Tuesday, 17 April 2018

Revit 2019 - What's New & First Impressions

Revit 2019 has arrived...

It has been an exciting past week with the arrival of Revit 2019. The list of new features and enhancements I think will see Revit 2019 as a key release in years to come. 
As many of you probably know by now, one of those key features is the multi monitor support together with tabbed views.

You can find the Revit Knowledge Network Article on What's new for Revit 2019 HERE.

The Upgrade Information for Revit 2019 can be found HERE.

The Revit Blog here also outlines some of the new features.

A list of resolved reported issues & improvements (minor) can be found HERE.

Finally, with the release of 2018.3 and Revit 2019, you can read the updated Revit Roadmap HERE.

Here is a list of the Architectural & multi-discipline updates (at the time of writing) and I will be sure to keep this updated with more minor updates that aren't typically covered in the marketing stuff as I discover them.
  • Multi-monitor support
  • Tabbed views
  • 'OR' in filters
  • Levels in 3D
  • Uncropped perspective views
  • 3D view projection toggle
  • Scope boxes can be applied in 3D views
  • Scope box list now sorts alphanumerically
  • Double fill patterns
    • Material browser foreground / background fill patterns
  • Material browser; new physical assets (improved render materials)
  • Delete level warning now itemises what will be deleted
  • Renaming level for corresponding views dialog box can now be turned off (Do not show again tickbox)
  • Material browser cleaned up with only one AEC library
  • Vertical text alignment
  • Ability to slow double click to rename views
  • Ability to split railings outside of sketch mode
  • Display software version for files in the Open dialog
  • Improved fidelity of FormIt imports
  • Access to new BIM 360 Design (replaces C4R) (also released in 2018.3 update)
  • Dimensions for curved objects in section views (perpendicular)

Note about installation: It has been flagged that Revit 2019 installs with the latest version of Dynamo 1.3.3. For some, the downside to this will be this version is not compatible with Revit 2016. You may need to reinstall Dynamo 1.3.2 afterwards. Further information can be found in the Dynamo forums if you run into problems. 
Also, there is known bug that Autodesk is working on fixing relating to common key functions not working in Dynamo for 2019. See post HERE at the Dynamobim website.

What am I most excited about in Revit 2019?!?
Tabbed views!, No, wait... multi-monitor support! No, actually, OR filters... oh wait, double hatch patterns! OK, so there is A LOT to like about this release. At the moment, I think tabbed views is leading the way for this question, but yesterday I was testing on a sample project and the dual monitor support put a big smile on my face. Then today I was testing some updates for our future drawings and double patterns was oh so easy.

The double patterns is a change that may take some getting use to. This will effect all areas of Revit where you can assign a fill pattern. You will notice now the terminology "Foreground" & "Background" used throughout the interface, from filters, to filled regions to the material browser.

Updated material browser interface

Updated VG fill pattern interface

Updated filled region interface

I am looking forward to applying this change to our documents. We have both timber and masonry fire walls throughout our documentation highlighted by a red fill. The problem has always been we couldn't simultaneously indicate the wall hatch representation for the material and the solid fill, now we can. With double fill patterns, we can now assign a background colour of red solid fill and foreground of masonry diagonal hatch. Perfect.

It is worth noting though background fill can only use drafting patterns (including solid). To ensure consistency, I am thinking that users should only use the "foreground" fill for single hatch patterns or things may get confusing. 

In the VG a double hatch pattern applied to walls for example looks like this...

Some Other Things I Noticed...
Tabbed views and multi-monitor support is great, but at the moment, off frame views act like a separate window application. What this means is when you pull a tab out of frame onto a second monitor, you can't add more tabs to this frame like you can when the frame is in Revit.
Instead, you will have to pull multiple views out of the Revit application frame and dock them into place using the Microsoft method of window docking.
Hopefully this is addressed in the future, being able to simply click tabs in out of frame windows would be much easier.

I am not thrilled about the slow double click to rename feature. We all know what this is like in windows when you mis-click the folder and you enter rename mode instead, I am hoping I don't start experiencing this in Revit now with views. Time will tell.

The factory concentrated on levels in 3D views. This is good, but to be honest, when I voted on the idea in the Revit Ideas forum, I was voting for grids in 3D views and for most people, I think this is far more useful so I hope this addition isn't too far away.

The material browser is busy. With the introduction of double fill patterns, the material browser dialog box has a lot going on and I think this could have been done better. I mocked up my own interface idea below. I just don't understand why we need such a big white box to show the fill pattern. Look how small the box is in visibility graphics and even that is split in two now!

I think this is a cleaner solution...

The Revit Icon; what is now a running joke, the Revit Icon has been the same since 2017. We use a software program that almost guarantees most offices will use more than a single version, and here we are with something so simple being ignored.
I wasn't going to wait for Autodesk, so I made my own this year. Those who have kept up with the changes for Navisworks 2019 will understand the irony of my colour choice*. 

*With no 'New features' list yet, the only change for Navisworks 2019 appears to be the icon colour going from the traditional green to now being blue. So now everything is blue? How boring. I think all the applications of the suites should have their own colour! Look out AutoCAD, you could be next!

Maybe the Navisworks team should have assisted the Revit team with a new icon?

Monday, 16 April 2018

Revit 2018.3 - Known Installation Issues

Revit 2018.3 was released recently. I was about to install, but I always check the forums first and I am now holding off until a few problems get sorted.
There is a forum thread at the moment over at Autodesk about a number of people reporting errors after installation. Might be worth a read if you are having similar problems.

Also, whilst many have made comment about 2018.3 only being a bug fix update, (full list can be found here) but the key component of the 2018.3 release is part of the new BIM 360 Design which Autodesk is calling the 'next generation of C4R'. 

Release 2018.3 makes Revit 2018 compatible with BIM 360 Design as prior versions of 2018 doesn't have the code to communicate with the suite.

So if you're not in a position to update to 2019 yet, then it may be something you are interested in beyond the bug fixes. Although, do your reading first as existing C4R projects need to be converted, they aren't automatically readable with the new BIM 360 Design. 

Fancy colourful image courtesy of Autodesk