Showing results for 
Search instead for 
Did you mean: 
Showing results for 
Search instead for 
Did you mean: 

Community Tip - Stay updated on what is happening on the PTC Community by subscribing to PTC Community Announcements. X

Differences between Creo/Direct and Creo/Elements Direct?


Differences between Creo/Direct and Creo/Elements Direct?

Hi to all,

can anybody provide me details about the differences between Creo/Direct
and Creo/Elements Direct (former CoCreate)?
maybe a matrix with their capabilities, pros/cons?


I'm still looking for a straight answer to all of this. From what I hear, there is CoCreate as Creo Elements Direct and it has an -optional- drafting extension (?!) and then you have the extension to Creo Parametric that is "flexible modeling" or "direct modeling" (often mixed in the same conversation). I am in the market for upgrading but I really don't know what to buy or even what the final cost will be. Still waiting for an answer. Its been a week!

Maybe this will help... or just confuse more.


Creo/Elements Direct is actually CoCreate Modeling, a complete high end 3D CAD Direct (non-history based) modeling system. It includes the Annotation module for creating 2D drawings that are associative with the 3D models and assys. Additional modules include an excellent Sheetmetal module, a Surfacing module, FEA, mechanism simulation, etc.

Where Pro/E is great for parametric modeling, Creo/Elements Direct is great for development, especially when you're not sure were your design will end up. I have modeled thousands of models in Creo/Elements Direct without ever needing tore-model a part.

Creo/Direct is actually a lightweight Pro/E engine with a user interface that hides the history tree. So, the commands work like direct modeling commands, but in reality, a history is building up. When you open a Creo/Direct model in Creo/Parametric, you will see this tree. This means that if someone is using Creo/Direct in a messy way, you will end up with an unusable part. In Creo/Elements Direct there is no such history, so the user doesn't have to think about modeling strategies. On the other hand, if you open such a model in Creo Parametric, the tree is empty.

So, Creo/Direct is aimed at non-CAD users, who can makesimple modifications onCreo Parametricmodelswith it. For serious modifications on ProE models,Creo Parametric's Flexible Modeling Extension is the way to go, because it allows powerful direct modeling without messing up the history tree.

Hope this helps!

Regards, Jaap

Hi Jaap,

thank you for your reply. You answered to all of questions about these
products. What about model exchange between
Creo 2.0 and Creo Elements/Direct? Creo 2.0 imports Creo Elements/Direct
model, like STEP or IGES. Then you can use parametric
modelling with/or Flexible Modeling Extension (FMX), or Creo Direct to
modify the part. What about the other way?? Does
Creo Elements/Direct imports Creo native file formats (*.asm, *.prt,
*.drw), or just STEP/IGES?
Why someone to invest in direct modeling instead of Parametric modelling.
Is there any matrix describing the pros and cons between direct and history
based parametric modelling?

best regards,



in the latest version of Creo Elements Direct you can open native .PRT and .ASM files. Since Creo Elements Direct has no history tree, modifying imported models is not different from modifying native models, so it's very easy to work on imported Creo Parametric models.

A couple of thoughts about choosing between parametric and direct modeling:

- development: Direct, engineering: Parametric or Direct

- can you predict what your models will look like in the end? If no: Direct

- do you build product families like Lego or Tupperware? If yes: Parametric

- do you cooperate with other CAD-systems? If yes: Direct

- computer skills of your engineers > low/medium: Direct. High: either Direct or Parametric

- lots of flexible components like springs: Parametric

- Mould design: Parametric

- unforeseen changes: Direct

- learning curve:days with Direct, months with Parametric

- huge assemblies,simple parts,large project teams: Direct. Small assies, complex (plastic) parts, small teams: Parametric

- CAD administrators / key users needed> Direct: 1 on 50 users. Parametric: 1 on 10 users.

Obviously, like anyone, I'm biased, but we do have years of experience with both systems in a large R&D dept.

just my opinion... regards, Jaap

Thank you Jaap for your comments

I just saw a video in

Very interesting. Thanks for the input.

Along with the other functions Jaap mentioned, Creo Elements Direct Modeling also has a parametric module called advanced assembly, which we have used to create parametric models for steel bridge cross member; a complete animation module with we have used to make avi movies to animate fabrication and erection procedure from our 3D models; and there is a fully functional stand alone 2D drafting package called Creo Elements Direct Drafting (formally CoCreate Drafting).  It is a pretty awesome package.

Business Continuity with Creo: Learn more about it here.

Top Tags