SketchUp 2016 is here!

There are many improvements in SketchUp 2016, and specifically SketchUp Pro 2016. Layout improvements see vastly improved layer handling and now serious file export handling – making those awesome presentations now email-able. Read below for more detail or contact us at CAD Software Direct if you want to get your copy of Sketchup Pro 2016.

Trimble Connect direct integration in SketchUp
Integration of Trimble Connect directly into SketchUp. Trimble Connect is the Trimble Buildings online collaboration platform. Think of it like a private 3D Warehouse, just for building project assets. Upload SKP’s, DWG’s, DXF’s, IFC’s PDF’s and share with team members. Trimble Connect is built off the GTeam platform, meaning that it enables sharing, reviewing and commenting in a web browser.

Reload 3D Warehouse models
In SketchUp 2016, a right-click on a component gives you the opportunity to reload (or swap out) a new component directly from 3D Warehouse. This action will reload every instance of that component in your model (similar to the same action in the Components Browser), so it’s a helpful method for working with proxy models. And if your component was downloaded from 3D Warehouse, you can also use the context-click to quickly access its 3DWH details page.

LayOut cloud references
With this release, LayOut’s reference objects are now web friendly. That means your LayOut projects can reference and update files that are stored and synced with services like Dropbox, Google Drive, and Trimble Connect Sync. When you reference a file from any of these services (.skp or otherwise), LayOut will notify you when an update is available for your ‘web reference.’ Say goodbye to missing references when different people are working on the same .layout document within a cloud sync folder that also contains the referenced files.

Enhanced Inferencing and Tool Improvements
Learning and utilising SketchUp’s inference engine makes for fast and precise modeling. In this release, the process has been improved and enhanced. This improvement is the result of many smaller tweaks and adjustments:

Off-axis inferences: Improved parallel and perpendicular inference display along with the ability to force the last referenced edge or plane (depending on tool) with the down arrow. This is particularly handy for extending edges on off-axis planes. (Keep an eye out for the new “Extend Edge” tooltip with purple highlighting). The up arrow is now the default locking mechanism for the blue axis.

Expanded Arrow Key locking: More tools now allow use of arrow keys to quickly lock to an axis. Additionally, you can now lock normals or rotation axis prior to first click for tools that require a rotation handle, including Arc/Pie, Rotated Rectangle, Rotation, Protractor, Polygon and Circle.

Arc/circle: SketchUp will now easily inference circle and arc center-points. SketchUp’s ability to inference arc segment endpoints has also been improved. Furthermore, you can now change the number of segments using new modifier keys (check out the status bar right after you’ve drawn an arc/circle).

Axes tool flexibility: A small but useful change: when selecting new axes, you can now toggle through the exact axes you’d like to pick first using the Alt (PC)/Command (Mac) modifier.

Inference hidden section planes: SketchUp will now recognize intersection points with hidden section planes. This functionality extends to snapping to elements of a SketchUp model in LayOut too; you’ll notice a big improvement when dimensioning models with section planes..

Miscellaneous improvements: There have also been additional improvements to the Move, Protractor, Offset, and Rotate tools.


Customisable Utility Trays on Windows

On Windows machines, SketchUp’s floating utility dialogs (Styles, Scenes, Components, etc.) have been rebuilt so that they neatly stack inside customisable, completely collapsible trays. This functionality also allows you to group dialogue boxes that you may often use at the same time, and is incredibly useful for hiding, browsing, and revealing your most-used utilities.

Refreshed Textures
SketchUp default material libraries have been reworked, adding contemporary textures and entirely new categories.

Small Dimensions
New ‘small dimension’ leaders in Layout ensure that text never interferes with arrows or extension lines, and that your dimensions always have room to stretch out when you’re working in confined spaces. When LayOut detects that your text strings are going to interfere with dimension arrows or extension lines, it will automatically pop-out your strings using a leader, which is customisable.

LayOut Layer Improvements
There have been many improvements throughout LayOut’s layers. Whether you’re grouping objects across layers, drawing objects on shared layers, or unearthing the bottom of a stacked viewport, the new layers are just much better.

Multi-Layer Groups: Entities on different layers can now be grouped together.

Maintaining Layers During Copy/Paste: Copy/pasting entities now respects the layer assignments of the original entity. This should make it easier to copy/paste a SketchUp viewport (along with any grouped dimensions and labels) from one page to another and maintain layer assignments.

‘Move to’ layer on right-click: You can now move entities between layers with a right-click. Use the new ‘Move to’ command, and then select from all unlocked layers.

Differentiating between shared/non-shared layers: In order to help users understand when they are creating or manipulating entities on a shared layer, new highlighting displays a different colour (red) when you are drawing or selecting elements on a shared layer. (You can customise this highlighting in LayOut Preferences > General).

Layer visibility maintained on new pages: If a layer is hidden on the current page, it will also be hidden on a newly added page.


Other improvements

Optimised PDF Export from LayOut
You can now choose to compress JPEG’s in your LayOut files when exporting PDF’s. Since every raster or hybrid rendered .skp viewport has a JPEG image, this leads to drastically smaller PDF exports from LayOut that still have a very high output resolution, but are much easier to share with others. Now file size savings of up to 80% are possible, depending upon compression settings.

Extension Security and Moderation
In SketchUp 2016, users can control which extensions to load based on their security level. There are three extension security options to choose from (see below) and they are accessible via the Extensions panel in Preferences dialog:

Off: SketchUp will load any extension (This is how previous versions work).

Approve Mode: Users will be prompted to load extension that have not been certified by SketchUp.

Secure Mode: Only extensions that have been certified by SketchUp will load.

High DPI toolbar icons, cursors, graphics
All SketchUp, LayOut, and Style Builder toolbar icons are now rendered from vector graphics. This means they will scale well for anyone’s resolution settings, with a much cleaner look and better sized icons on High DPI screens in particular.

Support for El Capitan and Windows 10
SketchUp 2016 is fully compatible with Apple’s El Capitan and Microsoft’s Windows 10.