Live Interior 3D Pro

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CNET Editors' Rating 4.0 stars


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  • 4.0 stars

    "Best home design software I've used"

    February 3, 2010  |   By shorst--2008


    -Doesn't crash
    - Great integration with Google Warehouse
    - Easy and intuitive
    - Good surfaces and textures
    - Good lighting controls


    - No library for cabinets -- big drawback for kitchens and baths
    - Render quality is good, but not really photo


    I've tried half a dozen home design programs (Mac and PC) over the past decade. Most were wastes of money -- either they crashed every ten minutes, or lacked features, or required too much building.

    This is the first and only program that I've used that I've been really happy with. It is only for interiors (no landscaping), but that is what I bought it for. It is extremely intuitive to use, and powerful and flexible. In an afternoon, I've imported a number of fixtures from Google Warehouse with no problem, edited one of them in Google Sketchup, and edited a number of things within the program for size or texture.

    I'm particularly surprised by the ease with which I can customize lighting in lighting fixtures and view the room in different lightings. Nice feature!

    The rendering is less than photo quality (or else I have not found the highest-quality rendering), but is better than the quality of rendering in other programs that I've been able to use in real time. You wouldn't mistake it for a photo, but it is definitely good enough to give a sense of what the room would look like.

    Perhaps the most impressive thing about it is the ability to import samples of tiles and surfaces and incorporate them into a room. I put samples of my tiles and bath surround, and some pictures and ornaments, into my room, using various tools (esp. the Pictures feature). I would have no idea how to even attempt this in other programs I have spent 100x the hours on, and 2/3 of it looks great. (I'm guessing the other 1/3 would too once I learn how to do it right.) runs natively on Mac. I've always been perplexed that most home design programs were PC-only. I keep a PC for a couple of programs that require it and don't run well on the emulator. I've used this one for half a day on the Mac -- had a decent rendering in the first hour or two!! -- without a crash. I don't think any of my PC programs run that long without a crash...

    I give this program 4 stars and not 5 because there are stlll features to add. But I would not give any other program I have tried in this category more than 2.5. Really, I am very pleased and impressed.

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