What’s new in Shaderlight 2021 (v9.0)

The latest release of Shaderlight has full support for the latest release of SketchUp and includes some new additions to improve your workflow when rendering with Shaderlight.

What can you expect to see when you upgrade to this release?

  • SketchUp 2021 support

Shaderlight supports the 2021 release of SketchUp.

  • Portal light updates

We've made some important improvements to Shaderlight's portal light feature that will improve quality and accuracy when using portal lights.

We're constantly adding to the feature set of Shaderlight so if you've not upgraded for a while, here's a reminder of some recent updates to Shaderlight.

  • Light Emitting material

Combining the features of the old Self Illuminating material type and an associated area light and both visibly glows and emits light that illuminates other surfaces, making it much easier to achieve the desired lighting result.  


  • Colour picker for lights

You can now specify the colour of Shaderlight lights by correlated colour temperature, making it easier to render real-world light fixtures that are specified by colour temperature.

  • White balance setting

A new White Balance control allows you to adjust the white point of renders by allowing the white point to be specified and produce images without strong colour tints.

  • Shaderlight light tool remembers most recently selected light

To make it easier to create lights based on existing lights in a model, the Shaderlight light placement tool now consistently uses the settings of the most recently selected light.

  • Transparent objects can now remain transparent in chalk renders

In previous releases, the ‘chalk’ render mode would make all objects appear white and opaque. In this release, there is a new ‘Transparent glass’ option when chalk mode is active, which makes most transparent objects render in their non-chalk mode. This can make form and massing studies more intuitive when large areas of transparency are used.

  • Shaderlight’s render settings can now be saved independently for each SketchUp scene

The Shaderlight Render Settings dialog now has an option to save the current settings with the active SketchUp scene, making it possible to save different settings for all or some of the scenes in a model.

  • Shaderlight now prevents your computer from entering idle sleep mode while rendering

If a long-running render has been started, it will no longer be interrupted by the computer entering idle sleep mode. Idle sleep is re-enabled after the render completes and the computer can always be forced to sleep manually.

  • Shaderlight now suspends App Nap for the plugin while rendering on macOS

On macOS, the operating system can put a process into ‘App Nap’ if none of its windows are currently visible. This drastically reduces the amount of CPU time it receives and, in Shaderlight’s case, effectively pauses rendering if you switch to another program and cover up the Shaderlight render window. Shaderlight will now ask the operating system not to put it into App Nap while a render is in progress, to ensure that the render completes in a reasonable time.

  • Addition of a 4K UHD output resolution preset

This increasingly common resolution is now easier to select.

  • The Shaderlight Message window has been tweaked so that it remains legible when macOS’s dark mode is in effect

The previous release of Shaderlight introduced a warning if you attempt to close the Shaderlight render window while a render is underway, to help prevent unintended loss of progress. This release extends that warning to the use of the ‘Quit Shaderlight’ menu option.

Start rendering with Shaderlight 2020

A FREE 14 day trial of Shaderlight 2020 is available to download here

Buy Shaderlight

Shaderlight 2020 is now available to buy from our website and our worldwide network of reseller partners