ArchiCAD Tutorials

"I love to create tutorials that show users how to take advantage of the full potential of ArchiCAD.  I have worked with ArchiCAD for almost 30 years, and it's a pleasure to share with you my knowledge and experience.  What do you plan to create?"
-- Eric Bobrow, January 2019

Below, and on the navigation menu, you will find an extensive list of the free ArchiCAD Tutorials I've created over the past few years.  I have been asked by various web portals and magazines to write about ArchiCAD, and I've collected many of my articles and video tutorials here to make it easier for you to learn from my experience.

New ARCHICAD Educational Resources for 2019!

ARCHICAD Best Practices 2020 Training Course and Coaching Program

If you like my free tutorials, you'll love my NEW ARCHICAD Best Practices 2020 training course and coaching program

If you are serious and would like to optimize your practice to get the best possible results in the least amount of time, find out more about it here.

NEW ARCHICAD Tutorials Website

I have just launched the new archicadtutorials.com website, which will offer an extensive library of ARCHICAD in both video form and articles.

I'm loading it up right now with the best of my tutorial videos, accompanied by transcripts (making it easier to search and find materials). I'll be inviting other ARCHICAD experts to contribute as well. I'm excited about the possibilities. Check it out!

Video Tutorials

This ArchiCAD tutorial video shows how to use Attribute Manager to swap in and out different materials quickly. It's easy to learn and will save you lots of time.

Here are some quick ways you can save your settings (and save time and work) using the ArchiCAD Favorites palette. Try it out, and see how easy it is!

In this short 11 minute demonstration, I show many different ways you can use parameter transfer (with the eyedropper and syringe) to speed up your work. Some of what I do may surprise you - this is so fast and easy it seems almost like magic!

In this quick little 8 minute demonstration, I show how to work with terrain models using Solid Element Operations (SEO) and Complex Profiles to simplify, speed up and improve your construction documentation.  There are some simple "tricks" in this video that may open your eyes to new possibilities!

This 5 minute video will help speed up a tedious part of the documentation process – setting up window and door ID’s sequentially so that they coordinate nicely with window and door schedules. One of my clients wrote to me saying that she had used this approach in a recent project to set the ID's for 99 windows and doors in just a few minutes. She said it saved her at least a couple of hours compared to the way she had previously done it.

Simplify one part of ArchiCAD that you use frequently – the popup layer palette in the Info Box. This 6 minute video shows how to use one of the Options menu – Work Environment settings to Hide Locked Layers in Popup Palettes, and give yourself the gift of a much shorter, less confusing layer menu to work with.

Learn how to use Microsoft Word and PDF to create general notes and specifications quickly and elegantly for your ArchiCAD project.


ArchiCAD Tutorial Articles

(Originally published on AECbytes Tips and Tricks, Cadalyst, and ArchiMAG)

I believe there are seven key principles that will help you to use ArchiCAD to its best effect. These best practices are common ideas, like getting organized, and doing things once instead of over and over again. But when they're applied in the right manner with an understanding of ArchiCAD's core principles, they'll help you be much more effective and efficient.

Graphisoft offers an innovative tool for sharing ArchiCAD-based Building Information Models with clients, colleagues, consultants and builders. The Graphisoft Virtual Building Explorer is an add-on available to ArchiCAD users for a nominal cost that makes it simple to export a project as a self-contained 3D model file.

ArchiCAD users have the ability to import industry-standard PDF format files. This opens up many options for bringing 2D information into ArchiCAD. Any program that prints can create PDF files, either internally or by using Adobe’s Acrobat software (or other free or inexpensive utilities widely available on the internet).

ArchiCAD makes it easy to create a Virtual Building, a 3D Building Information Model (BIM) of an architectural design while simultaneously developing coordinated 2D construction documents.  This article catalogs the various ways a BIM model can be viewed in 3D in ArchiCAD.

ArchiCAD's Complex Profiles are a powerful technology for creating extruded shapes for use in the wall, column and beam tools. The Profile Manager allows the user to draw the equivalent of a section cut through the element, and will extrude that shape along the path of the wall, column or beam.

Office standards set the graphic appearance and organization of documents produced by a firm. They also play a significant role in promoting consistency, efficiency and usability of the project files and workflow. A key ingredient in making standards work is to embed them into template files that are used to start projects.

Graphisoft's Virtual Trace™ is a powerful ground-breaking technology. Similar in concept to the architect’s familiar trace paper, it allows any drawing or view to be overlaid on top of or beside any other view. This digital light-table is amazingly versatile, and can be used in a large variety of contexts to simplify coordination of information and speed up the design process. Moreover, it can be a revolutionary catalyst, since it facilitates various hybrid 2D / 3D workflows which can ease the transition from 2D CAD to 3D BIM (Building Information Modeling), both inside the office and with consultants.

As I’ve trained and talked with ArchiCAD users over the years, I’ve identified several different strategies for working on remodels and additions. Each approach has different strengths, and users may choose between these methods in order to handle a wide variety of project sizes and scenarios.

Within the Navigator View Map, ArchiCAD has a powerful, yet little-known and underutilized feature called Clone Folders. They define a viewing “style” for Building Information Model (BIM) project information. This style is automatically applied to each entry of a particular type (story, section, elevation, detail, etc.) in the Project Map structure, and creates a separate View definition for each. This is a tremendous time-saver, particularly when set up in an office template for use in multiple projects.

Graphisoft has developed an innovative interactive tutorial for ArchiCAD called the BIM Experience Kit. It is offered as part of a free 30 day ArchiCAD Trial Version, allowing prospective or new users the opportunity to “get their hands on ArchiCAD” and learn the basics of Building Information Modeling (BIM).

Detail drawings are one of the most important (yet sometimes under-appreciated) parts of the architectural design and documentation process. They can be very time-consuming, often involving meticulous 2D drafting for each separate drawing, as well as careful placement into the construction document set and coordination of callout references.

In this section of the 3 part detail tutorial series, we’ll look at how to use parametric 2D object components (from the standard ArchiCAD library) as well as the free, downloadable Detailer Template to work on these drawings more quickly and efficiently.

This final installment in the 3 part detail tutorial series focuses on compiling, managing and integrating your own libraries of details.

One of ArchiCAD’s “hidden gems” is the Favorites Palette, a very powerful resource that improves both efficiency and consistency. It allows frequently-used standard settings for any tool or element type to be recalled at a moment’s notice, speeding up both modeling and documentation.

ArchiCAD’s Solid Element Operations (SEO) are powerful tools to carve and model complex shapes and forms that would otherwise be a challenge in Building Information Modeling (BIM) programs optimized for conventional architectural vocabulary such as walls, doors, windows and roofs.

Every tool in ArchiCAD has many options and settings to allow it to represent a wide variety of forms, shapes, and conditions. For example, the wall tool has parameters for thickness, base and top heights, materials for the finish on each side and the edges, fills for the floor plan, and section that represent its construction components, plus other settings that affect how it is drawn (Projected with Overhead vs. Symbolic, for example) and when it is seen (e.g., Show on Home Story Only vs. Show on All Relevant Stories), etc. Parameter Transfer is a set of methods using the eye-dropper and syringe tools to pick up and transfer all or part of the parameters between elements, saving time and ensuring consistency.

ArchiCAD’s Quick Layers palette is a complement to the Layer Settings dialog box that allows layers to be turned on and off or locked on the fly to suit various needs. It is elegant, intuitive, and compact, and it has a memory of layer states so you can retrace steps and undo and redo layer manipulations instantly.

For more "ArchiCAD How to" check out the Best Practices ArchiCAD Training Course.

If you enjoy working with ArchiCAD as much as I do, or would like to learn how to use it better so that you can enjoy it... please get in touch.

Let me know how you're using my tutorials - add a comment below!

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Archicad tutorial | Ghyou - July 30, 2011

[…] ArchiCAD Tutorials by Eric Bobrow | Free ArchiCAD Training …ArchiCAD Tutorial | The Seven Keys to Best Practices for ArchiCAD … Please sign up for my email list to receive free ArchiCAD tutorials and other news. … […]

ENG ISAIAH OGUTU - September 10, 2014

Thank you so much for this support and insight.

glboobalan - October 12, 2014

is any tutorial for
cine rendering detailed setting full explanation
AC to Photoshop transformation

    Eric Bobrow - October 27, 2014

    I do not have a detailed tutorial for Cinerender. I’ve done some training on basic settings and options for the Best Practices Course. At some point I may make a free tutorial, after I’ve gotten a bit more experience with these new rendering tools.

    I have some explanations of how to prepare images in Photoshop with alpha channel masking for use inside ArchiCAD in my tutorial:
    ArchiCAD Tutorial | 3D Pictures and Sculptures


john mbah - January 31, 2018

hello i’m john mbah i’m a building designer i’m from cameroon i work with archicad since 6 month and my wish is to have a complete tutorial about archicad 19 includind advanced tools like ( shell tool, curtain walls, printing and layoutin archicad and morph tool. ) please can you help me about this ? And how much should i pay for this ? i need also tutorials in cinema 4d the complete course about it . THANK YOU SIR BOBROW FOR YOUR REGARD!!!! my e-mail is (calixtembah@yahoo.fr).

    Eric Bobrow - February 15, 2018

    John – The Best Practices Course is a comprehensive curriculum that includes advanced tools such as what you mentioned (shell tool, curtain walls, printing and layout, morph tool, etc.). The cost is $697 USD, with an extended payment plan available; you may purchase this at https://www.acbestpractices.com.
    There is a dedicated course for Cinerender available as part of the Masters of ARCHICAD Training Series at http://mastersofarchicad.com/training-series/. We do not have a course for Cinema 4D itself, just for the rendering components that are available within ARCHICAD.
    – Eric

Gary - February 14, 2018

Please can you tell me is the BestPractice ArchiCAD course you offer up to date for learning the latest version of Archicad21.

    Eric Bobrow - February 15, 2018

    Hi Gary – The Best Practices Course has been developed over an extended period, with videos recorded using different versions of ARCHICAD. When you sign up, you’ll get access to this comprehensive curriculum as well as dedicated sections for new features introduced into ARCHICAD 21 and other recent upgrades. You’ll have everything you need to get up to speed on ARCHICAD 21. Note that I’m planning to rework some of the lessons this year; you’ll get access to these as I release them.
    – Eric

Fernando López - August 28, 2020

Hello, exist a tutorial for ArchiCAD MEP 23 or 24. Thanks

    Eric Bobrow - August 28, 2020

    Hi Fernando – I have not done a tutorial for the MEP tools within Archicad, sorry. Perhaps I will do something on this later this year, thanks for the suggestion!

Gilbert - May 18, 2021

Hello Eric, I tried signing up with as a member and the feedback is the website doesn’t exist. Can I get any assistance?

Ayman Fayed - May 30, 2021

Thank you man. I think I would rather to inquire how are you now and are you getting better, its more important to take care of your self, I hope you bless from god wishing you to get back to your feet soon

JUDY COETZEE - May 31, 2021

Thank you for these amazing tutorials – you have helped me out of some serious jams over the years. We appreciate all you do! God bless and get well soon.


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