Precision is key feature of AutoCAD LT

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With the release of AutoCAD LT 2010 software, professional woodworkers have new functionality that enhances speed and accuracy in their wood design process. This latest release has more of the 2-D features customers have been asking for such as Align, xref tools, block attribute commands, as well as a high-quality PDF output, says Sylvia Knauer, product marketing manager.

AutoCAD LT 2010 features PDF underlay and improved PDF output capabilities, previously only available in AutoCAD.

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"A new feature in the 2010 version is the ability to generate a PDF directly from the software, which facilitates sharing with colleagues or clients. Also, users may pull a PDF file into the software and draw over it," says Knauer.

AutoCAD LT is different from traditional AutoCAD in that it does not have 3-D modeling or visualization tools, explains Kate Morrical, technical marketing manager for the product. It also doesn't have custom programming options, nor is it available for networking licensing. While AutoCAD is more of a large-company solution, AutoCAD LT is suited for single users.

"The biggest advantage AutoCAD LT has is precision; the ability for you to know exactly what the dimensions of your project will be, to have them laid out, and all of your potential conflicts and interferences worked out on the screen before you even think about cutting into your first piece of wood," says Morrical.

The software is geared for design professionals, but in terms of a learning curve, a woodworker who wants to create a relatively straightforward 2-D design should be able to get up to speed quickly, Knauer says.

Another valuable asset to woodworkers is the ability of AutoCAD LT to plot to scale or even to plot full size. This enables woodworkers to create scale drawings they can measure or refer to while doing construction.

AutoCAD LT sells for $1,200. Sold separately is an AutoDesk subscription, which, if added to the purchase, entitles customers to upgrades within a given time period.

For comparison, AutoCAD sells for about $4,000.

This article originally appeared in the March 2010 issue.

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