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BEST CAD/CAM SOFTWARE FOR THE $$.5/7
We've had an SCM tech 80 P2P for about 8-10 years and are just going through upgrading our computer systems. We were running ASPAN 8.1 which came with the machine and worked fairly well for simple things like curves and other parts but it will not run on a 64 bit windows system. We use Microvellum for all of our casework programming and while microvellum is extremely powerful software we've found its good to have a backup that doesn't require all that much training. I learned everything I really needed to know about ASPAN in a 6 hour crash course and the rest I've learned as I went.
An upgrade to ASPAN (which is required to run in a 64 bit system) is between $1300-1500. With this in mind, does anyone have experience with ASPAN or other CAD/CAM software. I'm told that SCM now sends Alphacam out with their new machines but i'm not really sure if the price is worth it for the amount that we would be using it. Any thoughts that you all have would be a great help to us. Thanks
1500.00 doesn't seem like very much of an investment when you consider buying new product, time spent to debug a new post, and of course get past the learning curve in order to drive your new software suite. If Aspan does everything that you need, my advice is to upgrade your existing installation. If you need more functionality, then I would shop around, but most decent packages will cost you more than the figure you mentioned for the upgrade.
What sort of parts will you be running with her new CAD/CAM software? Are they just basic 2D parts or are you doing 3D toolpaths?
Like the previous poster I would suggest if you aren't looking to expand the features you currently have then you it's probably best to stick with Aspan.
If you don't want to upgrade ASPAN, and it's working for you, why upgrade to a 64-bit PC? There are tons of 32-bit systems out there, and you can still get 32-bit Windows 7. Why not set up a dedicated ASPAN PC? Won't ASPAN work in the SysWOW64 workspace like other 32-bit applications? Very few office applications are 64-bit and they all run successfully on 64-bit OS.
I'd recommend CADCode for posting to the Tech 80 but it would set you back a lot more than $1500.