EDUCATION

Top 7 Best CAD Modelling Software for Architecture Applications

3D printed house
Above: TECLA 3D printed Eco-house/Image Source: WASP

If you work in the architectural field then you have come to the right place. This article will provide you with a detailed list of the top seven best CAD modelling software for architecture applications.

This article will guide you if you have always wanted to know about the best software offerings for your designing needs. You can use these powerful software applications to design anything from a simple house to a complex structure. Continue reading to find out about the best CAD software for architectural modelling.

Best CAD Modelling Software for Architecture Applications

  1. AutoCAD Architecture
  2. AutoCAD Civil 3D
  3. Revit
  4. ArchiCAD
  5. Cedreo
  6. SketchUp
  7. MicroStation

1.   AutoCAD Architecture

architectural CAD modelling software
Above: AutoCAD Architecture software/Image Source: Autodesk

AutoCAD Architecture, is an Autodesk software, is a very useful tool for any architectural projects because it allows you to do both 2D and 3D designing. It is a complete tool that is useful for 3D modelling and 3D visualisation due to its excellent rendering capabilities. With its combination of tools like solid, surface, and mesh modelling, users will be able to create realistic models. AutoCAD Architecture is also useful for two-dimensional drafting and drawing. AutoCAD Architecture is the best CAD modelling software for architecture applicationsowing to its specialised tools and functions.

2.   AutoCAD Civil 3D

Similar to AutoCAD Architecture, AutoCAD Civil 3D is also an Autodesk software that specifically caters to users working in the architecture field. As the name suggests, this software is more commonly used in civil engineering and construction sector. Additionally, this software also connects with Autodesk Revit in case users need to reworkor put finishing touches to their design with additional structural modelling.

3.   Revit

CAD Modelling Software for Architecture Applications
Above: Autodesk Revit software/Image Source: Autodesk

Autodesk Revit can also be used as a CAD Modelling software for architecture applications. Revit is basically a BIM (Building Information Modelling) software. This is a powerful and a highly capable tool to architects and by leveraging its features, high-quality and flawless architectural designs can be created. Autodesk Revit allows the designing and managing of any type of building or infrastructure. The collaborative aspect of this modelling software delivers a significant advantage over many other competing software programs. By collaborating with multiple designers and the larger team helps in reducing rework and lost time. In case there is a need to prototype the designs made in Revit software, they can easily be exported in STL format for 3D printing.

Autodesk Revit is ideal for architects, landscape architects, structural engineers, mechanical, electrical, and plumbing engineers, designers and contractors.

4.   ArchiCAD

Graphisoft’s ArchiCAD programme is one of the best CAD modelling software for architecture applications. This is an open BIM tool is a full-featured architectural tool that allows you to do 3D and 2D drafting, visualisation, and building modelling. You can handle all aspects of engineering and design work with ArchiCAD and all of its functionalities. It is especially advanced in the field of visualisation, providing architects with high-quality, photorealistic architectural rendering. This CAD software is also well-known for its ability to store large amounts of data in 3D models. It can be used to design buildings, interiors, and cities. It is offered as a free tool to students who can extend the free license until the end of their studies.

5.   Cedreo

CAD Modelling Software
Above: Cedreo – A web-based 3D home design software/Image Source: Cedreo

Cedreo is a web-based 3D home design software for home builders, interior designers, and remodeling professionals. Professionals can use this software to draw floor plans and quickly create quality 3D renderings. Users can easily draw 2D and 3D floor plans, customize home indoors and outdoors in a few clicks with more than 7,000 3D objects, and generate construction drawings and photorealistic renderings.

By using its superior features, Cedreo software saves designing time and shortens sales cycle. It is estimated that an expert in this software can design a complete home project within an hour.

6.   SketchUp

SketchUp is also a popular CAD modelling software for architecture applications. It is easy-to-use software solution available with designers, especially students. It is as simple as drawing a house and just using push-pull features to build walls. Though it can be used for various applications, it is most widely used for architectural projects. SketchUp also has a vast library called as 3D Warehouse which can be used to download predesigned architecture and construction models.

7.   MicroStation

MicroStation is a CAD software developed by Bentley Systems that is used in the architectural and engineering industries. It creates 2D/3D vector graphics objects and elements and includes BIM features. Users can leverage this software to create conceptual models for architectural structures. It can also be used for visualisation of these models for studying all its details.

Architectural Concept Models

Every architectural project begins with a concept or an idea. This idea is then translated from the designer’s mind onto a paper and can now be 3D printed into a physical object.

This fundamental model assists architects in communicating their ideas to their clients. Because of 3D printing, concept models can now be extremely detailed replicating all of the minute features that will be seen on the final product. In comparison to the previous technique of hand-made models, 3D printing makes it much easier to create such intricate models. The task becomes not only simpler, but also faster and less expensive.

Buildings & Structures

3D printed steel bridge
Above: Queen Maxima of the Netherlands unveiled the 3D printed steel bridge developed by MX3D/Image Source: Imperial College London

This is one of the most rapidly growing 3D printing applications in the architecture industry. Many start-ups around the world are developing concrete 3D printers and building structures, houses, buildings, office spaces, and even infrastructure such as bridges.

This application is gaining popularity as a solution to the global housing crisis.

Art

3D printing is not restricted to the creation of geometrically symmetrical objects or the for simple structures. It provides a much more complex type of manufacturing tool. Artists can use this tool to create abstract designs and have them 3D printed into solid objects.

The level of complexity through 3D printing is unprecedented, and hence an increasing number of artists are experimenting with 3D printing technology to create art that was previously impossible.

Conclusion

The above list of CAD modelling software for architecture applications will be highly useful for all types of users from students to experts who operate in the architectural field. Users can create simple to complex structures like houses, building, stadiums, bridges, etc. By carefully understanding each of the software, its pros, and cons, you can effectively finalise which software you want to learn and professionally for your next automotive project.


About Manufactur3D Magazine: Manufactur3D is an online magazine on 3D printing. which publishes the latest 3D printing news, insights and analysis from all around the world. Visit our 3D Printing Education page to read more such informative articles. To stay up-to-date about the latest happenings in the 3D printing world, like us on Facebook or follow us on LinkedIn and Twitter.