Is SolidWorks Using My Graphics Card?

Is SolidWorks Using My Graphics Card?

If you are using SolidWorks for 3D modeling and design, you may be wondering whether the software is utilizing your graphics card to its full potential. The graphics card, also known as the GPU (Graphics Processing Unit), plays a crucial role in providing smooth and efficient performance while working with complex 3D models. In this article, we will explore how to check if SolidWorks is using your graphics card and how to optimize its usage for better performance.

Checking Graphics Card Usage in SolidWorks

To determine if SolidWorks is utilizing your graphics card, follow these steps:

  1. Open SolidWorks: Launch the SolidWorks software on your computer.
  2. Select Options: Go to the “Tools” menu and select “Options. “
  3. Access System Options: In the Options dialog box, click on “System Options” in the left-hand pane.
  4. Select Performance: Under System Options, click on “Performance.

  5. Check Graphics Card Usage: In the Performance tab, you will find a checkbox labeled “Use Software OpenGL.” If this option is checked, it means that SolidWorks is not currently using your graphics card.

To ensure that SolidWorks uses your graphics card, make sure the “Use Software OpenGL” option is unchecked. Enabling hardware acceleration allows SolidWorks to tap into the power of your GPU for improved rendering speeds and smoother modeling experience.

Optimizing Graphics Card Settings for SolidWorks

In addition to checking if SolidWorks is using your graphics card, optimizing its settings can further enhance performance. Here are a few tips:

Update Graphics Card Drivers

Regularly updating your graphics card drivers ensures that you have the latest performance optimizations and bug fixes. Visit the website of your graphics card manufacturer (such as NVIDIA or AMD) to download and install the latest drivers for your specific GPU model.

Adjust SolidWorks Performance Options

Open the “Performance” tab in the SolidWorks Options dialog box. Here, you can fine-tune several settings to optimize your graphics card usage:

  • Level of Detail (LOD): Adjusting LOD settings can significantly improve performance by reducing the complexity of displayed models when zooming or rotating.
  • Enable RealView Graphics: RealView Graphics provides realistic lighting and shading effects. However, enabling this feature may require a compatible graphics card and may impact performance on older or lower-end GPUs.
  • Configure Anti-Aliasing: Anti-aliasing smooths jagged edges in images but can increase GPU load. Experiment with different anti-aliasing settings based on your hardware capabilities and preferences.


In conclusion, ensuring that SolidWorks is using your graphics card is crucial for optimal performance while working with complex 3D models. By following the steps outlined above, you can verify if SolidWorks is leveraging your GPU and make necessary adjustments to enhance its utilization.

Remember to keep your graphics card drivers up to date and fine-tune SolidWorks’ performance options to maximize efficiency. With these measures in place, you can enjoy a smoother and more productive experience with SolidWorks.