Last Updated on May 5, 2023
Autodesk, Inc. is an American multinational software company that makes software products and services for the architecture, engineering, construction, product design, manufacturing, media, education, and entertainment industries. It bills itself as a “… leader in 3D design, engineering and entertainment software”.
The company was founded in 1982 by John Walker, who was a joint developer of the first versions of AutoCAD, the company’s best known software application. Autodesk is listed on the Nasdaq stock exchange, it has over 11,000 employees, and is headquartered in the San Francisco Bay Area.
While Autodesk develops many high quality applications they are proprietary software. And the vast majority of their products are not available for Linux. This series looks at the best free and open source alternatives.
Autodesk ReCap lets you create rich and accurate digital models of existing conditions. It lets users work with actual point clouds from laser scans.
ReCap is very specialist software with few alternatives that offer even a fraction of the software’s functionality. In fact, we can only recommend a couple of open source alternatives.
CloudCompare is 3D point cloud and triangular mesh processing software.
It was originally designed to perform comparison between two 3D points clouds (such as the ones obtained with a laser scanner) or between a point cloud and a triangular mesh. It relies on an octree structure that is highly optimized for this particular use-case. It was also meant to deal with huge point clouds (typically more than 10 million points, and up to 120 million with 2 GB of memory).
CloudCompare is available on Linux, macOS, and Windows platforms, for both 32 and 64 bits architectures. It is developed in C++ with Qt.
Meshroom is a 3D Reconstruction Software based on the AliceVision Photogrammetric Computer Vision framework.
|Alternatives to Autodesk's Products|
|3ds Max is a 3D computer graphics program for making 3D animations, models, games and images.|
|Arnold is software for rendering three-dimensional, computer-generated scenes using unbiased, physically-based, Monte Carlo path tracing techniques.|
|AutoCAD is computer-aided design (CAD) and drafting software. It's used in industry, by architects, project managers, engineers, graphic designers, city planners and others.|
|EAGLE is a scriptable electronic design automation (EDA) application with schematic capture, printed circuit board (PCB) layout, auto-router and computer-aided manufacturing (CAM) features.|
|Flame is 3D visual effects (VFX), finishing, and color grading software. It includes AI-powered tools and remote solutions.|
|Maya creates assets for interactive 3D applications (including video games), animated films, TV series, and visual effects.|
|MotionBuilder is 3D character animation software. The software is designed for virtual cinematography, motion capture, and traditional keyframe animation. Capture, edit, and play back complex animations.|
|Mudbox is 3D digital painting and sculpting software. Sculpt and paint highly detailed 3D geometry and textures.|
|ReCap lets you create rich and accurate digital models of existing conditions. Capture high-quality, detailed models of real-world assets.|
|ShotGrid is project management software used for visual effects and animation project management in television shows and movie production and video game development.|
|Sketchbook is a raster graphics software app intended for expressive drawing and concept sketching. It's also useful for making animations.|
|Tinkercad is an online 3D modeling program that runs in a web browser. Tinkercad uses a simplified constructive solid geometry method of constructing models.|