosing a CAD tool, it is important to know how efficient a certain package is at helping in the creation of the types of products or design you need to make. It is important to consider the tools offered for the user. Especially in creating 3D models which is primarily the reason why engineers and architects use this design tool for. CAD tools are most known for its capability to develop a 3D model.

An efficient CAD tool allows the user to create a design in a timely manner, although being able to create a good design needs skills from the designer, the tool must at least make it easier for them. CAD software must be an aid for the user in the phases of analysis, synthesis and documentation of the whole design process; thus, reducing the time for planning and other calculations. All of these factors will eventually result to efficiency to satisfactory output results.


In today’s modern world, many manufacturers are technologically a hundred steps forward. In the creation of a design, one must take note that these will be shared with your client whose system is not exactly the same as yours. The fact that the design may have multiple CAD formats which needs to be converted and centralized to the format which manufacturers are able to support, you need to make sure your system universally compatible. According to a study on choosing a CAD system, there are two types of compatibility engineering CAD software must possess:

Internal compatibility:

Instances like if a company is currently using CAD software but decide to move to a new one, the data from the old CAD software must be readable by the new one. Or if the company does not use any CAD system at all, the created data must be compatible with systems for the purpose of planning, organizing and for product promotion.

External compatibility:

Big companies do have their own CAD systems. Your systems output must be compatible with your big clients. As a designer, you must meet the CAD system requirements of your clients to avoid transmission and editing problems. It is also essential to make sure that your system supports export and import formats such as SAT, STEP, IGES, DXF, JT, etc.

Compatibility is an indispensable factor when choosing the right CAD tool. However, this might be hard to choose by yourself. It is always better to first do thorough research. You may look up for engineering CAD tool reviews to see what best fits your needs.

Drafting Tools

Although most of the time you will be designing in a 3D aspect, there are still instances where your customers will require plain drawings. This means to say that 2D modeling is still very important in the design industry. One great thing about a 2D drawing is the clear information which isn’t technically obvious in a 3D design.

3D CAD software is probably what most engineers look for since most of their design projects will involve 3D modeling. When looking for an engineering CAD service, it is important to not neglect the drafting tools needed for creating 2D designs. Carefully evaluate each feature software offers; choose the one that best fits your design projects.


For an average user, price is practically a very important criterion. According to an article by Lopol, most popular CAD tools are often more expensive than average ones. As a designer, you need to consider software that meets your budget without sacrificing the quality of your output.

According to a study, purchasing a CAD tool may require additional costs. This may include fee for annual license renewal, new hardware, staff training or installation costs. Before investing in an engineering CAD system, you need to be aware of these factors.

There are a lot of top engineering CAD tools online which are not overly expensive and are totally a good value for money. Take time to have a thorough research and evaluate your top picks.

Stable and Reliable Software

Stable and reliable software is always a must for engineers and architects. Issues like system bugs and crash could potentially ruin the whole design process. According to SolidWorks, there are no standard measures to determine if a certain CAD software is reliable or not since they are manufactured for various types of machinery and systems. It is recommended to just browse engineering CAD tool reviews to see how people go about their CAD systems.

If your firm is into manufacturing of large assemblies, see to it that the CAD software that you purchase is capable of efficiently handling them. There are many systems which are slow when handling complex designs with many part counts. The CAD system must be able to have a good assembly performance especially for complex shapes, helical sweeps, and so on.

In selecting the right system, see for the ones who offer to fix future bugs. Some Engineering CAD tools are committed in assisting clients in solving system issues. Fixing bugs may be difficult for most clients especially if there is no manuals or articles on how to deal with it. You can search for forums or CAD software reviews to see customer feedbacks. It will help you decide what the best one to choose is.

Support Availability

There is an overwhelming number of CAD tools in the market that offers enticing features and commits to be fast, reliable, cost-effective, etc. but has poor technical support or do not have any at all. There are other software that provides support but would require another cost if you avail of their service. As a customer, you deserve the right service with provided support.

Support can be in a form of phone call, chat or email. Various engineering CAD software offer one of the three or all three support. It is always best to look for a system that covers customer’s needs as part of their service.

Easy to Learn

Adopting CAD methods requires knowledge and experience. So it is important to choose a system that allows you to learn easily. SolidWorks also said it is best to look for a system that has a consistent and non-complex user interface. See to it that the drafting and design procedures fall logically from beginning to end. Some software has hidden issues that may stop designers in the middle of the process and they are left with no choice but to start over again.

It would also be helpful if the software have built in tutorials or self-help materials such as manuals or FAQs that will serve as your guide in operating the system. Remember; if the system is too complicated and there are no tutorials or guidelines included, it would be best not to look twice at it anymore. Having an easy to learn system is important as you do not have all day just to learn it.

The 7 criteria mentioned above is a guideline in choosing the right CAD tool. Now that you have a bit of a rough idea about the basic characteristics of a good engineering CAD platform, you are finally ready to pick your best choice. There are still more factors to consider before picking a CAD software. Having thorough research is important before moving on with the next steps. Always remember that your design output relies within yourself and the tool you use. Be wise and practical.

If you are seeking for the right software to invest to, you might want to know more about people’s feedback about engineering CAD tools. Check this list from and see who have made it as top engineering CAD tools.

Keith Moore

Keith Moore has worked with several leading Android development agencies to build customized mobile apps enabling businesses to extend the use of their services to smart phones and mobile devices.

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