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2024 Technology Preview Program

2024 Technology Preview Program:
Master powerful new features and shape the latest BIM-enabled innovations

Collaboration with other software
About model and data exchange with 3rd party solutions: Revit, Solibri, dRofus, Bluebeam, structural analysis solutions, and IFC, BCF and DXF/DWG-based exchange, etc.

ArchiCAD / Revit Architectural Challenge!

Anonymous
Not applicable
Hope I am posting this at the right place....

I have a challenge for any Revit / ArchiCAD Users on this Form.

After having a lot of people asking me which is better and if there has ever been a comparison done between the two I have decided to make a complete comparison. But I need some help on this.

I need a Revit user that works on Revit Architectural 2008 / 9 to help on this. I want to take different tasks and do them both on ArchiCAD12 and Revit. Then by using either screen prints or videos, compare the two. And see which one does it better, quicker, can or cannot do it.

Thus at the end of the day I should have i file with both the pro's and cons of both software packages.

The Rules are:

1. No external applications may be used. Such as rendering software and or modeling software like Maxon Form. With the exception to when testing is done on file export functions like dwg/dxf/pdf etc.
2. Revit / Archicad must be used with the default settings. Thus no previous set up of favorites allowed, or previous hatches/fills created, etc.
3. Each User will get to set a challenge, explaining what must be done, what the end result must be and or consist of.
4. Every step needed to finish the challenge must be documented in either video or graphic format. Thus every click you do or setting you change.
5. Make the challenges realistic, yet difficult and easy. Remmebering that the point is to see the weakness and strength of each program.
6. Each user has 2-3 days to complete the challenge and report back with their graphics / videos.
7. Users must also have some fun while doing the challenge.
8. Be honest and open minded during all challenges.
9. If you can not complete a challenge you just skip and move to next challenge.

After all challenges have been done, i will take all graphics / videos and compile a proper document showing all differences. Everybody participating in this will obviously receive a copy of this file.

So who out there is up for this? Please only reply if you are truly willing to participate.

Either reply to this post or send me your contact information and I will be get in touch with you.
29 REPLIES 29
Anonymous
Not applicable
Heh -- we've talked about this before on this forum... and I've gotten to know some really good people here and we've talked about what the two apps can do, but the problem is time: it would probably take half a day to do the comparison, and then the next release comes out and the details of your challenge will be stale. Revit is almost certain to get a new UI in a few weeks, so there you are.

I thought it would really be great to have the two masters in the same room, talking back and forth like the hosts of Mythbusters 😉 Then you'd look at workflow and features, etc. and switch from live camera of the two masters talking about features to the screens of the computers and back and forth as needed.

So I would be very happy to participate in something like this. I think it would be great to show off ArchiCAD as the alternative to Revit (or vice-versa, depending on your happiness with Adesk/Nemetschek). I'd be quite happy to help Nemetschek sell a few seats of their software
Anonymous
Not applicable
Dear metanoia,

I remember the ArchiCAD/Revit discussion here. It was very interesting and emotional. But, you are right, it is a very complex problem - to compare and rate different CAD/BIM systems. I doubt even if two very professional and impartial users can judge - the problem is so complex.

I think, that more public approach can be more effective. Project-based.

Imagine, we have a detailed description of working process under some very wide-spreaded and well-known type of architectural project. For example, like that:
1. Client come to some architectural studio. He wants an individual cottage (sorry for terms - I am very far from western architectural practice).
2. Client has some documents: the list and the documents itself
3. He describes his requirements: ...
4. He wants to see proposals: description
5. Architect generates some idea: the idea - detailed description
6. Architect order some additional information, as photos, GoogleEarth etc.: the list and the documents itself
7. Architect makes the proposals: pictures, documents.
8. Client looks at the proposals and request to change something (some kind of variations, which are very common)
9. Architect does
Etc.

It have to be a very detailed scenario from the first request to the last minute of work process with all kind of changes, variants etc.

If we have this, we can start our competition - just on the Web.
1. Select the most important BIM-related decisions for working under this type of project at particular system.
2. Discuss the best methods for each particular stage.
3. Proceed with creating BIM model, step by step with detailed description - how we do something and why we do it in this particular way.
4. We will describe all problems, which come during our work. And our "income" too.
5. If some expert has a fresh idea about the best method of doing something in a particular system, Ok we can discuss and change

I guess it could be a very useful resource - both for BIM comparison and systematic description of the best practice. But writing such kind of scenario itself - is a very complex job. It needs at least some architect who logs everything ...

Cheers,
Leo
Anonymous
Not applicable
Please! Call me Wes 😉

What you're talking about would take a lot of work to organize. Who's got that kind of time?

My hope was to get Aaron or one of the other ArchiCAD users, and over a couple of beers (a shootout in a pub! What's not to like!) take the same project (small, but something that would push both platforms) and work them both up showing early design, DD and CD stages in both platforms, and note any strengths and weaknesses.

I don't think it's possible to show off interdisciplinary BIM, though we could talk about it.

So Aaron -- meet me at Cactus Club with your Mac in tow 😉
Anonymous
Not applicable
Hi Wes (sorry for my mistake ),

yes, you are right, a meeting with beer and comps is rather effective . But there are some problems:
1. It's local and subjective. Your preferences can vary from my very much, even if we are both professionals.
2. At least a half of benefits/drawbacks come form realization, not from conceptions and options. How can you compare them without working?
3. Personally, I rate reliability and predictability as one of the most important characteristics of any BIM system. How could you rate them by talking about?
4. Simplicity of modifications is very important. How will you rate them: some of them are trick-like?

I think it's possible to public "the early design, DD and CD stages" of some particular project, discuss approaches and make model step by step. The scenario can be not very detailed at the beginning. And I am really interested in this project. But, unfortunately, I am not an architect (I help architects solve their CAD-related problems in Russia) and can't write even small scenario, which would be useful for non-local architecture community ...

Cheers,
Leo
Anonymous
Not applicable
I like the idea of a comparison, but as Wes says, it could be quite a large task for a single person in their free time to produce a complete set of drawings for a whole building.

How about splitting it down into common tasks and scenarios that people often encounter. You can concentrate on different areas without having to model the whole building. It would also be easier to video and describe the process so making it better to draw useful conclusions from.

A few ideas -

1- As an example perhaps, how about modelling several different types of foundation detail, then create fully annotated drawings from them. Then edit the foundations with a different shape of pad and different thickness of walls and update the drawings. Something like this would give a much better comparison to the general workflow.

2- Another idea i'd like to see would be to take a finished model that has an number of finished drawings produced from it, and then edit it in various ways (you could stretch it by a number of metres, add an extension somewhere, increase the floor to floor height and so on) then update the drawings. This would reveal many things about the different ways the two programs work.

3- Another idea could be 2d only, maybe produce a site plan, or a 2d detail.

4- Another important aspect is library part /families creation.

5- and so on...

I would expect it to be a fair test so it would be worth comparing the weaker points of AC, like stairs, rendering, skin editing, lack of parametricity etc to see just how much of a problem there is.

Modelling a whole building is just too complex to conclude anything useful IMHO.
Anonymous
Not applicable
Hi Peter,

I like the idea of splitting the whole project comparison into common tasks. The whole project is an ideal comparison, as we can discuss some phases' decisions from the next phases point of view. We can pre-select some type of project and start with the most common things, as you suggest. And go step-by-step to the whole project perspective.

I am sorry, I really like to discuss the ideas, but it's about 1:0 am for me now. So, I'll come back 8 hours later

Cheers,
Leo
Anonymous
Not applicable
You don't walk into this blind: you put together an outline of tasks, then both people work up a little project to build during the demo (or we bring the finished project to show at the end).

I'd have a list of Revit's features I'd want to cover, and we'd script things up to hit those points, and have a discussion narrative for the whole event. Likewise the AC user would do the same thing.
Anonymous
Not applicable
I am not sure what this would prove even if a 'winner' could be decided upon - maybe one guy would simply have more talent.
I head up a small team within a large global firm- 1000 CAD seats mostly Autocad but with 3 offices with BIM capability, 2 AC and 1 Revit. The studio choosing Revit did so because their engineers are using/familiar with Revit/Structure/MAP (altho IFCs can be used between AC and R/S/MEP

I am a long term AC user but have been assessing Revit for a short time to either encourage or resist a roll out of Revit throughout our 12 or so studios worldwide. There is much resistance in the 2 AC studios as expected as they have delivered some large complex projects using AC- the jury is out with the studio using Revit on it's ability to handle large projects- they also use Generative Components etc for those real sexy projects

Thoughts so far on Revit – based on only a few days use (have been thru the tutorials) but assuming skills/knowledge/speed would grow with use.

This is Revit 2008 compared with AC 11 (neither 2009 or v12 have been officially rolled out yet within our firm but I have used both)

Project Set Up
Similar but Rvt uses the Elev window to set up storeys. The Rvt grid tool is better allowing placement of cols at all intersections regardless of grid spacing. The AC v11 grid tool is so so

Modelling
Good base modelling tools although the sketch/edit work environment takes getting used to. The associative wall tool is great- auto link to slabs/roofs etc, the ability to step/connect over different stories is a real plus. The roof/slab tool not as solid. A real winner for Revit is true arcs for barrel vault roofs, curved trusses etc- the segmentation in AC has always annoyed me. The ability to edit/copy paste across storeys in the 3D window is good as well as shifting a column and having everything connected stretch with it (beams/struts, slabs etc). The AC 3D marquee/stretch will only partly achieve this

Libraries.
Rvt uses Families and the interface/choice is nowhere near as good as AC but new components can be made on the fly thro a rather long winded edit/new process- but no GDL req’d

Rebuild
This is on the fly and v quick on the tutorial models- but I can see it bogging down in v large projects. Rebuild in AC 11 is v slow but you can choose to rebuild sections/elevs when you want- (v12 is very rapid here)

Solid Modelling
Quirky and not intuitive but effective- e.g blended swept profiles i.e. a rectangle can blend to a square or even a triangle along a curved path- archifoma/GDL Tool box used to have this ability but cannot be done direct in AC workplace

Layout
As Revit has always had this integral I thought it would be more mature than AC but no – AC allows more control and better xref’s/data base abilities

Schedules/Zones/Calculation etc
Rvt and AC seem to have similar abilities

Workflow
Rvt has no layers so controlling different output to Client/Sales/Engs/Authorites who all want to see different info etc is more convoluted- AC output schemes is much better in my opinion. Not a fan of Rvt workplane – cutting of roof apex etc in plan view etc- although it can be adjusted at the expense of perhaps not seeing something else? Sure there is a work around

Conclusion

Revit has v good modelling abilities, probably better than AC overall, no GDL req’d but AC still has much better production/workflow. Fact is the competition between AC and Rvt is healthy and good for the end user- I think AC is slightly ahead overall but Rvt v good and Graphisoft cannot rest and need to improve the solid modelling set. If Graphisoft can eliminate the curved segmentation I will stick with AC if only for the Curtain Wall tool in v12 which seems rock solid even with v complex profiles

In experienced hands, on a mid size project, I feel that Revit would be quicker out of the blocks with initial modelling but AC would catch up and fly by in the home straight with it's excellent work flow - this is endorsed by a colleage who has similar experience with both.

Regardless I would be interested to view results of any competition
Anonymous
Not applicable
Dear Cecilia,

I am so sorry for spoiling your challenge . I was so excited to see a message of Wes Macaulay here, as I have been turning over in my mind an idea of a project-based CAD/BIM systems comparison for several months. And I had known him from this forum as a very competent Revit specialist. So, I skipped your message as a usual request for help with choosing ArchiCAD/Revit platform . And Wes' message supported me at this conclusion - it was so "talking about" in style. Sorry again.

I appreciate your professional skills and experience. And absolutely sure that it is going to be a very interesting and substantial competition. If I understand him right, Wes takes your dare. He is one of the best competitors from Revit's side here.

I support Harry in his doubt about interpretation of results of the competition. Systematic approach seems to be more appropriate here from my point of view.

Good luck,
Leo