Help with selecting the correct rendering programme

Hi all. We are an events, activations and content creation company. We are brand new to Sketchup, and will be buying pro shortly. Our main need for Sketchup is to design stages and events stands.

The reason is for for showing clients our proposed design in a realistic way that is quite photo realistic. Light, shape and textures are fairly important.

I know we will probably go with an “inside Sketchup” rendering app. But wanted to know what works well, is easy enough to use, to understand and maximise quickly, and not take a huge amount of time to process.

Any help or suggestions would be appreciated. Thanks

Have a look at LightUp…
not considered Photo Realistic by it’s competition, but very useful for your stated goals…

I don’t personally use it but have tested many of the free trials over the years…


If you are after very photo realistic renders, you should search for a Renderer which supports biased rendering. A nice GPU support will help you to reduce rendering time.

(There are a lot of topics with a lot of suggestions in all SU forums, have you searched for those already?)

Thanks John. Will look into “Light Up”

Does this app give the option for camera flythroughs too?

Hi Cotty. Sorry but i am an absolute beginner. GPU support?

Havemt searched SU topics yet but i will. Thanks

there’s more info on this forum post by Adam the developer…

tutorial link

Grapics processing unit can do a lot of computations in parallel and will speed up the rendering.

I’ve used Thea and Indigo successfully and they both are able to generate photo realistic images. They have galleries on their websites to get a feeling for reachable quality. But you will need a lot of practice to get great results…

Thanks Cotty. Indigo looks promising. my machine has a NVIDIA GeForce 9400M, and im mac based. How will this fair?

Thanks John. Will check out Light up closer through tutorial.

Here are a few previous threads that dealt with this subject. Although the list of software indicated in these threads is not exhaustive, many good rendering solutions are referenced;

Thanks Appreciate this. Although a little confusing, i will plough through and try make sense.

my list of render extensions/plugins for SU is exhaustive, at least at the date of creation/update.

why not start with something free… the in the meanwhile free ‘Visualizer’ is the most easy-peasy rendering plug avail. but therefore with limited capabilities, if you wanna mo’ power check the free hobby version of ‘Twilight’ first.