By Martin Phelps
A Summary of new features in AutoCAD 2018
- High Resolution (4K) Monitor Support
User interface elements such as the cursor, navigation bar and UCS icon display correctly on high-resolution (4K) monitors.
Most dialog boxes, palettes and toolbars are correctly adjusted to the Windows setting for the display scale.
For best results use Windows 10 and a DX11-capable graphics card.
- PDF Import
PDF files generated from AutoCAD drawings that contain SHX text store the text as geometric objects.
The “PDFSHXTEXT” command can be used to convert the SHX geometry back into text, which now includes an option to use the best matching SHX font.
The “TXT2MTXT” command has been enhanced with several improvements including the option to force uniform line spacing.
- Visual Enhancements
The improvements include the following:
- Hatch display and performance are enhanced.
- Anti-aliasing and high quality graphics settings for supported graphics cards can now be controlled independently from each other.
- Off-screen object selection.
- The orange rubber-band line that appears when objects are either created or edited can now be set to any colour via the “Colours” button in the “Display” tab of the “Options” Dialogue box.
As shown in Figure 1.
- External Reference Paths
The default path type for external references is now set to Relative. Two new path options are available: Select New Path and Find and Replace. Additional capabilities include the following:
- When you fix the path for a missing external reference, you can now apply the same path for other missing reference files.
- When saving the host drawing in a new location, the user is now prompted to update the relative paths for the external references.
- The Change Path Type option in the External References palette now reflects the current path type when a single external reference is selected. The current path type is not accessible, which lets you know which path type is current.
- Attach references with Relative Path type for unnamed files.
- 3D Graphics Performance
Additional performance improvements have been made when using 3DORBIT and panning and zooming with the following 3D visual styles: Wireframe, Realistic and Shaded. It is recommend that a 64-bit machine and a compatible graphics card is used.
- DWG Format Update
New DWG and DXF formats for AutoCAD 2018, the DWG format has been updated to provide improvements in open and save operations, especially for drawings that contain many annotative objects and viewports, shown in Figure 2.
Additionally, 3D solid and surface creation now uses the new geometric modeller (ASM), which provides improved security and stability.