January 3, 2015 at 1:48 am #152193
Anyone out there using VW Landmark 2014/2015?
We are considering migrating from AutoCAD to VW for our very small office. We are a relatively new practice (about 3 years) and working on everything from small residential spec homes to urban design, subdivision planning, parks, mapping, and signage projects.
Our clients are mainly architects using Archicad, Revit, and AutoCAD. We also work with GIS data and frequently AutoCAD surveys/base information. We do alot of conceptual work that requires going from hand drawn sketches to ‘hard lining’ in CAD and quickly to rendering programs.
My main concern is:
1. Participating in the IDP process, as many of our colleagues are using BIM.
2. Integrating and sharing data between Civil 3D, Revit, Archicad, and AutoCAD..interoperability is extremely important. We want to be an integral part of the process.
3. Terrain and grading modeling. We want to protect our ‘turf’ from Civil3D (civils) users and model our own grading, including detailing.
4. Detailing and BIM functionality–We’re not necessarily looking for out of the box graphics. We want a program that offers a high degree of customizability in terms of symbols, blocks, lineweights, raster graphics, etc..We want a program we can control, we dont care much for ‘sketchy line graphics’ etc.
So far, VW looks like it offers the most of what we are looking for. Anyone have any trouble with file sharing? How steep is the learning curve after coming from 10 years with AutoCAD? How well does VW generate site details–wall sections, paving, custom constructions?
Any feedback or guidance is appreciated.
Thanks!January 3, 2015 at 6:47 am #152198
Anyone able to share a few details, maybe a good site, layout plan?
I’ve watched all the tutorials and demos I could find on revit and vs for landscape and the design is with nearly non existent or a small cottage garden. I find it very difficult to understand the capabilities of the program if the sample is poor. I’d love to see some streetscape plans, custom bench details, planting–just 2d line work. I want to see cd’s not renderings..anyone?January 3, 2015 at 5:37 pm #152197
I can personally tell you that with my consulting services I have successfully guided one firm through the transition from AutoCAD with Land F/X add on to Vectorworks Landmark. The latest iteration of Landmark is by far much better than earlier versions and this firm is working with Architects that are using Revit and AutoCAD on complex urban mid-rise and high-rise buildings.
- With regard to BIM, if you working with other firms that are using Revit, my client has not had any issues. The only one would be that the exchange file (an ifc file) will be much larger as it is uncompressed. However the architects we are working with have greatly appreciated the fact that they have not had to re-draft the site walls and paving on their projects.
- We don’t have that much experience with collaborating with Civil 3D other than exchange TIN’s to get a terrain model that we can use in Landmark. I have personally used the grading features and have found them to be very easy to use. My client has leveraged the new interportability with Autocad files as these can be referenced directly into VW without conversion and the resulting file will have the same line weights and line types from the original Autocad file. I’ve already touched on Revit. As for Archicad I have not had the opportunity to work with this file format but given the opportunity I could work something out.
- As discussed above another of my clients has received TIN’s from surveyors and we then produced proposed grading plans that we have then sent the resulting DTM to the Engineer to use in producing a final grading design. One particular project that I worked on was for a 75 acre site which had everything from streets to urban plazas with ramps and stairs.
- Detailing is simple and depending on the complexity of your projects there are numerous opportunities for leveraging some of the best qualities of VW. One of these is that VW has built in smart objects like fasteners, steel members, hole patterns in 2D and 3D, as well as a repetitive unit tool. With regard to graphics another great feature of VW as opposed to Autocad is that the interface is more like Adobe Illustrator in that you can have layers of managing opacity and you don’t have to double up on polygons with some showing line work and other containing hatches. VW allows you to do both with the same object and control their visibility, even allowing you to control the appearance through viewports where one VP will have just the line work (which could be changed) and the hatches or tiles or gradients can be changed and shown in another VP.
I was an autocad user since 1996 and even had the opportunity to work in early AutoCAD Map and Civil as well as Microstation V8 with Geopak and can tell you that VW has been the best by far! There is a learning curve and rather than just getting my perspective I could give you some references to get their impression. If you like I can inquire with one of my clients to see if I can share with you some pdf’s for your review.
I have even started to move away from using sketchup and using the 3D design within Vectorworks. One of the best things about Vectorworks is that when you are working on conceptual designs in 2D you can start adding elements that are available as smart objects that will give you sections easily and efficiently. As for you list of concerns I will respond to each as best I can.
My firm provides contract design, drafting, QA/QC and training services. Should you move to VW I can provide you with CAD a manual to fit your firms style as well as creating drawing templates and title block templates that leverage some of the great features of VW. Please feel free to contact me if you would like to discuss these services.January 3, 2015 at 6:30 pm #152196
Thanks so much Robert!
Like I said, we are still a very small upstart, but have invested in technology to give us an advantage over other larger firms and it has paid off–however slowly.
I would be interested in speaking with you further at some point about how you can help us transition. In the meantime, I may download a trial and tinker a bit. It sounds like VW may be the way to go for a dedicated BIM (SIM) tool in the future.
I’ll send you a PM with my contact info..January 4, 2015 at 11:52 pm #152195
I spent most of the day yesterday with the Landmark trial and a handful of the tutorials VW offers and as much as I WANT to love Landmark, I’m really having a hard time justifying spending more time with it.
The button based commands are exhausting coming from command prompt driven CAD. The windows and palettes get out of control just drafting simple elements like orthogonal walls. I’m also worried about VW’s capabilities in providing solid CD sets. The tutorials VW provides are of an english cottage garden, working in metric–I find the sample project to be distracting and does little for my confidence in the capabilities of the software to provide a full documentation package for larger, more complex projects.
If anyone can direct me toward more relevant training material and/or example documents created in VW Landmark that would be much appreciated.March 2, 2015 at 7:49 pm #152194
I started out with autocad ver 1 and went to Vectorworks about four years ago. Will never go back to Autocad. There is a saying that Vectorworks makes Autocad autocan’t. The 3D is fantastic at the cartoon level. I’m not at the photo level, yet. I now design more in 3D than I use to. Any changes in 3D are automatic in your plan. Love it.
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