There is an interesting performance comparsion between SolidWorks 2004
and SolidWorks 2005 available for download. Performance test shows
that there is no significant changes happened in SolidWorks capability
to handle large assemblies.
Results can be downloaded from:
Test datasets and other testing material such as macros are also
freely downloadable from
So if you
don't belive your eyes you can reproduce test results in your own
Has anyone tried this yet? I watched their video & it appears a little
misleading when they rotate the assembly model. Looks like they are just
using the keyboard arrow keys to rotate & then later use a spacemouse. That
doesn't seem to prove an increase in performance to me. However the rest of
it does seem pretty convincing. I would have liked to see them actually
mate something into place in addition to moving components in the large
I guess I just need to go out & try it myself. Just curious if anyone else
had yet & could save me the hassle.
by the way I do not see them listed on the solidworks partner list nor gold
Interesting, hmm, I don't know. By the numbers listed in the comparison,
2005 shows a 13% increase (bottom line number) in performance. Is that
insignificant? One of the earlier posts about this product mentions that
some assemblies don't show any performance increase at all. Which ones I
What I really find interesting is the marketing technique being used. Posts
to many different message boards from Hotmail accounts, or from "users"
touting the virtues of the product. One of the "user" posts to the
SolidWorks discussion forum had a link to a website under the signature.
When I tried to follow it, I got an server not found error. Go figure.
I'm kind of surprised that these folks haven't been taken to task a little
more. Blatant sales pitch posts are usually flamed right out of here.
Perhaps they've hit a nerve when it comes to large assembly performance and
SolidWorks. I think I'll sit back and see how this turns out. Could be fun.
I've been waiting for someone else to bring this up. As far as I can tell,
interactive graphics performance has nearly doubled. It's really noticable
on older computers, like my home machine.
Apparently they've done some serious optimazations on their OpenGL code.
What they've done really isn't new, it's been used on UNIX based OpenGL
applications for years. I think they used to call it "pruning" and
"culling". This is where the level of detail is dependent on what's actually
on the screen, like a zoomed feature/features that fill the screen. All off
screen rendering is "pruned" from the OpenGL display list. The other part
has to do with detail simplification when zoomed out. Features that can't be
seen anyway are simplified.
This is real easy to see. Bring up a moderate sized assembly that contais
some small highly detailed parts. Keep your eyes on one of these parts and
zoom out untill you can just barely make out the details. Rotate the model
while watching the part. It will turn into a simlple cube while moving, but
the larger features will keep their detail. If you can't see it. zoom out a
little more and try again.
They did a real good job of putting right on the threshold of visibility.
The result is faster graphics.
I created a simple program that measures the time (in ms) to load
documents in SW to see the difference between different versions. I
haven't tested it with SW2005 vs SW2004, but you have to be sure that
before having a reliable result, you should convert old documents to
the newer version. You'd best first do a 'save as' and then make a
copy of the files in a new directory, so these can be converted to the
new version. Then you can run unfrag on both directories. Only now,
you removed all 'rubbish' from the files to make a good comparison.
If you're interested in the program, please let me know.
I am not sure if this is a performance increase where it counts, in
Assembly loading and rebuilding isn't all that differenct from 2004 to
2005, but part regeneration did measurably slow down.
That's a shame, given that 2004 is dog-slow on large assemblies,
particularly section drawings
What's more of a shame is that now 2005 is released, 2004 will not receive
any significant further attention. I never migrated from 2003, but a major
site I do contract work for has gone 'up', and they and I are tearing our
hair out at how long general assembly drawings are taking. We are doing
seriously inconvenient workarounds to eke every percentage point of
performance we can, yet, to match the productivity of SldWks 2003, on the
particular work they do, would necessitate providing two PCs and two
licences to each CAD jockey doing major assemblies, so you could be doing
something useful during the twenty minutes it might take to, say, change to
another sheet, or switch from draft to high quality. (With the CPU pegged at
100%, so that the machine is unusable)
They're seriously thinking about winding back to 2003, which would be a
major PITA, given that thousands of models have been opened and saved in
2004 and they would have to laboriously recover them from backup tapes.
Very few complaints about modelling in 2004, but drawing (SP4.1) is
nightmarish, still buggy, still sloooooooooooow.