What's the best PC, graphics card and monitor for SketchUp use?


We are playground designers using SketchUp pro 2014 (upgrading soon). We have just welcomed another designer to our team and i’d like to know what people suggest for a PC, graphics card and high resolution screen. Our models are often large so we’re obviously looking for something to cope with these whilst maintaining premium quality. Our budget for the lot is around £1500. Appreciate any suggestions :grinning:

Hardware Purchasing Advice For SketchUp & LayOut [wiki]

It’s wise to make a list of all the applications you intend to run on the system and obtain a copy of the Hardware/Software requirements for each application.
From those you can compile a list of the hardware/software features you need, which enables you to make an informed decision about what to buy.

SketchUp Hardware/Software Requirements — SketchUp Help


Thanks, that has helped.
we’re considering purchasing a NVIDIA GeForce GTX 970 graphics card and getting a 4K Dell P2815Q Ultra 28" monitor - has any one had experience with either of these?


• CPU: intel Core i7-4790k
• GPU: GeForce GTX 770+
• RAM: 8+ GB
• System Disk: Samsung 850 Pro 256+ GB

could imagine that a 4K res even on a 28" screen may lead to very small tool icons etc… ensure that your ‘rookie’ doesn’t wear glasses before purchasing :wink:


OK, yes we’ve seen several reviews on these and that’s what quite a few say.
What would you recommend then please? (Put it in basic English - we’re only simple guys!) :laughing:


like the Dell UltraSharps too… and would in general prefer Dell/NEC/Eizo models with a matte PVA or IPS panel at a (W)QHD res (2,560x1,440)… the Dell U2715H looks like a capable and very reasonable allround monitor.



Glossy Screen = Eyestrain … Unless you prefer to work in a dark room. :wink:


I suggest you to avoid Dell P2815Q as it is TN 30 Hz only at 4k and choose instead a Dell P2715Q (ips 4k 60 hz).
I have experience with a Dell UP2414Q and I can tell you that, at 4k 60 Hz, it is a wonderful experience on sketchup (pro 2015). I use it as second screen with a MacBook Pro 15 L2013 and with “ideal for retina” resolution (it is like a 1920x1080 super crisp).
Using a monitor at 30 Hz is impossible for my eyes, especially in a 3D SW and in other SWs where you make a lot of “pan” and “rotate” camera.
Hope this help.


Love my Dell UltraSharp. Mine is several years old, dating back to when it was time to move up from a CRT screen. I bought a factory reconditioned item from Dell, which reduced the price considerably while having a warranty. It’s still crisp and without a single dead pixel - never noticed any defect which caused it to be a returned unit. It even survived being knocked to the floor without any damage.


I have to agree with @catamountain. I also use a Dell Ultrasharp and it has performed flawlessly through extended usage. I sometimes leave the monitor turned on continuously for extended periods while running SketchUp, Layout, Photoshop or one of several rendering programs. This level of use has been consistent now for more than a year and I have never experienced any problems. The monitor is simple to use and requires practically no maintenance. I have submitted a couple of favorable reviews of this product to both Dell and Amazon.


I love both ’em.
Neither of which is young
1920 x 1200 native w/matte screen
My office has off white walls and a large 8’ x 4’ window facing due south.
Difficult to Imagine how bad this would be with glossy screens.

Goodbye XP Pro photo

Reccomended laptop

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After figuring out the best card, now I needed to figure out memory and hard drive. Many will say that 8gb is all you need but I know better that on a laptop 8gb will be consumed when multitasking. 16gb is the absolute minimum. DDR3 1600 MHz is the standard but test have shown that DDR3L 1866 MHz is better for multitasking and rendering.

After figuring out the memory I was off to the hard drive. I wanted too separate hard drives a SSD Solid State primary drive for Windows and essential programs such as Office, AutoCad and Sketchup. Startup times are faster and more efficient while running the applications within the program. So I decided on a 250 SSD SATA III M.2 and a 1 Tb 7200 hard drive for files and everything else.

Now I need to find a computer that would encompass all of these features and looked long and hard for a professional setup and narrowed it down to three choices Sager, Alienware and MSI All three are great computers but I wanted to find a rig that would need minimal upgrade to get all of my needed hardware. Price was a factor as well. My first choice was Sager for the expand ability in the future and quickly ruled out MSI for their lack of swapping out Hard drives and adding a SSD M1 or M2. That led me to my final choice and purchase of the Alienware 15 which I only had to upgrade the memory to the Hyper Impact DDR3L 16gb 1866 MHz memory and will be adding a 500gb SSD M.2. I am so happy with the performance and that I can add three additional monitors to my setup. I highly recommend the amplifier that has a direct link into the back of the laptop to even give a better experience to the other monitors.