Inventor and Solidworks compared – who is the winner?

August 5, 2010


I have received a PDF document with a deep comparison study performed by TechniCom Group. This study is dated August 2010 so it must have been done quite recently.

The TechniCom whitepaper compares Inventor Professional 2011 and Solidworks Premium 2010 in 15 functional areas (161 individual questions), using a group of experts for each software product.

As an Inventor user and as a participant of frequent disputes with my school-mate Sergio (he is a Solidworks fan) I am very proud that Inventor has won this comparison in astonishing 15 cases (of 15)!

They were comparing the functions included in the following packages, with no third party add-ins – i.e. Inventor 2011 Professional Suite with Inventor Fusion, Autodesk Vault for Workgroups, AutoCAD Electrical, Inventor Publisher, and Showcase vs. SolidWorks 2010 Premium, SolidWorks Workgroup PDM, SolidWorks PhotoView 360, and 3DVIA.

The 15 key areas included in the comparison were (and the point score for Inventor vs. SWX):

  1. Part Modeling (2.8 > 2.5)
  2. Assembly Modeling (3.1 > 3.0)
  3. Simulation (2.6 > 2.4)
  4. Mixed Modeling – parametric+direct (3.2 > 2.7)
  5. Plastic Part Design (3.6 > 2.3)
  6. Sheet Metal Design (2.9 > 2.8)
  7. Interoperability (3.4 > 2.6)
  8. Documentation/Drawings (2.2 > 1.8)
  9. Visualization (3.4 > 2.9)
  10. Design Automation (3.4 > 2.9)
  11. Mechanotronics (2.3 > 1.7)
  12. Mold Design (3.0 > 2.1)
  13. Routed Systems (3.0 > 2.1)
  14. BIM – Building Information Modeling (2.3 > 0.8)
  15. Data Management (3.0 > 2.7)

You preferences and weights for the individual areas may vary, so you can perform your own comparision, but this is what experts are saying.

Sergio, do you listen ? ­čÖé


Solidworks 2009 vs. Inventor 2009

October 7, 2008

Last weekend I have met my school-mate Sergio who is currently working with Solidworks. It was a good opportunity to play a favourite “who is better” game. He proudly presented the new Solidworks 2009 (“SWX 2009” as he writes) but I have seen amazingly many similarities to the Inventor 2009 version.

  • Performance – I cannot judge as he was using a different hardware configuration than me, but┬áSergio has admitted that the promised performance gain is not that great
  • New icons – same as in Inventor: not that much important for us users
  • 64-bit version – Inventor has it already
  • SpeedPak – assembly simplification – looked interesting, in Inventor we are using LOD and other similar functions
  • Geometry sensors in assemblies – it is called AutoLimits in Inventor (already there)
  • BOM in assemblies – Inventor has it for many releases
  • Filters in BOM – Inventor has it
  • Dual dimensions – Inventor has it
  • Assemblies larger than 1000m – I doubt many┬ádesigners will need it but I have tried it in Inventor and it works there, no problems
  • CircuitWorks – electrical functionality – some of the functions are there in Inventor Pro, much more is in AutoCAD Electrical
  • Ribbon cables – already there in Inventor Pro 2009

There seems to be nothing new about the DWG. DWG file format compatibility is still very limited in Solidworks. And although Sergio claimed it works for him in most cases, we have digged out a couple of DWG files which were loaded incompletely into Solidworks’ DWG Editor but loaded smoothly into Inventor.