Is Rhino Better Than SolidWorks?

Is Rhino Better Than SolidWorks?

When it comes to choosing the right 3D modeling software, there are numerous options available in the market. Two popular choices among designers and engineers are Rhino and SolidWorks.

Both programs offer powerful features and capabilities, but they cater to different needs and preferences. In this article, we will compare Rhino and SolidWorks to help you make an informed decision.

The Basics

Rhino, also known as Rhinoceros 3D, is a versatile modeling software widely used in various industries such as architecture, industrial design, jewelry design, and more. It provides a flexible and intuitive interface that allows users to create complex 3D models with ease.

On the other hand, SolidWorks is primarily focused on mechanical engineering design. It offers a range of tools specifically designed for creating precise mechanical models and assemblies. This makes it a preferred choice for professionals working in the manufacturing industry.



  • Surface Modeling: Rhino excels in creating complex organic shapes using its powerful surface modeling tools. It allows designers to create smooth curves and surfaces using control points.
  • NURBS-based Modeling: Non-Uniform Rational B-Splines (NURBS) are a mathematical model used by Rhino for accurate representation of curves and surfaces. This makes it ideal for creating precise designs.
  • Limited Parametric Capabilities: While Rhino does offer some parametric capabilities through plugins like Grasshopper, it is not as robust as SolidWorks in terms of parametric modeling.


  • Parametric Modeling: SolidWorks is known for its robust parametric modeling capabilities. It allows users to create models with predefined parameters, making it easier to modify and update designs.
  • Assembly Design: SolidWorks offers advanced tools for creating complex assemblies with ease.

    It allows users to simulate the movement and interaction of parts, making it ideal for mechanical engineering.

  • Sheet Metal Design: SolidWorks provides specialized features for designing sheet metal parts. It enables users to create accurate flat patterns and unfold complex geometries.


Rhino’s workflow is more open-ended and flexible compared to SolidWorks. It allows designers to explore different design iterations quickly. Rhino’s focus on organic modeling makes it a great choice for designers who prioritize artistic freedom and creativity.

SolidWorks, on the other hand, follows a more structured workflow that suits the needs of engineers and manufacturers. Its parametric modeling capabilities enable efficient design changes and updates throughout the product development process.


Rhino offers a relatively affordable pricing model with a one-time purchase option. This makes it accessible for individual designers or small businesses on a budget.

SolidWorks, however, follows a subscription-based pricing model. While it offers various licensing options, it may be more expensive in the long run, especially for individual users or small teams.


In conclusion, both Rhino and SolidWorks are powerful 3D modeling software with unique strengths. The choice between them ultimately depends on your specific requirements and preferences.

If you are an architect or designer looking for artistic freedom and flexible modeling capabilities, Rhino may be the better choice for you.

On the other hand, if you are a mechanical engineer or working in the manufacturing industry, SolidWorks’ parametric modeling and assembly design features make it a more suitable option.

Consider your workflow, required features, and budget before making a decision. Both programs offer free trial versions, so it’s worth trying them out to see which one aligns better with your needs.