Tag Archive | Revit 2016

Autodesk Revit 2016 R2 Released with a bunch of new features

Autodesk Revit 2016 R2 builds on the speed and project performance improvements that distinguish Revit 2016 and includes more than 25 updates, many requested by users. With further improved software performance and scalability, plus new features, the family of Revit 2016 R2 releases enables subscribers to more effectively and efficiently capture design intent.

Revit 2016 R2 is fully compatible with the existing Revit 2016 releases and has no file format changes so users can install the update without disrupting existing ongoing work in Revit 2016.

Revit 2016 R2 represents significant incremental value for Autodesk Maintenance and Desktop Subscription customers who get immediate access to the most current Revit capabilities. Here is a view into just some of what Revit R2 delivers:

Faster: Revit 2016 R2 features continued improvements to software performance and scalability:

  • Orbit, pan and zoom more quickly with the new Draw Visible Elements Only option. Revit improves navigation speed by working only on displaying the visible elements of a view. This occlusion culling is especially beneficial with complex files and views in which regeneration of a significant amount of content is suppressed.


Orbit, pan and zoom more quickly with the new Draw Visible Elements Only option. Image courtesy of Autodesk.

  • Keep working during update of color schemes and the associated color fills with Color Fill Background Processing. Revit 2016 R2 updates room, space, HVAC zone, duct, and pipe color fills using multiple CPUs, which alleviates model interaction delays associated with these computations.


Revit 2016 R2 updates room, space, HVAC zone, duct, and pipe color fills using multiple CPUs. Image courtesy of Autodesk.

Smarter: Revit 2016 R2 has new and improved tools to help users better-capture and embed design intent in a model.

  • Embed design intent in a model by using project-wide parameters to drive dimension and element instance parameters with the Global Parameters feature. A global parameter can measure dimensions and calculate formulas to drive dimensions and parameter values in other elements in the project.


Embed design intent in a model by using project-wide parameters to drive dimension and element
instance parameters with the Global Parameters feature. Image courtesy of Autodesk.

  • With Family Visibility Preview, get a better view of design intent by filtering out geometries that are not viewed. Work more quickly by previewing geometries and making adjustments before loading a Family into a project.

Better: We’re always striving to improve Revit based on user feedback. Over 20 user-requested enhancements include:

o Unload links per user to increase performance and improve memory usage without affecting other project team members
o Copy/Paste commands in perspective views
o Cancel print or export of multiple views and sheets with one click
o Filter solids/voids in separate entries to more easily multi-select the geometries to make bulk changes
o Enhanced rotation controls and insert part option in fabrication part modeling


Unload links per user to increase performance and improve memory usage without affecting other project team members. Image courtesy of Autodesk.

As an incremental install, Revit R2 can be less disruptive for users and administrators by spacing out changes vs. incorporating larger annual updates. Any downtime or disruption to work processes can be more easily out-weighed by the gains in performance, usability and stability.

Autodesk Revit 2016 R2 is available to Maintenance and Desktop Subscription customers worldwide starting today, October 22, in the following languages: Brazilian Portuguese, Czech, English, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Polish, Russian, Simplified Chinese, Spanish and Traditional Chinese.

What’s New In Revit 2016?

As you all may have noticed, Revit 2016 has now been released, but what new features do we all have to play with? Rob Clark from Excitech posted the following videos explaining what’s new in Revit Architecture, Revit Structure, Revit MEP & AutoCAD Civil 3D 2016.

Creating simple parametric families in Revit – Part 1

Today, I will be showing you how to create simple parametric families in Revit. This tutorial is for anyone learning Revit who hasn’t yet got into creating families. I will be continuing to post more family tutorials so keep checking back over the coming weeks for more. This tutorial will show you how to create a simple ‘cube family’ with a fixed elevation height with parametric width and height as well as material options. 

The first thing you want to do, is to create a new generic family template. When deciding what template to use, you should take into consideration what kind of family you are creating. For example, if you are creating a light fixture, you would of course use the light fixture family template. Be sure to think about where the family will be hosted, if it will be hosted on the ceiling, make sure you also use a ceiling based family. 

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Once you have your generic family template loaded, you will want to tile the windows. (Be sure you have no other active projects open) The reason you want to do this is to give you a good overview of all relevant views when creating your family. Plan view, Elevation front, Elevation left (or right) and 3D view. 

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Now you should see 4 equally sized windows fitted to your screen. In case the view has been obscured, zoom to fit in each window (double click mouse wheel). Now the most important part about creating families is using reference planes. Reference planes are crucial when designing families, as these will act as your control dimensions / constraints. Create a square with 4 seperate reference planes as shown in the image below. Always remember to draw your reference planes clockwise, this will be important for future developments. 

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Now you have set constraints to the floor plan view of the project, it is now time to set some elevation height constraints. We do this with the use of dimensions (di), by adding a dimension line to our elevation view. If you have a certain height you want your cube to be, then measure it off here, otherwise, for now just follow the example shown in the images below. 

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Once we have set some dimensions on our reference planes, we want to give these dimensions a parameter. Parameters are used to give custom or fixed assets to our families. Now you want your elevation view, where you have just created a dimension to be active. Highlight your dimension and click on the dropdown menu next to label, as shown below. To start with, the only option you will see is ‘Add parameter…’uploaded image

We are now going to add a parameter to this dimension line, constraining the elevation height of the cube. As shown in the image below, we will create a name for this dimension parameter ‘Height of cube’. Be sure the ‘Group parameter under’ option is set to ‘Dimensions’ In this case, we will keep it as a ‘Type’ parameter. This means that we can use this parameter to constrain the height of the family to the ‘Height of cube’ parameter, which you can see is ‘2214mm’.

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Once you have created a parameter for your ‘Elevation left’ view, you will want to do the same thing for your dimension lines you created on the ‘Floor plan’ view. Click on the dimension defining the height and add a new parameter label. This time we will call the dimension ‘Height’ again checking it is set as a dimension. This time we will use an ‘Instance parameter’ so click the ‘Instance’ checkbox. Instance parameters will give the user of the family the option to define custom settings, in this case height for the cube. Follow the exact same steps mentioned above for your ‘Width’ dimension on the ‘Floor plan’ view. You will now have 3 dimension, with 3 new dimension labels.

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Now, once our template is set up and constrained we are going to start creating some actual physical geometry. We do this of course with the Revit massing tools. As shown above, navigate to the ‘Design’ tab and click on ‘Solid Extrusion’. You now want to draw a box with the square line creation tool, covering the reference planes you have set, as shown in the image above. Before you finish your extrusion, you want to edit some of the extrusion properties.

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We are now going to modify the ‘Extrusion End’ constraints, otherwise known as the elevation height, or extrusion height. Click on the small grey box at the end of the ‘Extrusion End’ bar. You will now see the ‘Associate Family Parameter’ dialogue appear. You will also see the 3 new paramaters you have just created. As we are now trying to define the extrusion height of the cube, we will select our ‘Height of cube’ parameter. Click OK. You will now see that the ‘Extrusion End’ bar is greyed out.

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The final parameter we are going to add is to be for a material. The reason we do this, is so that the user of the family, in a project environment will be able to choose which material they want the family to be. For more detailed families it is possible to split the materials into different sections, but I will be discussing that in another post. For now, we want to add a parameter for the material. Simply click on the small box at the right side of the materials bar and click on ‘Add parameter…’ We will name this parameter ‘Cube Material’ and make sure it is set as a ‘Material and finishes’ parameter and set as an ‘Instance’.

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You can now finish your extrusion by clicking on the green tick in the modify extrusion ribbon. You should now be seeing something similar to the image above. If not, make sure all of your views are active and zoomed to fit. You can now save this family. Revit > Save As > Family – I like to add all my custom families to a new folder I have created in the Autodesk library, that way they are all stored together, but you can choose to save it wherever suits you best.

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Once you have saved your family, Use the Revit > Close button. You can now open up a new architectural project file template, or the project where you want to add your newly created family. You can now add your family the way you always would > Place component, locate your family and load it. You will now see your cube in a project view. Here you will be able to set some custom parameters, such as material, width and height. And that is it! Extremely simple, and good foundation knowledge for creating Revit families. I will be posting part 2 in my Revit familys series soon. Hope this has helped someone who is having trouble, or someone who is just starting to use Revit. Any problems or questions, just leave a comment!

View Part 2 here – Creating simple parametric families in Revit – Part 2 Tables