Ashlar Vellum Cobalt....?

Has anybody used this 3d cad/cam software? It is supposed to be an engineering and at the same time 3d software tool.

3d studio is ok for 3d work but isn’t it better when simultanously have the engineering designs ready for production? Plus in case you need better rendering you import it in another 3d tool…

any comment?

I have been really looking into this for about 3 months now. I’m mainly a 3ds Max user but have used AutoCAD & Pro-E back in the day.

I’ve recently done the Software “Test Drive” for Solidworks 2005, Autodesk inventor, Alias & Pro/CONCEPT. I’ve checked out Demos for Rhino, Cobalt & Concepts unlimited. I thought it would be a real easy task to find a program that can do do conceptual rendering and also be able to go acuratly go right to CAD/CAM.

I posted a thread on 09-30-04 called…
Point of Purchase Design ID Software?
…check that out. It describes the type of design buisiness that I’m in.

I know Ashlar Vellum is more geared for both Concept and CAD/CAM than any other program but I heard that the company was financially unstable, something to look into. Concepts Unlimited is another version of Cobalt (the 2 companies split and now produce a similar product).

…this is just the word on the street.

I’ve met people that use Cobalt and love it, parametrics with the easy interface and tools of vellum we all know. That, and rendering can be good with it (I’ve seen a couple of really good samples). Only problem heard about is glitches, but then again, you get those with all progs.
Concepts seems to be the same guts, haven’t heard from any users though. Their renderings on the site aren’t too inspiring but that may just be who submitted.
I’d say the big benefits are 3-d parametric, surfacing, auto-dims, and rendering in one package on Mac. And I hear it’s extremely easy to use. Don’t know of too many progs with all of those points (excluding platform biases). Haven’t heard how well it exports to pro, etc…

Right! i have also used AutoCAD so i guess i will be somehow familiar with the Cobalt. Max is better in rendering but whu not importing your cobalt file in max and do your job?

i have down;oaded part of their user guide but also searched for tutorials but did not find anything. is there any web page with such stuff?


i bought cobalt and have been using it for a year. Best 3D model package there is. Simple cheap and works well. If u ever used vellum or graphite and know the ease of use it, this is what cobalt is like and 3d. Renders fine, very easy learning curve and is great for products. Not for faces or humans etc…then MAX is the GO.


Ashlar has never updated their software for 1.5 years and there help is really crap.
Their ACIS KERNEL is still 7 while we are upto 13 now and i can give a whole other list of problems.

The makers of Cobalt (code) have split away from ashlar and started thier own company and brought out thier own version of the program. (still the same as cobalt but a thousand times better).

We have switched to this package called concepts unlimited (

This package is the best ever. Great support and forums and updates everymonth.

So for people who are intrested in cobalt…switch to concepts unlimited…same program just better updated and all bugs taken out.

Check out the site and see.


I use cobalt and concepts. Concepts has been updated but they lost some of the tools I really like-Parasolid import, constraints, and sketches. I think concepts will implement something to replace the sketches.

Both programs have agood balance of surface modeling, easy to use, and good part making features- Shelling for example.


alias software or cobalt? Furthermore, alias sketchBook or Painter?

Up to now i have never used any of the so called alias software. R they so good or just a myth?