The Benefits of Using AutoCAD and Revit

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The Benefits of Using AutoCAD and Revit

Written by: Keysoft Solutions

Keysoft Solutions products have always been based on AutoCAD however over the past few years Revit has been gaining in popularity across the design community, so it may be appropriate to ask why? What are Revit’s strengths and when is it best to continue to use AutoCAD? Is it best to use Revit, AutoCAD, or a mixture of both to complete a design?

What AutoCAD and Revit Both Offer

AutoCAD and Revit do have a few key similarities. Both applications offer 2D, 3D and rendering options, meaning both pieces of software can be used to design a variety of projects. In addition, they both offer the option to attach extended data with options to extract this for generating schedules. There may be a slight difference in graphical display, workflows and how projects are presented, but essentially, they can generate similar outputs.

What Does Revit Offer?

Revit has many strengths over AutoCAD when designing architectural structures. Revit is a 3D design tool that allows an object to be edited through graphical and non-graphical (data) views, AutoCAD is an all-round generic 2D drafting tool, which allows you to model in 3D but often requires third-party plugins to be able to provide additional functionality and intelligence. However, AutoCAD is often superior when it comes to either larger designs or complex landscape designs.

Revit is database driven, with changes to the database affecting both the 2D and 3D representation. Revit is parametric so changes made to the 2D, 3D or data are automatically reflected in the database and updated in all views, including changes to any dependent objects or sub-objects. It also offers dynamic scheduling that can make a job easier and reduce the risk of errors.

Revit has the ability to create a topology (surface model) that can be manipulated and includes a limited palette of trees but it lacks many of the tools necessary to develop the external elements around a building.

How can AutoCAD and Revit be used together?

There are a few key reasons why we prefer to use AutoCAD to Revit. Firstly, the AEC industry is somewhat used to, if not heavily reliant on AutoCAD as a base platform and it has been around a lot longer; it is malleable, and able to be used in a multitude of ways,. There is a lot more support and third party applications available for AutoCAD, aiding it in becoming an industry standard.

Over the past few years, we have found that AutoCAD is a superior software when it comes to 2D design. Revit is primarily a 3D tool, used for architectural projects, whereas AutoCAD is better suited for larger scale projects. AutoCAD meets the wider needs of the AEC market. It includes  3D design, should it be required, and is far more useful from a landscape architecture perspective.

Finally, AutoCAD is a multi-faceted tool for designers and the DWG/DXF drawing format is widely supported by other software.  Designs can be easily imported in to Revit from AutoCAD if needs be, allowing for an incredible amount of versatility. This is useful, allowing for the strengths of both pieces of software to be used when the need arises. It is this flexibility that makes AutoCAD a stronger building block for design work overall.

Why AutoCAD Overall?

Revit is a powerful package for modelling buildings, but can often be seen as restrictive when dealing with external works. AutoCAD is more customizable and can be used to meet the need in hand. Essentially, AutoCAD provides the ideal design platform and allows you to share your proposals with a wide audience, including Revit.

For landscape professionals that use AutoCAD to prepare their design proposals, the great news is that Keysoft Solutions landscape design applications, working within AutoCAD, provide unique export features that streamline the ability to share design data with Revit. See our recent case study here

To find out more about our suite of AutoCAD tools and how they may help you collaborate with other design partners, please feel free to trial our software for free or contact us directly at 03451 30 30 40.