Autodesk has announced full native Apple Silicon (M-series chip) support for its new AutoCAD for Mac 2024 and AutoCAD LT for Mac 2024 releases. While not the first major CAD software to support native M-chip Mac computers (this means no Rosetta translation from Intel instructions to native ARM, M-chip instructions), the new M-chip support is a big deal.
Across the board, Autodesk for Mac 2024 and its LT sibling show a comprehensive 2x speed up compared to AutoCAD for Mac 2023 releases that run on Intel (x86) based Macs.
AutoCAD for Mac 2024
The support notice in the company’s official press materials references M1 and M2 chips in the M-series custom semiconductor designs by Apple’s own chip team. Dania El Hassan, Director of Product Management for AutoCAD, told Architosh that the M-series chip support naturally includes upcoming chips as well.
The next M3 chip is rumored to arrive this year, possibly in a new Mac Pro at WWDC in June or sooner. Unlike the modest performance gains between the M2 and M1, the M3 is slated to be produced on a 3-nanometer node at TSMC and is rumored to offer very dramatic speed-ups. This may mean that AutoCAD on Mac may be the fastest version of AutoCAD ever, but until all these items are released and tested, it remains to be seen.
“AutoCAD for Mac 2024 and AutoCAD LT for Mac 2024 deliver incredible new performance with the ability to run AutoCAD natively on Apple Silicon,” says Danie El Hassan. “It’s exciting to see how customers can now take full advantage of the latest hardware and M-series chips for faster ways to work.”
Exclusive to AutoCAD
The Mac versions of AutoCAD are increasingly gaining parity with the Windows versions of AutoCAD products. This is a really good thing for AutoCAD users as many organizations increasingly mix both PC and Mac computers. It is especially difficult in the present market to ignore the performance advantages of Apple’s MacBook computers, especially when running off their batteries in field conditions.
AutoCAD for Mac 2024 and AutoCAD LT for Mac 2024 deliver incredible new performance with the ability to run AutoCAD natively on Apple Silicon.
The Mac versions for 2024 gain the same Markup Import and Markup Assist features found in the Windows versions. This means users can use machine learning to identify markups and provide ways to view and insert drawing revisions with less manual effort and more automation. Markups can be imported from a PDF or jpeg file, and these markups can be the entire drawing or a portion of the drawing and are placed into a new trace.
For example, if there is a PDF version of a file with markups with text and revision notes, users utilize Markup Import to overlay the revised drawing (PDF) on top of the original in a trace. If there are markups on a paper-printed version of the file, simply take a picture of the marked-up printed version of the drawing and again use Markup Import, and the JPG or PGN file will automatically be aligned to the drawing file on a new trace.
As noted in our report on the Windows version of AutoCAD 2024, machine-learning (ML) technology powers Markup Assist and can automatically identify geometry in the trace markups and autogenerate such geometry into the AutoCAD file. It can also detect certain words like move, copy and delete and save steps with those commands or allow you to edit the text before inserting it into the drawing.
AutoCAD 2024’s trace technology updates include Drawing Background and Faded Markup as new settings.
Across AutoCAD and LT, both contain the new Smart Blocks: Placement commands, trace updates just mentioned, 3D Connexion device support, and new 3D color background application preference settings.
Mac AutoCAD for More Markets
Autodesk has not had its Mac version of AutoCAD in as many global markets as some of its competitors. In order to better address that, AutoCAD for Mac 2024 and the LT version too now have support for Italian and Spanish language. This better positions Autodesk to address the take-up of Mac computers in Italy and Spanish-speaking regions around the world where, again, Apple’s mobile laptops continue to enjoy accelerating momentum.
The new versions of AutoCAD 2024 for both Windows and Mac are available today, and readers can learn more about AutoCAD for Mac 2024 and the LT version here and here or learn about the Windows version of AutoCAD 2024 here.
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