Interior Design Software

Interior design professionals for the last twenty years have been reaping the benefits of working with very advanced Interior Design Software that can in a great deal increase their productivity. Through advanced features that are exploited with processing power of modern computers, designers have now tools at their disposal which allows them to bring out creativity when designing some really astonishing new projects. But which of these software are top of the line, and which are just copy cats that fall short of the front runners?

One of the first software that came out back in 1982 was AutoCad (CAD standing for computer aided design). It is created by the company called Autodesk. What made a program instantly interesting was that it could be run on a personal PC where others required a processing power of powerful servers. Autocad is an advance designing platform for creating 2D as well as 3D drafts and models. Its popularity has stem from ease with which one can modify 3D models to achieve an exact desired shape. That is obtained with the help of its advanced features such as mesh modeling and parametric functionality. Surface Modeling, Surface Analysis and Object Transparency are some of the other features that can be used. The program supports over 20 different languages including English, German, French, Italian, Spanish, Japanese, Korean. The program is so popular that any reputable architecture and design courses will include work in AutoCad as it is de facto standard for the industry.

Interior Design Software

A great alternative to AutoCad is ArchiCad which is developed by Hungarian based company called Graphisoft. Just like AutoCad, it too has a professional depth and build in design engine that help designers create complex computer generated models. The program uses company developed “Virtual Building” concept to create anything that any building may need including walls, roofs, floor and even furniture. Since 1997, its version 5.1 allows architects at multiple stations to work on one project simultaneously through a feature called Teamwork Solutions. The newest version of the software expanded Teamwork Solutions to work over internet so that designers can work on the same project regardless where in the world they may be. Maybe that is one of the reasons why currently more than 150,000 architects worldwide use ArchiCad on a daily basis.

Where these two top software cost in thousands of dollars (ArchiCad is around $3,800 including one year subscriptions), less expensive versions of interior design software at the cost of less than hundred dollars are also available. One of them is Punch! Interior Design Suite. The program in no way can duplicate rendering power and diversity of above mentioned professional software, but it works great as an alternative and as an introduction to interior design software industry. Still, the program is divers enough as to allow custom material design. It offers over 5000 object and different materials library and if that is not enough, one can import its own images. It can save its files in .dwg and .dxf format so they can later be uploaded to AutoCad for further processing. It is very user friendly, and with its 3d Walkthrough feature it can serve as a great tool when working with clients who want to actively participate in a design process themselves.

So which one is the right software to learn? The smartest thing students can probably do is get acquainted and comfortable in using all of them since they can never know when their knowledge will be required.

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