Performance in free vs pro?

I’ve been using Sketchup free in chrome for a few days and I notice that when my project gets a little meaty, it takes about 30 seconds from when I push any button until the process is done.
This can be anything from rotating the screen to changing tools.
I have a 4000$ pc and feel like this should not be a problem.

My only question is:
Will the performance be better(or even stable) if I upgrade to Pro (desktop version)?`
I want to check with you guys before I pay 300$.
I tried to search for free vs. pro features, and it tells me I will get extensions and all that, but nothing about the performance.
Workflow is really important to me, as I am doing a very big project for work now.

Sketchup free runs in your browser. its performances won’t depend only of your gear, but also of your bandwidth, stability of your connexion, running speed of the servers and their availability (these last few days there has been some crashes). Also, it’s like an emulator, I mean, SU works in addition / inside the limitation of your browser.
So yeah, it’s a free version, and its performance is limited, regardless of your hardware.

The pro version will be able to use your hardware better.
be warned though, SU (like other 3d softwares) will only use one core of your processor (single thread process), and will barely touch your graphics card. so the difference between a 1000$ and a 4000$ machine might not be THAT visible. especially considering the price of graphics cards and processors.
EDIT : here is a thread that explains better than I do why high end gear might not result into super massive boost compared to medium-end.

But don’t trust my word on this, try it. You have access to the free trial (30 days)

1 Like

How big? It may be too large and the SketchUp will “clog”. Unfortunately, it has limited options. You’d better follow the advice @ateliernab try the 30 day demo version.

I may have phrased that wrong. After seeing people build hotels and towns in Sketchup with little performance issues, mine seems like nothing. I meant to say it’s a big thing for me.

I see.
It would not be right to pay 300$ for a program that runs so bad that you will litterally take days to draw a little house.
Will give it a shot and cross my fingers.

Thanks for replying.

Sure, have a go, and if you get stuck / encounter problems, we’ll be here ! :slight_smile:

1 Like

One of the best things you can do to increase, or get the best performance, from your system is to understand how the construction of and style settings of a model can affect your workflow.
Sketchup models are made of faces and edges and the more of them there are the harder the computer has to work.
Be aware of what you add to your model, whether that is how many segments you use in your circles or what entourage you add from the warehouse. These are the two most basic issues to be understood. You don’t need 96 segment circles on a door knob that is only seen as part of a room, nor do you want to download chairs with 5 castors each of which is more complex than the rest of your model. Lovely wrinkled bedspreads on all your beds will bring your computer to its knees. And showing all those complex edges, meaning using a style that shows a thickened ‘profile’ around things will increase lag.

A good workflow and an understanding of what is really needed in a model will get you much further than fancy hardware. There are people here who can develop a full working model of a house with all the detail needed in a file size less than a single office chair available in the warehouse. So, understand what you really need and detail appropriately.


In general, the advice you get is usually only as good as the information you provide.

In your initial post you made it sound like your project was getting larger and your performance was getting worse. That’s a bit different than “I’ve drawn a little house and SketchUp is still having performance issues.”

The reality is everyone here is really guessing until they know what exactly is in your project. In general though, performance in the web version will be worse than in the desktop version.

1 Like

The above is all true, but incorrect conclusions could be drawn from it. For example, during a modeling session (when you are using SketchUp’s tools such as Push Pull, Orbit, Pan, Circle, Arc, Follow Me, etc. there is no communication with the servers. Modeling is done entirely within the browser on the local computer. You can disconnect from the internet with no impact to modeling. Communication with the server occurs when loading or saving a project, logging in, and performing other non-modeling actions. Thus, performance of modeling operations is not dependent on your internet connection, the state of the servers, etc.


huh, didn’t know that. Never really used the web app, and it was always somewhere with a stable connexion, but it’s good to know !

Technically, once it is running you can work offline.

Update: I can confirm that it’s not lagging in the desktop version.
Thanks for all good answers

Realistically it would be far better to be able to say, it’s not lagging in the web version before moving to the desktop version.

This takes me back to my childhood when I kept a few mice as pets. You’d build a box, go to the pet store and buy 2 mice. Pretty soon you had quite a few mice in the box, so you built another larger box…and you can see where that ended up. Pretty soon I had 300 mice and an amazing array of interconnected houses, then my mother became aware that I bought the first pair.

The connection here is that you can’t just keep building a bigger house, you need to control the number of mice.


Try telling them that while they are having such a good time.

Nothing that can’t be fixed with a very small pair of scissors.