You’ve Got Access – Use the Full PD&M Collection

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If you’re finding it difficult to keep up with developments in technology so you can decide what’s worth investing in, consider the benefits of having an entire collection of products that all work together.

Around 2016, Autodesk started encouraging software users to upgrade to the new industry product collections. Not only was it enticing, but the upgrade price was very reasonable – giving companies access to quite a few complementary products at essentially no extra charge. In fact, the list of products in the Product Design and Manufacturing (PD&M) Collection was long enough that it was hard to envision how they might all be used.

Image: Autodesk.com

For the many Autodesk software users that upgraded to the PD&M Collection, there wasn’t an intuitive transition for them to use all of the software tools they now had access to. In the early days of the transition to Collections, most of the additional products companies were entitled to tended to be overlooked and not downloaded or used.


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If yours was one of those companies that upgraded to the PD&M Collection and you maintained it, following is a rundown of the integrated software products that are available to you for your workflows:

  • 3ds Max – tool for 3D modeling, animation and rendering of models and designs.
  • AutoCAD – 2D and 3D computer-aided drafting.
  • Autodesk Drive – cloud storage and file sharing solution.
  • Autodesk HSM – CAD/CAM programming solution that provides integrated high-speed milling functionality.
  • Nastran In-CAD – Finite Element Analysis software offering a wide-range of high end simulations.
  • Dynamo Studio – standalone visual logic programming environment.
  • Autodesk Rendering – enables use of computing power in the cloud to create high-resolution renderings.
  • Factory Design Utilities – interoperable 2D and 3D factory layout and optimization tool, creates digital factory models to design the most efficient factory layout.
  • Fusion 360 – collaborative, cloud-enabled 3D CAD, CAM, CAE, and PCB software; unifies design, engineering, electronics, and manufacturing to connect the product development process.
  • Inventor – used in product design, tooling creation, mechanical design; enables users to construct accurate 3D models to simulate and visualize products.
  • Navisworks – clash detection and advanced design/model coordination.
  • Recap Pro – reality capture for 3D models using imported photos and laser scans.
  • Vault Basic – integrates with CAD software to manage design and engineering data, regardless of file type.
Autodesk expands product design collection aug

With a list of thirteen products, the options may seem overwhelming. Many users don’t know where to start in deciding which would best benefit their workflows. If you’re only using one or two products in the PD&M Collection, your work is being developed in a “silo.” In a Project Amelia interview, Kenneth Driscol explained that using Autodesk Collection products together will improve your efficiency, safety, quality, and, ultimately, competitiveness.

Kenneth advised that, while you may be tempted to use non-Autodesk products you’ve heard about that are supposedly easier to use to help your workflow, chances are they won’t communicate well with each other. That erases any “easier to use” benefits you were hoping for. Instead, invest in your workflow by learning how to use the complementary Autodesk products you already have access to for better efficiency and productivity. They’ll enable you to make better decisions with your designs and get the best return on your technology investment.


Applied Software technicians have real-world experience with the software tools in the PD&M Collection. Contact Applied Software today and partner with industry-trained specialists to choose the products that best suit your company’s individual needs.