Tuesday, March 22, 2011

AutoCAD 2012

AutoCAD 2012 is released now.

Most everyone will find something useful in this release. Many will upgrade just for the performance enhancements. Others might wait because of bugs or that this release does not give enough value to be worth deploying. Can I recommend it? I do recommend everyone to take a look at AutoCAD 2012 and see what it’s all about and decide for themselves.

“Install from download or DVD” the system requirements says. USB memory stick installation was the big thing during the Autodesk 2012 Webcast so I would expect it to be mentioned. Of course you can install it from a USB memory stick as well.

From Autodesk’s site comparing different AutoCAD versions there are some incorrect details. AutoCAD-Complete Command Entry is not completely new for AutoCAD 2012 but it is improved a lot. Before you had to press Tab.

Delete Duplicate Objects (OVERKILL) is not new but it is improved with increased performance and functionality and is now a core command instead of an Express Tool command.

Project Snap was the labs name but now it’s called Autodesk Content Explorer.

Here’s from the press release:

What’s New in AutoCAD 2012 Products

Users of the AutoCAD 2012 products gain several new productivity tools, helping them to slash drafting, detailing and design revision time. Parametric drawing tools automatically define persistent relationships between objects; extended associative array functionality enables creating an array of objects along a path; and PDF publish and import improvements help users clearly communicate with clients. More robust 3D modeling tools improve surfacing and conceptual design functionality, while enhanced design and documentation tools help users to read and edit multiple file formats, streamlining the documentation process to improve accuracy and accelerate design time. Other enhancements provide faster start times, faster commands and overall improved product performance, together with a premium graphics and visual experience.

With direct access to AutoCAD WS web and mobile applications from within the AutoCAD 2012 products and the Autodesk Design Suite editions, users can view, edit and share their designs with anyone, anywhere from a web browser or mobile device. The AutoCAD WS mobile application is currently available for Apple iOS devices, including iPad and iPhone.

Highlights of the AutoCAD 2012 Products

AutoCAD LT drafting and detailing software is the professional choice for data compatibility, reliability and 2D drafting productivity. With AutoCAD LT 2012, incremental improvements, support for hardware acceleration and overall performance enhancements can add up to bigger productivity gains. Key new features include:

  • Associative array can save valuable rework time when creating conceptual designs or finished documentation by establishing and maintaining a set of relationships between arrayed objects, such as windows on a building or trusses on a bridge.
  • Multifunctional grips help make editing faster and easier by enabling direct manipulation. The power and efficiency of multifunctional grips has been extended to lines, arcs, elliptical arcs, dimensions and multileaders, in addition to polylines and hatch objects. Simply hover over a grip to see the relevant commands and options.
  • Sheet Set Manager organizes drawing sheets, reduces steps to publish, automatically creates layout views, links sheet set information into title blocks and plot stamps, and performs tasks across a sheet set, so everything is in a convenient place.
  • AutoComplete commands provide a list of matching command names, system variables, and command aliases when users type in the command line.

AutoCAD 2012 includes all the improvements to AutoCAD LT 2012, along with new and expanded workflows for conceptual design, model documentation and reality capture. In addition to a wide range of timesaving enhancements, AutoCAD 2012 delivers powerful tools for performing 3D design more easily, streamlining time-consuming documentation workflows and helping drive projects to completion faster.

Enhancements include:

  • Model documentation tools enable users to import models from a wide variety of CAD applications (including Autodesk Inventor, Solidworks, CATIA, NX and Rhino), and quickly develop intelligent documentation for those designs.
  • Autodesk Inventor Fusion software for 3D conceptual design is now included with AutoCAD 2012. Inventor Fusion unites the power and control of parametric, history-based modeling with the ease of use and productivity advantages of direct, history-free modeling. The integration between AutoCAD and Inventor Fusion facilitates faster transfers between the applications, as well as with other 3D CAD environments.
  • Point cloud support for up to 2 billion points enables users to quickly visualize scanned objects directly in their modeling workspace, bringing 3D scans to life and helping to streamline time-consuming renovation and restoration projects.

AutoCAD Architecture 2012 software now offers faster startup and drawing load times for more immediate access to tools and large drawing navigation. A new corner windows capability makes it easy to add a single window in the corner intersection of two walls.

AutoCAD MEP 2012 mechanical, electrical, and plumbing software offers enhanced native productivity and utilities tools that make it easier to access dynamic and interactive 3D modeling for building system design. New Industry Foundation Classes (IFC) support from within AutoCAD MEP helps users manage and share data with others throughout the design process.

AutoCAD Electrical 2012 control design software expands its support for international standards, and new tutorial material and an intuitive user interface makes it even easier to save time, reduce errors, and create innovative electrical control designs.

AutoCAD Mechanical 2012 design and drafting software now enables editing 3D models from nearly any source with Inventor Fusion and intelligent drawing view creation with a new model documentation feature. It also includes enhanced bill of materials migration, performance and collaboration improvements designed to help make users more productive while allowing them to maintain existing workflows.

AutoCAD users now have access to product information and customer support through Autodesk’s new Autodesk Exchange site (http://exchange.autodesk.com). The Autodesk Exchange site hosts training, tips, advanced techniques, expert advice and other tools about AutoCAD products, using the AutoCAD 2012 user interface, and more. This site will be the destination for all AutoCAD Help Content, helping users to be more productive with resources all in one place.

More will be added to future blog posts and on the AutoCAD 2012 page.


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