What is the Best Woodworking CAD Software in 2023? — Furniture Design and More in 3D

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The right woodworking software is vital to the process of getting great designs and precise measurements. However, we have come across more than our fair share of options that are difficult to use. 

To help you steer clear of these options, our experts have tested the best woodworking software available today. 

*Disclaimer: The first one is not an actual software.

Reviews of the Best Woodworking Software

1. Sawinery Projects Designer

Most woodworking design softwares cost fortune. We wanted to create an alternative for beginners and woodworkers who can’t afford paying $500 for a software. That’s why we created Sawinery’s Project Designer.

Sawinery Projects Designer is set of woodworking templates and guides and in-depth illustrations suitable for newbies and advanced woodworkers. Even if you don’t have excellent drawing skills, these innovative templates allow you to visualize and create your project plans with a simple pencil and eraser. 


2. Shapr3D

If your woodworking project includes intricate details, we don’t doubt that Shapr3D’s built-in rendering tool will suit your needs. Unlike other CAD software, you don’t need to use an external application to add specific iterations to your designs. 

During the hands-on, our woodworkers didn’t have a hard time learning its visualization and designing features as it has a very short learning curve. You can also rely on its material library with over 70 styles to give a unique touch to your piece. 

We also liked that this software works in sync with different devices, allowing users to access their designs offline. 

What We Like

What We Don't Like

3. Auto CAD

Any expert woodworker and accomplished furniture designer knows Auto CAD, and its popularity is based on its excellent features and the convenience it offers. 

Auto CAD isn’t only used for woodworking, but you’ll find that it’s a design software that works well with woodworking design plans. It’s simple to use and can bring your 3D models to life. 

You can start with 2D drawings and then move to 3D plans. It features tools to aid you in the process including a MEP toolset, a 3D map toolset, a raster design toolset and more.

This software is a fully-functional program that you can use on any device. This means you can be working on your plans during your commute or any time you are away from your computer.

What We Like

What We Don't Like

5. Autodesk Fusion 360

This Autodesk Fusion 360 is one of the first design software options to offer users product creation and CNC Gcode on the same product platform, this makes it high on our list. It’s a great tool for woodworking design for CNC and is used by professional and independent woodworkers.

It’s designed to be a straightforward and user-friendly CAD [1] software and there isn’t much of a learning curve involved. It also expertly combines both 2D and 3D design features, making it one of the most versatile woodworking design software options to generate your design.

It also offers a free trial, the Fusion 360 for Personal Use, which features the software’s most basic features. If you’d like to explore all of the software’s features, tools, and support, you have the option to get a monthly, annual, or triennial subscription.

What We Like

What We Don't Like

6. SketchList 3D

Sketchlist 3D is a program designed just for woodworkers. Whether you want to build a 3D warehouse or small pieces of furniture, Sketchlist has all the amenities you will need to put out the work you envision.

Since it’s dedicated to woodwork design, you will find indispensable features for generating precise mockups, models, and layouts. The dragging and dropping make it easier to realize your ideas without leaving out important details.

It even allows you to pick and choose your wood type for the most accurate design features and can emulate the drill holes to ensure your project will turn out the way you expect down to a tee.

What We Like

What We Don't Like

7. Sketchup


Sketchup is a very user-friendly tool that also gives free version of its software. Unlike some other tool options we have on our list, Sketchup was designed just for woodworkers and their woodworking projects. 

Our experts strongly recommend using Sketchup for beginners who aren’t sure about committing to a 3D modeling software. Sketchup offers woodworkers the flexibility to start from a simple 2D drawing that will eventually create a 3D designs. You can easily navigate through the software to draw your desired woodworking plans

The Sketchup software also features a myriad of tools you can use to simplify the design process and make it easier for beginners to create designs. When you watch a few videos, you will learn this quickly. It is also considered as one of the best deck design software available today. 

What We Like

What We Don't Like

8. Pro100

PRO 100

This Woodworking Design software caters to woodworkers and interior designers. This program helps you plan and visualize your woodworking ideas and has both 2D and 3D capabilities.

Our experts say Pro100 has a very strong 3D plan simulation with a very convenient rendering engine. If you like to build detailed designs, Pro100 has with all the gadgets and tools to realize your vision. You might have to watch a few videos to get the hang of it.

Pro100 does charge a fee for users, but before you take the plunge the software features an estimation tool that will show you the approximate cost of each design build.


What We Don't Like

9. Easy Woodworking Design

Easy Wood Working

As the name suggests, this is a simple woodworking design software that is an excellent option for those who like simplicity and have no prior knowledge on how to operate CAD tools. Easy Woodworking Design software will allow you to create your beginner level woodwork projects with minimal hassle and training.

The program features compatibility for both 2D and 3D designs. It also has basic design features that lets woodworkers estimate potential costs for a project and comes with a fairly intuitive editing tool.

It also supports cut lists, cut shelves, and angles to aid professionals and laymen with designing.

What We Like

What We Don't Like

Woodworking Software Buyer’s Guide

You can say that software is one of the woodworking tools you need for your project. Whether it’s furniture design or any other wood project, a good software will have the following features.


Determine your skills and evaluate the amount of training you will require to work these programs. This will allow you to get the most out of your purchase. 

You don’t want to have a hard time using these programs, so one that has a simple interface that won’t require training is ideal for beginners. Some available woodworking classes online can even provide you with deeper understanding on how these software and programs work. 

2D or 3D Modelling

The program you choose depends on the projects you have at hand. Some programs offer either 2D or 3D modeling capabilities, while others are designed to accommodate both.

The most important part is the versatility of the program. If you would like 2D planning and 3D modeling, look for an available CAD program that offers both.


Some of these woodworking design programs like Fusion 360 and Sketchup as well as EZ Wood Project Designer have an affordable price than others. There are also few options that are free of charge! 

Determine your budget as well, as you may need to shop for more professional options. There are those that cost nothing, some that just require a one-off payment, and others that come with a subscription service.

Autodesk is a popular example that comes with a free trial. However, the premium versions feature reasonable pricing offers.

Our Top Pick: Sawinery Projects Designer

Using the best woodworking software can get overwhelming, particularly if you’re a technologically challenged individual. Because of this, our resident woodworkers unanimously selected Sawinery Projects Designer as the best among the options. 

It’s a great go-to designer with comprehensive guides and templates. We don’t doubt that it’ll be a great resource material for anyone struggling to make rough project sketches. 

Robert Johnson is a woodworker who takes joy in sharing his passion for creating to the rest of the world. His brainchild, Sawinery, allowed him to do so as well as connect with other craftsmen. He has since built an enviable workshop for himself and an equally impressive online accomplishment: an extensive resource site serving old timers and novices alike.
Robert Johnson
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