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Susan Smith
Susan Smith
Susan Smith has worked as an editor and writer in the technology industry for over 16 years. As an editor she has been responsible for the launch of a number of technology trade publications, both in print and online. Currently, Susan is the Editor of GISCafe and AECCafe, as well as those sites’ … More »

TurboCAD Pro 2015 and TurboCAD Pro Platinum 2015 released

March 12th, 2015 by Susan Smith

Dave Taylor, product design manager at IMSI/Design, spoke with AECCafe Voice about the recent release of TurboCAD Pro 2015 and TurboCAD Pro Platinum 2015.

CEO Bob Mayer calls this “one of our most significant releases.” Dave Taylor said that the most significant feature addition is the Conceptual Selector.

“If I go back to the classic selector historically ever since we incorporated 3D in TurboCAD, we have used this style of selector,” said Taylor. “You see xyz handles on here for rotating, and one of the nicest things about TurboCAD is the yellow reference point in the inspector bar. In 2015 we’ve incorporated the Conceptual Selector that gives TurboCAD a more modern look and feel to its interface. This looks a lot like the selection tools for the new generation popular CAD applications.”

“The selection tool is the most frequently used tool in the application. If you select an object you’re going to edit, you will see the square boxes that will allow you to scale bi-directionally or in one direction or the other. The tool has all sorts of controls including the ability to rotate and for any type of precision move you need to do. You can always select the object and come down to the inspector bar and type a coordinate, etc.”

In TurboCAD 2015 the new selector tool is fully customizable. Users can determine what handles are displayed, whether there is a boundary box, lighting effects, etc.

Another new change is the RedSDK rendering engine as opposed to the old GDI engine used in past releases. RedSDK is a GPU driven display and rendering engine. This will also be a part of TurboCAD Deluxe 2015 when it is released and is now the default display engine technology for TurboCAD.

There are several TurboCAD models. Designer is 2D only, Deluxe is 2D and 3D, and Pro Basic, standard Pro and Pro Platinum. “Most people who make the jump between Deluxe and Pro end up going with the Pro Platinum because it has way more capabilities — first and foremost would be the Part Tree,” said Taylor.

“If I design a part and once I’ve applied a Boolean operation to it, instead of being individual objects it’s become a part. Part Tree allows me to go back to the history of my putting together my parts. I can make edits on the fly and automatically update the model. You’ll see the part automatically update. Anyone doing mechanical design will want this Part Tree. That’s the significant difference between Pro and Platinum.”

The hole tool allows the user to automatically put a hole in the design on the fly. This also becomes part of the part. The parameters of the hole can also be changed on the fly.

Expanded roof capabilities allow users to fully customize roofs.

Standard usability improvements include improved block and group editing which is the ability to snap to objects while you’re in lock edit mode.

Significant user interface changes , include the properties dialogs that have always been fixed size for typing text into. Now you can type an unlimited amount of text into this field.

Introduced last year, Simple BIM is an answer to those users who ask for a simpler form of BIM than Autodesk Revit. These users require some interaction with BIM, but not the whole complex building model. This year Simple BIM expands with the addition of import support of Industry Foundation Class (IFC) files.

“We termed it “Simple BIM” because it only applies to the key object types in our application as far as architectural goes, which are walls, doors, windows, and slabs, railings and stairs,” said Taylor. “Last year we introduced the ability to export BIM information out of TurboCAD, so you have the functionality to import end drawings.”

(List below from company materials):

TurboCAD Pro 2015 and TurboCAD Pro Platinum 2015 new and enhanced features include:


  • New IFC Import (Platinum only): Simple Building Information Modeling (BIM) is now more advanced with the ability to import intelligent Walls, Doors, Windows, Slabs and Roofs saved in the Industry Foundation Classes (IFC) format, the industry standard for BIM information.
  • Improve Roof Angles (Platinum only): TurboCAD now makes it easy to control the rise/run and/or degrees of a roof angle.
  • New Slab Roof Object Types (Platinum only): TurboCAD now allows users to make a roof slab object type. With one slab, you can quickly create a flat roof, or use in conjunction with new roof angles, mitering, and edge cut tools to join several slabs together and create nearly any roof style.
  • New Mitering of Roof Slabs (Platinum only): Select two or more roof slabs and have them “meet” automatically.
  • New Roof Edge Cut Orientation (Platinum only): A new “Edge cut” roof property for roof slabs allows users to select different methods of roof building, either plumb or square.
  • Improved Roof Modifier (Platinum only): Now you can quickly create holes in roofs for chimneys, skylights, etc. and trim edges of roofs.


  • Improved Quick Pull: The popular Quick Pull tool now offers multiple selection, so you can manipulate several co-planar faces simultaneously. You can also thicken ACIS surfaces with the Quick Pull tool, and dynamically switch between Quick Pull and Imprint modes.
  • New Wire Wrapping: Wrap a wire around a 3D solid for use as an extrusion or sweep path.
  • Create Surface from Faces: When using the ACIS tool ‘Create Surface from Faces’ users can now retain the source object.
  • Create Surface from Solid: When using the ‘Create Surface from Solids’ tool, users can now retain the source object.
  • Improved Smooth Surface Mesh Tools (Platinum only): TurboCAD now offers a set of tools for editing a Smooth Surface Mesh (SMESH) as symmetrical model.
  • Improved Drafting Object Breaks (Platinum only): When a drafting object is too large to display fully, TurboCAD allows users to add a break gap to abbreviate the displayed object, adjusting the break line properties including type (straight, zig-zag, wave, or heartbeat), gap value, color, and extension length. New TurboCAD 2015 supports multiple breaks per drafting object.
  • Improved Unbend Sheet Tool (Platinum only): Now users can generate the required bend lines when the Unbend Sheet tool is used.


  • New Conceptual Selector: Manipulate and modify 3D objects like never before. The totally flexible design of Conceptual Selector allows users to customize any visual and editing parameters available in the application (eg. Move, scale, or rotate).
  • Improved Nudge: The TurboCAD Nudge function now offers more efficient pick-up and placement of selected object(s) using the numbers pad.
  • Improved Block/Group Editing: While in block/group edit mode, users can now snap to objects outside the block or group.
  • More Flexible UI: Users can now resize dialog boxes as needed for their design environment. Adjust the screen size, resolution, and more. Works with the majority of dialog boxes including general property pages, multiline text, dimensions, program setup, and Drawing options pages.
  • New Contact Manager & File Sharing: Users now have the ability to create and maintain contact lists and send files to individuals or groups from within TurboCAD.


  • Improved RedSDK Rendering: Updated engine (to v3.5.0.2) and new displacement shader for more realistic materials.
  • Dynamic Cutaway Plane (Platinum only): Cut away plane, for looking inside a 3D model, works in draft mode, in mixed draft and wireframe, and in mixed draft and hidden line modes.


  • Improved Format Painter Tool (Platinum only): Use the Format Painter to transfer Custom Properties and Property Set Definitions (PSD) from one object to another. This huge productivity improvement is also a crucial feature for extending BIM/IFC models.
  • New Dimension Units Format ‘By Drawing’: Users can now globally define dimension units at the drawing level.
  • Improved Dimension Text: Dimension Text can be set to non-rotatable. With this property selected, dimension text will always face the user no matter the orientation of the drawing.
  • Sorted Layers in Drop Down Lists: The Layers in the drop down and simple lists are now sorted as per the Design Director. If you change the control view order in Design Director the same ordering will be in all other Layer controls.
  • Improved Trim Tools: New ability to trim hatched or closed objects and maintain the hatch or closure.
  • Improved Join Polyline Tool: The Join Polyline Tool now works on Beziers and splines without converting them to a polyline, so that their original curve status is maintained.


  • Improved AutoCAD (DWG/DXF): Read/write filters for 2013-2015. Dynamic blocks are imported as simple blocks.
  • New SketchUp (SKP): Read/write filter based on SketchUp 2015.
  • New Visual Effects for Exported Images: For any image that has been added to a TurboCAD drawing, you can now control the brightness, contrast, saturation, and transparency.

Availability and Pricing

TurboCAD Pro 2015 is $1,495 and is now available. TurboCAD Pro Platinum 2015 is $1,695 and is now available. Annual Subscriptions also available.

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Categories: 2D, 3D, AEC, AECCafe, AIA Convention 2014, architecture, AutoCAD, Autodesk, BIM, building information modeling, collaboration, construction, consumerization, IFC, IMSI/Design, infrastructure, integrated project delivery, project management, rendering

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