Top 10 AutoCAD Hacks from Autodesk University

It’s hard to believe it, but AutoCAD is now 34 years old! Which is why you’ll find hundreds of AutoCAD courses at the upcoming Autodesk University (AU) live and online (dating as far back as 2011).

Autodesk prides itself on continuously upgrading and enhancing AutoCAD so that it puts users at the forefront of design, so there’s always lots to learn.

To help you get more from your AutoCAD software, whatever version you’re working with, we’ve compiled our picks of some of the best and most useful AutoCAD classes available. You can also print handouts for easy productivity references!

Here they are and in no particular order:

1. AutoCAD Secrets Exposed: Tips for AutoCAD 2012-2015 Users

Many classes, webinars, and workshops tend to concentrate on tips and tricks for getting the most out of the latest release of AutoCAD software. But if you’re using an older version, they’re not much use. Not to fear! This class from the ever fun Jeanne Aarhus, shares tips and tricks for AutoCAD releases dated 2012 to 2015, including hidden secrets from other AutoCAD users. Watch now.

2. AutoCAD Super-Duper Click Savers

Get it done faster! This course, presented by Jarod Schultz, is loaded with tips for trumping repetitive steps and tasks. Watch now.

3. Top 10 AutoCAD Apps for Under $100

Who doesn’t want to get more out of their software investment? Well, thanks to Autodesk Exchange (Autodesk’s app store) you can get a lot of bang for your buck when it comes to AutoCAD apps. In fact, the most popular apps from Autodesk Exchange are AutoCAD productivity enhancers.

To help you learn what’s what, Autodesk’s Jim Quanci and Stephen Preston provide a great round-up of the 10 most popular AutoCAD apps for under $100 (in fact most are free or available for a few dollars). Watch now.

4. More than a Pretty Picture: Photorealistic Rendering Techniques in AutoCAD

If you’re using AutoCAD 2016 or higher, then you have an entirely new rendering engine in your hands. Watch this class from David Cohn and you’ll be able to convert your 3D AutoCAD models into finished, photorealistic renderings. David also explains how you can use Autodesk 360’s cloud rendering service to create them quickly and easily, without using up all your desktop processing power. Watch now.

5. Explore the Powerful AutoCAD Option Dialog Box

The Options dialog box is known as the heart of AutoCAD, with hundreds of options for custom sets. But how do you know you’ve optimized your settings for the best AutoCAD experience? This class, presented by Shawn Niles, explains what many of these options do and how you can set them up for your environment. Watch now.

6. AutoCAD – Pushing it to the Limits

If you’re using large data sets or pushing AutoCAD or your hardware to its limits, check out this class on how you can take advantage of features in AutoCAD, as well as modern hardware workstations and servers, to handle point clouds, photorealistic rendering (desktop or cloud), and document your Inventor or Fusion 360 models. Watch now.

7. Managing your Standards and Reusable Content with Tool Palettes

Maintaining standards and managing block libraries can be a struggle. Matt Murphy’s class offers easy and effective methods for managing existing blocks and Dynamic Blocks and ensuring that the correct colors, layers, and linetypes are used for geometry creation. Watch now.

8. Surviving the Transition from MicroStation to AutoCAD

Another session from Jeanne Aarhus, this one designed to familiarize MicroStation users with the features and functionality of AutoCAD and how they can use it to be more productive. Watch now.

9. No Sheet! You Can do that with the SSM in AutoCAD?

The Sheet Set Manager (SSM) in AutoCAD is a great document management tool. This electronic database houses all your project information that you can add to a template file, saving time and eliminating errors when populating data throughout a project. Watch Sam Lucido as he explains how you can set up templates, organize sheets, and publish the entire set to a PDF when finished. Watch now.

10. Getting the Most out of AutoCAD 2016 with Lynn Allen

No round up of AutoCAD classes would be complete without Lynn Allen. Here Lynn takes you on a tour of last year’s release of AutoCAD and its many productivity and time savings tools. Watch now.

Grace Bergen Autodesk Tech Writer