This is probably the first question that a novice planning to learn a 3D modeling software (CAD) will ask.
” Which 3D modeling Software Is Best For me? “
In fact, the answer to the above question should be crystal clear in your mind before you invest your precious time and money on it.
Well, I am assuming that this question is asked by someone, who wish to learn a 3D modeling software. There are different aspects based on which these 3D modeling software can be rated but the key aspects are-
- Importance with respect to the industrial point of view.
- Ease of learning for beginners (which also depends on the user interface).
- Of course, Area of expertise of these 3D modeling software.
- The different modules of these 3D modeling software.
Let’s Choose the Best 3D modeling Software
Before deciding on the best 3D modeling software let us discuss a few of the prominent ones:
1. CATIA | 3D modeling software
Why I wrote CATIA on top of my list?
Naah, it’s not because I rated CATIA higher than others. It’s because I decide to list them in alphabetical order:)
And while making that statement, I made it very clear that there is no way you could rank these 3D modeling software. Because one or the other way they have something special.
“CATIA is especially known for its Surface Designing.”
And since I have used CATIA and few other 3D modeling Softwares. I totally agree with the statement made above.
The options and tools to control surfaces in CATIA are unique and give the Design Engineers full control over their design. This makes it a landmark in the field of Automobile and Aerospace industry and is the favourite among companies like Honda, Volvo, Tata Motors, Boeing, Mahindra & Mahindra, Ford etc (Seriously, I could not add them all.)
But even this powerful tool proves to be no exception in terms of some shortcomings in some modules. The Assembly Module and the Sheetmetal Module are not as advance as in Creo and NX CAD.
What I disliked about CATIA is it’s User Interface. Although not much user-friendly for beginners I would still recommend it to those who wish to make a career in Automobile or Aerospace industry.
2. CREO PARAMETRIC | 3D modeling software
It was my first 3D modeling software and I loved it!!!
CREO, earlier known as PRO-E(Pro-Engineer) came up with it’s the latest version of Creo Parametric 3.0. The best thing about this software is the ease with which it can be used. The nice interface is very popular among both big and small companies. eg:
CREO has a special module called Advance Assembly which helps in assembling a very large assembly thus saving the time required by companies to manage large amounts of data.
Another unique feature called Flexible Modelling gives it an extra edge over other softwares in Part modelling. But when it comes to Surface Module, it lags behind by a big margin.
3. SIEMENS NX CAD | 3D modeling software
NX CAD (also know as Uni-Graphics) provides a unique solution to one of the major challenge of data transfer between different platforms faced by all companies. NX has it’s own modules for CAD, CAM and CAE which make data transfer possible without any data loss (which happens when you convert the file format of a CAD model).
And hence, many believe that companies may shift to NX CAD in the upcoming years.
It is similar to Creo Parametric in terms of command names and user interface. The variety of modules and the wide range of commands make it a big player in CAD industry.
4. SOLIDWORKS | 3D modeling software
If you are learning a 3D modeling software on your own using different resources or for a project, Solidworks is the best choice on the list. The reason I said so is its ease of use and easy control over different options.
And the reason why I said so is because of it easy to use interface and easy command and control over different options. But that makes it less popular among the bigger companies too because there aren’t many options available to meet their needs. That doesn’t mean nobody uses it. Solidworks mainly used for plastic or surface modelling.
But the lack of options to meet the demands of big companies makes it less popular among them. But that nowhere means that no one uses it. In fact it is world’s most used software. It is mainly used by Plastics and Molding industries.
It could be the best 3D modeling software to start as it gives you the understanding of CAD tools.
THE PIE CHART.
The Pie Chart depicts 3D modeling Software users in terms of percentage.
Hey! Use it carefully: Don’t use the chart to judge the capability of the software. Factors like the type of industry, cost, demography etc. play a major role in deciding the figures sometimes enough to make them irrelevant for an individual.
A more honest and realistic view can be obtained by self-research to find out which 3D modeling software suits your target industry.
Now Let’s choose the best one for you.
Being very specific about your choice does not really matter at the initial stage when you are not sure about the industry you will be working with.
My personal recommendation is to learn anyone of them. As they all have a similar line of operation, it won’t take you more than a month to master any other software if you know the basics of any 3D modeling software.
True indeed. Master any one and you are good to go with the others.
These views are based on my experience with 3D modeling softwares. Please feel free to share your views.
Don’t forget to comment……….