Best Mac Apps For Designers 2019

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  1. Best Mac Apps For Designers 2019 2020
  2. Best Mac Apps For Designers
  3. Best Mac Apps For Graphic Design
  4. Best Macbook Apps For Graphic Designers

If you’re looking for CAD software for Mac, you’re not without options. We’ve found some standout Mac and cloud-based CAD platforms for you.

You’re likely to hit a wall if you’re searching for computer-aided design (CAD) software designed for Mac. There are plenty of CAD software options for Windows—you’ll see many of them in our list of the top AutoCAD alternatives—but only a handful offer support for Mac.

And, if you think you’ll bypass the issue by using a cloud-based CAD tool, you’ll quickly find that CAD vendors haven’t embraced the cloud as much as other types of software vendors have, so the offerings are still largely on-premise. According to Gartner’s Hype Cycle for IT Evolution (full content available to Gartner clients), cloud-native CAD applications still have five to 10 years before they reach mainstream adoption.

But fear not, Mac users. We’ve done some digging and have put together this list of the top-rated CAD software for Mac. Read more about our methodology at the bottom of this article.

5 Best CAD Software for Mac (presented alphabetically)

Jump to:


  • CorelCAD

  • FreeCAD

  • Fusion 360

  • LibreCAD

  • Onshape

1. CorelCAD

CorelCAD offers 2D drafting and 3D design capabilities, such as the drawing constraints feature for creating different geometric shapes faster and the push and pull feature for 3D direct modeling.

3D modeling in CorelCAD (Source)

Common user feedback trends

Based on analyses of user reviews on Capterra, here’s an overview of the areas of CorelCAD they like best, as well as those they feel could use improvement.

What users like:

  • The short learning curve: Users mention that the tool is easy to use and beginners don’t have to spend a lot of time learning it.
  • Compatibility with multiple file types: Users like the fact that the tool is compatible with DWG, PDF, ACIS, DXF, STL, CDR, and other file formats.

What users think could be improved:

  • Software reliability issues: Some users mention that the software tends to crash at times.
  • Better dimension functionality: Some users would like a better dimensioning feature for more accurate drawings of angles and proportions.
Apps

Who can use CorelCAD

CorelCAD can be used by construction businesses for collaborative editing on multiple devices. It offers native iOS applications, which makes it easy for field crews to add annotations in graphics and share files using their iPhones and iPads. Additionally, the tool allows team members to leave recorded messages and instructions for colleagues embedded in the graphics using a voice note tool.

2. FreeCAD

FreeCAD is an open source CAD tool that works on Mac as well as Windows and Linux. It reads many common file formats such as STEP, IGES, STL, SVG, DXF, OBJ, IFC, and DAE.

It offers different modules, including a drawing sheets module that converts 3D models into 2D views, a rendering module that can export 3D objects, and an architecture module for a BIM-like workflow.

3D model of a building in FreeCAD (Source)

Common user feedback trends

Based on analysis of user reviews on Capterra, here’s an overview of the areas of FreeCAD they like best, as well as those they feel could use improvement.

What users like:

  • Feature-richness for a free tool: Users mention that, although it’s free, the tool comes with a full set of features.
  • Reliability: Users mention that the tool does not demand a lot of CPU power and works well on devices with low RAM.

What users think could be improved:

  • Steep learning curve: Users mention that the tool is not the most user-friendly solution and can be difficult for beginners to learn.
  • Dependent on community for updates: Users mention that modules ignored by the community tend to become outdated quickly.

Who can use FreeCAD

FreeCAD appears to be best for hobbyists and home users. It’s also good for users who don’t have a high budget for software but still want to tinker with CAD modeling.

FreeCAD could also be a good choice for businesses on a budget looking for a free and open-source option.

3. Fusion 360

BestBest Mac Apps For Designers 2019

Fusion 360 is a CAD tool from Autodesk with design functionalities such as sketching and 3D modeling. It also supports project management with features such as task management, document management, and collaborative image editing.

Document management in Fusion 360 (Source)

Common user feedback trends

Based on analysis of user reviews on Capterra, here’s an overview of the areas of Fusion 360 they like best, as well as those they feel could use improvement.

What users like:

  • Comprehensive design features: User mention that the tool offers all the functionalities necessary for 2D and 3D designing.
  • Availability of training resources: Users like the fact that the tool comes with ample documentation and tutorials.

What users think could be improved:

  • System crashes: Users mention that the tool tends to crash, especially when designing and rendering large files.
  • Steep learning curve: Users mention that it can take a lot of time to learn the advanced functionalities of the tool.

Who can use Fusion 360

Fusion 360 is part of the Autodesk ecosystem designed for the AEC industry. This makes the tool suitable for construction businesses that are already using, or intend to use, other Autodesk solutions. Using a software vendor that offers multiple solutions will especially benefit larger businesses that invariably need software that can scale with their growing requirements.

4. LibreCAD

LibreCAD is an open source CAD tool that supports Mac, Windows, and Linux operating systems. The tool comes with 2D drawing features such as a snap tool, dimensioning, and annotations. It also supports multiple file imports and exports.

2D drawing in LibreCAD (Source)

Common user feedback trends

Based on analysis of user reviews on Capterra, here’s an overview of the areas of LibreCAD they like best, as well as those they feel could use improvement.

What users like:

  • Ease of use: Users mention that the tool offers an intuitive and easy-to-use interface.
  • Lots of tutorials: Users like the fact that there are ample video tutorials that help them get started with the tool.

What users think could be improved:

Best
  • Software speed: Users mention that the software tends to lag, especially when trying to print designs.
  • Add support for 3D design: Users would like to see functionalities for creating 3D designs.

Who can use LibreCAD

LibreCAD is an exclusively 2D CAD tool for drawing and designing blueprints of buildings, layouts of parks, and the like. As a free tool, the solution can be used by small and midsize businesses across different industries, including manufacturing, engineering, architecture, and construction.

5. Onshape

Onshape is a cloud-only CAD solution that comes with features such as document management with version control, collaborative design creation/editing capabilities, and reporting dashboards to understand project status.

Importing documents in Onshape (Source)

Best Mac Apps For Designers 2019 2020

Common user feedback trends

Based on analysis of user reviews on Capterra, here’s an overview of the areas of Onshape they like best, as well as those they feel could use improvement.

What users like:

  • Document version control: Users like the document management features of the tool, such as version history.
  • Intuitive interface: Users mention that the tool comes with an intuitive interface for easy image editing.

What users think could be improved:

  • Performance issues: Some users mention that the tool does not function well on non-Chrome browsers and has file loading issues.
  • Lack of features: Users mention that the tool should improve certain features such as 2D drawing and 3D surfacing.

Who can use Onshape

As a fully-cloud based tool, Onshape is ideal for businesses that need to manage design documents collaboratively with multiple stakeholders. The tool’s collaboration functionalities include document sharing, document editing, comments, and file downloads in multiple CAD formats, such as Parasolid, ACIS, STEP, and IGES.

Next steps

This report offers a mix of Mac CAD solutions—from free tools that can help you with basic 2D drawing to advanced solutions offering extensive 3D modeling functionalities.

If these tools don’t meet your needs, expand your search and check out more options. To help you, we’ve created a CAD software comparison page where you can explore products using different filters, such as features offered and pricing options.

If you’re looking to understand the CAD software market better, we also recommend that you read the articles listed below:

Methodology

To be shortlisted, products had to fulfill the following criteria:

  • Products had to be compatible with Mac and offer core CAD software capabilities, such as:
    • 2D drawing or 3D modeling features
    • Collaborative editing of drawings
  • Products needed a minimum of 20 user reviews on Capterra (published in the last two years).
  • Products had to have a high overall rating (an average of at least 4 out of 5 on Capterra).

Note: The content in this piece that provides opinions and points of view expressed by users. It does not represent the views of Capterra.

Looking for Construction Management software? Check out Capterra's list of the best Construction Management software solutions.

Every designer is familiar with a wide array of tools & software, such as wireframing/prototyping tools, SVG editors, and design handoff tools. To narrow down the field, today, we will focus on the best SVG editors and resources.

Table of Contents:

  • What is SVG?
  • SVG vs. Bitmap
  • Why is SVG becoming more popular?
  • The best SVG editors
  • The best SVG resources

What is SVG?

Scalable Vector Graphics (SVG) is an XML-based vector image format for two-dimensional graphics with support for interactivity and animation.

- Wikipedia

With the development of responsive web pages, the requirements for content presentation are increasing, especially for images. Since scalable vector graphics (SVG) allows you to achieve natural scaling or expansion on various devices without affecting picture quality, its popularity has skyrocketed.

SVG vs. Bitmap

In computer graphics, there are two main types of images: vectors and bitmaps. A bitmap is the smallest unit composed of pixels, which get distorted when zooming in or out. SVG, on the other hand, is an image format that renders without distortion when scaling.

So, why exactly is SVG becoming more popular? Here are some reasons:

  • SVG is scalable vector graphics that can be resized in the browser without loss of quality.
  • SVG image files are smaller and more compressible than bitmaps.
  • SVG can be accessed by readers such as Notepad and search engines.
  • Text in an SVG image is optional and can be copied.
  • SVG images can interact with DOM, CSS, and JavaScript.
  • SVG can be made into a whole or partial animation.

The Best SVG Editors for Free Download

You can use Illustrator or Inkscape to create SVG images. But when doing web design, some necessary optimization to make SVGlighter are needed. To create and use SVG files, you need an SVG editor. Here are the free SVG editors for Windows, Mac, Linux, Web. that are organized by the Mockplus team.

1. Adobe Illustrator – An SVG editor for Windows/Mac

The world's most famous SVG editor, Adobe Illustrator has a large market share in the global vector editing software industry. With its powerful features and user-friendly interface, it’s hardly surprising. According to statistics, 37% of designers worldwide use Adobe Illustrator.

This SVG tool is mainly used in printing and publishing, poster book layout, professional illustration, multimedia image processing, and internet page production. It also provides high precision and control for line drafts. Whether you’re working on a small design project or a large, complex one, Adobe Illustration will do the job.

2. SVG.js – Free SVG editor for Web

The SVG.js library provides developers and designers with the ability to stitch together multiple SVG images to create funky animation that can be used for video projects, website needs, or simply to express your creativity.

3. Inkscape – A Free SVG editor for Windows/Mac

Inkscape is a very popular SVG editor that is free to use. It is cross-platform compatible, making it an ideal choice for illustrators, graphic designers, and web designers. It has powerful object creation and manipulation features such as pencil tools, stroke tools, rectangles, polygons, and more.

This tool is mainly used to construct and optimise vector graphics in the form of charts, logos, illustrations, charts, and even multiple images. It is known for its comprehensive SVG support. Additionally, Inkscape supports a range of output formats including PNG, OpenDocument, DXF, PDF, EPS, sk1, and more.

4. Vector – A Free SVG editor for Windows

Vectr is a free SVG editor that makes it easy to create vector graphics that can satisfy almost any vector task. Although the interface is simple, it does not affect its ease of use, and powerful editing features. For beginners, it's very easy to learn to use its basic functions such as adding layers, borders, shadows or text to create simple vector icons and images.

Vector is a free SVG editor that makes it easy to create vector graphics. Although the interface is simple, it has powerful editing features. For beginners, it's very easy to learn basic functions such as adding layers, borders, shadows, or text to create simple vector icons and images.

5. Snap.svg - Free SVG editor for Web

Snap.svg is built for modern browsers and supports cropping, masking, textures, gradients, grouping, and more. This tool can be used to create interactions and great-looking vector graphics. Projects made using Snap.svg are resolution-independent on any screen size. With a rich animation library and easy event handling, Snap.svg can help you easily implement SVG functionality.

6. Sketch – SVG Editor for Mac

Very popular with the designer crowd, Sketch is a tool for UI design and full vector design. It is light-weight, offers pixel-level precision, and is also ideal for interface design and icon design for mobile applications. Though you’ll have to shell out $99/year to use Sketch, what you get is well worth it.

Best Mac Apps For Designers

With Mockplus's Sketch plugin, visual drafts can be quickly converted to interactive high-fidelity prototypes. The built-in SVG component of Mockplus allows you to upload your SVG images/icons from Sketch (or other sources, for that matter). It will ensure the image or icon used in prototypes won’t be affected.

7. Trianglify – A Free SVG Editor for Web

Macbook

There are a lot of ads, web pages, and other design styles that are decorated with polygons. If you want to create a simple polygonal texture background, you can use the Trianglify generator to create beautiful SVG geometric patterns. You can set the color, size, and color palette to suit your needs. Furthermore, it is very convenient to download the SVG pattern after all the settings are completed.

8. Plain Pattern - A Free SVG Editor for Web

Plain Pattern is a simple free SVG editor online. The editor allows you to preview the results before downloading. On the Plain Pattern website, you can quickly generate SVG graphics based on the color of your choice, which may be faster than any handwritten form! Just upload your images, scale down or change intervals, rotate, or recolor (just to name a few functions) to get beautiful patterns quickly.

Best Mac Apps For Graphic Design

Free SVG resources for your convenient

An SVG editor allows you to create your own graphics and icons. If you are looking for free SVG resources on background, images, and icons, the Mockplus team has got you covered. We’ve made a list for you to check out. For additional resources, take a look at 11 Best Free Vector Icon Resources for App Design & Web Design in 2018.

1. SVG Backgrounds

SVG Backgrounds is a generator that allows you to customize vector illustrations.

2. Freebiesbug

Hand-picked resources for web designer and developers. It provides resources in PNG and SVG file formats.

3. Flaticon

Flaticon has thousands of free vector icons. It’s also easy and convenient to use in Mockplus (and other design tools) with its SVG component.

4. Freepik

Freepik offers tons of free vector graphics and icons in different themes. You can find backgrounds, banners, buttons, and many great design elements here.

Conclusion:

Best Macbook Apps For Graphic Designers

With the best SVG editors and resources, your work is made much easier. More than that, if you use other design tools like Mockplus Cloud, product design can be a breeze. Take the case of Sketch - after you create your own SVG elements in Sketch, simply upload the project into Cloud. With its seamless hi-fi prototyping using the Sketch plugin, your entire workflow becomes smoother. Increase your productivity by choosing the tools that fit you perfectly.

More vector resources:

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