Recommended Computer Workstation For SketchUp

Best Workstation For SketchUp

SketchUp is a 3D design and modelling application commonly used for Architectural, Engineering and Construction workflows. While being packed full of highly capable and powerful features, Sketchup is also well known for its intuitive interface and ease of use.

SketchUp provides a simple yet highly capable platform for AEC professionals. With support for other 3rd party applications, you can create photorealistic renders, virtual tours of design and virtual reality experiences of your SketchUp designs.

Although SketchUp is relatively easy to use, you must still have the correct hardware to get the most from the application. Tailored SketchUp Workstations from Workstation Specialists optimise your SketchUp projects and help you to get the most from this powerful 3D design software.

If you wish to talk to an expert directly about your requirements, request a quote online or contact our expert sales team today at +44 (0) 800 180 4081 or email

High-Speed Processors Accelerate SketchUp 3D Modelling

3D modelling is a frequency bound process meaning that lots of cores and threads will not increase performance. A processor with fewer cores and threads but higher clock speeds is the best performing option.

If 3D modelling is your sole requirement then the AMD Ryzen and Intel Core processor ranges are the best types of Workstation platforms for you. They offer industry-leading core frequencies keeping your system and application as responsive as possible.

CPU Rendering Requires Cores/Threads

If you plan to make use of a 3rd party application such as V-Ray Next to produce photorealistic renders, then selecting a processor with more cores and threads is essential for maximising performance. CPU rendering can run many operations simultaneously unlike 3D modelling within SketchUp.

Workstations based on the AMD Ryzen Threadripper and Intel Core X-series range of processors offer a fantastic balance of cores and threads while maintaining high core frequencies. These all-round processors ensure you maintain robust SketchUp 3D modelling performance while having large core counts to speed up your render times.

How To Accelerate GPU Render Times

If you wish to take advantage of the phenomenal performance GPU’s provide to render your SketchUp models within applications such as V-Ray Next or Octane Render. Then selecting a processor that supports many GPU’s is a must for maximum performance.

GPU rendering generally scales exceptionally well, therefore, installing a second graphics card into your system will almost double your GPU rendering performance. GPU rendering similarly to CPU rendering takes advantage of multiple cores and due to the thousands of cores provided by modern GPUs, near-real-time photorealistic renders are now possible.

Graphics Card Support for OpenGL 3.1

SketchUp only receives a minor boost to the performance by the Graphics Card. Therefore we recommend that only a low-end NVIDIA GeForce graphics card is required for 3D modelling within SketchUp. If you are using other applications; however, it is essential to make sure you select a graphics card that is suitable for those programs as well.

If you plan on GPU rendering, you should consider selecting a higher-end NVIDIA GeForce graphics card to accelerate performance. For even better value for money, multiple lower-end GPUs can offer a better bang for your buck but may limit your upgrade path. Please speak to our expert consultancy team today to discover the perfect GPU configuration for your needs.

System Memory

Trimble recommends 8GB of memory for SketchUp; however, in our experience this is too low for a modern Workstation. Opening only a couple extra applications as well as your SketchUp model will quickly use all available memory, dramatically hurting your system’s performance.

We recommend at least 16GB of memory for SketchUp and 32GB would be an ideal amount. Configuring your system with at least 16GB of memory ensures you have enough to run large SketchUp models and other applications simultaneously without hitting memory bottlenecks.

Storage Configuration

We recommend a two-drive configuration to SketchUp users. Configuring a Solid State Drive (SSD) for your primary boot drive and applications will ensure your system is responsive and loading times will be minimal. An SSD is significantly faster than a traditional Hard Disk Drive (HDD) and as a result, is our recommendation for all new Workstations. There are currently two major types of SSDs available on the market, NVMe and SATA. Both are suitable for SketchUp users; however, NVMe will offer the best performance at a slight premium.

We also recommend installing a secondary traditional Hard Disk Drive for long term bulk storage of files. Although significantly slower than an SSD, they do offer much larger storage capacities at a much lower price per GB.

Mobile SketchUp Workstations

If you wish to take your SketchUp Workstation on the move, then the Workstation Specialists NVIDIA GeForce Mobile Workstations range is perfect for you.

Configurable with high-frequency processors, 16GB-32GB of memory, high-performance mobile graphics and Solid State Drives for fast storage.

Our Mobile Workstation solutions have all the performance an AEC professional could ever need while working on your SketchUp projects.

Ideal Systems For SketchUp

Leave a Reply