Cut the Cost of CAD Conversion

Exporting and converting CAD data has always been a complex and expensive process… but is there an easier way to share data?  These days, if you know where to look, CAD conversion can be both efficient and economical.  Of the available conversion software on the market today, PROSTEP’s conversion solutions are the least expensive and most advantageous.  PROSTEP software converts CAD data from any authoring system (AutoCAD, Creo Parametric, CATIA, Solidworks, etc.) into a lightweight, shareable 3D PDF file.

CAD conversion to a lightweight, portable format is an important part of the product lifecycle management process, as it is the method by which you render your data shareable downstream.

The purpose of CAD conversion is to translate your data into a more readily readable format, and you want to keep things simple for the recipients of your data.  You want said recipients to access your data files without having to purchase, install and learn to use an entirely new program.  You want to convert your data into the most versatile, lightweight, accessible file format available… a 3D PDF file. 3D PDF file is a communications tool that allows people to view, receive, send and edit the data in a PDF file.

With 3D PDF, your original engineering data is not part of the shared file, so your 3D CAD models can be transmitted without compromising your intellectual property.  3D PDF also allows you to translate 3D models into 3D interactive documentation.  These attributes all lead to improved communication downstream.

3D PDF files can be read using the free Adobe Reader, which is installed on almost all modern electronic devices.  Since Adobe Reader is so readily accessible, the person or company with whom you share a file will not need to install any new software or learn any new programs.  Your shared 3D PDF file will be immediately available for a recipient to view.

3D PDF use case examples:

Compatibility with 3D PDF

What solution is best for you?

Whether your company is a two person operation or an international conglomerate, you want to ensure that your CAD conversion solution is scaled appropriately.  PROSTEP can help.  PROSTEP has CAD conversion solutions to suite a company of any size.  Are you a smaller company looking to share data person to person?  If so, you don’t need an exorbitantly expensive enterprise wide installation.  You need something less extensive, like a client-based solution.  Are you a larger corporation with the need to share data among numerous employees and outside vendors?  If so, the purchase of a single use license for every one of your employees is a waste of resources.  A server based solution with an enterprise license is far more sensible, both financially and operationally, for a large company.

If you prefer a client-based solution, PROSTEP offers Tetra4D Converter, which is sold as a single user license.  Each license is assigned to only one employee and one machine.  Converter does just what the name suggests:  it converts your CAD data into a 3D PDF file.  The best part about purchasing a Converter license is the minimal impact it has on your budget.  It is one of the most economical single-user solutions available.  If your company is small, or if only a few of your employees will utilize CAD conversion software, then Tetra4D Converter is the correct solution for you.

PDF Generator 3D is PROSTEP’s server based solution.  This product allows your entire enterprise to access the conversion software and convert CAD data into easily readable 3D PDF files.  These files are viewable in the free Adobe Reader, which means that they can be read by almost everyone with access to an electronic device.  PDF Generator 3D does have a higher price tag than Tetra4D Converter simply because it is far more extensive and intended for numerous users.  It is designed as an enterprise wide solution and meant to be utilized throughout your organization.  Purchasing a separate license for each user in your company is unnecessary with PDF Generator 3D, since all your employees can make use of the software collectively.  Although the cost of this software is higher than a single seat of Converter, it is still far and away the most cost effective server solution.

Client or Server Solution – At a Glance

The right CAD conversion software ensures that communication flows freely and securely down the supply chain.  When communication is unencumbered, product lifecycle management processes run smoothly.  And when lifecycle management processes run smoothly, budgets remain accurate and deadlines are met with ease.

Are you ready to reduce your costs and simplify your CAD conversion process? Visit PROSTEP’s website to see how a 3D PDF conversion solution can increase the efficiency of your company.  You can download information about 3D PDF files and PROSTEPS’s CAD conversion solutions here: 3D PDF Examples.


Abbie Nesbitt, Operations Manager at PROSTEP INC

Abbie Nesbitt started her career with a brief stint as an educator, but quickly found that the software industry was a far better fit for her talents. She now has almost a decade of writing, consulting, and management experience in the software field, and she currently works as an Operations Manager at PROSTEP Inc. 


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