HERE WE HAVE our complete list of CAD and CAM apps for the macOS platform. The list is below in alphabetical order.
We must note that we do understand we have missed some apps, or put them into a future 3D apps list for macOS which is coming up very soon. But here is the list thus far. And it’s quite healthy!
Some Notable Mac CAD/CAM Apps
Since we highlight some of the most important CAD apps for Mac on other more specific lists, we wanted to draw folks attention to three CAD apps that honestly either don’t get the attention and marketing they deserve or are rather new in the world. This is not an endorsement; it’s meant to illustrate growth in the application space in the macOS platform.
One of the more notable signs of growth in the Mac CAD market was when Chief Architect came to the platform in 2013. The actual product line is three products, with Chief Architect Premier, Chief Architect Interiors and Chief Architect Lite. Chief Architect is a powerful 2D/3D BIM-based design tool aimed at builder-developers in the home market but a good many architects use it as well and swear by it.
A software app we have reviewed several times is TurboCAD Pro Mac. This app is one of the best values in the entry to mid-level CAD market because it provides strong mechanical and product design features, including support for 3D printing, robust AutoCAD DWG support and smart tools for AEC CAD users. TurboCAD too comes in three different levels but the ACIS based NURBS modeling versions at the mid and upper levels provide a lot of firepower for the buck.
Unlike Chief Architect, MacDraft is a veteran product in the Mac community. The UK-based CAD developer was among the core group of early CAD software providers on the Mac platform, offering tools at the lower-end of the market. Always one to stay rather up-to-date with the latest Mac standards, MacDraft has “smart-snap” technology. The latest version features custom grid colors, custom guides, a template chooser, a helper palette and a lot more. MacDraft is regarded as an easy-to-learn and fun CAD system.
There are over 50 CAD applications listed below and we start breaking them down into industry-specific lists for you here and deeper into the big leaders in the market who have dozens upon dozens of add-on applications and plugins available.
The bottom line is—there has never been a better time to be a Mac CAD user. So many choices!
INDEX 01: A complete “alphabetical-ordered” listing of Mac CAD/CAM Apps
We have over 59 macOS native CAD applications in this list below but we know there are likely others out there we need to add—and will certainly do!
- ARCHICAD — offers computer-aided solutions for handling all common aspects of aesthetics and engineering during the whole design process of the built environment — buildings, interiors and urban areas. (Mac OS X and Windows)
- ArchiFacile — free floor or house planner software which allows you to design them in two dimensional. This tool is very beneficial for architects as it allows to export design in PDF format. It can be used to plan floor, house, garage, wooden house, a garden shed or pool. (web-based)
- Argon — CAD and 3D precision modeling software for Mac and Windows. It offers wireframe, solid and surface history-free modeling with precision drawings, photo-realistic renderings, and animation. (Mac OS X and Windows)
- ARES Commander — powerful CAD software for day-to-day work as well as complex projects. Leverage the productive tools and intelligent features for drafting and design that you’ve come to expect from top CAD products plus some exclusive productivity features, at significant cost savings. (Mac OS X, Windows, and Linux)
- Autodesk Alias — An industrial design software widely used in the auto industry for concept design, surface modeling, and visualization. (Mac OS X and Windows)
- Autodesk Fusion 360 — a modern web-based 3D CAD, CAM and CAE tool aimed at product development and engineering and simulation. It features a modern development model and includes simulation tools. (Mac OS X and Windows)
- AutoCAD LT for Mac — the fully macOS native version of AutoCAD LT offers near feature parity with its Windows version and delivers it in a superior user-interface than its Windows version, taking advantage of unique Apple Mac user-interface features and integration, like support for the Apple Touch Bar on the MacBook Pro. (Mac OS X)
- AutoCAD for Mac — this is the complete professional CAD package for AutoCAD on the macOS platform and has all the features of LT above plus a whole lot more in the form of 3D. (Mac OS X)
- AutoQ3D CAD — 2D and 3D CAD application that allows you to create, edit and share your drawings and designs. It is intended for everybody as professionals, sketchers, architects, engineers, designers, students and more. (Mac OS X and Windows)
- BricsCAD — offers all the familiar .dwg 2D CAD features, yet it adds time-saving tools and 3D Direct Modeling. (Mac OS X, Windows, and Linux)
- BricsCAD BIM — a powerful full-featured and native DWG file 2D/3D CAD and BIM system that features direct-modeling, IFC support and more. (Mac OS X, Windows, and Linux)
- BricsCAD Sheet Metal — this innovative product offering adds specific feature sets for the sheet metal industry to the base BricsCAD product offering. (Mac OS X, Windows, and Linux)
- BRL CAD — BRL-CAD is a powerful open source cross-platform solid modeling system that includes interactive geometry editing, high-performance ray-tracing for rendering and geometric analysis, a system performance analysis benchmark suite, geometry libraries for application developers, and more than 30 years of active development. (Mac OS X, Windows, and Linux)
- BricsCAD Communicator — a high-quality 3D data exchange between major MCAD formats. This optional module to BricsCAD Pro or Platinum users can import and export 3D CAD data with all the major MCAD programs.
- CAD File Converter 4 — this is a DWG-DXF-PDF convert, view and print application and also handles conversion of DWF, Autodesk’s PDF competitor format.
CADtools 11 — brings the power of CAD tools to Adobe Illustrator complete with robust dimensioning, symbols, CAD walls, axon support and much more. (Mac OS X and Windows)
CADpatterns — from the same folks at CADtools 11, this app brings 134 editable architectural CAD patterns to Adobe Illustrator and can be used in conjunction with CADtools. (Mac OS X and Windows)
- CADintosh — 2D-CAD software for electrical, mechanical and architectural drawings. it has interactive window redrawing, where the user can work at the same time as the window is redrawing, also easy to Import and export your work into multiple format such as HPGL, DXF, and PICT.(Mac OS X)
- Chief Architect — The industry leader for residential architectural home design software. This program is easy to use for the building professional.
- DraftSight Professional — an ARES-based native DWG 2D CAD system by industry giant, Dassault Systèmes. In terms of CAD usage, DraftSight has one of the largest user-bases in the world, with over 2 million downloads and counting. It comes with its own API and Dassault has largely used this platform to thwart Autodesk’s dominance in the CAD market.
- DraftSigth Enterprise — this version is just like the version above but for large organizations, NGOs, governments, who want full DWG native 2D CAD but with network licensing and built-in technical support plans.
- Cobalt — the premier parametric 3D modeling and CAD program from Ashlar-Vellum. This application includes 2D and 3D production drafting along with advanced parametric modeling with geometric dimensioning and tolerancing. (Mac OS X and Windows)
- CorelCAD — an ARES-based DWG-native 2/3D CAD program that has unique ties to CorelDraw useful to manufacturers with extensive CAD and technical illustration workflows. (Mac OX and Windows)
- DesignFreeQ — is a drafting program is used in CAD/CAM to produce high precision drawings, but also in areas like technical illustration, documentation and education. Due to DesignFreeQ’s unique Inference Engine, drafting is made as easy as sketching on a piece of paper. (Mac OS X)
- DeltaCAD for Mac — is a fully-featured CAD application specially designed for architects and engineers that need an easy-to-use yet powerful drawing app. It features a distraction-free interface.
- DigiCAD 3D — this is a photogrammetry, mapping, and architectural surveys application useful to the CAD processes supporting these applications.
- DomusCAD Pro — You can immediately begin to create three-dimensional elements without needing to start from a two-dimensional plan. Elements such as walls, floors, roofs, and stairs are created from the onset in their full three-dimensional form. Watch the 3D model change in real time as you design in plan. (Mac OS X and Windows)
- DomusTerra — land modeling CAD program for architecture from the same folks behind DomusCAD Pro. (Mac OS X and Windows)
- DoodleCAD — DoodleCAD is an easy to learn, feature rich and inexpensive vector drawing and 2D CAD tool that gives Mac OS X users the tools they need to do illustrations, diagrams, and mechanical drawings like a pro at a very affordable price. (Mac OS X and Windows)
- Eagle — Make anything with EAGLE PCB design software. Powerful, easy-to-use tools for every engineer. (Mac OS X and Windows)
- eDrawings Viewer — CAD viewer for Mac which delivers a premier 3D viewing experience for non CAD professionals. eDrawings Viewer enables anyone to quickly and easily view, print and review native eDrawings and SOLIDWORKS files in addition to AutoCAD DWG and DXF files.
- FreeCAD — FreeCAD is a parametric 3D modeler made primarily to design real-life objects of any size. FreeCAD is open-source and highly customizable, scriptable and extensible. (Mac OS X, Windows, and Linux)
- Graphite — When you want 2D and 3D CAD software that’s easy to use, yet absolutely precise, that’s Graphite. Formerly known as Vellum®, Graphite offers extremely powerful, precision wire-frame drafting with the elegant ease-of-use that makes it productive even when only used occasionally.
- HighDesign — award-winning 2D CAD program originally made exclusively for Mac OS X, it ships in LT and Pro versions. The Windows version is currently in Beta.
- Home Sketcher — Thanks to a high-level, intuitive plan drafting tool, you can design your home in just a few clicks!
- iCADMac — made by the same folks behind progeCAD, this is a full CAD alternative to AutoCAD that is DWG native and supports a user-friendly 2D/3D CAD system native to macOS. It is highly customizable and very affordable. progeCAD is one of the several high-quality AutoCAD clone CAD companies and this is their Mac version.
- ImplicitCAD — is a programmatic CAD program, implemented in Haskell. Unlike traditional CAD programs, programmatic CAD programs use text descriptions of objects, as in programming. Concepts like variables, control structures, and abstraction are used, just as in programming.
- Live Home 3D — Live Home 3D, a successor of Live Interior 3D, is the powerful yet intuitive home design software that lets you build the house of your dreams right on your Mac or Windows.
LibreCAD — free Open Source CAD application. (Mac OS X, Windows, and Linux)
- MacDraft — UK-based native Mac OS X CAD program comes in both Professional and PE (Personal Learning) editions, while Professional can open and edit AutoCAD DWG files. (Mac OS X)
- Microspot DWG Viewer — a Mac OS X native DWG file viewer and annotation and printing tool. (Mac OS X)
- Onshape — Design, version, and share parts, assemblies, and drawings from anywhere for less than your legacy CAD maintenance fees. (web-based)
- PLaSM — open source scripting language for solid modeling, a discipline that constitutes the foundation of computer-aided design and CAD systems. In contrast to other CAD programs, PLaSM emphasizes scripting rather than interactive GUI work. (Mac OS X, Linux and Windows)
- PowerCADD — You want drawings that look like those you’ve always done by hand — or better. Exquisitely detailed. Perfect arrows. Crisp lines. Or maybe even a squiggly sketch. You don’t want it to look like it was done on a computer. (Mac OS X)
- Punch Interiors for Mac — Bring the interior design of your home to life with this consumer-oriented 2D/3D easy to use design program focused on home interiors. (Mac OS X)
- PunchCAD Landscape for Mac — Bring your home’s exterior features to their full potential with the all-new Landscape Design for Mac version 19. A PunchCAD product aimed at the prosumer market. (Mac OS X)
- Sailcut CAD — It is a sail design and plotting software for Architectures. It allows you to design and visualize your own sail and compute the accurate development of all panels in flat sheets.
- SharkCAD — SharkCAD is a comprehensive 2D/3D CAD program that ships an entry and pro versions. It features KeyShot Live Linking and advanced NURBS surface modeling. (Mac OS X and Windows)
- solidThinking Evolve — an industrial design software that competes with Autodesk Alias for advanced surface modeling, concept design, product design, etc. (Mac OS X and Windows)
- topeScope 2.3 — this little app is useful for viewing solid models created on Vectorworks and saved to the STL format for 3D printing, for example. In the app, the user can find errors and then correct them back in Vectorworks. (Mac OS X)
- TouchCAD — like topeScope 2.3, this program too is a stand-alone software that works in VW workflows, users can unfold complex model shapes in TouchCAD. Not just for that, TouchCAD is useful for more complex modeling, sheet-metal unfolding, and reverse-engineering. (Mac OS X)
- TurboCAD Mac Designer — IMSI/Design’s entry-level 2D drafting CAD program is a well-regarded stable in the Mac CAD community aimed at the prosumer market. (Mac OS X)
- TurboCAD Mac Deluxe 2D/3D — IMSI/Design’s mid-level CAD package for Mac features ACIS modeling tools along with strong 2D drafting CAD features, including support for 3D printing and both AEC and MCAD tools. (Mac OS X)
- TurboCAD Mac Pro — is IMSI/Design’s professional mid-level 2D/3D CAD package and includes both ACIS modeling, AutoCAD DWG compatibility and powerful rendering tools along with 3D printing support. (Mac OS X)
- Vectorworks Architect — a full BIM and CAD application oriented at the professional architectural market used for modeling, BIM, and drafting documentation. (Mac OS X and Windows)
- Vectorworks Designer — The complete package of all vertical industry series solutions of the Vectorworks product line. (Mac OS X and Windows)
- Vectorworks Fundamentals — the entry-level version of the Vectorworks product line, focused on general CAD and modeling needs across various industries. (Mac OS X and Windows)
- Vectorworks Landmark — a full BIM and CAD application for landscape architects, urban designers, and other landscape designers. (Mac OS X and Windows)
- Vectorworks Spotlight — an industry-leading application for the design of entertainment venues and performance spaces with simulated lighting, rigging, and documentation tools. (Mac OS X and Windows)
- ViaCAD — like SharkCAD made by PunchCAD and aimed at the prosumer or consumer CAD market, ViaCAD ships in 2D, 2D/3D versions and ViaCAD Pro. Taken together the PunchCAD product line ranges in price from $40USD – $1895USD. (Mac OS X and Windows)
- Xenon — this is a full-featured 3D modeling and production drafting (2D/3D) application by Ashlar-Vellum similar to Cobalt but without parametric modeling. It has associative 3D modeling instead which is not as powerful. This is Ashlar Vellum’s mid-range product. (Mac OS X and Windows)
Growing This List
Have we missed a key software package? If you think so please email us at [email protected] and tell us about it. We will be sure to add it to the list at the next update AND we will give you a complimentary annual subscription to Architosh INSIDER premium membership.
series index page: Mac App Guides for CAD/CAM/3D/AEC industries.
Architosh will be reviewing and updating all our App Lists on a regular basis. See the dates below.
Listing of Updates by Date
15 Dec 2017 — Page last updated on.
01 Nov 2017 — Creation Date.