ProLandscape Software by Drafix

Discussion in 'Landscape Architecture and Design' started by Sean Adams, Jul 16, 2004.

  1. VO Landscape Design

    VO Landscape Design LawnSite Senior Member
    Male, from Mt. Pleasant Ia.
    Messages: 365

    Is the zoom in effect a part of Photobucket? I like that for displaying the pics. Did you install them too?
  2. jas4906

    jas4906 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 32

    VO Landscape Design,

    Thanks VO.. Acutally the zoom in feature is in Prolandscape, but the only way to capture the image is to zoom in on the screen. Get it where you want it hit print/screen button on your keyboard. Open up Paintbrush, click edit and paste. Then using the cut-out box tool cut your zoomed picture out and right-click select the copy to and save as a .bmp or .jpeg file. I acutally did do 2 out of the four installs. I will get some pictures of the installs and post with these. It is actually pretty impressive as to how close the installed pictures look.
  3. jas4906

    jas4906 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 32

    I just looked at the slideshow.. Maybe we both are not on the same page... Yes, photobucket does add the zoom feature to the pictures. I didn't realize what your talking about.
  4. Lite4

    Lite4 LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,170

    I guess I am the only one who doesn't care for it. I thought the symbols did not represent the the true plants well enough. However in it's defence I must say I don't do much in 3D. However the 2D portion I found to be very basic and unimpressive. I still use Raincad because of it's versatility and compatability with other using CAD also, should I need to import or export site plans or finished drawings to an architect.
  5. tropicalvibe

    tropicalvibe LawnSite Member
    Messages: 7

    I really appreciate everyones post regarding prolandscape. I own a small specialty nursery and landscape design company. I have been hand drawing my plans for years and finally developed my business enough to justify spending money on design software. After reading what seems like hundreds of posts on a few few websites the reviews seemed lie they were all over the board. Some love it, others don't recommend it and a few use it along with other software. I spent 2 weeks reviewing other options too... Dynascape, Visual Impact Earthscapes, Landcadd, etc. For better or worse, I decided to go with Prolandscape's new version 13 and all of it's new features.

    I ordered the software last Friday night. Over the weekend I upgraded my home and office computers from 512 mb of memory to 1.256 gb of memory ($100/computer). The software recommends 512 mb but I want it to run fast. I also upgraded my office computer's monitor from a Dell 15 inch flat screen to a Samsung 22 inch widescreen. I am not sure if I went big enough but I decided to start there.

    I received the dvd software Tuesday (yesterday) morning via UPS next day air ($35 extra) after much anticipation. I was expecting cd software and was unable to load it on my computers. Arg! I read in the documentation cds are available by calling tech support. With frustratin I called tech support. The phone rang 2 times and a tech rep answered the phone. I was expecting to struggled with an automated system then wait in a queue for 15-30 minutes. I was impressed with service and asked if it normally that easy to reach a tech rep. I was told that Monday mornings are busier since they returning calls from the weekend but usually it is easy. Not bad. They told me the cds would be sent out via UPS ground (5-7 working days). I was frustrated again! I requested overnight delivery and they obliged - at no extra cost. I was happy they obliged but disappointed that downloading wasn't an option. The cds are supposed to arrive today but until then I am stuck reading manuals.
    I will update after I receive the cds and start using the software...
  6. Dreams To Designs

    Dreams To Designs LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,406

    Sorry to hear about your struggles, but the wait will be worth it. I have brought in a CAD draftsperson this season to work on the plans while I design, sketch and use the 3D imaging along with Horticopia for presentations. It has mad the design work so much easier and more immediate. Make sure you are able to find a local printer that can print your plans in scale correctly. The local Kinkos is now unable due to the unavailability of software to read the files correctly. There are multiple ways to print out the plans, so check with your printer to find what works for them. Better yet, buy a printer and go it alone.

    I invested in an HP Designjet and it is well worth the price for convenience. It's great to print out a base plan and sketch on it, and then put it back into the computer to email or print out and present.

  7. trailboss

    trailboss LawnSite Member
    Messages: 206

    Thats what I love about the software as well. We go out to a job and take hardscape & prop. line measurements and bring them back to the office and print all this out. Then we take that back to the site and do all of our design work as a field sketch. Take that back again and create a finished product. On a few small jobs we have taken a laptop out and done the whole thing on site.
    I am currently using version 10. Anyone upgraded to 13 from here? Is it worth the money to upgrade?
  8. tropicalvibe

    tropicalvibe LawnSite Member
    Messages: 7

    Dreams to Design,

    Thanks for the encouragement and tips. I received the cd software on Tuesday and finally loaded them onto my home machine. I haven't reviewed any of the tutorials yet or tried using it at all. I have about 8 projects to design right now in the midst of supervising a couple of installations and running a nursery. By hand this would require about 64 hours of drafting. How would you, as well as anyone else using ProLandscape, suggest that I start integrating its use into my current process?

    BTW, I found out that my local Staples can print them out to scale for $3 if I send them as a 2' x 3' pdf. I would have imagined that Kinkos could do the same. The lower-end Designjets that will print 24 inches wide start at around $1000 for a non-network version. I print about 5 copies of my plans per job on average. That would mean that it would pay for itself after approximately 70 jobs ($3 x 5 copies = $15 per job. $1000 for printer divided by $15 in copies per job = 70 jobs for the hard cost roi). I didn't factor in other expense like the time spent getting copies made or the maintenance cost for the printer, etc. I have been trying to determine how valuable the convenience factor would be. Do you think the convenience is worth the extra cost?


  9. Dreams To Designs

    Dreams To Designs LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,406


    The plan mode may take you a little while to get comfortable with. I would recommend the training when it come around again. The two day class was a great help for me and I though I used the program pretty well prior to the class.

    You can scan in your base plans, clean them up and print them out to be used on your drafting table for your concept drawings. I find designing on the computer screen to be restrictive, so I prefer to design on the drafting table and then put that information in the plan to be printed out as a final drawing. You'll have another advantage as you can email the plan or portions of it to your clients for review without having to visit. I work in a very large geographical area, so being able to email 3D images and plan sections eliminates a great deal of driving around. When it come to presenting the concept and final plans, I always do that in person.

    You'll find the 3D imaging a great presentation tool and quite quick to pickup. With the integration of 3D imaging with the plan mode in version 13, you'll have the advantage of real placement that will translate better when installing.

    I tried the PDF mode and the plans were 8.5" x 11" and blown up to fit 2" x3" paper, not actually to scale. One of the local office supplies offered, but is not sure if the plans will be printed out to scale. I did go for the HP Designjet 110 plus and am very happy with it. HP had a rebate of $100 which the deduct from the price and free shipping if you contact one of their advisers for the order. The spare ink cartridges can be obtained from local office supply stores, less expensive than HP, but I have not been able to find a cheaper source for the paper than HP. The 18" x 24" is .50 a sheet and the 2" x 3" are $1 per sheet. The convenience of having the printer right in the office is great. No running around for copies, can make changes and reprint immediately and even make a print for anyone that may be consulting on the jobs. Another advantage is you can print only what you need via turning layers on and off. I needed a plan for an irrigation consultant and was able to give him only the information he needed on the plan without making changes, just turning off a couple of layers that would be only clutter for his purposes.

  10. tropicalvibe

    tropicalvibe LawnSite Member
    Messages: 7


    Thanks for the great feedback. I am going to try using the planner module with the process you mentioned above.

    As for the printer, I am beginning to think that the convenience factor may be quite valuable. I spend 45 minutes having copies made, usually two times for each job. I charge about $150/hour for designs. After factoring the time lost due to having copies made the printer makes much more sense - about six jobs and it pays for itself.

    Trailboss - I like your laptop idea. Sometimes I miss minor measurements that would make the drafting a little easier. being there during the drafting would eliminate that problem. I tend to get smaller jobs, mostly 6,000 - 8,000 sf residnetial lots with limited hardscape work. Once I am proficient enough I would like to try your idea - would be a little weird if I was watching the tutorial or referrig to the manual at their home.

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