MCAD Update: VX, Alibre
I don’t write much about the latest mechanical CAD news, because others (like Deelip) already do it better than I can.Â But, since I write a lot about affordable MCAD, it’s time for a brief update on two players:
- Alibre has replaced the $97 Design Standard with the $99 Personal Edition.Â The PE is useless for my uses (such as modeling PCBs) because it won’t import or export STEP or IGES files, although at least you still can do a basic file export to 3D PDF.
- The cheapest version that can handle STEP files is Design Professional, which is currently $599; Alibre’s price do move around a lot.Â Since Alibre runs a lot of specials, especially for existing customers (e.g. PE or Standard users), you should be able to upgrade for less if you wait a while.
- But I’m very happy Alibre is keeping the Standard edition alive for current users.Â I plan on staying on maintenance as long as Alibre continues to provide Standard upgrades.
- VX dropped the VX Innovator and Innovator Light products a while ago without saying anything at all.Â So if you’re interested in Innovator, well, too bad.
- My guess is that this is related to the news that China’s ZWCAD ZWSOFT (maker of the ZWCAD AutoCAD clone) has bought VX; VX will be staying in Florida, but the VX product line will become ZW3D, possibly with significantly lower prices.