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SketchUp 2020.2 New Features Update!

After introducing SketchUp 2020 in January and sharpening it in April, we’re pleased to announce an August update as well. These enhancements focus in on a few long-standing user requests. Let’s take a closer look.

Linear inference toggles for the Line tool in SketchUp

SketchUp inferencing comes in all shapes and sizes. One of the most distinct is the linear inferencing that allows you to snap or lock to the red, green, and blue axes. Linear inferencing makes SketchUp work, but it can also get in the way. For instance, if you are working with very small spaces or tracing images, we’ve heard from you that it would be helpful for inferencing to get out of the way.
To address this, the Line tool now features a modifier key [(ALT) on Win and (CMD) on Mac] to toggle linear inferencing on and off, so you can draw edges without being snapped to an inference. You can turn off all inferences, or leave only parallel and perpendicular inferencing on. Of course, you can still jump to a specific inference — red, green, blue, or magenta — using the arrow keys.

Weld Edges in SketchUp

We added ‘Weld Edges’ to SketchUp’s native tools. This means you can join edges and arcs into a single polyline without installing an extension. If you haven’t used a weld extension, we recommend starting to weld edges for any face where you’d like a smooth push/pull extrusion. Select the edges you want to join, right-click and select Weld Edges.

Control line width, colour, and pattern by tag in LayOut

Over the years, we’ve learned a lot about how LayOut users stacked viewports to create incredible 2D drawings. The biggest lesson: it would be great if you didn’t have to stack performance-impacting viewports to get drawings to look the way you want.
We’re happy to share that you can now control the line style of SketchUp tags in LayOut. Before this update, rendering a plan view with different line weights meant hiding a bunch of geometry, creating different scenes, and stacking viewports. Now, you can adjust the edge width, colour, dash pattern, and dash scale in one viewport by assigning and styling tags.

Whether you need control of line styles for architectural drawings, production drawings, and details, or general illustration, we’d love to hear your impressions… or better yet, see your work. Share some examples of the drawings you create (or would like to make) in SketchUp and LayOut using the hashtag #LearnLayOut 

Smoother operations in larger LayOut documents

Good LayOut documents are an arrangement of viewports, images, vector graphics, and labels. As pages get complex and documents get longer, operating on selections gets slower. To help speed up larger files, we’re excited to share changes to how the move, copy, and scale operations work. Now, LayOut previews these transformations instead of drawing them in real-time as you work with a selection. When you complete a move, copy, or scale operation, LayOut then redraws your action. This is a subtle change, but it brings a new feel and a lot more efficiency to LayOut.

Introducing Nearmap: Add some fresh, high-res details to your 3D designs

Is the base imagery in Add Location not quite what you’re looking for? 🥁 Drum roll please…we are excited to announce high-res imagery in Add Location (provided by Nearmap)! In addition to our base imagery offering, we are thrilled to offer SketchUp users clearer, fresher aerial imagery to include in your SketchUp models! With 8x more data than our standard imagery, you can zoom in and get those higher resolutions you need to make those real projects… well… real. Talk about being able to visualize the little details! Did we mention these are the most up-to-date aerial maps available? The data is never older than 12 months. So you never have to worry about outdated information. We got your [design] back!
See the difference: Out-of-the-box satellite imagery from Digital Globe compared to high-resolution imagery from Nearmap

How can I get high-resolution imagery?

Great question. Nearmap will be available to purchase on an as-needed basis for subscription holders (Pro and Studio) as well as for our Classic license holders. You can pull the data directly into SketchUp and checkout right there. Buy only what you need, without leaving your workflow.

How to get started?

It’s easy to get started and flexible enough to fit in your workflow. To use Nearmap tiles, just follow these simple steps:

  1. If you don’t have access to the latest version of SketchUp, upgrade to version 2020.2

  2. Click on File > Geo-Location > Add Location. We’ve added coverage polygons to show where high res imagery is available. Psst: make sure High Res Coverage is on under ‘Map Type’, and then zoom in to a region that has high res coverage.

  3. Next, click ‘Select Region’ and choose Nearmap as your provider. Now you can adjust the import level to choose your resolution. Once you’ve selected your region and import level, you will see the cost of those tiles via the menu. 

Note: you won’t be able to preview Nearmap tiles in the map view, but you will notice a slight white overlay that changes to represent the tiles at your selected import level. This also shows which tile can be previewed.

Before you commit to purchasing, you’ll be able to preview single imagery tiles by clicking the preview button. This is a “pay as you go” style product so you can purchase what you want when you want it — which makes things easy! Nearmap is roughly $0.04 per tile (tiles are 256×256 pixel images) and is subject to a 200 tile minimum.

Currently, this imagery is available for all major cities and suburbs in the U.S., Canada, Australia, and New Zealand. SketchUp & Nearmap are constantly expanding and updating aerial maps — surveying 330,000+ square miles each year! Whoa, that’s a lot of data.

Try out Nearmap on your next project and see the [high resolution] difference in your urban planning or landscape architecture projects. After all, real projects require real-world imagery.

Happy SketchUpping!

Ready to Try? Download the 2020.2 update now

See for yourself how these updates can enhance your professional workflows.

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