What Is Difference Between SolidWorks and Solid Edge?

When it comes to computer-aided design (CAD) software, there are several options available in the market. Two of the most popular choices among designers and engineers are SolidWorks and Solid Edge.

While both software solutions serve a similar purpose, they have distinct features and capabilities that set them apart from each other. In this article, we will explore the key differences between SolidWorks and Solid Edge.

Different Companies, Different Backgrounds

One of the primary differences between SolidWorks and Solid Edge lies in their origins. SolidWorks is developed by Dassault Systèmes, a French software company known for its expertise in 3D design, simulation, and product lifecycle management. On the other hand, Solid Edge is a product of Siemens PLM Software, a division of the German conglomerate Siemens AG.

User Interface

Both SolidWorks and Solid Edge offer intuitive user interfaces that make it easy for users to navigate through the software. However, there are some notable differences in their approaches.

SolidWorks: The user interface of SolidWorks is known for its simplicity and ease of use. It provides a familiar Windows-like experience with menus, toolbars, and customizable workspaces. The software emphasizes drag-and-drop functionality and offers a wide range of keyboard shortcuts for efficient modeling.

Solid Edge: In contrast, the user interface of Solid Edge has a more modern look and feel. It employs a ribbon-based interface similar to Microsoft Office applications. This approach provides users with contextual tabs that change based on the selected tool or feature.

Modeling Capabilities

Parametric Modeling:

  • SolidWorks: One of the key strengths of SolidWorks is its robust parametric modeling capabilities. It allows users to create complex 3D models by defining parameters and relationships between different entities.

    This feature enables easy modification of designs and ensures that changes propagate throughout the model.

  • Solid Edge: Solid Edge also offers powerful parametric modeling tools. It supports synchronous technology, which allows users to directly edit imported 3D models without the need for feature history. This feature is particularly useful when working with files from different CAD systems.

Assembly Design:

  • SolidWorks: SolidWorks provides advanced assembly design capabilities, allowing users to create assemblies with thousands of components. It offers features like mate references, collision detection, and interference checking to ensure accurate assembly designs.
  • Solid Edge: Solid Edge offers similar assembly design tools as SolidWorks. It includes features like intelligent snapping, pattern recognition, and assembly relationships to simplify the creation and manipulation of assemblies.

Simulation and Analysis

SolidWorks: SolidWorks is well-known for its comprehensive simulation capabilities. It provides a range of tools for finite element analysis (FEA), computational fluid dynamics (CFD), motion analysis, and structural optimization. These tools enable engineers to validate their designs and make informed decisions before manufacturing.

Solid Edge: While Solid Edge also includes simulation tools, they are not as extensive as those offered by SolidWorks. However, it does provide basic FEA capabilities that allow users to perform stress analysis on their models.

Collaboration and Data Management

PDM Integration:

  • SolidWorks: SolidWorks has its own product data management (PDM) solution called SolidWorks PDM. It provides a comprehensive set of tools for managing design data, controlling revisions, and facilitating collaboration among team members.
  • Solid Edge: Solid Edge integrates with Siemens Teamcenter, a leading PDM and product lifecycle management (PLM) software. This integration allows users to seamlessly manage their design data and collaborate with other departments within an organization.


In summary, while both SolidWorks and Solid Edge are powerful CAD software solutions, they have distinct differences that cater to different user preferences and requirements. SolidWorks is known for its robust parametric modeling capabilities and extensive simulation tools. On the other hand, Solid Edge offers synchronous technology for easy editing of imported models and seamless integration with Siemens Teamcenter for efficient collaboration and data management.

Ultimately, the choice between SolidWorks and Solid Edge depends on factors such as individual workflow preferences, specific project requirements, and available resources. It is recommended to evaluate both software solutions thoroughly before making a decision.