I’m now on my own, after working for small firms for years. I’m well versed in AutoCAD, but think it is WAY too cumbersome for the needs of an LA. I’m switching (& very seamlessly, I might add) to VectorWorks. It has all of the tools, but not too many of the extras we won’t ever use. It also has a great setup for material quans/pricelists, plant & materials symbol palette, etc. It also allows you to import/export files in .DWG format, which is proprietary to AutoCAD, and create 3D models similar to SketchUp. And it’s less than half the cost of AutoCAD. But both are great if you are working closely with engineers or architects.
Nice Chad, I was wondering about open source alt’s.. I had switched to Ubuntu not long ago, but my archaic Dell couldn’t even handle all the GUI bells & whistles I preferred, so I (unfortunately & reluctantly) switched back to Windows XP. Do you find that those programs play nicely with .PSD’s, .DWG’s, etc? Just wondering HOW seamless it is.. Thanks in advance.
As a Mac user at home and a PC user at work for the past 16 years, I’ve finally started my own practice with what I feel is the best software out there for landscape architects – Vectorworks Landmark. One software for all phases of design with a little help from InDesign and Sketch up. Easy to learn, cheaper than AutoCAD, and is both Mac and PC compatible.
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