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FAQ SEE Electrical


For questions or technical problems on our products, we advise you to visit our client area. You will find many FAQs and technical notes.


Questions and Answers for SEE Electrical



1 - Choosing an Electrical CAD package

2- Symbol and manufacturer part databases

3- SEE Electrical versus AutoCAD

4- Viewing projects / Exporting

5-Tutorial / Trial version

6- IEEE and IEC standards




1- Choosing an Electrical CAD package


Q: I need an Electrical CAD program. It has to have a large library of commonly used components for industrial automation and it can’t break the bank.

A: We would recommend SEE Electrical Standard (since the Basic level does not include part database). As far as the budget, SEE Electrical Standard ‘Freedom’ offers a yearly subscription that includes maintenance for support and upgrades. The SEE Electrical Standard (without Freedom) is a one-off purchase price where you own the software. You can then choose if you want to take out maintenance or not.

Q: Can I use SEE Electrical Basic to design control panels?

A: To be able to design the panel layout you’d need to think about the ‘Standard’ level. Standard level also adds automatic wire numbering so there are some significant advantages.


Q: Can you customize the auto wire numbering?

A: Yes, you can base them on page/column/sequence, set new start and step values and add your own characters. You can also define different wire types, each with their own numbering methods but remember this is for standard and advanced levels not the basic


Q: If I use SEE Electrical Basic25 version am I able to work on unlimited projects, each of them limited to 25 sheets?

A: Yes, 25 circuit diagram sheets per project but you can also have many terminal or cable lists or cover sheet diagrams on top of that.


Q: What is the difference between standard and advance level package?

A: The standard level is quite capable, allowing parts assignment, auto numbering, and graphical terminal and cable plans however the advanced level adds a lot more flexibility to the environment and lots of extra functions such as unlimited signal types, auto numbering based on the symbols. You can upgrade later if you find you need certain functions and the overall cost would be about the same. Its worth checking the ‘Features by Software Level’ list and checking with your local sales team if you’re not clear on anything listed.


 Q: Is Expert a level of SEE Electrical?

A: No, SEE Electrical Expert is a completely different package, designed for corporations that need to set standards and include work in their PLM system. It leads on to harness and system design.


  Q: What is the right package for machine control?

A: If you just want to draw schematics then Basic is fine. If you want to assign parts and generate terminal plans and cable plans then Standard should be enough and if you want to have complete control over projects and be able to manage projects using database editors and customize the reporting then perhaps the Advanced is necessary.


 Q: What are the differences between See Electrical levels? Is there any table showing it?

A: Please visit ‘Features by Software Level’ 


 Q: I work a lot with PLC, I see I would need Advanced licence then?

A: You can work with PLCs from the Basic level however handling of the PLC data improves with the Standard level providing auto-numbering and data table editing. The Advanced level adds the ability to define I/O schedules in Excel and then quickly assign the data in the drawing among other things.


Q: I would like to know it your software can be used for drawing fluid plans and fluid components?

A: Yes, SEE Electrical comes with a default Hydraulic and Pneumatic symbols library. Symbols can have part numbers and settings assigned and sections of the design can be dragged onto your custom symbol library folders to save them for future use to speed up the process. It is also very easy to create new symbols from existing ones or from scratch. SEE Electrical supports import/export of DWG/DXF as well as raster formats and pdf files. We have a huge Internet based database of over 600,000 parts from over 900 manufacturer which can be subscribed to.


Q: There is no difference between the electric and fluid diagram in your software, is that right?

A: You can use separate page types so that links can be made between the electrical and hydraulic/pneumatic parts of the devices. This provides a useful 'pick list' function to ensure the components have the same details and reference each other. Users often also set up different signal types to represent pipes with different attributes, but this flexibility is just part of See Electrical.


Q: Does the 3D feature come default in the software, or do we to install it separately?

A: It’s a separate module, you would purchase the standard or advanced level package and then add either 2D or 3D cabinet layout module. There are other modules as well but it depends what you need to produce with your schematics. You’ll need to request this from your local sales team. They should be able to provide a download link for the additional 3D module together with a trial unlock code to test it out.


 Q: If I were to buy a license, could i have that license on more than one computer?

A: If you purchase a ‘flexible’ license then you can share it by releasing the license from a computer when you close the application. Irrespective of the license method you can install the software on as many computers as you like. Those that don't have a license will open as viewers.


 Q: I need a software to draw electrical diagrams for building electrical and control systems. What would you recommend?

A: SEE Electrical would be ideal, it has got modules for Circuit Diagrams IEC and Installations for building plans to design electrical plans and cabling.


  Q: I will be receiving both CAD and PDF files from architects. I will be doing residential and light commercial nothing over 600VAC.

A: SEE Electrical Installation Modules would be ideal.


 Q: Does House installation module allow to design structure cabling part of project (RJ45 socket and similar)

 A: You can define cable routes and then select cable types to connect devices that include the cable, conduit and other parts needed. It is possible to show switches and routers and the cable routing. We have an example for network routing which shows the planning net diagram in the circuits and then displays the locations in the plan views of the building.


Q: We are interested in having the capabilities to import configuration data to generate drawings

A: You can generate drawing with SEE Electrical Standard and Advanced packages. There’s a module called Auto Generation which handles this.



  2- Symbol manufacturer part databases


Q: Does SEE Electrical Basic include a manufacturer part database?

A: The Basic level doesn’t support the parts database so we’re just talking about the symbology. It comes with libraries for the IEEE/JIC or IEC standard electrical symbols together with hydraulic/pneumatic, architectural and quite a few more. It’s also easy to either import symbols from raster format (.JPG .PNG etc), DWG/DXF or even draw them using the standard CAD tools. You can assign part numbers to create a BOM in the Basic level, you just won’t have the manufacturer’s details behind it, just a BOM with parts and quantities. There’s also plenty of nice symbol libraries for PLC cards.


 Q: Can I acquire additional symbols for SEE electrical?

A: Additional symbols are available in the Web Catalogue (requires a subscription). In the case where you can't find a specific part, you can request a new part to be created for you. Our “SEE Part Libraries” will ensure that your requests are processed very quickly.


Q: What is: “Pack of unlimited downloading from SEE Web catalogue (1 year)”?

A: This subscription service allows for downloading of parts data and symbols from the Internet based web catalogue. You begin with some 60,000 parts in your local database and its an open database so you can manually add parts or import from XML or Excel. If you subscribe to the Web Catalogue you can search and download from over 600,000 parts, with thousands of symbols.


 Q: I need to draw plans for a railroad crossing. Are all the symbols that I would use in this program or will I have to find more from somewhere else?

A: Rail signal/relay diagrams do sometimes use special symbol sets. We provide symbols for the standard controls systems such as IEEE/JIC and IEC (European) so if these sound familiar then you’ll be OK. You can import raster graphics and PDF files as well as DWG


  Q: It appears that there is no access allowed to the web library of parts with a basic or basic 25 license. Is that correct?

 A: Yes, that’s correct. The Basic version of SEE Electrical is ideal for designing schematics but does not provide access to the parts database, you’d need to be using the Standard or Advanced levels to make use of the Web Catalogue.



 3- SEE Electrical versus Autocad


Q: How is SEE Electrical better than AutoCAD LT?

A: AutoCAD LT is just a plain CAD package, so it’s not well set up for electrical project work and managing groups of pages and the underlying data as well as the connectivity


Q: What versions of AutoCAD is SEE Electrical compatible with?

A: If you’ve downloaded the latest version of See Electrical V8R2 then it will read/write from AutoCAD version 12 to 2016.


Q: Could SEE Electrical drawings be saved and viewed later in PDF or AutoCAD format?

A: Yes, DWG is there from the start, using ‘File - Save As - AutoCAD DWG/DXF’ and there is a nice module for intelligent PDF exporting which maintains the links between wires and symbols and creates bookmarks to quickly navigate around the project.


Q: How does SEE Electrical differ to AutoCAD?

A: It's quick, dedicated to electrical design, and easy to use. If you want the drawing to look exactly the same as they do in AutoCAD then you could import the AutoCAD files and create intelligent symbols out of the blocks (adding connection points and component names). We do however supply industry standard symbol libraries with the software so it's not necessary. See Electrical handles related symbols such as relay and contacts as well as panel wires and multi-core cables and PLC and terminals. You can assign parts data to the symbols and link this to cabinet views where the layout can be designed. This is all synchronized by the software to ensure basic errors are avoided and assembly and testing departments are equipped with useful and accurate documentation of the schematics, wiring, terminals, components, and cabling.


Q: I have a large history of DWG files created with AutoCAD Electrical. Will SEE-Electrical import and edit these files?

A: Yes. Look carefully at the options in the import DWG dialog since it includes information about removing the existing title block, importing layer names, ignoring hidden elements and lots more before you import. The files can then be edited and exported if needed but be aware that symbol and wire intelligence will not be recognised. We do have a legacy data import module which allows AutoCAD Electrical blocks to be mapped to See Electrical symbols so that whole projects can be imported and made intelligent automatically.



4- Viewing projects / Exporting


Q: Can Electrical schematics be exported into other CAD programs? One of our factories uses this package and I now and then need to make minor changes.

A: To make changes you’d really need the Basic version as a minimum. You could open the project in the free viewer and add redline comments which can then be acted on by someone with a license. Exporting to another editable format such as DWG would not allow changes to be imported back in, since there are no rules imposed in the plain CAD package to maintain the expected structure.


5-Tutorials / Trial Version


Q: I am looking for SEE Electrical Viewer. Is it free for download?

A: Yes, you can download the demo version and after 30 days demo (Advanced level 3, page edit limit) it becomes a viewer. There is also a free viewer you can download (Services/Download on our website).


Q: Where can I find a tutorial for SEE Electrical?

A: The tutorial can be found on


Q: I would like to download SEE Electrical 30 days trial. Is it Window XP or Window 7 32 bit compatible?

A: Windows 7 up to Windows 10 yes, but it won't run on Windows XP.


 Q: Which product level is the See Electrical demo package? Basic, Standard or Advanced?

A: The demo version is the Advanced level limited to 3 circuit diagram pages per project and 30 days. The demo version also includes 2D Cabinet and Installation modules.


Q: Do you make software for designing industrial control panels?

A: Yes, SEE Electrical is designed for this. Try the 30 day demo version.


Q: What is Auto Diagram on circuit diagram?

 A: This is a separate module for generating schematics from circuits listed in an Excel spread sheet.



6- IEC and IEEE standards


 Q: Do I need to purchase two licenses for IEC and IEEE versions?

A: No, you should be able to discuss with your supplier and add the additional module for a nominal fee. You should however only use one standard at a time.


Q: I have SEE electrical advanced IEC version. Are these file compatible with the Standard version IEEE licence?

A: The level is not important but if another user only has IEEE module and you create your drawings in IEC they won’t see those drawings. It is possible to add an IEEE module to SEE Electrical IEC (and vice versa). This additional module will include dedicated IEEE symbols. Please contact your local sales team to enable this.


Q: Does SEE Electrical offer IEEE symbols?

A: Yes it comes with American IEEE symbol databases, you should be able to download a demo to test it out if you like. When you download, please make sure you select the IEEE version.



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