AutoCAD Compatibility

by Will
(Greenville South Carolina)

I was interested in purchasing an AutoCAD program but I am not sure of what program I need.

I am getting drawings of sites that we are installing EVCS and I have to do an as-built drawing once I have completed the install.

I would like to take the site drawings that are submitted to me and just update them.

What version should I purchase?

The version that the site drawings are on is AutoCAD 2011.

The last version of AutoCAD that I used was AutoCAD 2000 and I was in High School.

What version would be fairly simple to use and still be compatible.

Thank you,


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May 27, 2011
AutoCAD LT or Full AutoCAD
by: Joe

Hi Will,

If the last version of AutoCAD you used was 2000, there will be a bit of a learning curve to bring yourself up-to-date.  However, AutoCAD still works basically the same way, but now with a few more whistles and bells.

You mentioned installing EVCS, but we are not familiar with that.  Is this a program that will work with AutoCAD as an add-on?  I would think you should contact Autodesk directly if you have concerns about program compatibility. 
Autodesk makes several products that may be more specific to your needs than regular AutoCAD.

If you find using vanilla AutoCAD is your best choice,I think going with the latest release is the best approach as you can always open older drawings with it and save to an earlier version if needed.

If your need to use AutoCAD will be on an on-going basis, I suggest that you purchase Autodesk's subscription program. You will have to pay for the full program up-front, plus the subscription fees for that year, but you will always get the latest updates on as they become available, without incurring a large upgrade fee every 3 years. It ends up being cheaper renewing your subscription yearly compared to upgrading.

Now, you may or may not need the full AutoCAD program. I'm not sure as your post doesn't give enough info to say one way or the other. But if you are only concerned with 2D plan work, and don't have a need for LISP routines and such,
then I would opt for the latest AutoCAD LT program. It is available for approximately 1/4 of the price of regular AutoCAD and is fully compatible with drawing files created by the full-blown AutoCAD program. I do believe Autodesk provides a subscription program for it's lighter version as well.

I would also suggest bringing yourself up-to-date with an online AutoCAD tutorial
. The first 3 chapters are free, to give you an idea of what the tutorials entail, and then if you choose you can purchase the rest.


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