Is There Any Future Prospect Of Raster Image Formats In CAD

To store and transmit data, there are several CAD file formats. CAD file formats are divided into two formats: bitmap or raster and vector format. Here in this blog, we shall talk in detail about the differences.

The raster format display images in pixel mode. Raster graphics suit in photographic images and they are independent of resolutions. When scaled up to higher resolutions there would be some loss of quality, because there will be more grains to images and several details are lost.

The vector format has images as primitives on an algebraic grid. Vector images can be scaled up to every resolution without quality issue.

The most important difference is that raster images become poor when scaled up. Whereas vector images have no such issue.

  • Some raster based formats are like the JPEG, PNG, BMP, TIFF formats.

  • The vector-based formats include EPS, PDF, SVG, DXF, DRW, and DWG formats.

  • Compound formats like EPS, PDF, SWF, and PICT has both pixel and vector-based data.

What is the popularity of Vector Format among the CAD Vendors?

It is often seen that today CAD software packages store designs and drawings in vector format. Let’s see what CAD formats the leading CAD vendors apply:

  • Autodesk comes with its own file format, also supports DWG, DXF and several other file formats.

  • AutoCAD uses the DXF and DWG vector formats.

  • SolidWorks store design information in DXF vector format. Other formats like the AI, CGR, and STL are kept in a structured format, which also stores raster formats.

Formats those are quite popular with 3D Printing Technology

The format applied is the STL format. The leading 3D companies get converted the CAD files into STL. Other CAD vendors who can export files into STL include Catia, Autodesk Inventor, SolidWorks, and SolidEdge.

Which specific CAD format best suits for CAD Data Exchange?

The most preferred CAD file exchange software can have the quality of converting between raster and vector formats. Due to current CAD files which have more drawings and design information, it is sensible to have various file formats preserved within a structure, such that very less information is lost during conversion and transmission of the files.

With some compositeness in making integrated CAD file formats, there are chances that a new acronym is to be coined.

Well, if you wonder if any specific CAD file format is there that best suits for CAD data exchanging; then the answer is no.

If you have to exchange CAD data in the form of design drawings, then the most suitable among the lot is the vector format. It offers a change in scale without information loss.

If you have CAD in form of pictures or animations then a raster format with a higher resolution, would best suit for exchange of data?


It is understood that the raster images cannot be scaled up without any loss of information, they are essential to convey picture images and for animations. In modern days, storing CAD data inclined towards the utility of structured file format where various file formats can be embedded with.

With this, we conclude. Hope this piece of information is helpful to you.

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