16 May 2023. Written by Alexander Parker. Estimated skim time: 9 minutes.
Introduction to Dxf Files and Their Importance
If you have ever worked with CAD (Computer-Aided Design) software then you most probably are familiar with DXF file format. DXF or Drawing Exchange Format is an Autodesk file format that is used to store 2D and 3D design data. As DXF is an open source file format, it can be used by software other than AutoCAD, and there is a huge demand for DXF viewers. DXF files are usually used in industries such as architecture, engineering, and construction.
As it is essential to have a DXF viewer to open and view DXF files without having an expensive CAD software on your computer, we have created a list of the top 5 DXF viewers that can be used on both Windows and Mac.
Comparison of Top 5 Dxf Viewers for Windows and Mac
1. AutoCAD: AutoCAD is a well-known CAD software, but it also offers a free web-based viewer for DXF files. This viewer provides quick access to view, print, and share DXF files with anyone online, even without an Autodesk account.
2. CADSoftTools ABViewer: With CADSoftTools ABViewer, you can view, edit, and convert DXF files. This viewer has additional features like measuring tools, image capturing functions, and batch conversions, making it a useful tool for professionals in the AEC (Architecture, Engineering, and Construction) industry.
3. DWG FastView: DWG FastView is a free CAD viewer that can open DXF files. Although it is a lightweight viewer, it still provides basic features like layer manager, zooming tools, and annotation tools.
4. BricsCAD Shape: BricsCAD Shape is a free 3D modeling software that can also be used as a DXF viewer. This software is user-friendly and enables users to create architectural designs in 3D, as well as view and edit DXF, DWG, and other file formats.
5. FreeCAD: FreeCAD is an open-source parametric 3D modeling software that also works as a DXF viewer. With its 3D design capability, this software allows users to view and edit DXF files in 3D.
If you want to read more about Autodesk software as well as other CAD software comparisons, check out this article Autodesk Software Compared to see how they stack up!
Features and Benefits of Each Viewer
3. DWG FastView: DWG FastView is a free CAD viewer that can open DXF files. Although it is a lightweight viewer, it still provides basic features like layer manager, zooming tools, and annotation tools. One of the advantages of DWG FastView is its compatibility with other file formats, including DWG and DWF. The software also allows users to print and export files to different file formats quickly.
4. BricsCAD Shape: BricsCAD Shape is a free 3D modeling software that can also be used as a DXF viewer. This software is user-friendly and enables users to create architectural designs in 3D, as well as view and edit DXF, DWG, and other file formats. BricsCAD Shape also allows easy data exchange between common BIM formats, which makes it more accessible for architects or designers who use BIM (Building Information Modeling) software.
Both DWG FastView and BricsCAD Shape offer advanced features like architectural design, which is especially useful for professionals in the AEC industry. Additionally, they provide users with a smooth and stable performance when opening and viewing DXF files. However, they may lack some of the advanced tools and functionalities that paid software offers, but ultimately it depends on the user’s specific needs and requirements.
If you want to make the most out of your DXF files, you can also check out this Beginner’s Guide to Object Recognition Software, which provides an overview of how AI can improve the accuracy and efficiency of object detection in the AEC industry.
Point 5: How to Download and Install Each Viewer
Downloading and installing each DXF viewer varies based on the software. However, it is generally a straightforward process that requires you to download the software from the official website and run the installation wizard. Make sure to read the installation instructions carefully, and do not forget to check the system requirements for the software.
For AutoCAD, there is no need to download or install anything, as it is web-based. Users can simply open their web browser and access the viewer through the Autodesk Viewer website.
For CADSoftTools ABViewer, users can download the free trial or purchase the full version from their website. After downloading the installer, users can run the program, and the installation wizard will guide them through the process.
DWG FastView can be downloaded either from their website or from the Microsoft Store. Once downloaded, users can run the installation wizard, which is simple and easy to follow.
BricsCAD Shape can be downloaded for free from their website, and the installation process is straightforward. Users can run the installer and follow the prompts to install the software.
For FreeCAD, users can download the software from their website. Once the installer is downloaded, users can run the installation wizard, and it will guide them through the process.
Point 6: Conclusion and Recommendation for Best Dxf Viewer Option
In conclusion, having a DXF viewer is essential for viewing and sharing DXF files without expensive CAD software. Each viewer has its pros and cons, and the choice ultimately depends on the user’s needs and preferences.
If you are looking for a simple and user-friendly option, we recommend using DWG FastView. Its lightweight features and tools provide basic functions to view and annotate DXF files. For more advanced 3D modeling and editing capabilities, we suggest using FreeCAD. Its parametric 3D modeling software allows users to view and edit DXF files in 3D.
Overall, we hope this article has provided useful information about the top 5 DXF viewers for both Windows and Mac. For more information regarding DXF and DWG file formats, check out our article on the Best Free DWG Viewers.