Geolocation Imagery Quality Issues

Several months ago in Sketchup 2020 the Add Location feature got a huge quality boost. I was able to select “import tiles” and select a quality range of the imported aerial imagery along with the terrain. Suddenly, this feature is gone in the same version of 2020, and the quality of imported imagery is back to being… very poor.

I can’t seem to get any answers as to why this feature was suddenly removed and the imagery quality is back to being hardly usable. It seems that the data was still being provided by Digital Globe, so I would assume there is no conflict with the satellite provider.

Any help?

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Sorry I have no idea why it would have reverted to a lesser quality level except that imagery quality can be highly variable depending on the specific location you are trying to import.

I think you need to be signed in with a subscription license in order to use SketchUp’s higher quality satellite import feature.

PlaceMaker is another potential solution for you:

It uses Mapbox for satellite imagery worldwide. Nearmap can be used for North America if you want even higher quality.

I think there are other imagery import solutions as well if you do a search on the Extension Warehouse.

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As far as I know, the subscription feature doesn’t give you higher quality images, but it does let you import say 18x zoom tiles while still looking at the 14x zoom level. Those aren’t better than if you imported at 18x, but it could save you some time.

I too am running into quality issues.

What location are you importing, and what zoom level?

It is in a more rural area of Oregon. Max zoom level for a property. The Google Image is great, sharp and usable. All other sources are subpar so far.

You can see the Dramatic Difference.

It looks like it is slightly motion blurred.

I tried an idea, where I used a sharpening application to improve the image. See if this is more usable.

locationsharpened.skp (2.7 MB)

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It is much more usable. Thank you. What sharpening tool? Even with the sharpening tool it is trash by comparison.

You might try contacting the PlaceMaker folks directly and see if they have any suggestions for you.

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This one:

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The thing to remember about digital image sharpening tools is that they are inferring content that wasn’t really present in the original image. That may be ok if your goal is just cosmetic appearance, but can cause errors if you are seeking precision alignment with real features.

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I am a designer for an equine equipment manufacturer so the precision varies per job. This one is intermediate in precision and I will be in contact with the customer for the particular measurements. The placemaker image is so bad that I can’t really use it. Cleaning it up might put it into the usable category but I don’t want the customer to see it.

You could buy a drone and do your own aerial shots.

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The county GIS office might have high res imagery that you could access.

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Here is a post you will want to read. Note that images coming in from Add Location are still limited to the same areas that you can get in high resolution using Placemaker. Unlike the subscription only feature where you can import at 18X when set to 14X, this one is up to 21X, and does work for Classic license holders as well as subscribers.