- SolidWorks is a professional tool that allows users to create error-proof solid modeling projects.
- It lets users export projects into multiple formats, so you can further edit your model with rendering software.
- Find below suggestions of the best rendering tool that provide 2D, 3D modeling features, animation tools, and more.
- The list includes easy and budget-friendly tools to get you started, as well as professional-level rendering software for modeling experts.
Rendering software is used to convert a user-created 3D graphic model into full 3D environments or images.
This rendering software helps graphic designers, architects, and media developers to insert objects and disparate objects from 3D modeling programs into a graphically desired environment. These rendered images are easy to scale, navigate, and are responsive.
The rendering software may have features including animation tools that can integrate with animation programs to bring life to images. These can be used for movies, games, architecture, and other uses.
SolidWorks is a professional computer program for solid modeling. It can automatize some calculations and also offer proper simulations of the project.
It is also a good proofing tool because it lets engineers thoroughly check for any errors before submitting the final project to their clients.
The software allows users to sketch in 2D or 3D with various advanced geometry features.
SolidWorks can export files of various formats which makes its products compatible with multiple other CAD software.
You can easily open and edit SolidWorks files to other programs and also import projects created with other programs into your SolidWorks workspace.
There are numerous SolidWorks rendering programs available but we have compiled the very best below in terms of functionality.
- What are the best tools to generate SolidWorks previews?
- Autodesk 3ds Max - Best quality for 3D models
- Adobe Dimension - Complete modeling tool
- Unity - Most efficient rendering
- Maya - Best rendering system
- Lumion - Animation features
- Cinema 4D - Simple editing tools
- KeyShot - Dynamic modeling
- Thea Render - Multiple projects manager
What are the best tools to generate SolidWorks previews?
Autodesk 3ds Max – Best quality for 3D models
3ds Max is a unique rendering software that is widely used. Its major advantage is its versatility. You can utilize this software for different types of projects from architecture to fully animated characters for video games with quality results.
This program is compatible with Autodesk software and other render software which enables more functions and features. The modifier and texturing features are quite amazing. In addition, it is easy to use its texturing tool.
3ds Max has nice inbuilt tools that can be added on through the store. The internal scripting language can be utilized by users to write their own tools.
The software is the perfect software for architectural rendering. It also brings a quality interpretation of industrial design concepts and presentations.
However, this software has a complexity of features which can be frustrating for beginners. All the features cannot be utilized on a single project.
Other key features of Autodesk 3ds Max include:
- Extensive library of different modifiers
- Free version for students
- Automated retropology and mesh repair
Autodesk 3ds Max is a subscription-based service. There are multiple types of subscriptions available. It also has a free trial.
Autodesk 3ds MaxFor high-quality SolidWorks renderings, 3ds Max is a must given its rich features that will render models up to the very last detail.
Adobe Dimension – Complete modeling tool
Adobe Dimension is a modeling software equipped with the tools necessary to complete various types of projects, including illustrations, interactive content, and much more. It can import and edit Solidworks projects in STL formats.
This software has a user-friendly interface. It provides all the controls you need without being intimidating. Even though it comes with plenty of advanced features, it can be a good choice for a beginner because you can quickly adjust to it.
Adobe Dimension lets you select canvas size, units, and resolution. It also has 3D scene controls that you can use to scale objects in meters, centimeters, feet, inches, yards, and more.
In order to allow users to create their projects as specific and precise as they can, Adobe Dimension lets you combine 3D and 2D assets, apply images, materials, and advanced lighting controls including reflection adjustments, multiple shadow options, color, contrast, and more.
Moreover, users get access to the Adobe Stock library where they can find ready-made objects and models that they can use in their projects. You can access the on the web or via the Creative Cloud Libraries in the Adobe Dimension UI.
Dimension also lets you create highly realistic illustrations that look like photographs. It is vector-based, so you never have to compromise on quality. You can use this feature to create beautiful commercial pictures for your models.
Other key features include:
- Supports OBJ, Autodesk FBX, STL, and Sketchup file formats
- Compatible with Windows, macOS
- Available in multiple languages
- Support for interactive environments
Adobe Dimension is a subscription-based software. You can use it along with the other Adobe Creative Cloud tools, or on its own. You can try it for free
Adobe DimensionImport and work on your SolidWorks projects with top-quality tools such as 3D and 2D assets, material settings, lightning controls, and more.
Unity – Most efficient rendering
Unity is another powerful modeling software. It can be used to create animations, virtual realities, architectural projects, video games, and many more.
This tool offers a full-featured platform that lets you create, edit, and export your projects with maximum efficiency.
To import your SolidWorks projects into Unity, you need to convert them into an FBX file.
Unity has both 2D and 2D modeling features. The 2D feature set includes foundations, world-building tools, animation support, graphic tools, and physics controls.
The extensive 3D toolset and the multiple controls for character creation made Unity a user favorite when it comes to game creation and animation.
Along with that, it provides the features necessary to build realistic environments. These include point-to-point cut tools, shape creators, and terrain tools.
Other key features include:
- In-depth tutorials available on the official website
- Kinematica character animation system
- AR support
Unity has both a free version and some subscription plans.
UnityImport your SolidWorks project and create animated environments, advanced models, or even virtual realities.
Maya – Best rendering system
Maya is rendering software that has earned rave reviews over the years with its excellent rendering services.
This software gives users beautiful renders of 3D models with its unique tricaster system. The software allows for extensive object manipulation. The camera angles are also unique with excellent views of the model from various angles.
In addition, this program has a well-arranged workspace which gives freedom on customization, while optimizing the workspaces to suit your needs. This makes working easier in the 3D modeling environment.
One of the major cons is that the user interface is not easy to understand for beginners and could take a while to learn the rudiments of the software.
Autodesk Maya supports the SolidWorks projects in the IGES format.
The 3D modeling toolset includes polygon modeling, NURBS modeling, UV editing and toolkit, a sculpting toolset and more.
The software has advanced animation tools that include graphics editors, a time editor, a preview playback player, and more.
Other key features of Autodesk Maya include:
- Integrated Arnold render
- GPU and CPU rendering
- Standard surface shader
- Advanced color management
Autodesk Maya is a subscription-based software with a free trial included for each plan.
MayaCheck out Maya’s artist-friendly UI that will provide high-quality renderings and allow for quick, on the spot, changes.
Lumion – Animation features
This rendering software has been for a long time and enables the quick and fast rendering of images. Lumion allows easy animation as users can insert cover materials, weathering, aging, and transparency with ease.
Lumion is user-friendly which enables users with basic knowledge to produce awesome renders. In addition, it gives detailed light editing and users can configure 3D models as many times as needed.
The virtual reality feature is also nice as users can render models and transfer them to other devices or access the links through email.
However, this rendering software involves the graphic card, since the software is fully graphic card-based. Hence, users cannot do other things on the computer that require graphics while rendering.
Lumion supports imports DAE, FBX, MAX, 3DS, OBJ, DWG, and DXF 3D files. In order to open your SolidWorks project in Lumion, you need to first convert/save as one of these formats.
Lumion has a large library with various objects that help you create architectural designs, street maps, realistic 3D environments, and more.
Other key features of Lumion include:
- LiveSync preview
- Displacement mapping
- Lights and shadows controls
Lumion is a licensed software with a free trial.
Cinema 4D – Simple editing tools
Cinema 4D gives a simple straightforward way of creating renders. Users have more control over combinations with light and shadows. The rendering software is an ideal tool for newbies, as it makes rendering quite easy.
Cinema 4D has an easy User interface that is intuitive, which gives beginners the rudiments of the basics with good results. The app also incorporates online training which gives techniques and easy-to-learn tutorials.
The major con of the software is the UV system which should be improved. Although the current setup is ok, it can be improved upon which would make editing easier.
KeyShot – Dynamic modeling
This is one of the most popular rendering software used globally. KeyShot allows you to create materials needed to get the required visual effect. The software allows for editing, to achieve a realistic feel of models to be showcased.
The graphical interface allows users to manipulate materials to create amazing realistic visual effects on materials like dirt on a rusty surface.
Users can also import 3D model files and update them without fear of losing quality on changes made.
One of the major cons is the presence of some imperfections in terms of transparent/cloudy materials.
This software has an advanced scene manager that is based on sene nodes. Users can create procedural geometries or even entire scenes in a hierarchy-based view. You can easily integrate objects with drag-and-drop.
The user interface is easy to navigate. Cinema 4D provides multiple assets that you can integrate into your project. The integrated asset browser is very well organized so you can easily find what you need with keywords and filters.
Other key features include:
- Lets you work on multiple documents with tabs
- HDR/EDR viewport
- Dynamic palletes
This software has multiple subscription plans available. It offers a free trial.
Thea Render – Multiple projects manager
Thea Render is one of the ideal software for rendering, though it’s not too popular, it does the job well.
The major feature is the speed of rendering, this software is good to use when you are on a tight schedule.
Although it may not give you the same rendering quality as other software mentioned above, Rhea Render still gives decent rendering quality.
However, this software uses the Presto engine which provides quick network rendering services. There is also more emphasis on lightning with its impact on rendering easily adjusted to give optimal results
The major con is the lack of numerous features that exist in other major rendering software.
Other key features of Thea Render include:
- Batch rendering
- Relight feature
- Multiple Integrations
- Imports various file formats
We hope this list helped you choose what software to use in order to render SolidWorks on your Windows 10 computer.