CrazyEngineers Archive
Old, but evergreen and popular discussions on CrazyEngineers, presented to you in read-only mode.
@Ankita Katdare • 07 Dec, 2014
As mechanical engineers & graduates set out to learn the CAD software, they are often confused as to which software to choose. The popular ones being, CAD, Solidworks and Pro/Engineer, there's a lot of engineering service companies out there, who choose one above the other depending on project demand and customer's needs.

The folks over at Boston Engineering conducted a study to find out once and for all which major CAD platform is faster, Pro/ENGINEER or SolidWorks? Those interested should take a look at this video for an unbiased review and interesting analysis by people who have used both -


If anyone of you has used one of these software, please share what you think of it in terms of User Interface, efficiency, tutorials available, error management etc.. Which CAD software do you prefer to learn and would suggest to others?

I have heard that since 2011-12, SolidWorks is gaining popularity very quickly, and so it's probably a great platform to build you skills in. Looking forward to a healthy discussion.
@Ankita Katdare • 07 Dec, 2014 Inviting @zaveri @Ramesh_Kumar @SarathKumar Chandrasekaran @Ambarish Ganesh @Mohit Kamat @Issue @Gurwinder Singh @Harshad Italiya to share their views if they have ever used or heard about these CAD software.
@Mohit Kamat • 08 Dec, 2014 This is my opinion, though different people prefer different softwares and have different views...
SOLIDWORKS: It is a solid modelling software mainly. Gives you little options to do analysis accurately. A very widely used software in various industries.

CATIA: This software is mainly used for sheet modelling. Used mostly to design Automotive parts, aircraft designing etc.
Again this software doesn't give u a lot of options for accurate analysis...

PRO-E: Again a designing software, though it gives you accurate analysis results.

ANSYS: Now this software is for pure analysis. You will find the most accurate results with this software. This is a must learn software with any of the above software according your need.

Well let me tell that I am no pro in CAD..
So please correct me if I'm wrong.

I have learnt 2D drafting on AUTOCAD. Basic solid modelling on SOLIDWORKS. I will be learning CATIA (because I am interested in aircraft modelling which requires metal sheet designing), PRO-E and ANSYS in the coming year. Will do tutorials for SOLIDWORKS from youtube.
Thanks for reading, I hope my post helps 😀
@Ankita Katdare • 08 Dec, 2014 Great. Tagging @Shashank Moghe as well.
@Shashank Moghe • 08 Dec, 2014 Well, I have worked professionally on AutoCAD for 1 year and 2 years on SolidWorks. Have been trained in Pro-E as well. As far as personal preferences go:

1) SolidWorks: Top of the list! Reasons: Less license cost, amazing solid modeling capabilities and OK analysis (never used analysis myself, but heard it is not at par with core analysis softwares like ANSYS. Well that's bound to be, the 3D modeling abilities of ABAQUS/ANSYS are crappy too. So it goes both ways). SW is extremely intuitive, with newer releases kicking all other CAD modelers a**. One more thing, it is extremely modifiable. I worked on the SW kernel based software development part, so I know it is way more easily customizable than Catia. So if you need for a cheaper licensed, awesome modeler, go for SW.

2) Pro-E: One thing about Pro-E, the UI is extremely intuitive, very self explanatory. Easy to use. I heard its not so widely used in the industry as Catia (which is very widely used in auto/aero industry). But that's about it, I am yet to come across any friends who work exclusively on Pro-E. No professional experience myself.

3) Catia: It looks a little bit user not-so-friendly, but what can I say, it happens to have the best modeling capabilities it seems, most of my friends happen to work on Catia. It is perhaps the most widely used CAD modeler in the auto/aero industry, as far as I am aware.

4) UG: Unigraphics is again an awesome modeler, and is used in a variety of industries (including my current company, automotive). It is a very capable software. All of this is what I have seen/heard. I assume UG has a bright future.

Well, since you have the choice of learning any software as long as you are in the university, make sure you learn a few. Once you learn one, others will be easier to grasp. They have more or less the same functionality/terminology/work procedures.

Just my ~2 cents on the topic.
@Sarathkumar Chandrasekaran • 08 Dec, 2014 As far as designing is conserned, Pro E is my favorite. Easy to use and better UI. Havent used other softwares but heard a lot about Catia and Ansys. All time fav- Autocad
@Harshad Italiya • 09 Dec, 2014 I was not much familiar with the these tools but yeah after we purchase our first 3D printer now we need some designs to be printed.

And personally I am not using any tool but would like to go with any open-source CAD tool.
@zaveri • 23 Dec, 2014 At present i am using Creo the advanced version of pro-e.
@Ankita Katdare • 30 Jul, 2015 Yesterday, I was discussing with a friend when the topic of CATIA vs SolidWorks in their industry came up.
From what little I understood, I think we can't really compare the two products.
CATIA is used for virtual product designing, whereas Solidworks is used for 3D designing. Though it sounds similar, he said that it is like CATIA is used for designing both a vehicle as well as the factory in which it is produced.
CATIA lets you design the layout of a manufacturing plant including the machines required and create the whole picture in virtual reality as well as simulate ergonomic studies.

He said SolidWorks is mostly dedicated to designing machines with applications ranging from automobile industry to consumer product manufacturing.
He found SolidWorks to be more user-friendly than CATIA.
Could anyone here confirm that this information is correct or just his personal opinion?
@G JAIPAL REDDY • 31 Jul, 2015 At Present I am learning Catia V5 tool now, we need all the mechanical software like autocad, proe,solid works, uni graphs and catia .but i feel catia is special all among these because it has 100's of work benches due to this we can a make a live product come alive in one software from free sketch to the 3d modelling and anlysis and also discuss the ergonomics..
IT IS A REAL BENEFIT TO THE AUTOMOTIVE INDUSTRY.THANKS FOR CREATING THIS SOFTWARE D ASSAULT SYSTEM
CATIA enables the creation of 3D parts, from 3D sketches, sheet metal, composites, molded, forged or tooling parts up to the definition of mechanical assemblies.

so Personally i feel many benefits with catia rather remaining software's
@G JAIPAL REDDY • 31 Jul, 2015 • 1 like
Ankita Katdare
Yesterday, I was discussing with a friend when the topic of CATIA vs SolidWorks in their industry came up.
From what little I understood, I think we can't really compare the two products.
CATIA is used for virtual product designing, whereas Solidworks is used for 3D designing. Though it sounds similar, he said that it is like CATIA is used for designing both a vehicle as well as the factory in which it is produced.
CATIA lets you design the layout of a manufacturing plant including the machines required and create the whole picture in virtual reality as well as simulate ergonomic studies.

He said SolidWorks is mostly dedicated to designing machines with applications ranging from automobile industry to consumer product manufacturing.
He found SolidWorks to be more user-friendly than CATIA.
Could anyone here confirm that this information is correct or just his personal opinion?
Solid works may be more userfriendly but in catia we can make the complex shapes easily when compared with other mechanical softwares
@Ankita Katdare • 31 Jul, 2015 @G JAIPAL REDDY Thank you for sharing your opinions. It is always great to hear first-hand opinions.
Also, do note that I have removed the part that was copy-pasted from other sites and kept just the part that's been written by you. No copy+paste is strict policy of the site.
@G JAIPAL REDDY • 31 Jul, 2015 @Ankita Katdare Sorry. Don't know the rules. New to this group.

@Shashank Moghe great explanation
@Ankita Katdare • 29 Sep, 2015 So, both Solidworks and Catia are produced by the same company Dassault Systems.
I talked to a few students and they told me that SolidWorks is very easy to learn as compared to CATIA. However, they also said that SolidWorks was a bit difficult/tough to get proficient at. They said that they simply got the Student Copy of SolidWorks and used online easy-to-understand tutorials to get the job done.
@RabinKC • 22 May, 2016 yeah for sure first learn 2D in autocad and move to SW for 3D and finally for analyising purpose jump to ANSYS. This stepwise process avoids the turmoil and your design shows more healthier
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