Grand Designs 3D Renovation & Interior video review



Read the full Grand Designs 3D Renovation & Interior review

Budding self-builders rejoice. For £50 you can have a reasonably powerful and relatively easy to use CAD package with which to design your latest creation. From 2D layout to fully rendered 3D model and architect's drawings you can plan and execute the vast majority of most modest building and design work with one program. Just don't expect much from the Grand Designs tie-in.

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April 22, 2009, 5:35 am

Hmm, interesting. Personally, I don't see much use for this to the average DIYer (well, at least not this version). Surely it'd much easier - not to mention cheaper - to jot a few things down on some paper? If you want something that dresses it up and renders fancy lighting (not that it looks particularly fancy anyway) then you might as well play The Sims. The whole thing stinks of a rushed, half-assed commercial cash-in.

Having said that, it does sound like the full version would be of benefit to more serious types, not that I can speak from any experience.


April 22, 2009, 5:43 am

Could it be, the rare software review?

You guys really need to review more software!


April 22, 2009, 2:26 pm

@smc8788, I'm not sure it might be useful, if you have a designers head but are not a trained housing designer, then passing your creations over to him to finish to make sure it has all current housing regulations etc, could save a lot of time & money.


April 22, 2009, 2:38 pm

Precisely, Keith. Being able to flesh out your ideas and demonstrate them, to an architect or builder or just to yourself so you can fully visualise them, is pretty invaluable.


April 22, 2009, 3:00 pm

Could I use this version to design my living room : ie render what it would look like to have a 42" plasma on a pull out wall mount, and larger 5.1 speakers but 'hidden' by sitting on purpose made bookshelves, and a cabinet designed to house/hide all my AV gear?

If I could show my wife a convincing rendered mock-up I could speed this project along, and start ordering some decent AV kit!


April 22, 2009, 3:09 pm

Given that you see so many Macs in Grand Designs, its very disappointing that they didn't go for a Mac version of this or some similar software. At best it seems a poorly considered cash-in, when people can get the free version of SketchUp for both platforms. As someone who runs an architectural practice, I welcome Clients giving me 3d sketches - the rest I'd rather sort myself rather than having to undo what they think they've done - building structures and building regulations are complicated - buying a piece of software doesn't overcome that!


April 22, 2009, 3:23 pm

Aye, SketchUp is a brilliant piece of free software. I use it on occasion for a bit of case modding.

I suppose I can see the use in throwing down some ideas to see what they might look like, but I doubt its usefulness as a serious design tool. I'm sure there must be better options out there for that kind of thing; this just seems like a highly simplified piece of software with rather limited options for people that don't want to pay out for a fully fledged design program. But then I could be wrong - I haven't even used it after all!


January 15, 2011, 5:06 pm

Agree with the above. I am a qualified Architect and yes I can see how the client could find this piece of software useful in generating initial designs to begin to understand the spaces but I would say that any building project so much more involved than a piece of 'Grand Designs' software. Relying too heavily on something like this to see you though the statutory regulations and contractual issues is a real danger without professional expertise.

Also agree that SketchUp would be a much better option (and free)for any budding home-builder. This is a great piece of software, again with its own limitations, and I would imagine from reading this review give the user a greater freedom to design.

rapid prototype

February 17, 2014, 6:49 pm

Thanks for sharing...

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