Autodesk Inventor

Version2022(as of 7/21/2021)
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Rating:2.7  |  62 Votes

Main Features

  • Create, test, and document 3D mechanical product prototypes
  • Share designs with key stakeholders via cloud-based Autodesk Viewer
  • Import and export files used by other Autodesk CAD programs, as well as competitors' programs

Software Overview

Screenshot of Autodesk Inventor 2022
Screenshot of Autodesk Inventor 2022

Autodesk Inventor is a computer-aided design (CAD) application that engineers and product designers use to prototype mechanical products. In Inventor, users create 3D product prototypes, test those prototypes under a variety of conditions, and provide documentation that allows other engineers, designers, and manufacturers to understand their design choices.

Inventor includes a wealth of freeform, direct, and parametric design tools, many of which can be accessed by right-clicking while designing a part or assembly. Users typically begin by creating a 2D drawing of one or more parts, before transforming their 2D sketches into 3D models. In both the 2D and 3D stages, users can edit parts' geometry and dimensions. They can also revert changes as needed, if they want to backtrack to a previous version of their design.

After users have finished creating or importing the parts they need, they combine those parts into a product prototype, referred to as an assembly. While creating an assembly, users can continue editing parts as needed. They can also set relationships between parts, add design constraints, and document their design process. After finalizing an assembly, users can test their prototype's performance using Inventor's comprehensive motion simulation and stress analysis tools, and they can share their prototype and receive feedback from key stakeholders via Autodesk's cloud-based Autodesk Viewer.

Finally, Inventor allows users to import files from and export files for use by other Autodesk programs. For example, Inventor users can import AutoCAD .DWG files to give them a head-start on creating an assembly, and they can open and edit Inventor part (.IPT) files in Autodesk Fusion 360. Inventor can also import and export files used by other CAD programs, such as CATIA V5, SolidWorks, and UGS.


Autodesk Inventor is a comprehensive 3D CAD program that is a highlight of Autodesk's product design and manufacturing collection. Those who are already using Autodesk programs and want to start creating 3D product prototypes on Windows may want to reach into their pocketbook and start an Inventor subscription.

Primary File Type

iam icon.IAMInventor Assembly

Supported File Types

ExtensionFile Type
.IAMInventor Assembly
.3DMRhino 3D Model
.ASMPro/ENGINEER Assembly File
.DWGAutoCAD Drawing
.EASMeDrawings Assembly File
.F3DFusion 360 Archive File
.IDCLInventor Desktop Content Library File
.IDEInventor iFeature
.IDVInventor Design View
.IDWInventor Drawing
.IGSIGES Drawing
.IPJInventor Project
.IPNInventor Presentation
.IPTInventor Part
.JTJT Open CAD File
.PRTCreo Parametric Part
.SLDASMSolidWorks Assembly
.SLDPRTSolidWorks Part
.SMBAutodesk Shape Manager Binary File
.SMTAutodesk Shape Manager Text File
.STLStereolithography File
.X_BParasolid Model Part File

Additional Related File Types

ExtensionFile Type
.X_TParasolid Model Part File
Updated 7/21/2021