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Mastercam X3 vs Mastercam 2020

6/12/19 6:00 AM / by camInstructor Mike

This video takes a look at the new Mastercam 2020 and compares it to an older version, Mastercam X3. Mastercam X3 was released in 2008 so it's not a fair comparison but a fun look at how far things have come in the last 11 years.

This is a bit of an unfair comparison, X3 is 11 years older than the 2020 release, so of course functions have improved and matured. We will again compare the same part in both versions.

One of the biggest drawbacks of using X3 is that the Dynamic Mill toolpaths had not made its way into the software yet. Not having access to this tool motion or chaining options are a HUGE drawback both in programming efficiency and overal machining efficiency. Dynamic Mill made its debut in X4.

Without the added benefit of being able to easily define Air Regions, in X3 we will have to create some additional geometry to better represent where we need the tool to cut. The resulting toolpath will work and there is nothing wrong with creating the toolpath this way...but as the saying goes, work smarter not harder. The features added over the past 11 years really become apparent when compared side by side. 

Drag and Drop! Almost forgot about this one. This is a feature I use all the time when opening files. This was not available back in X3. So glad this functionality was added!

Even the graphics have come a long way in the past 11 years. I guess something like graphics should be obvious, if you compare a computer game from 11 years ago I'm sure it'll look pretty awful compared to todays standards. It's amazing the things you forget about when you don't look back at where you came from.

I also did a comparion between X9 and 2020, here is a link to that post...

X9 vs 2020


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Topics: Mastercam Dynamic Milling, Mastercam, Mill, Mastercam 2020, Mastercam X3

camInstructor Mike

Written by camInstructor Mike

camInstructor Mike is Mike Wearne, an avid machinist, cnc programmer and overall connoisseur of all things machining. Mike is one of camInstructor's resident cad/cam/cnc experts and works part time at his local college teaching aspiring machinists how to program CNC Machines of all types.

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