Professional Documentation


SOLIDWORKS Composer allows you to easily repurpose your 3D CAD data to develop stunning assembly, operations, and maintenance publications, in parallel with your design process.
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From CAD Data to Polished Technical Documentation

At its core, SOLIDWORKS Composer is a tool designed to take your 3D models and 2D images and create step-by-step PDF assembly instructions. However, it can be used for so much more than that.

With SOLIDWORKS Composer, you define your customer’s experience. If you need to provide assembly instructions for a boxed product, a printed PDF manual might be a good fit. If your products need assembly and detailed installation instructions, maybe an animated video is best. 

What if you are collaborating with a vendor or customer and need to provide a detailed 3D model with fully interactive instructions? In that case you can take all the above and combine it with an interactive 3D player that clearly lays out all the details with a combination of 3D and 2D content. SOLIDWORKS Composer can help you achieve all of this, while remaining associated to the SOLIDWORKS CAD model to ensure your documentation stays up-to-date with any CAD changes.

solidworks composer player view

Key Features & Benefits

CAD Format Support

SOLIDWORKS Composer supports a wide range of 3D CAD formats, including SOLIDWORKS, Pro/ENGINEER/Creo®, and Autodesk® Inventor, as well as neutral file formats such as STEP, IGES, and others.

Update Visual Content

Update all content seamlessly with the latest design changes, including geometry, Bill of Materials (BOM) tree, metadata, and more, ensuring your documentation is always up-to-date.

Faster Content Development

Create 2D and 3D graphical content in multiple formats: (JPG, BMP, TIF, PNG), vector images (SVG, EPS, SVGZ, CGM), videos (AVI), 3D interactive animations (3D PDF, HTML, SMG), and executable packages (ActiveX control).

Annotate Documentation

Easily add annotations (auto balloons, BOM table, arrows, and detail views) or change appearances (hide/show, transparency, and colors).

Document Processes

Develop detailed step-by-step procedures documentation and manuals demonstrating component assembly in incremental stages.

Create Animations

Create a manufacturing BOM independent of an engineering BOM. Customize parts lists and properties for each view.


Unlock Creativity and Efficiency with SOLIDWORKS Composer

SOLIDWORKS Composer revolutionizes technical communication, enabling seamless creation of stunning visual content from 3D CAD data. Empower your team to streamline documentation processes, enhance product understanding, and accelerate time to market.

Explore the possibilities with SOLIDWORKS Composer today!

Engineering Success Together

Services & Customer Benefits

Frequently Asked Questions

Yes, Composer is tied to the SOLIDWORKS file name and when the design is adjusted it can be easily updated in Composer, and then pushed to your publications.

Do I need SOLIDWORKS to use Composer?

No, Composer is standalone software that does not require a connection to any CAD modeling software. However, 3D models are required in order to use Composer.

Can Composer licenses be networked like SOLIDWORKS?

Yes, SOLIDWORKS Composer is available in both standalone and network licensing so you can either lock it to a specific computer or share it with multiple users, one at a time.

Can I use SOLIDWORKS Composer to modify the CAD models?

No, Composer does not have the ability to edit the CAD design, and this is by intent. The purpose of Composer is to give technical content creators the ability to use the 3D models without the risk of accidentally modifying the design.

Does Composer work with SOLIDWORKS PDM?

Yes, there is a full PDM connection built into the software.

What kinds of 3D models can I bring into SOLIDWORKS Composer?
Composer is directly compatible with all neutral and most proprietary 3D CAD files. There are some limitations with proprietary file types, but there is almost always a compatible file type between the two programs.
What information is imported from SOLIDWORKS designs to Composer?

This is quite a list but to break it down:

  • All metadata such as custom properties
  • All views such as exploded or configurations
  • Assembly level BOM IDs
  • 3D PMI data, also known as MBD or DimXpert dimensions
  • Textures and part coloring

All of this imports directly from SOLIDWORKS to Composer. They also maintain a link back to SOLDWORKS so if they are modified, that change will be reflected in Composer.

If I don’t have 3D modeling experience, will Composer be difficult to learn?

Absolutely not. SOLIDWORKS Composer is not a CAD program; it is an authoring tool that imports 3D and 2D content so that a story can be told. No CAD experience is needed, however if you are familiar with 3D models it will help since Composer is a 3D program.

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