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!
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!
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
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.