Graphics card with OpenGL or Metal

Hi, hope you all are going well!

I’m considering buying a new macbook pro.

Now I noticed that Apple on it´s page no more list the latest graphics cards Radeon Pro 5300M and Radeon Pro 5500M, because they will no longer support OpenGL.
That’s why I called Apple support and was told that Apple will switch from OpenGL to Metal in the future.
Currently the graphics cards would still support OpenGL, but it may be that only metal will be supported with one of the next updates. Then what about Sketchup, OpenGL is required here Https: // ?

Kindest regards Steve

There is a bit more nuance to this situation than you may have been led to believe by Apple’s marketing. SketchUp is built using OpenGL, and in the future, Apple does plan to migrate to their chosen successor for that, Metal. Microsoft did the same thing with DirectX several years ago. But this will be a long, phased process that gives everyone in their developer community (like us) ample time to resolve any incompatibilities.

If you want to use SketchUp on macOS, you are making a solid decision going with with any of today’s production models. Apple doesn’t support NVIDIA graphics cards any more, preferring chips from AMD or Intel instead for their stock builds. And of course, Apple are well down the road towards building their own CPU/GPU in the future. They already do so for all their mobile devices.

I use SketchUp on a humble Mac Mini (2018) and am happy enough with it. You may want something with more 3D graphics ‘oomph’ for your work, though. The 13" MacBook Pro is what I typically use at work, and I’ve never had a problem with it. In fact, that is what many of our developers use as their daily driver as well. The 16" is nicer, but also heavier :wink:


Screen Shot 2020-03-29 at 14.29.55 I have SUPro 2020 and just downloaded trial VRAY, but getting loads of crashes really for no reasons as keeping models really small while i try it out, I tend to use Abvent Artlantis, but a bit slow on the rendering.

is it time to retire this old girl or am I missing a trick somewhere,

I usually cycle my Apple hardware about every three years. If you aren’t pushing the performance limits, you can probably get five years out of Apple hardware, it is usually just built like a tank. But your machine is almost nine years old; might be time to think about a replacement. You can’t run Apple’s latest operating system (Catalina), and that is a strong signal that it is time to move on.

If you prefer a Mac desktop, I have a mid range late 2015 iMac 27" 5K Retina display machine with an i5 3.3GHz processor and Radeon R9 M395 2G graphics card. It runs SU 2020 very well for all but the most humungous models - many hundreds of MB and millions of edges and faces, and many tens of thousands of component definitions make it begin to struggle. But I’ve only worked on one such huge model, and that is usable (just) if you are careful to turn off tags (formerly layers) of large parts of the model you aren’t viewing or modelling, model in monochrome with Profiles and Shadows turned off, and take care not to import over-detailed submodels for entourage from 3D warehouse.

I’ve always wondered about them with the integrated graphics vs. a “real” graphics card in the 15" MacBook Pro.

Then decision has been made, I now have a relevant excuse to put before the boss(wife) that members of the wider community suggest an upgrade, many thanks all, stay safe

Me to. Thank you for all of your answers! So I’m going to look for a 16 ‘’ MacBook Pro.

Kindest regards Steve

Morning, yep desktop is my preferred and same ish spec as you mentioned

Many thanks

Hi all,
I have just purchased a new Macbook pro 16" and sketchup just crashes and crashes and crashes.
Is there something I should know?
I’m using the latest version of sketchup, latest version of catalina (whcih is my only option with this machine). My graphics card is AMD Radeon Pro 5500M 4GB.
Is this to do with my graphics card?
Thanks for any advice this is driving me crazy.

I do frequent testing all day long in various versions of SketchUp. My 16 inch MBP does have 8GB of VRAM, but otherwise will be similar to your machine. I would be looking at what extensions you’re using, are you using a Space Mouse, does it crash with particular models, and so on.

If there is a chance of it being particular models, could you let us look at one of them?

Hi Colin,
Thanks for your help!
I’m using the built in trackpad, although I did start the model in my iMac on which I use a kensington trackball.
I’m happy to send you the model I’m working on.
Do you think I should stick with 2020?
I might try starting a new model on the MBP and avoid going between different machines, perhaps that’s causing a corruption?
Also I have been dragging various models in from 3D warehouse, do you have any advice on ways to do this, things to avoid? if that’s ever an issue.
Thanks again!

Tram 1.skp (2.6 MB)

HI again Colin,
Here is my model.
I checked the extensions on my MBP and I have none installed (I did this via system preferences).

Your model loads fine here. You won’t find SketchUp extensions in System Preferences. Look here:

~/Library/Application Support/SketchUp 2020/SketchUp/Plugins

In a Finder window, press ⇧⌘G then paste the above path in.

1 Like

Quit SketchUp, follow McGordon’s instructions, but change it to be this:

~/Library/Application Support/SketchUp 2020/SketchUp/

Rename Plugins to anything else. Also go to this folder:

/Library/Application Support/SketchUp 2020/SketchUp/

If there is plugins, rename that too. Open SketchUp, and see how you get on.

The test will have recreated Plugins folders. If you find things are more stable, look inside the renamed folders, and try to figure out what extra plugins you have, that could be causing an issue.

If after doing that test things are still not good, submit a support email, if you have support with us that is! I don’t mind doing a screen share with you to try and figure out why your MacBook Pro isn’t stable like mine.

Thanks Gordon!
YEs it always loads fine, works fine… then crashes.
Anyway I have followed your and Colins advice and renamed extensions.
There were four sketchup extensions which I’m assuming are standard as I haven’t installed any and only installed the software yesterday.
Anyway will see how it goes!
I’m assuming stick with 2020 as no-one has said anything different…


If there are only four extensions in here:

~/Library/Application Support/SketchUp 2020/SketchUp/Plugins

and no plugins folder in here:

/Library/Application Support/SketchUp 2020/SketchUp/

then that rules out any extra extensions you might be using.

When 2020 crashes, and you open it next time, do you send in the bugsplat report?

HI Colin,
I sent the bug report to Apple, is that what you mean?

Ok I looked up bugsplat… no dialogue comes up when I reopen sketchup.
I have had to force quit the app does that make a difference?