PROS / The object and home materials library is exhaustive, allowing you to design a home down to the finest details.
CONS / Those new to CAD software will find this software difficult to use at first.
VERDICT / This is comprehensive home and interior design software for Mac. With some patience, you will be able to design and model your dream home with SketchUp Pro 2013.
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Unless you have prior CAD (computer-aided design) software experience, getting started can seem like a daunting task. Our advice for beginning interior design software users is to follow along with the video tutorials to build your knowledge of the program. These videos will have you building 3D model houses within an hour. Even for more experienced CAD users, there are advanced to expert video tutorials that help you get the most out of SketchUp Pro.
Once you start working in this 3D interior design software for Mac, you'll realize how vast its feature set is. After you've composed a 3D model within the SketchUp software, you can turn your 3D model into a 2D drawing using the built-in LayOut extension. When you insert SketchUp model views into LayOut, they are called viewports. If you change something within your model, all of your viewports update too, making the integration between SketchUp and LayOut seamless.
There are many different ways to view and present your 3D model layouts using this home design software for Mac. Not only can you look around inside of your model, you can digitally walk through your model. It feels like you are actually inside your digital home. You can even climb and walk down stairs and ramps like you would in a video game – a video game that you created. If you need to present your work in SketchUp, you can print layouts of your model, create individual scenes and make video of your 3D walkthroughs.
As corny as it sounds, the most important tool in SketchUp Pro 2013 is your imagination. If you want to put a fence around your home or custom design your cabinets and stairs, you can do so within the framework of the program. Custom roof pitches and curved walls are only a couple of the many possibilities.
The array of finely focused tools makes this powerful software. While you’ll get familiar with all of the tools during your 3D modeling endeavors, the software itself streamlines your workflow with automated shortcuts and tips.
The line tool automatically finds the midpoint of a wall or line. You can use the Offset tool to create depth and add dimension to doors, windows and overhangs. The Follow Me tool lets you create design elements and wrap them around corners, such as courses of exterior brick. The Lines tool follows parallel inferences to ensure that lines are parallel throughout your designs, such as roof lines, building lines and more. The Infer tool lets you adjust walls, panels and elements to the same depths or protrusions.
SketchUp’s ability to search and use items found on Google 3D Warehouse is a feature that sets this Mac home design software apart from others in the competition. The Google 3D Warehouse is home to just about any piece of furniture or appliance that you can imagine. Searching though the warehouse and using models is as easy as typing your inquiry into the search bar and clicking on one of the results. A 3D image will now be in your model where you can adjust it and place it where you want. There are vast options for flooring, bathroom fixtures, houseplants, interior lighting fixtures, entertainment centers and many other options. If you don’t want to start from scratch you can use Google 3D Warehouse to import full home models.
The video tutorials are a critical part of learning this house design software for Mac. Even if you're experienced with design software, the video tutorials can help you learn tricks and tips that will only further your expertise.
There is an online manual that is available for download as well as community forums if you need any questions answered. This software comes with a free year of tech support, though we don’t know the extent of the support.
SketchUp Pro 2013 is masterful technology for creating your dream home. It has an extensive list of features and tools that streamline your workflow and bring your home decoration ideas to life. Experienced CAD software users will enjoy the flexibility and versatility SketchUp Pro has to offer.