SketchUp Make 2015

SketchUp Make 2015 (32-bit) 15.3.330

Powerful yet accessible 3D modeling software

SketchUp bucks the trend of expensive 3D modeling software such as 3DSMax and Cinema4D and presents a free, easy-to-use alternative with which you can even post your creations onto Google Earth for the world to see. View full description

PROS

  • Makes 3D drawing much easier
  • Lots of tips and hints
  • User friendly
  • Upload your creations to Google Earth
  • Integrated with Google Maps

CONS

  • Lacks advanced features of major CAD apps
  • No export to CAD format in free version
  • Can't add text and images to designs in free version

Excellent
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SketchUp bucks the trend of expensive 3D modeling software such as 3DSMax and Cinema4D and presents a free, easy-to-use alternative with which you can even post your creations onto Google Earth for the world to see.

Refreshingly simple approach

There's a refreshing lack of technical jargon in SketchUp, and there are plenty of helpful hints and guides throughout to help you get to grips with 'snapping' when you draw rectangles, circles and other shapes. Sketchup intelligently predicts where you want endpoints to meet and snaps them shut for you, saving lots of time messing around.

SketchUp doesn't lack in functionality despite its ease of use, and includes all the usual collection of drawing and filling tools you'd expect, neatly accessible in the toolbar across the top of the screen. Instructor hints pop out on the right of the screen when it thinks you need them.

Other options can be accessed via the menu system, or you can choose to place extra palettes on the workspace to save wading through menus. Of particular note is the 'Materials' palette, which contains over 100 different preset swatches, such as vegetation, metal and glass. The Shadow Settings palette is also worth keeping to hand, as it allows you to apply realistic shadows via simple sliders.

Google Earth and Maps integration

The real fun however is when you export your SketchUp drawings into Google Earth. You can send images of your 3D designs via email or upload them for free storage at Google's 3D Web Warehouse. Alternatively, you can geo-tag them in one-step using Google Maps, as this is integrated with Sketchup. You receive a snapshot when you add a geo-location to your model which includes 3D terrain data plus color aerial imagery.

There are some problems with SketchUp however. This is most apparent when trying to create domed surfaces, as the Push/Pull tool is particularly cumbersome, although pushing and pulling straight lines is considerably easier. Being free, it also obviously lacks some of the advanced features of many of its heavyweight rivals.

3D design and modeling for the masses

SketchUp provides a refreshingly simple approach to 3D graphic design and modeling and is ideal for non experts in CAD technology.

SketchUp is an easy-to-use yet powerful tool for creating, viewing, and modifying 3D ideas quickly and easily. The program is designed to combine the elegance and spontaneity of pencil sketching with the speed and flexibility of today's digital media.

Developed for the conceptual stages of design, SketchUp allows for quick and easy 3D form creation, complete with an interface that supports a dynamic, creative exploration of 3D form, material and light. SketchUp combines a compact yet robust tool-set with an intelligent guidance system that streamlines the 3D drawing process.

Some of Sketchup's features:

  • Export models to Google Earth
  • Click on a shape and push or pull it to create your desired 3D geometry
  • Experiment with color and texture directly on your model
  • Real-time shadow casting lets you see exactly where the sun falls as you model
  • Select from thousands of pre-drawn components to save time drawing

SketchUp Make 2015

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SketchUp Make 2015 (32-bit) 15.3.330

— User reviews — about SketchUp Make 2015

  • jasonmiller

    by jasonmiller

    "Be prepared to waste a lot of time"

    For all the hype it is buggy as heck- things that are rendered perfectly fine suddenly 'vanish' when uploaded to Shapewa... More.

    reviewed on November 20, 2015

  • Creepyreaper

    by Creepyreaper

    "Pretty good."

    Never heard about it previously, but the software seems to be pretty decent. I recommend. More.

    reviewed on December 18, 2014

  • jhomesley

    by jhomesley

    "Love it!"

    Great design software. Easy to use and very helpful. It is a real benefit to be able to layout your design before cutt... More.

    reviewed on September 18, 2014

  • Teeba Hashmi

    by Teeba Hashmi

    "Its a pretty good way of designing your objects and really helpful."

    Its a pretty good way of designing your objects and really helpful. More.

    reviewed on May 14, 2014

  • Yr Mum

    by Yr Mum

    "Sketch-up is great for projects"

    I use sketch-up for a lot of projects, and It's GREAT! I get As on my projects when using Sketch-up and I love it. :). More.

    reviewed on February 24, 2014

  • tiffany.zheng.716

    by tiffany.zheng.716

    "Awesome-I use it for homework."

    Awesome-I use it a lot for homework, and it works for architecture, which I love. More.

    reviewed on February 5, 2014