AutoCAD gets native Apple Silicon support, boasts 2x speed jump

Posted:
in Current Mac Hardware
Engineering and design tool AutoCAD by Autodesk gains native support for Apple Silicon M-series processors in the 2024 release.

A MacBook Air with M2 processor
A MacBook Air with M2 processor


AutoCAD and AutoCAD LT are the latest professional apps to gain native support for Apple Silicon. This translates to faster load and render times throughout the app.

According to a press release from Autodesk, the Apple Silicon support is for both M1 and M2 series processors. The AutoCAD and AutoCAD LT apps still support Intel as well, but the Apple Silicon versions boast up to 2x performance improvements over the 2023 version.

"AutoCAD for Mac 2024 and AutoCAD LT for Mac 2024 deliver incredible, new performance improvements with the ability to run AutoCAD natively on Apple silicon," says Dania El Hassan, Director of Product Management for AutoCAD, Autodesk. "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."

AutoCAD for Mac 2024 costs $245 per month or $1,955 per year. The cheaper AutoCAD LT for Mac 2024 runs $60 per month or $485 per year. Autodesk offers a 30-day free trial for new customers.

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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 15
    tmaytmay Posts: 6,419member
    ...and this, for all of you makers, engineers, et al...

    Fusion 360, a popular 3D design software, is set to achieve full native support for Apple Silicon chipsets (i.e. M1 & M2) by the summer of 2023. The delay in support is due to the need for 100% compatibility between components from over 100 third-party vendors, including Autodesk.

    chasmroundaboutnowxiamenbillwatto_cobrajony0
  • Reply 2 of 15
    entropysentropys Posts: 4,213member
    Damn, just bought a Thinkpad P14s for CAD work because things were a bit dire in Mac world. Ah well, needed it two months ago.

    now for solidworks and Siemens NX.
    edited March 2023 tmaybyronlxiamenbillwatto_cobra
  • Reply 3 of 15
    michelb76michelb76 Posts: 653member
    That's a very modest speed bump, it doesn't use the GPU I guess?
    lkrupp
  • Reply 4 of 15
    entropys said:
    Damn, just bought a Thinkpad P14s for CAD work because things were a bit dire in Mac world. Ah well, needed it two months ago.

    now for solidworks and Siemens NX.
    There's no Solidworks made for Mac unless you are running virtual Windows on a Mac.
    lkruppdewmewatto_cobra
  • Reply 5 of 15
    tmaytmay Posts: 6,419member
    entropys said:
    Damn, just bought a Thinkpad P14s for CAD work because things were a bit dire in Mac world. Ah well, needed it two months ago.

    now for solidworks and Siemens NX.
    There's no Solidworks made for Mac unless you are running virtual Windows on a Mac.
    Same problem that I have for Autodesk's Product Design and Manufacturing Collection, albeit the bundled AutoCAD and Fusion 360 are likely able to be run independently in the cloud on a Mac per the license, the rest on a PC.

    Then there is this;

    https://machow2.com/inventor-for-mac/

    Requires Parallels...

    https://machow2.com/run-solidworks-mac/

    I was a SolidWorks user in the past, and I would assume that Parallels would work fine, but I would want to be confident that there wouldn't be issues. 

    Windows 11 and Parallels Desktop 

    Parallels® Desktop version 18 is an authorized solution for running Arm® versions of Windows 11 Pro and Windows 11 Enterprise in a virtual environment on its platform on Apple M1 and M2 computers. 

    The Arm version of Windows 11 has limitations that can impact your ability to use various types of hardware, games, and apps, including those that rely on DirectX 12 or OpenGL3.3 or greater. For more information, please see the FAQ in this article

    edited March 2023 ravnorodomwatto_cobra
  • Reply 6 of 15
    tmay said:
    entropys said:
    Damn, just bought a Thinkpad P14s for CAD work because things were a bit dire in Mac world. Ah well, needed it two months ago.

    now for solidworks and Siemens NX.
    There's no Solidworks made for Mac unless you are running virtual Windows on a Mac.
    Same problem that I have for Autodesk's Product Design and Manufacturing Collection, albeit the bundled AutoCAD and Fusion 360 are likely able to be run independently in the cloud on a Mac per the license, the rest on a PC.

    Then there is this;

    https://machow2.com/inventor-for-mac/

    Requires Parallels...

    https://machow2.com/run-solidworks-mac/

    I was a SolidWorks user in the past, and I would assume that Parallels would work fine, but I would want to be confident that there wouldn't be issues. 

    Windows 11 and Parallels Desktop 

    Parallels® Desktop version 18 is an authorized solution for running Arm® versions of Windows 11 Pro and Windows 11 Enterprise in a virtual environment on its platform on Apple M1 and M2 computers. 

    The Arm version of Windows 11 has limitations that can impact your ability to use various types of hardware, games, and apps, including those that rely on DirectX 12 or OpenGL3.3 or greater. For more information, please see the FAQ in this article

    Interesting. The site says it runs faster on M1 and M2 Macs virtually than Windows 11 native PC. Wow, someone really needs to test this out. This is great news for Mac users.  But realistically speaking, I got my son a PC just to use these programs at his college rather then jumping over the hoops with a Mac which I don't have time for. Maybe one day after a virus eats up his PC, then I will introduce him a Mac.
    watto_cobrajony0
  • Reply 7 of 15
    tmaytmay Posts: 6,419member
    tmay said:
    entropys said:
    Damn, just bought a Thinkpad P14s for CAD work because things were a bit dire in Mac world. Ah well, needed it two months ago.

    now for solidworks and Siemens NX.
    There's no Solidworks made for Mac unless you are running virtual Windows on a Mac.
    Same problem that I have for Autodesk's Product Design and Manufacturing Collection, albeit the bundled AutoCAD and Fusion 360 are likely able to be run independently in the cloud on a Mac per the license, the rest on a PC.

    Then there is this;

    https://machow2.com/inventor-for-mac/

    Requires Parallels...

    https://machow2.com/run-solidworks-mac/

    I was a SolidWorks user in the past, and I would assume that Parallels would work fine, but I would want to be confident that there wouldn't be issues. 

    Windows 11 and Parallels Desktop 

    Parallels® Desktop version 18 is an authorized solution for running Arm® versions of Windows 11 Pro and Windows 11 Enterprise in a virtual environment on its platform on Apple M1 and M2 computers. 

    The Arm version of Windows 11 has limitations that can impact your ability to use various types of hardware, games, and apps, including those that rely on DirectX 12 or OpenGL3.3 or greater. For more information, please see the FAQ in this article

    Interesting. The site says it runs faster on M1 and M2 Macs virtually than Windows 11 native PC. Wow, someone really needs to test this out. This is great news for Mac users.  But realistically speaking, I got my son a PC just to use these programs at his college rather then jumping over the hoops with a Mac which I don't have time for. Maybe one day after a virus eats up his PC, then I will introduce him a Mac.
    I'll probably have to upgrade my PC, currently running Windows 7, since Autodesk no longer supports the latest versions of software. I've held out about as long as I can, but the option of running on a Mac M Series at this point in time is too risky.
    ravnorodomwatto_cobra
  • Reply 8 of 15
    danoxdanox Posts: 3,065member
    AutoCAD is garbage on the Mac, if you want to draw construction drawings and do 3D/BIM work use Vectorworks or Archicad, along with Bluebeam. All of their programs support Apple Silicon Mac’s now.  Revit and Navis are no-shows and probably will never make it over onto Apple OS.

    strange thing cad programs are like word processing programs. Once you have experience on one, takes hardly anytime to learn another. The exception to that rule is learning Revit combined with Windows ribbons is a Bim abomination.



    edited March 2023 Alex_Vravnorodommattinozxzuwatto_cobrajony0
  • Reply 9 of 15
    genovellegenovelle Posts: 1,481member
    JP234 said:
    It ain't cheap, but if you need it for work, it's the standard and you gotta pay.
    I have a friend who is an engineer and one invoice for a single project can usually cover the full month for his entire team. 
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 10 of 15
    macxpressmacxpress Posts: 5,849member
    danox said:
    AutoCAD is garbage on the Mac, if you want to draw construction drawings and do 3D/BIM work use Vectorworks or Archicad, along with Bluebeam. All of their programs support Apple Silicon Mac’s now.  Revit and Navis are no-shows and probably will never make it over onto Apple OS.

    strange thing cad programs are like word processing programs. Once you have experience on one, takes hardly anytime to learn another. The exception to that rule is learning Revit combined with Windows ribbons is a Bim abomination.



    Bluebeam is not supported on the Mac. They dropped Mac support a few years ago. We use this where I work and everyone that has a Mac and needs Bluebeam has to have Parallels to use the Windows version. 

    https://support.bluebeam.com/articles/revu-for-mac-end-of-life-eol-announcement/
    edited March 2023 ravnorodomxzuwatto_cobra
  • Reply 11 of 15
    fastasleepfastasleep Posts: 6,444member
    JP234 said:
    It ain't cheap, but if you need it for work, it's the standard and you gotta pay.
    This isn't even that expensive compared to a lot of software out there. Nuke is $3500–5500/year for example. 
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 12 of 15
    boboliciousbobolicious Posts: 1,153member
    Is BIM Ruining the Architecture Industry? - YouTube

    Like so much software has the default position of growth at all costs with new features that add complexity (and bugs) beyond debatable efficacy and the tightening of licensing financials on (significantly invested) customers with migrations to subscriptions inverted the cost-benefit equation for design professionals...?

    On the mac have the annual (since 2011) 'upgrade' cycles also had an effect on overhead burden ?  By way of example migrating a 10 year old file from a client to do some additional work...
    edited March 2023
  • Reply 13 of 15
    macxpress said:
    danox said:
    AutoCAD is garbage on the Mac, if you want to draw construction drawings and do 3D/BIM work use Vectorworks or Archicad, along with Bluebeam. All of their programs support Apple Silicon Mac’s now.  Revit and Navis are no-shows and probably will never make it over onto Apple OS.

    strange thing cad programs are like word processing programs. Once you have experience on one, takes hardly anytime to learn another. The exception to that rule is learning Revit combined with Windows ribbons is a Bim abomination.



    Bluebeam is not supported on the Mac. They dropped Mac support a few years ago. We use this where I work and everyone that has a Mac and needs Bluebeam has to have Parallels to use the Windows version. 

    https://support.bluebeam.com/articles/revu-for-mac-end-of-life-eol-announcement/
    I use Autocad 2023 for Mac on my 2019 Intel Macbook Pro everyday and it runs fantastic. I do electrical engineering drawings for buildings though, and have no need for the 3D functions. REVIT should be used for 3D and it's nowhere to be seen on Mac. I was also saddened when they cut off Bluebeam for Mac as I use it all the time. I managed to buy Bluebeam Revu 1.9.3 for Mac before they went to windows only. The 2.1 version for Mac kept crashing so I went back to 1.9.3 which works great to this day. But for how long it works is another question. I do have Bluebeam on my 11" iPad Pro M2 but I've recently moved to using the built-in Apple Preview app for PDFs which works way better than Bluebeam if using the Apple Pencil for markups (no pencil lag at all). I will be updating my macbook pro to maxed out when the M3 processor comes out. I will likely see a huge performance gain in Autocad although to be honest, it runs very well right now.
    ravnorodom
  • Reply 14 of 15
    mattinozmattinoz Posts: 2,372member
    danox said:
    AutoCAD is garbage on the Mac, if you want to draw construction drawings and do 3D/BIM work use Vectorworks or Archicad, along with Bluebeam. All of their programs support Apple Silicon Mac’s now.  Revit and Navis are no-shows and probably will never make it over onto Apple OS.

    strange thing cad programs are like word processing programs. Once you have experience on one, takes hardly anytime to learn another. The exception to that rule is learning Revit combined with Windows ribbons is a Bim abomination.



    Remember the "good old days" when Autodesk use to ring companies up and threaten to sue them because AutoCAD was the only way they could be doing the work they did on a computer, so we must be using pirate copies of AutoCAD.

    There were better options then and there are better options now. 

    Has AutoCAD even improved I still see a lot of flat lifeless drawings and design coming from people who use it?
  • Reply 15 of 15
    Well! That's great because I thought autoCAD 2022 on my M1 was working terrific. Gonna def update then. I would be quite elated if they get Revit on there—for now, using Parallels or RDP'ing to my beefy windows workstation is also okay too.
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