Integrated Graphics Card vs Recommended Hardware

Dear All,

Long time reaper first time caller.

Will Sketchup run correctly with the Intel integrated graphics card - Intel® HD Graphics 520? I have reviewed the SketchUp Hardware and software requirements and identified its short comings in Graphics Video Memory of 32GB but question whether this will greatly effect running performance. Has anyone had experience with this and/or can throw their two cents in?

Thank you

• Intel® Core™ i7-6600U Processor (Intel® HD Graphics 520, 2.6 GHz, up to 3.4 GHz with Intel® Turbo Boost Technology, 4 MB cache, 2 cores)
• Windows 10 Pro 64
• 14" diagonal FHD SVA slim LED-backlit touch screen (1920 x 1080)
• 8 GB DDR4-2133 SDRAM (1 x 8 GB)

Download either the Make install (it’s free for non-commercial use,) or the Pro edition (which will run a 30-day trial.)

Try it and see.

This graphics version (520) is one of the newest (6th generation) chipsets, so it may be that it (or it’s driver,) have problems with older (or deprecated) OpenGL function calls.

Intel® HD Graphics 520 for 6th Generation Intel® Core™ Processors

The standards info:
DirectX: 12
OpenGL: 4.4 (SketchUp current minimum is 2.0)

But don’t take my word, test it by getting realtech’s OpenGL test and view utility:

This is not a shortcoming. Integrated graphics use shared system memory. Seeing as how your system only has 8GB, you’ll never approach the maximum for the GPU. Basically I would guess (having been yesterday researching various Intel chipsets with integrated graphics,) … that the newer integrated graphics just have the system’s maximum memory listed as the maximum graphics memory.

So, it is really the amount of system RAM that is lacking in your list of properties.

I seem to remember someone else asking recently about the 520 Intel graphics. Searching …

Okay, I think it was this post:
SketchUp on Dell XPS 13” 9350 notebook

No actually it was this thread, and they asked about the 530 graphics:
i7 Skylake integrated graphics and SketchUp rendering
… and I stress what I said in there re, RAM and the Windows edition.

Hello @Aaron,

Over the last year, I have faced a similar problem. I settled on using the 32 bit version of SU in lieu of the 64 bit version, because the latter tends to crash repeatedly with the Intel integrated graphics adapter. Other users have indicated that this effectively reduces the amount of RAM that can be made available when comparing the two versions, although I cannot confirm that. The described approach using the 32 bit version seems to work in an acceptable manner for me and I frequently generate models of significantly large size; I use a number of techniques to reduce the number of polygons within my models and regularly perform strategic purge operations to manage model “weight”. (I am probably considered to be a Power User of SU…perhaps somewhere just south of expert…which is only mentioned for context and not as an attempt at braggadocia.

Here are several links to previous threads where this subject was discussed in detail (Just click on the boldface type below):

Link 1

Link 2

Link 3

Hi Dan

Thanks for the speedy reply.

I should have provided a little more backgound info. I am looking at purchasing a laptop with these specs. Plus an additional 8GB of RAM. Unfortunately can’t try before you buy.

Just another thing about the Graphics Video Memory of 32GB not being a short coming? The SketchUp Hardware and software requirements ask for a minimum:

  • 3D class Video Card with 512 MB of memory or higher. Please ensure that the video card driver supports OpenGL version 2.0 or higher and up to date -

So I’m still a little confused about weather the Intel® HD Graphics 520 would satisfy these requirements. Specifically the 512 MB of memory

That is 1/2 (half) of a Gigabyte.

The 520 graphics can use (dynamically) upto 32 gigabytes of system memory. (Which in reality it cannot as the system and other applications are also using some of the system memory.)

ADD: No need to be concerned when the 520 graphics maximum is 64 times the SketchUp minimum.

ALSO: When I first started testing SketchUp, my machine had an office quality Nvidia card with only 32 megabytes of dedicated graphics memory. SketchUp still loaded and ran.
On my current notebook (crappy old integrated Intel OpenGL v2.1 max) with 2 monitors, I still am only using 187MB (although I can currently use up to 1.3GB.)

Thanks Mate! Very Helpful.

It sounds like a higher end laptop. Make & Model ?

If it has an open slot (which many higher end notebooks do,) that can be used to later insert an Nvidia card, then I do not think you need worry too much.

Its the HP EliteBook 840 G3 Touchscreen Notebook

Well looking at the “Technical Details” page (and expanding “See More…”) it does not seem to have any internal expansion slots that could be used for a dedicated graphics card.

Thanks again, its a great help!

So in your experience would I be better off going for something with a dedicated graphics card or would it be much of a muchness?

The HP 850 has the option of AMD graphics card with 1Gb memory -

Integrated: Intel HD8 Graphics 4400
Discrete: AMDTM Radeon HD 8750M, with 1 GB dedicated GDDR5 video memory

AMD Radeon graphics are worse than Intel, IMO. Search the forum, and you’ll see a lot of users having a lot of issues with AMD graphics.

And with a CPU running 4400 graphics, it must be a 4th generation chip:

If you can afford it, try to stay up in the 5th or 6th generation systems.

Well that was close! Good to know! Thanks.

FYI, I have created a standalone wikilist of collected topic threads:
Hardware Purchasing Advice For SketchUp & LayOut

I have a Lenovo ThinkPad x201 which I use mostly with my ultrabase as desktop alternative. The specs can be found here: the reason why I am posting here is because my trees and plants form arcstudio 3D look really rubbish and won’t render properly? I scoured the forums and the search engines in pursuit of an answer to my dilemma and so far have come up with nothing,not even Matt donley has been able to advise?! I started thinking maybe it’s my graphics card and/or hardware? Or RAM? I just don’t understand why trees and plants would require so much system RAM to render? Is it because they have so many edges and therefore so many faces?would live to get to the bottom of this as it has already caused me hours and hours of frustration and hair pulling!!! Have deadlines to reach and I can’t supply a client with a design proposal if the drawing isnt finished. I think in the interim I shall just have to do the drawing without the planting. I look forward to someone who has the know how giving me a concrete solution to this, you?

Please start a new topic about these tree / plant components and post an example model or one of the tree component files so the sages can look at it.

Your machine is quite old. The chipset was released 6 years ago:
and the CPUs appear to be 2nd generation Intel Core with HD 2000/3000 series integrated graphics.

This is not a good machine for rendering.

1 Like

Hi Dan, Thanks for getting back to me so promptly.
So basically my machine is too old! you wouldnt happen to know of a alternative to sketchup that would render fine on my machine?

Well, first of all, SketchUp is a modeler, not a renderer. There are 3rd party render applications that can work with SketchUp. Memory is always a factor. It looks like from your profile (graphics memory 1.6GB max,) that you may have only 4GB of memory. Your machine can take up to 8GB.

If this is true (you only have 4GB) under 64-bit Windows, your machine is basically limited memory-wise as if it was running a 32-bit edition OS.

Basically a set of 8GB SODIMMs for your machine would be about 38US:

So as much memory as you can get will always help no matter what heavy software you run.

yes I think Ive only got 4gigs atm so upgrading to the 8gigs would defo help. sorry when I used the term rendering I was referring to the tree components alone. I’m new to this whole software environment and have only just started to migrate from hand drawn to CAD so all the jargon is again alien to me, if its supposed to be modelling then so be it, as far as I was concerned prior to you enlightening me modelling and rendering meant the same thing to me, obviously this is not the case. I shall defintely look into upgrading the RAM maybe even the cpu if my motherboard will let me, havent looked into it that far yet. cheers