This powerful tool uses an intelligent model-based process to help plan all aspects of a building project, from design through to construction and beyond. While Revit is a fantastic tool for architects, its scope is vast and its toolbox is deep - it also services engineers, builders, project managers and more. Designed to be utilised as a collaborative tool for professionals in all specialist disciplines of engineering and construction, Revit is the complete package for taking a building project through its entire lifecycle. This software offers a suite of tools for building design and engineering, and is capable of seeing a project through engineering and visual design of building's interiors, exteriors, and surrounding spaces. There's no denying that both of these CAD options are powerful tools, and as always, dedicated users of each will naturally think their preference is better. We're having a closer look at how these two programs compare to help you decide which is better for your particular application and working process. Architectural features Conceptual design Revit features a conceptual design environment which provides a great deal of flexibility in the earliest stages of project design. This allows you to create conceptual masses as well as adaptive geometry which can later be integrated into your BIM project environment. Here you can manipulate designs into parametric components or subcomponents to be nested in other models. You can reference designs from this environment, and they can also be modified within the BIM environment itself. These intelligent components can adapt to a variety of complex surfaces. Concept design in ArchiCAD is fairly straightforward without sacrificing useful features. While ArchiCAD is a great platform for quickly creating a concept, it lacks the complexity and robust referencing capabilities of Revit. Visualisation Revit features a wide range of potential views from which to approach your design. Wireframe and transparent surface views open up the model, while other view types allow the user full control over shading and light. There is almost no view that Revit is incapable of providing, and each can be manipulated and controlled to display optimal views for your particular task. Most of these can be assigned to the overall view, or specified to a category, filter or element. While ArchiCAD has a similar suite of visual styles to Revit, it lacks Revit's capacity for customisation and applying views to specific elements. Each program can produce photorealistic images of the exterior and interior of your project, and both Revit and ArchiCAD feature an extremely large suite of tools to allow fine tuning for optimal outcome. Revit features Raytracer in-product, but also allows users with Autodesk A to render in the cloud, reducing stress on any one system. Both allow minute alterations to light, shadow, texture, brightness, depth, diffusion and retraction - while the processes are different for each program, the results are comparable. Engineering and construction features Revit and ArchiCAD are both great tools for architectural design, but a building project doesn't end there. Without dismissing the role of aesthetics, the most important factor here is ensuring structural integrity across every facet of the project and making sure it conforms to every relevant building standard. Structural Revit supports multidiscipline coordination of the design process, utilising intelligent models to provide in-depth analysis of how each part of the project responds to relevant and potentially applicable stresses. Not only does this streamline the process of analysis and compliance, but also the creation of supporting documentation. By simulating stresses, structural engineers can gain an accurate picture of reinforcement requirements and optimal rebar design. Revit allows you to perform cloud-based analysis while you work, and also features the Dynamo plugin, which provides structural engineers with the ability to optimise structures through creation of logic-based tools. ArchiCAD has recently been equipped with an element classification system to classify elements of a design project according to standards relevant to country and application. While this is a good tool, it merely mirrors the basic functions of Revit.
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