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Is Autocad Better Or Solidworks? Complete Guide And Highlights

The comparison between these two CAD programs should be based on empirical facts so that users can easily choose between them. 

Therefore, the comparison between AutoCAD and SolidWorks should be done by stating the important features as well as their features as a design tool.

 To do this, we must examine the design possibilities of each and how to use them using specific parameters.

Before comparing these two softwares, it is necessary to examine the reasons for the creation of each. AutoCAD is a 2D architectural design software that is updated every year, while SolidWorks is used to design 3D models.

 But in general, both software have the ability to design 2D and 3D.


Criteria for comparing the two software

As stated at the outset, this comparison should be made using specific parameters or criteria. By studying the following, you can make an intelligent decision to choose the right design software:

  • Industry: The industrial application of CAD software is proprietary. CAD programs are usually developed according to specific industries.
  • File types: The type of files that an application can support is also a criterion for selecting it. You may be required to provide projects in specific formats to your clients.
  • Function: In this section, the types of features and tools for drawing and modeling and how they work are discussed. This criterion includes software features such as electrical design, architecture and modeling features. This is done using a comparison and contrast template between the two applications.
  • Learning: Learning a CAD program can not be considered a simple task, the features of a software can make it more difficult. This criterion examines the issues raised in software learning.

Compare AutoCAD and SolidWorks


In this section, we will examine the common features of the two programs based on the above criteria.


AutoCAD and SolidWorks are used in similar industries. AutoCAD is primarily designed for architectural and construction design, but its 3D modeling capabilities can also be a good tool for engineering design. SolidWorks is also used to design 2D architecture. While popular as a 3D modeling software, it is also used in the engineering community to design 3D mechanical components. Both programs can be used by different users.

File types

If you are new to CAD, you should know that AutoCAD has been at the forefront of other programs for many years. AutoCAD DWG and DXF formats are considered as standard in various industries. AutoCAD and SolidWorks support the use of different file types in their user interface. These files include: DWF, DWG, DWS, DWT, DXF, PLT, SAT and SolidWrks.


As we said before, both CAD programs are good tools for 2D drawing and 3D modeling. These CAD softwares are geometric design tools and are equipped with a variety of tool menus for design work. The user interfaces of both programs are completely intuitive and designed to be easy to use. The use of custom command lines and shortcuts as drawing aids are other similarities between the two software.

AutoCAD and SolidWorks can be used in assembling parts, simulating designs, estimating costs, and presenting models, depending on what the user wants to do. The cloud storage capabilities of the two applications allow users to store and share work projects.



The comparison of how to learn these two programs is not based on the speed of learning drawing and modeling in them, but depends on how complex tasks and projects are done with them. Learning 2D drawing in both software will be difficult for beginners. This process can be a little easier if users are familiar with similar design programs.

I think the process of learning these programs as a 2D drawing tool is quite similar. And working with them requires training.

The two programs are in many ways exactly the same and can be used in similar design projects. But at the same time, there are differences that should be considered depending on the needs of the user.

The difference between AutoCAD and SolidWorks


Although both programs can generally be used in different industries, each is designed for a specific industry. AutoCAD for; Architectural design, education, construction and automotive industry, developed. This program has extensive features that support design projects in the mentioned fields.

SolidWorks is more efficient than AutoCAD due to its user interface design and modeling features. It is widely used in industries such as aviation, computer design, rapid prototyping, electronics, energy, biomedicine and technology, given that SolidWorks is designed for 3D design.

File types

As we said, Autodesk has put the use of DWG and DXF files in computer design on its agenda, but with the advent of different design programs, different formats have emerged, so the user interface must support different types of files. . AutoCAD supports the following files: ACIS, ACIS SAT, HOOPS META FILE, HPGL / PLT, IGES, IGS, JPEG, Parasolid, PARASOLID XT, PDF, PROE, STEP, STL, STP, TIF / TIFF, VRML, WRL .

SolidWorks supports more limited file types. In terms of file support, SolidWorks is compatible with more popular files used by most CAD programs, such as DWG, DXF, PDF, and SolidWorks. Therefore, in this respect, AutoCAD surpasses SolidWorks by supporting more templates.


In terms of performance, AutoCAD and SolidWorks have many differences, which we will discuss here. The performance of CAD programs is the most important part of using them. Although the two programs have many similarities in terms of features, the differences between them are also significant.

Collaboration Features: AutoCAD supports converting 2D designs to 3D models, while SolidWork does not. Also, AutoCAD models can be printed with a 3D printer, but SolidWorks models usually need to be loaded into a cutting software before 3D printing.

Advanced Modeling Features: First of all, you should know that AutoCAD, unlike SolidWorks, is a 2D design program. SolidWorks has advanced features that make 3D modeling easy for CAD users.

Some of its advanced features include: the ability to create organic shapes, flat surfaces, non-radial surfaces, heal or knit patterns, face change, shape style determination, surface filling and deviation analysis, thickness analysis, symmetry analysis, Undercut analysis, Gaussian analysis, mi radius analysis and many more advanced tasks. AutoCAD does not have these features, but for those looking for an Autodesk product with these features, Inventor is recommended.

Architectural features: In terms of architectural design features available in the two applications, unlike advanced modeling features, AutoCAD is more advanced. And equipped with extensive features to do such designs.

With AutoCAD, designs that include landscaping, leveling stairs and railings, integrating survey results, and designing walls, doors, and windows in floor plans can be easily done. On the other hand, although SolidWorks can be used to design building parts and structures, the program does not have the tools needed to prepare and document major architectural projects.

Electrical design features: Engineers use CAD to design schematic drawings, circuits, and advanced electrical systems, as well as to analyze how they work. SolidWorks is equipped with the necessary tools in electrical design, while AutoCAD has many limitations in this regard.

Design of metal plates: Metal work is also somewhat dependent on CAD. Because CAD can provide simulations and realistic tools to help users create placement sketches. Using SolidWorks, you can: Calculate bending probability, control placement sketches, change flat screens, use forming tools, bend tables, weld tables, etc. when working with sheet metal and construction.

Surprisingly, AutoCAD lacks all of these features. Therefore, Inventor could be a better option for those looking to use Autodesk to work with metal.


We have already discussed the similarities between the learning process of the two programs. Regarding their learning differences, it should be noted that SolidWorks has integrated training programs and features that help you get acquainted with it easily using your user interface. AutoCAD also has training programs, but no special training features are provided in its workspace.

But this can not stop you from learning it because many online resources are available to you.

In general, it should be said that AutoCAD is the mother software (that is, it is easier to learn the rest if you know AutoCAD to learn many other engineering software). Knowing without AutoCAD has no special advantages, but you must know it. Most in-house construction companies consider AutoCAD proficiency as a prerequisite for hiring. In foreign countries, however, SolidWorks is considered an advantage. It is a special software and not everyone is proficient in it.