Rendering for free

Hey! im looking for a extension to make fast and simple renders in sketchup, its been a while and the last time i did i used to be a student and know i come across the fact that basically all of the rendering motors are under suscription, is it oout there any option for free? i mean im not asking for too much quality o hyper realism

Twilight has a free version but it’s limited in features compared with the pro version and it’s not for commercial purposes, if you want a cheap rendering engine with very good quality and with perpetual license with lifetime updates and upgrades for free, I recommend you Brighter 3D, it’s intuitive and fast.
You can also use other softwares to render, D5 has a free version that can be used with commercial purposes, and the best option but that takes a bit more time to learn is Blender, you can achieve hyper realistic renderings with cycles or not so realistic but still a good quality with Eevee, it’s an open source software so you can use it for whatever you want, with blender you can make animations as well among a lot more things, it’s one of the best softwares I’ve used, unlike sketchup blender releases new versions every 5 months with major updates and upgrades, it’s becoming an industry standard, it was used to make some parts of the latest Spider-Man movie. iI’s unbelievable that it’s free.

1 Like

For ease of use, Twinmotion is a game engine based realtime renderer somewhat similar to Enscape, and it is free for personal use.
Kerkythea is a free versatile standalone rendering application with an export plugin for SketchUp.

Twinmotion is just a rendering engine, it belongs to Epic Games who are the creators of Unreal Engine which is a game engine.

Twinmotion free license is limited to 2k and it has a watermark since the latest update, and it’s not for commercial purposes.

The only free rendering options I know that can be used for commercial purposes are D5, Bkender and Kerkythea, but it hasn’t been updated in some years and you will have a lot of crashes, I’ve tried it and it’s extremely unstable.

Just checked on the World Wide Web that Kerkythea last update was in 2018, twilight uses actually Kerkythea engine and according to them the developer, Solid Iris, won’t continue developing it, Twilight is migrating to a new engine that will also run natively on apple silicon macs.

Hi @Syksy ,

I’m working on a new render extension for SketchUp called Rayscaper: https://www.rayscaper.com/ - It will be a commercial plugin eventually, but it’s currently alpha software (with some rough edges…) and available for free.

Feel free to reach out if you have more questions.

Here are some screenshots showing off Rayscaper:

Cheers,
Thomas

1 Like

Trimble Connect Visualizer extension

Blender EEVEE

3 Likes

Will the licenses be perpetual with a fee to upgrade to a newer version or subscription or both?

Hey @francisquitof ,

Rayscaper will have a classic license model. You pay one time, and own the license forever. You have to pay for upgrades to a newer versions. No subscription licensing.

Cheers,
Thomas

1 Like

Great, does it render using cpu or gpu?

@francisquitof CPU rendering. Support for GPU rendering (Nvidia RTX) is planned post 1.0. Here is the roadmap: Roadmap | Rayscaper

Cheers,
Thomas

I think you meant to say: and own the licence forever…

1 Like

Thanks for the correction! Yes, it’s a perpetual license.

twilight hobby is free, but it can be used for commercial purposes (License Terms (twilightrender.com))

Simlab Composer Free can be used for any purpose.


It’s not free, but after experimenting with 6 free test renderers I found only Indigo Renderer was able to process my then 780MB mode (It shrunk by almost half in the latest version of SU). Other renderers, even the most well known ones, just choked on such a large model, at least in the free test modes. Even Indigo takes about 1/2 hour to do the render shown. Something to consider if you have a large model.

D5 Render, free

Thank you so much to everyone! I have tried almost all of your suggetions and in the end i proceeded with the Trimble visualizer, as it was the easier to use for my colleagues that are not so familiar with rendering procedures, thanks again!

Trimble connect visualizer is a good option but it’s very limited. For beginners it could be a way to get into the rendering world.

1 Like

Indeed, if i had to choose for personal use i would choose D5, but as its a choice intended for people who need fast basic good looking pictures without having to set much stuff i think it gets to the main goal, thank you all!