Home » SketchUp vs SolidWorks

Selecting the best 3D modeling software for your plans can be challenging. This article will compare SketchUp vs SolidWorks. Depending on what you’re designing, Solidworks is a far more complicated and capable package aimed primarily at product design and material analysis. In contrast, Sketchup is a far more approachable, less sophisticated, and less expensive 3D package widely used in architectural design, interior and furniture design by amateurs interested in simple models and 3D printing, and so on. Each serves a distinct purpose, and the two are not interchangeable.  



SketchUp (Originally Google SketchUp) is CAD software for 3D modeling that both professionals and amateurs use. SketchUp can create many 3D models and is appropriate for large architectural projects (e.g., landscape design). Because of the fantastic 3D visualization tools, the tool is a good pick for interior design because it is easier to learn. For creating realistic 3D models, SketchUp includes an OpenGL renderer. Sketchup is primarily used for architectural, interior, and furniture design and landscape design. Sketchup, available for over 20 years, has always been distinguished by its intuitive design tools and simple workflow, allowing users to gain control of the program quickly.

This ease of use is complemented by the 3D warehouse, an extensive 3D model library through which users can navigate to generate pre-set objects and quickly work out their scenes. If you work in architecture or real estate, you should use SketchUp to create architectural models. You can easily create 2D drawings or 3D models with this program’s intuitive tools.


SolidWorks is a popular 3D design software for industrial and mechanical models. It is a professional computer-aided design (CAD) and computer-aided engineering (CAE) application. Users can use Solidworks to create mechanical parts, complex machinery assemblies, and welding structures, among other things. SolidWorks is a solid modeling program, as the name implies. In SolidWorks, users can create models, components, and assemblies using a parametric function-based technique. SolidWorks models start with a 2D sketch and are extruded in 3D with various SolidWorks tools. SolidWorks can handle even the most complex assemblies. Thanks to recent SolidWorks enhancements, users can now work with larger assemblies and edit them in large design review mode.

SolidWorks’ main selling point is its user-friendly interface, making learning and using the software simple. The program includes great detail and functionality, making it ideal for modelers who want more than just a basic modeling technique. The key features are additive and subtractive manufacturing (SAM), mesh fabrication, and design intent tools. SolidWorks users can create patterns for the parts they want to manufacture and edit existing patterns. Users can also use the color tool to add color to their designs and change the physical properties of parts and materials. SolidWorks also includes several additional modeling features. One is the “infinity blend,” which allows users to add, edit, or choose from a collection of pre-existing patterns. It also includes a realistic rendering of a wide range of product types. These features include customized wheels, axles, transmissions, frames, bodies, swing systems, landing gears, generators, engines, and other components.

SketchUp vs SolidWorks

SketchUp vs SolidWorks: Similarities in Functions and Features

  1. 3D Object and Environment Modeling

Both of these programs are capable of producing high-quality models with intricate shapes. SketchUp tends to use bare-bones tools and commands, whereas Solidworks has an almost infinite number of devices.

  1. Photorealistic Illustrations

SketchUp and Solidworks can use plugins to create stunning photorealistic renderings. There are cloud-based rendering services for both SketchUp and SolidWorks that will significantly reduce the time required for these powerful renderings. This frees up space on your computer and saves you time.

SketchUp vs SolidWorks: Differences in Functions and Features

  1. Applications

Hobbyists are familiar with Sketchup, which allows them to create 3D modeling projects. But this 3D program is also perfectly adequate for architecture and interior design. Solidworks has a lot of options for architectural projects. Because the tools and software are more advanced and aimed at experienced users, they can be used in more specific industries such as mechanical, electrical, and plumbing.

  1. Interface

Sketchup appears easier to learn and more intuitive, resulting in a shorter learning curve. Solidworks is more complex, and you will need some knowledge of 3D modeling to use it. If you’re new to CAD software, the number of features in this program may be overwhelming, whereas Sketchup is far more straightforward.

  1. Features

Sketchup is expanding its capabilities with add-ons and plugins. Add to that the 2D drawing options and the significant benefit of the 3D warehouse, where anyone can upload Sketchup models. This feature gets a lot of attention from those creating interior designs. 

Solidwork provides advanced toolsets for 2D and 3D modeling and tools for easier collaboration. Furthermore, switching between 2D and 3D is more fluid and straightforward than SketchUp. Solidwork can be used for mesh, solid, surface-modeling and 3D rendering.

SketchUp vs SolidWorks: Pros and Cons

SketchUp is regarded as one of the most accessible CAD programs to learn, but it is not without criticism from users. Surprisingly, while it is said to be simple, the actual functionality is complex. SketchUp may be perceived as clumsy or lacking in the finesse of other CAD software. SketchUp may not be the best choice for more complex projects.

Solidworks’ criticisms are similar to those leveled at most CAD software in that it can be resource-intensive and slow. Furthermore, it may be more expensive than competing products. While it excels in electrical applications, it may not be suitable for industries such as aerospace and automotive.

SketchUp vs SolidWorks: Areas of application or specific users

SketchUp is designed for a different purpose than Solidworks, so there are some things that Solidworks cannot do. These features are classified as building analytics and are similar to those in a BIM (Building Information Management) system.

When it comes to building design, certain factors influence HVAC functionality. How big are the rooms? How far must the ducts travel from the AC unit? How much light does each room get compared to the others? How long will it take to cool the building in the summer heat? What kind of weather do you get where you live? HVAC is affected by all of these factors. The HVAC Analytics tool in SketchUp can assist in answering these questions.

The extensive capabilities of SolidWorks cover all aspects of the product development process, making it useful in a variety of industries and professions. SolidWorks would be highly beneficial to any industry that requires manufacturing or product creation. Software is widely used in many industries, including manufacturing, aerospace, automotive, robotics, construction, oil and gas, agriculture, and many others. Electrical engineers and technicians also use SolidWorks to design and analyze complex electrical systems.


In this comparison of SketchUp vs SolidWorks, each CAD program has advantages and disadvantages. In my opinion, SketchUp is easier to use but has a lower range of features. SolidWorks, on the other hand, is very similar but could use a few tweaks to make the program easier to use and understand, but it has a more extensive feature set than SketchUp.