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I know this is going to sound like a very naive question but it is because my workflow has worked exceptionally well forever and to date have had no compelling reason to do different...

being a (Mac) user from way back (Minicad) I've done 2d drawings + 3D (quite naive but suits my purposes) separately rather than hybrid - on design layers not utilizing viewports.

As I presently and in the future will consider doing everything hybrid - I'm wondering if it is a mistake not to be figuring out how to incorporate viewports - or if continuing using design layers without them is without major disadvantage.

Thanks for any comments.  

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Certainly viewports are the way the programme is headed and offer a range of continuing flexible advanced graphic options which can be tailored to your needs. The more you venture into 3d the more compelling the case becomes. Justaforexample the clip cube tool allows you to cut a 3d section into a live viewwport. You can retain the section line cut, reverse it, or change the position of the section line and the viewport will update instantly. I find live viewports in a 3d environment incredibly useful. So if heaven forbid a difficult client or an even more difficult planning officer demands a number of changes to a scheme at the last minute I am able to reconfigure the 3d model and see these changes updated automatically in my viewports, concentrating on the correctness of the changes and not having to pour over a number of different drawings hoping the changes have been reflected correctly in multiple 2d dwgs. I would advocate investigating this for your workflow and seeing the time-saving you can achieve   . HtH

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