The Cost of 3d Modelling software

the cost of 3d modelling

cost of 3d modellingI’ve been modelling with 3d modelling software for many years, but it wasn’t until I graduated college and started doing freelance work that I realized the steep costs that go along with 3d modelling software.  As I continue to push forward with my freelance and professional careers, purchasing 3d software is something that comes up more often.  As a way to help myself start to sift through the prices I made this price comparison chart.

The chart features some of the most popular 3d modelling software: Sketchup Make, blender, Sketchup Pro, Formz, Rhinoceros 3d, Inventor, 3ds Max, Maya, Solidworks, Autocad, Archicad, and Revit Architecture.

Aside from the chart serving as a visual guide to 3d modelling software costs, putting this together certainly reaffirms my mission to continue to build the Designer Hack sketchup tutorial library.

I want to make sure that the price of design software doesn’t hold you back from creating amazing content and changing the face of design.  Sketchup has allowed the design community to do so much because of it’s reasonable price tag.  I will continue to champion the software until that is no longer true.

I’ll be going Pro soon.

What are your thoughts?  Do you think the pricetags here are justified?  Is Sketchup low-balling itself?


  1. Tony Gushanas May 20, 2015 at 6:15 am #

    Great insight Robin!

  2. DesignerHacks June 17, 2014 at 9:46 pm #

    Robin, this is certainly true. Thanks for sharing your valuable insight with the design nation.

  3. Robin de Jongh June 16, 2014 at 10:46 am #

    Thanks for sharing this! The big difference between the low cost software ($1000 or less) and the high cost software ($3k+) is actually more to do with support, documentation and training than the capabilities of the software. The $3k+ group are all sold through resellers that offer the full support infrastructure that you need if your software is “mission critical”. SketchUp Pro is starting to push the envelope of capabilities toward the higher end of the market but it will only really get there if Trimble decides to fully support it. If a company needs to pay $40k per employee per year then the difference between a $0.5k SketchUp license and a $4k archicad license becomes negligible.

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