Architectural CAD


Architectural CAD software for Mac

  • ArchiCAD® – by Graphisoft is architectural CAD for Mac OSX. It is purpose built architectural CAD software that has been around for years and was the leading Architectural CAD software globally for some time. It is at the higher end of the price range and is also available for Windows. ArchiCAD and all the architectural CAD software at this level of professionalism does require time to learn and master. It is a professional software product designed with dedicated professional users in mind. Interestingly Graphisoft since 2007 a part of the Nemetschek Group who also own All-Plan and Vectorworks. All competitors of each other. It will be interesting to see what happens in this space.
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  • BOA – French architectural CAD design software for the Mac that allows users to design projects in 3D and obtain 2D drawings automatically. By today’s standards this software is quite elementary but could be worth considering if your demands on software ability are not too high.
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  • DenebaCAD – DCAD Vectorspace appears to have disappeared from the radar. It was an elementary design system from Italy with strong architectural ability. We can’t advise on this product until we are able to contact the developers and find out where this software has gone in the last few years.
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  • DomusCAD® – by Interstudio of Italy is an architectural CAD program for Mac OSX and supports QuickDraw 3D technology and plug-in renderers. Whilst this Italian software is relatively unknown outside of Italy, it is a powerful architectural tool and extremely well priced. The lack of support options in English outside Italy seriously prevent us from giving the program top marks, however for the price it is well featured.
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  • Home Designer Professional – Chief Architect Corp (USA) is a slightly reduced version of its full Chief Architect software. We currently regard this software as the ‘best in class’ for residential and light commercial building design. It is easily the easiest and fastest building design software we have tested and comes with a staggering array of automated features. the is can be used on its own or combined with third party tools and templates to make it an all time favorite with our team.
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  • VectorWorks® – Architect by Nemetschek is a well worn and extensive 2D/3D CAD program for Mac. Albeit quite intense to use, especially for the beginner, Vectorworks has a long following due to it being one of the first Mac based CAD programs in the market, originally known as MiniCAD. It has a particularly strong user base in landscape and interior design as well as stage and lighting design. On its own Vectorworks compares with AutoCAD® and RealCAD® but most Vectorworks users will add a plug-in for either architecture, landscape or lighting design and rendering to make it even more useful. Whilst historically popular and well supported throughout the world, Vectorworks suffers from a legacy of being complex to use and having much of its screen real-estate taken up with menus and dialogs.
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  • DenebaCAD – DCAD Vectorspace appears to have disappeared from the radar. It was an elementary design system from Italy with strong architectural ability. We can’t advise on this product until we are able to contact the developers and find out where this software has gone in the last few years.

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