Is it possible to get a downgrade license to 2015 PRO 64 bit from my curent 2018 Pro?

Hello all

I now have SlecthcuP 2018 PRO through annual maintenance support subscription - here in India.

I am still on 2017 version and have not installed 2018 version.

From version 2017, they changed the SketchUP Rendering engine from CPU to GPU. This affects me by way of slower performance as I have only a moderate graphics card:

My computer specs:
Inter Core i-7 7th generation (quad core) processor, 16 GB DDR4 RAM, Nvidia GeForce GTX 730 GPU. 27 inch Full HD monitor (1920x1080)

I feel this GPU is not at all sufficient to run SU 2017.

I do not wish to again invest in an expensive GPU.

Instead i’d like to settle for 2015 Pro 64 bit version - where the CPU + GPU handles the Su render engine. This could give me a real performance boost with the Nvidia GTX 730 GPU.

My question is whether I could get a downgrade license from 2018 (which I have still not installed) to the older 2015 Pro 64 bit version ?

Thanks in advance

nope, from SU v2017 the fallback option (“Window > Preferences > OpenGL”) for doing the OpenGL display output rendering in software on the CPU (= slow) instead of the default on the GPU (= fast) was not available anymore.

Which was a sort of a workaround for users with e.g. incompatible graphics systems resp. drivers (as e.g. integrated solutions) without a mature OpenGL support anyhow.

meant probably a GT 730… old and not very fast but should suffice at least for non-big models, update the driver to the recent version if not already done.

this graphics card was never expensive, even at their release date in 2014 (“again”?).

Try to get hold of a recent GeForce GTX 1050 roughly 5x times faster and available as new for ~120.- bucks. Before upgrading ensure that the used mainboard supports PCI-E 3.0 x16.

Thank you very much for your reply.

You mentioned:

“this graphics card was never expensive, even at their release date in 2014 (“again”?).”

I never complained about the price of this Graphics card. I had already contemplated on the 1050 Ti which is a bit expensive for me here4 in India. And, if I bought this 1050 Ti, I also have to buy a much more expensive UPS (what I now have is a simple UPS with no power conditioning) with higher capacity ad it also has to be a power conditioner too - which again adds the cost to my setup.

Which was exactly why I wished to downgrade to 2015 version instead of spending on graphic card and the UPS. If I downgraded, I feel 2015 should work very fine with my present set up itself.

I am no Guru of SketchUP. But let me please ask you this. Would it be really worthwhile to make these expenses to install & run 2018 Pro (which I am yet to install - at the moment running 2017 Pro) ?

Would there be such a great difference between 2015 & 2018 versions? I made a lot of Google search on SketchUp 2015 Pro 64 bit Vs 2018 Pro for comparison but I received very little info on this.

So I am now asking the seniors in this forum to advise me on this. Would it be really great to run 2018 Pro ( If it was great, I would not mind spending on the hardware ) instead of 2015 Pro . I am nor yet into Layout but very soon I would be in it - downloaded tons of tutorials on Layout so that I start using this feature to produce detailed drawings too - especially interiors. Is there a big difference in Layout between 2015 Pro Vs 2018 Pro?

Please kindly advise me.

P.S: I would also like to get a reply if it is really possible to apply for downgrade.

Thanks is advance

A GT 730 does have a max. power consumption of 49 W, a GTX 1050(Ti) of 75 W. What makes it very likely that your exisiting PSU is capable to provide enough wattage for the GTX 1050(Ti). Even if not would a new, reliable PSU with ~500W from e.g. Corsair available from roughly 60.- bucks.

Downgrading is not available by Trimble… being required to support an old version with issues already fixed by the recent version is not worthwhile the effort.

For using SU with the latest operating system versions and for profiting from hundreds of problem fixes using the latest SU revision - besides new functionality - does obviously make sense, especially if the investment for doing that (see above) is that small.

more info here.

btw, if a downgrade would be feasible version 2016 would be the latest version with an option to render OpenGL in software (see above).

without having a choice upgrading the hardware appears to be without alternative… but you can always contact Trimbles tech. support and ask for a downgrade to v2016 because of your limited hardware.

Are you talking about the same thing? a UPS and PSU are different things.

@PRSS you should look at the Power Supply inside of your computer to determine it’s wattage. The GTX 1050 requires a 300 watt minimum power supply.

probably, assume that he has mixed up the abbreviation.


Did you try the driver update? Compared to the GT 620m in my ultrabook your graphics card is much faster. and I have never had problems running my models (that are generally rather small) with mine.

Thank you very much for the replies. No. I did not mix up PSU & UPS !! My PSU is Antec 600 W.

Well, I brooded over for a while after seeing the replies. Downgrading seems to be unwise. I have now placed order for Nvidia GTX 1050 Ti with 4GB VRAM and a UPS (In Line unlimited power supply & power conditioner) to both my computers running 2017 Pro now,. I shall now install the latest 2018 version too.

Thanking you once more for your valuable advice.

Best regards

upgrading the UPS if swapping the graphics card is in general not required.

keep the SUP v2017 program installation parallel to a new installation of 2018 sothat you might do a fallback if issues do arise, i.e. incompatible plugins etc.

Thank you for the reply & suggestion. I shall keep the 2017 version too. Yes, I do have lot of plugins.
Best regards

Hi PRSS, I appreciate your frustration, especially when you have tried to do the right thing and keep up your license and then get forced into actions/decisions you weren’t ready for.

You seem to be confident that 2015 will satisfy your requirement better than the latest offering even though you have a current license (and this infers that you have some audit trail for backward versions). I am guessing you do not have a registered license for 2015 (or have you just deleted that licensed version?).

Now I’m not a legal eagle so I have no idea if this suggestion will have the copyright cops knocking on my door, however, if possible try to get hold of a 2015 Make version (which did not require a license) and run it to your hearts content. Then if you get into issues with new features you would like to use, swap to your 2018 Pro version, work on it and save it as a 2015 version and then go back to your 2015…

Now I happen to have kept a copy of the 2015 Make version and unless some QC reading this reply challenges me about the legality (I don’t want to go to jail… at 68 I’m too pretty to become someones toy-boy) I could send the Make version to you (naturally no license)…

Not that I’m a do-gooder or a benevolent saviour… I just hate seeing people that do the right thing get screwed (even if its a well meaning oversight in the course of progress).

Looks like I got ahead of myself… again…

My suggestion of 2015 Make is out of context as we are still caught in the conundrum of a Make version being used for commercial purposes.

Unfortunately it may be time for a PC/laptop upgrade.

Thank you for the reply Xelaarak ! I did not have a purchased version of 2015. but at that time, I had trial tun it for 30 days - the 64 bit version. I was fully satisfied with the performance - had great speed on my core-i3 computer too with 8 GB RAM and Nvidia GT 730 card. But somehow I could not buy that version here in India as the then new vendor in my region landed up into difficulties as there was a major flood in that region and he gave up the dealership too. Then another vendor took up and by that time it was 2017 version only which I had to buy ! Because i had bought the 2017 version, I changed my computer to a new core-i7 / 16 GB RAM etc.and with the same GT 730 card. Now I have again spent money on the new Nvidia 1050 Ti card. Performance is great now - as good as what I saw in 2015 64 bit version. So, one purchase (the purchase of 2017 version of SketchUP) led to another major expenditure in a new computer itself, later now again expenses on upgrading the Nvidia card !!! I could only assign this ti my destined FATE (or “Karma” as we Indians call it) !!! Had I been able to purchase the 2015 version, I would not have had to change my computer to a more expensive one and again spend on it for the upgraded nvidia card ! And now 2 of my Core-i3 machines (CPUs ) are just idling - no takers for these as “used computer” ! What else to say that it is all because of my own “Karma” !! And now I accept these expenses considering that I was destined by my “Karma” to suffer these expenses !! This is how we Indians “accept” when something unusual happens !!

Thanking you once again !
Best regards

BTW, I forgot to mention this. Till I purchased the 2017 version, I used to work myself on Google SketchUP 7 which I had got long, long back - one copy - I would say, instead of doing serious work, I used to do a lot of playing around with it - build imaginary complex models, render in Kerkythea etc.It was a craze of mine - that hobby ! That was how I became familiar with SketchUP and had fallen into loving it which led me into buying the 2017 Pro version !

PRSS, If you are only using it for non-commercial use (even though you have a licensed Pro… I have 2013 to 2018 licenses though I’m non-commercial) there should be no legal issues in using 2015 Make. A quick search showed up this link,

Let your conscience and Karma determine your next move.

Unfortunately there is a FAT line between legality and common sense.

Thank you again for the reply Xelaarak.

NO. I cannot use MAKE. While purchasing 2017 PRO (2 copies) I had made the decision to use them for my professional work too. My practice is Architecture + Interior Architecture. A tiny office with just 4 junior assistants. We use Autodesk software for all of our professional work - AutoCAD / Revit / 3ds Max (only 2 of them use Revit & 3ds Max which require “beast” computers) - and since the last one year I am making a shift towards interior architecture and yet again towards smaller scale buildings - more so to individual villas - planning to “semi-retire” to pursue my favorite hobbies of Photography & Painting (recently purchased Adobe Lightroom Perpetual license, yes, LR alone is still available as perpetual license + Photoshop Elements) - and I am 62 years old now. Individual Villas would be Architecture + Interiors.

For Interior Architecture, for my type of work, SketchUP Pro and AutoCAD and Photoshop Elements are more than enough (avoid the hassles of Revit for interiors - 3ds Max might become idle now) - SketchUP is more intuitive for me as a design tool - realized it quite late !! But better late than never ! So, I am making the switch to SketchUP Pro for all my Interior Architecture projects. Also bought Twilight Render Pro 2 copies !

Installation of Nvidia 1050 Ti cards on both my computers has proved to be very worth while. I am seeing a very marked improvement in speed and I am fully satisfied with this.

I am happy & thankful that you and others in the Forum helped me in sorting out my problem.

Thanking you all once again !

Best regards


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