Softpedia Editor's Review for SketchUp Make
An easy-to-learn 3D modelling program
Written by Elena Opris on November 26th, 2012
Google SketchUp is a tool designed to teach you 3D modeling, whether you are a novice or experienced user.
When you enter the program, the first step is to select the type of template you want to work in - simple, architectural design, Google Earth modeling, engineering, product design and woodworking, plan view, or beginning training template.
Google SketchUp's user interface is very accessible, and an Instructor guides you every step of the way. In addition, you can watch video tutorials, or read tips and tricks.
In the toolbar menu you can select the line, rectangle, circle, arc, eraser, tape measure (to measure distances, create guide lines or points, or scale a model), or paint bucket tool (assign materials and colors to entities - asphalt and concrete, blinds, bricks, carpets, metal, stone, and others).
Plus, the push/pull tool lets you push and pull Face entities, in order to add or substract volume from 3D models, and the move tool allows you to move, stretch or copy entities. The rotate tool enables you to rotate, stretch, distort, or copy entities along a rounded path, while the offset tool creates a copy of line at a uniform distance from originals.
If you have not managed to rotate camera till this point, or move it vertically and horizontally, then you have probably missed the orbit and pan tools.
You can also add photo textures to your model (a feature that uses Street View photos imported from Google Maps) - add a new building (by installing the Google Earth plugin), get models from the Internet, or share your own creations.
Furthermore, once you create a model that exists in reality, you can add it as a location, so SketchUp can share it online.
In conclusion, Google SketchUp proves to be a reliable and user-friendly program designed for 3D modeling. It may use a high amount of CPU and memory resources, but we still recommend you try it.
SketchUp Make description
Here are some key features of "SketchUp Make":
Edges and Faces:
· Every SketchUp model is made up of just two things: edges and faces. Edges are straight lines, and faces are the 2D shapes that are created when several edges form a flat loop. For example, a rectangular face is bound by four edges that are connected together at right angles. To build models in SketchUp, you draw edges and faces using a few simple tools that you can learn in a small amount of time. It's as simple as that.
Push/Pull: Quickly go from 2D to 3D:
· Extrude any flat surface into a three-dimensional form with SketchUp's patented Push/Pull tool. Just click to start extruding, move your mouse, and click again to stop. You can Push/Pull a rectangle into a box. Or draw the outline of a staircase and Push/Pull it into 3D. Want to make a window? Push/Pull a hole through your wall. SketchUp is known for being easy to use, and Push/Pull is the reason why.
· SketchUp is great for working fast and loose in 3D, but it's more than just a fancy electronic pencil. Because you're working on a computer, everything you create in SketchUp has a precise dimension. When you're ready, you can build models that are as accurate as you need them to be. If you want, you can print scaled views of your model, and if you have SketchUp Pro, you can even export your geometry into other programs like AutoCAD and 3ds MAX.
· You use SketchUp's innovative, do-everything Follow Me tool to create 3D forms by extruding 2D surfaces along predetermined paths. Model a bent pipe by extruding a circle along an L-shaped line. Create a bottle by drawing half of its outline, then using Follow Me to sweep it around a circle. You can even use Follow Me to round off (fillet) edges on things like handrails, furniture and electronic gadgets.
· You can use SketchUp's Paint Bucket tool to paint your model with materials like colors and textures.
Groups and Components:
· By "sticking together" parts of the geometry in your model to make Groups, you can create sub-objects that are easier to move, copy and hide. Components are a lot like Groups, but with a handy twist: copies of Components are related together, so changes you make to one are automatically reflected in all the others. Windows, doors, trees, chairs and millions of other things benefit from this behavior.
· SketchUp's powerful, real-time Shadow Engine lets you perform accurate shade studies on your models.
· You can use SketchUp's interactive Sections feature to temporarily cut away parts of your design, enabling you to look inside. You can use Sections to create orthographic views (like floorplans), to export geometry to CAD programs using SketchUp Pro, or just to get a better view of your model while you're working on it. Section Planes can be moved, rotated and even animated using SketchUp's Scenes feature.
· We created Scenes to enable you to easily save precise views of your model so you can come back to them later. Need to create an animation? Just create a few Scenes and click a button.
Look Around and Walk:
· SketchUp lets you get inside your model with a set of simple navigation tools designed to give you a first-person view. Click with Position Camera to "be standing" anywhere in your model. Use Look Around to turn your virtual head. Finally, switch to Walk to explore your creation on foot; you can even climb and descend stairs and ramps, just like you're playing a video game.
Dimensions and Labels:
· You can use the super-intuitive Dimension and Label tools to add dimensions, annotations and other glorious detail to your work.
· SketchUp's Instructor dialog box, which you can choose to activate at any time, provides context-sensitive help.
Layers and the Outliner:
When you're building a big, complicated model, things can get messy very quickly. SketchUp provides two useful ways to keep your geometry manageable:
· SketchUp and Google Earth are part of the same product family, meaning you can exchange information between them easily. Need a building site for your project? Import a scaled aerial photograph, including topography, directly from Google Earth to SketchUp by clicking one button. Want to see your SketchUp model in context in Google Earth? Click another button, and you can. Anyone can use SketchUp to build models which can be seen by anyone in Google Earth.
· SketchUp's Sandbox tools let you create, optimize and alter 3D terrain. You can generate a smooth landscape from a set of imported contour lines, add berms and valleys for runoff, and create a building pad and driveway.
· The Google 3D Warehouse is a huge, online repository of 3D models which you can search through when you need something. Why build something when you can download it for free?
· You can import 3DS files directly into your SketchUp models. Have a piece of furniture in 3DS format that you'd like to use? Import it in, then keep on truckin'.
· With SketchUp, you can import image files like JPGs, TIFFs, PNGs and PDFs. You can use them by themselves (kind of like posters), but you can also stick them to surfaces to create photo-realistic models of buildings, package designs, and more.
Export TIFF, JPEG and PNG:
· SketchUp lets you export raster images up to 10,000 pixels square, so generating an image which you can send in an email, publish in a document, or project on a wall is as easy as choosing a few options and clicking Export.
· 1 GHz processor
· 512 MB RAM
· 300 MB of free hard-disk space
· 3D class Video Card with 256 MB of memory or higher
· Windows compatible pointing device
· Microsoft Internet Explorer 7.0 or higher
· .NET Framework version 2.0
What's New in This Release: [ read full changelog ]
· You know how SketchUp lets you easily create multiple copies of an object with your keyboard? Those are called arrays, and now LayOut lets you make them, too. Move a copy, type how many copies you want, type the letter ‘x’ and Enter.
Curved Label Leader Lines:
Creating a jauntily curved callout line for a label used to be a five-step, two-handed operation:
· Click. Click. Tool switch. Double-click. Click-drag-with-a-modifier-key.
Dashes in Dimensions:
· Ask the guy with the 86 foot ceiling if readable dimensions are important. It’s a little thing, but we added dashes to LayOut’s dimension labels to make them easier to read.
Faster Screen Redraw:
· Every time you zoom, pan or move an entity on the page, LayOut has to re-draw the picture you see on your screen. For this version, we massaged the code so there’s a noticeable improvement in the speed at which this happens. LayOut should feel snappier, especially as your document gets more complex.
· Introducing Extension Warehouse...
| ||Softpedia guarantees that SketchUp Make 13.0.3689 is 100% CLEAN, which means it does not contain any form of malware, including spyware, viruses, trojans and backdoors. [read more >] |