We will help you find the best alternatives to SketchUp with similar or better features. You can choose the best free or paid 3D modeling software that fits your needs from the list down below. Let’s get started.
What is SketchUp?
SketchUp is a popular 3D Computer-Aided Design (CAD) program used in architecture, engineering, interior designing, sculpting, making robots, and 3D printings. Known for its intuitive, user-friendly UI and built-in capabilities, its plugins also offer additional support. Available in both free and paid versions, SketchUp has reigned its mark for over 20 years in the industry.
Its 3D Warehouse is a library full of model designs viz furniture, and buildings that you can easily import into any project. The inbuilt templates make SketchUp one of the best free 3D modeling software. However, just like other software, it can’t fulfill everyone’s requirements. So, let’s help you find the best SketchUp alternative.
Top 15 SketchUp Alternatives (Free 3D Modeling Software) in 2023:
One of the best alternatives to SketchUp is SolidWorks which runs on Microsoft Windows. It is useful for designing 3D solid parts and modeling assemblies. Known for its intuitive interface, comprehensive standard library, easy hole-drilling, and tapping options, it allows us to compare two designs, either their geometry, and views using Face Comparison, View Comparison, and Geometry Comparison. You can select faces, loops, edges, and features depending on the various geometric criteria.
The analysis tool lets us compare two SolidWorks documents, and analyze the various thick and thin regions. So, with this 3D Design software, you can locate and make necessary changes within models. You can download it from its official website.
Among the real alternatives to SketchUp, Shapr3D is worth mentioning in this article. With parametric and direct modeling techniques, this CAD application was made in 2016 exclusively for iPads and Apple Pencils, soon after iPad Pro was released.
A lot similar to SketchUp, owing to the same Siemens engine, the free 3D Design Software and its portable tablet are somewhat complicated. Furthermore, it allows for two free designs and other premium versions.
With easy-to-go UI, an integrated approach to other CAD file extensions, and intuitive modeling functions, it provides the best of SketchUp, and is more portable and accessible.
Created by AutoDesk, Fusion360 is a great SketchUp alternative. Known for parametric modeling, it allows you to extract ideas from concepts into 3D functional models. The concept of parametric modeling makes this CAD tool even better than SketchUp. It further enables users to input specific dimensions in height, thickness, etc., and manipulate them with particular figures in the model.
Run your simulations, input your ideas, and let the intangible fabricate into something more constructive. Fusion360 is one of the Free 3D modeling software for 3D printing that provides industry-standard precision modeling aids. Most users recommend the program for its mechanical engineering approach rather than organic sculpting.
AutoCAD is the true alternative to SketchUp, preferred by engineers, architects, and construction professionals around the globe. Famous for its ease of 2D and 3D printing of models, this program enables easy editing and drawing on any virtual device. Also, CAD drawings are handy to create, draw, and edit with the software.
With the AutoDesk cloud feature, you can access DWG in AutoCAD. Additionally, the free 3D modeling software offers many attributes to change contrast levels to avoid eye strain, select multiple objects and easy removal the same, and object preview.
Being the best-fit alternative to SketchUp, DraftSight is a trending free 3D modeling software for 3D printing. It enables you to create, format, and arrange the models. DraftSight also offers easy modification command that serves to rotate, move, copy, and scale the variables throughout the document.
Documentation and PDF Underlay are some additional attractive attributes of DraftSight. The designed layers are well-sorted and arranged in appropriate layering standards. You can also easily import blocks from the respective libraries or create new ones to be used as templates in different designs. Download DraftSight today and give it a try!
6. Autodesk Inventor
Inventor is top-rated CAD software. Developed by Autodesk, it is an excellent SketchUp alternative mostly preferred for its ease in 3D printing, professional-standard 3D mechanical designing, simulation tools, and documentation. Its automation in modeling, visualization, collaboration & design automation, and connected data feature, Autodesk Inventor, has a free trial availability.
After downloading and installing this 3D design software on your PC, you will have a simple, easy-to-use analysis tool that provides product configuration, REVIT native export, and animation and annotated exploited views. What are you waiting for? Try it today.
7. Vectorworks Fundamentals
VectorWorks, the best alternatives to SketchUp, offers 2D drawing, 3D design modeling, and BIM i.e., Building Information Modeling. The software is an architecture-supportive tool that allows users to sketch, draw, and model in an integrated BIM platform.
The program is best suitable for residential work, integrated 2D-3D projects, and landscape designing & planning. After downloading and installing this 3D design software, you can enjoy exclusive features such as the terrain modeler, the wall tool, and other parametric function that enables rapid customization throughout the BIM workflow.
The open-source 3D parametric modelers, FreeCAD is the best SketchUp alternative. In mechanical engineering, product designing, and architectural works, it is essential to draw, design, and modify real-life objects of any size. It is a general-purpose program with similar features to SketchUp, SolidWorks, and Solid Edge, thus, owning features like MCAD, CAx, CAE, etc. It uses all the open-source libraries viz. OpenCascade, Coin3D, Qt, and Python can be treated as a library on their own.
Moreover, this free 3D modeling software has a customizable GUI and a fully multi-platform that you can use on your PC with Mac OSX, Windows, and Linux/Unix.
One of the trusted SketchUp alternatives is Blender. It is a free open-source, 3D creation solution. Blender allows modeling, rigging, animation, UV unwrapping, texturing, skinning, water & other simulations, building interactive 3D apps, soft body dynamics, non-linear editing, etc. It comes with GNU (General Public License) so that you can use, modify and distribute it.
Blender is a completely free 3D modeling software, while SketchUp has both free and premium versions. Additionally, its intuitive surface subdivision system allows Blender to handle more polygons on a single screen than SketchUp. Inbuilt Cycles, ever-rendering engines, and its ability to map textures over surfaces adds a better touch to Visualizations.
Another popular SketchUp alternative in the market is SolidEdge, which relies on synchronous technology for its rapid customization, speedy product design, and editing or improving the data. Its unmatched mobility and superior assembly performance allow users to draw detailed layers with annotation and dimensioning controls.
The best-in-class sheet metal design system of SolidEdge combines speed and ease of direct modeling with parametric design control. The 3D Design Software lets you streamline the P&ID workflow process while having data-driven access to pipe specifications.
11. ActCAD 2020 Professional
ActCAD 2020 Professional is a professional-grade alternative to SketchUp, Cedreo, and Microstation. Known for 2D drafting, 3D modeling, BIM modeling, and a plethora of 5000 standard symbols and design templates, the CAD software is popular among engineers, architects, designers, and the garment industry.
The SketchUp alternative uses the latest IntelliCAD 9.2 engine. Well-known attributes constitute the professional 3D renderer, inbuilt PDF to DXF converter, self-license transfer, classic menu & ribbon style UI, and the infamous ArtCAD Block Library. Moreover, the 3D Design Software download is not available for free but has a free trial option.
12. pCon Planner
A people’s choice SketchUp alternative, pCon Planner, is a 2D & 3D tool available in several formats- dwg, dxf, skp, etc. It is perfectly suitable for architecture and home designs. The CAD solution lets you be creative and provides a comprehensive picture of your plan. The designs can be seen and studied from every angle.
Moreover, you can have high-quality graphics and stunning photographs and create complex furnishing concepts professionally. Download and install this free 3D modeling software online to access catalogs through the program quickly.
A trending free alternative to SketchUp is LibreCAD. It was initially meant to build CAM capabilities. The solution works on Windows, Linux, Unix, and macOS. It has ellipse tools, transformation tools, an advanced snapping system, etc.
LibreCAD open-source CAD solution is an excellent tool for 2D drawing. Based on QT and available in more than 30 languages, the free 3D modeling software is fast, lightweight, and has a less-than-30 mb installer. It reads and writes dwg files and exports jpg, png, pdf, SVG, and more.
TinkerCAD is the best free SketchUp alternative created by Autodesk, Inc., an American multinational software corporation. This 3D CAD solution is adept at creating designs, thus, assisting architectures, engineers, and manufacturing concerns. TinkerCAD relies on its library of shapes, elements, numbers, characters, and a set of editing tools that allows novices as well s professionals to refine pre-set polygons into complex, organic forms.
The free 3D modeling software for 3D printing lets users balance their intuitiveness and technicality to yield functional 3D designs in minutes. So, you are a beginner and don’t want to invest money in purchasing premium software, TinkerCAD is the best option for you.
Last but not the least, Cedreo is one of the popular SketchUp alternatives, is the only 3D home design software that lets you create conceptual designs in just a few hours. With a sharp learning curve, the solution is a blessing for builders, constructors, real-estate developers, and designers. Cedreo lets you draw in 2D, import an existing blueprint, resize it in one click, and visualize the same in 3D.
Cedreo, a top-rated 3D design software, provides exciting features like the floor plan and roof drawing with a single click, a library of furnishings and materials for customizing your interiors, and photorealistic three-dimensional renderings.
Also Read: FaceRig Alternatives Free
With the top 15 SketchUp alternatives in 2023, now you can select and download the best 3D modeling software that fits your needs. While reading this article, you must have realized that the choice depends on how you perceive the 3D designs. Each of the above software comes with its intellectual approach and smart tools. Some of them are free 3D modeling software, while others are paid. Some tools like SketchUp have both free and premium versions.
Study your project and understand the needs and choose the right SketchUp alternative to achieve your goals. Have another 3D modeling software you love? Share your recommendations by leaving a comment down below.