AutoCAD® and MicroStation®

MicroStation vs. AutoCAD

Published by - Admin On December 19, 2012

How does one compare the two most popular CAD Software Applications used in the drafting community without ruffling few feathers? And how does a CAD user handle such comparison without being a little biased to the CAD Application he or she has used throughout his/her professional life. Therefore, the basic features of both CAD Software Applications will be listed below in a head to head format designed to help Designers come to an educated choice on which software will serve them best.

Comparing MicroStation V8i to AutoCAD 2013

House in 3D

AutoCAD 2013 is an advanced 2D/3D CAD Application primarily used by Engineers and Architects for designing mechanical components, building structures and assembling component to make a complete model. MicroStation V8i is an advanced CAD Software Application that simultaneously combines the functions of 2D/3D CAD Design with features of building information modeling platforms for designing/assembling engineering and architectural designs.

Today’s comparison will be done using the following key criteria. An advanced CAD Drafting Tool should provide its users in terms of:

  • 2D Design Features—which touches on the available tools and functions a CAD application provides for handling 2D Drafts
  • 3D Design Features—this criterion covers 3D Modeling, Simulation and Animation using the features provided by a CAD Application
  • Interoperability—here, collaboration features between other CAD Applications, the ability for multiple Designers to work using one platform or cloud features amongst other functions will be compared
               Criteria              AutoCAD 2013          MicroStation V8i
2D Design Features In the realm of 2D Designing, AutoCAD still reigns supreme due to the number of tools and features it offers users such as:

  • Sketch tool for intuitively drawing 2D Drafts
  • A customizable tool palette, color palette and command log
  • Snap to grid functionalities, Tape Measure Tool and text Box
  • Generate 2D Drawings from 3D Models
Although it is an advanced 2D Drafting CAD Software, the MicroStation lacks some key features for 2D Designing. MicroStation available features are:

  • An advanced sketch tool
  • Tool palettes, color palette and command logs that are customizable
  • Has features to generate 2D Drawings from 3D Models
3D Design Features AutoCAD 2014 is fitted with the following tools and features for 3D Modeling, Rendering and Animation

  • Parametric Modeling Tools
  • The ability to view real time texture, and material changes as they occur
  • Extrude 3D Models from 2D Drawings
  • It creates Photorealistic models
  • Its animation features equip it to handle basic animation projects
Microstation is a platform fitted with the necessary features needed to handle 3D Modeling and Animation. In this capacity, it is more advanced than AutoCAD:

  • Has parametric modeling features
  • All real time changes can be previewed when implemented
  • It can handle the extrusion of 3D Models from 2D Drawings with on 3 dimensional geometric surfaces
  • It achieves photorealistic models
  • It is equipped to handle 3D Printing
Interoperability/Collaborative Features AutoCAD 2013’s highly advanced user-interface and collaborative features include the following:

  • It supports writable/readable file formats such as: 3DS, DWF, DWG, PDF
  • It comes with the well documented Autodesk 360—Autodesk Cloud Feature—which makes working remotely on the CAD Software Workspace possible. It provides each user with approximately 3 Gigabyte of free space, which can be increased, for the sharing of files.
  • Google Mapping Integration
MicroStation wins the war of interoperability due to its building information modeling features that support advanced collaboration, these features include:

  • It supports writable/readable file formats that include: 3DS, DWF, DWG, PDF, Sketchup, Revit
  • An AutoCAD support feature that allow users to open and use data from all Autodesk’s CAD Versions
  • It supports Geo-location by providing its users with coordinate information on real life building structures, features to integrate Google Mapping, and networking features amongst colleagues.
  • Microstation also provides CAD Users using its CAD Software with a digital signature feature that protects Designer’s work from intellectual theft.

In conclusion, the features of both software applications make them advanced drafting tools which can be used by CAD Drafters to draw and design both 2D and 3D Designs, regardless of their difficulty level. At IndiaCADworks, our specialists leverage AutoCAD and provide the advance 2D drafting services, whereas we also assist with 3D designing and interconnectivity using our MicroStation services.

– The CAD Chief

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