3D Rendering and How to Optimize Your Approach for Maximum Speed
3D Rendering and How to Optimize Your Approach for Maximum Speed

We’ve witnessed countless projects and situations where artists weren’t aware of the importance of time. They didn’t optimize their projects for rendering and ended up with unnecessary size on a hard disk, extremely high RAM usage, and longer render times, but, more importantly, unsatisfied clients.

From our long years of experience with working on hundreds and thousands of projects, we can safely say it is possible to identify specific threads and themes common to the process of 3D rendering.

Artists are bound to cross paths with some common issues with rendering, but the most important thing is these issues can be solved quickly. That’s the reason why we decided to come with this short guide. We want to help artists and rendering professionals address these common issues by getting insight into new techniques to help achieve more stable, optimized, and faster rendering.

If your rendering is taking forever, there are things you can do and tweaks you can apply to speed up 3D rendering cycles. Rendering includes many features and settings that can be optimized to speed up your render time. Some of these settings are minor, meaning they won’t affect the quality of your model, while others might affect the quality.

We’re going to mention the importance of optimizing render speed, how it benefits both artists and clients, and share the best optimization tips that can help your speed up your rendering and deliver the wanted results on time.

Why Is This Important?

Both rendering professionals and clients benefit from timely delivery. From an artist’s perspective, decreasing the render time makes it easier to work with the models. They can mention decreased render times to boost the interest of potential customers.

In the world of 3D rendering, construction, and architecture, respecting deadlines is equally important for clients, team leaders, and 3D artists. They are all concerned about whether they’ll be able to respect deadlines.

If 3D renderings aren’t done in time and according to the schedule, this negligence can cause reputational losses, negative feedback, loss of clients, lucrative business opportunities, etc. However you take it, things don’t look good. That’s why speeding up your rendering process affects everyone involved in a project.

In business, deadlines are the ultimate standard, and they affect everything and everyone involved. If you don’t know how to handle your due date issues, you will have to go through many awkward situations with other parties, work under pressure to meet the client’s requirements, etc.

Aside from these troubles, working under pressure will significantly decrease the quality of your work. If you’re new to the 3D rendering market, you should know it is overwhelmed with professionals.

Clients are used to these professionals going to incredible lengths to meet their requirements, but, more importantly, respect the deadlines. If you’re late with the expected works, that simply won’t be acceptable.

Who Benefits the Most from This Guide?

This guide aims to help 3D artists who are aware of the importance of time in their business niche and have had their fair share of unpleasant experiences and awkward situations. Its main benefit is to allow them to learn how to speed up their work and make it more cost-efficient.

Untimely rendering isn’t only inefficient regarding time, but resources too. Too much time, high resources usage, and working under pressure are all tremendous obstacles that keep you from becoming a professional 3D rendering artist.

Fortunately, our guide offers insight into great and useful optimization techniques that can help you speed up your render times and make your clients happy. The main goal is to reduce both RAM usage and render time.

By doing so, you won’t be pressured to speed up your work and sacrifice quality. Also, you will also have more time to get creative with your ideas while saving both time and money and having more satisfied clients.

Being able to deliver the wanted results quickly and exceed your clients’ expectations is the only way to get ahead of the competition curve and build a reputation for yourself.

10 Optimization Tips to Speed Up Your Rendering

Here are the top ten optimization tips to speed up your rendering if we consider everything mentioned above.

1.     Adjust the render region size

The easiest trick on our list is that adjusting the render region size is one of the most effective ways to significantly save render time. Some rendering tools, like 3ds Max, gain the most optimization for this particular setting.

Certain render regions tend to be too large, which means the render takes much longer. By changing the render output to a lower setting, you won’t be tampering with the render region while achieving a significant decrease in the time it takes for the render to finish.

2.     Upgrade your RAM

You can’t render like a professional if you don’t have enough resources to support your efforts. Your device needs RAM to be able to finish rendering promptly. If your device is too slow, it’s time to consider upgrading your random access memory.

RAM is a fast type of computer memory where you can temporarily store any type of data your system needs at the moment or will need some time in the future. You can think of RAM as a decompression chamber or holding cell for your rendering software’s necessary data.

If you don’t have enough RAM or if your memory doesn’t have sufficient capacity, it will slow down your render time. To make sure your device can render things at the highest speeds, just get a RAM upgrade, and you’ll notice a significant difference.

And while you’re swapping out your RAM, you should also consider investing in a better rendering software tool. In the majority of cases, the root of the problem with rendering time was the software tool.

Nowadays, there are so many great software programs for rendering to choose from. Find the one that works according to your exact needs and enjoy your render without any delays.

3.     Explore different rendering settings

Each rendering software tool comes with a wide range of different custom settings. Most artists don’t bother much with these settings, but that is a huge mistake. Adjusting just a few of these settings can help you speed up the rendering process significantly.

Try using a different codec to make your model smoother, explore different layers, and try to trim them, reduce pre-comps to additionally optimize your model for rendering, etc. Regardless of how small or pointless a change seems to you, every action matters when it comes to rendering. If any of the settings can help you save some time, you should consider it.

4.     Get a top-quality graphics card!

Just like with RAM, you should do the same with your graphics card. Even though this can turn out to be quite an expensive move, it can do wonders for your rendering time. Since most rendering software relies on your GPUs or graphics processing units, you’ll need sufficient GPUs to handle rendering to form the user interface.

If you have an aging graphics card, it won’t do well with such an overwhelming process as rendering. So, it may be time to consider an upgrade. An additional professional tip would also be to get a solid-state drive or SSD.

They are much superior to regular hard disk drives, but the most significant benefits of using SSDs relate to:

●        Lower energy consumption and power usage

●        Greater reliability

●        Faster access times

If you want to significantly speed things up, getting an SSD is definitely worth the trouble.

5.     Reduce polycount in your scene

The higher the polycount, the bigger the size of the rendering file. Big files need more RAM to be rendered, which means they require more time to be rendered. To reduce the polycount in your scene, you can do the following:

●        Check the polycount;

●        Locate heavy models;

●        Remove any unnecessary polycounts and delete all hidden objects;

●        Replace all copies of the rendering objects with instances to reduce the amount of RAM;

●        Optimize models based on their visibility and distance;

●        Use your rendering program’s optimizing modifiers;

●        Replace models and shaders with pre-rendered planes with optimized textures;

●        Collapse models you don’t need to reduce your scene size on HDD;

6.     Use stock textures and 3D models!

Regardless of you being a team leader or a 3D artist, you can significantly speed up your rendering using stock textures and 3D models. There is absolutely no reason to make all of the textures and 3D models from scratch when you can use any sample of both 3D models and textures, which are already created.

Choose your stock 3D models from a range of:

●        Bathroom fixtures and accessories

●        Light fixtures

●        Cars

●        Exterior and interior furniture

●        Flowers, trees, and plants

In case your client requires some specific details regarding accessories, furniture, and so on, there are many 3D stock platforms where you can either buy or download 3D models. The same goes for textures. Since you’ll need seamless textures, you can find textures of various materials by reviewing stock platforms.

7.     Use 2D or 3D CAD files!

If your clients can provide CAD files, that can significantly reduce the time it takes to make 3D renderings. 3D CAD files, such as 3D AutoCAD, Revit, ArchiCAD, or Solid Works, allow you to import objects in 3D rendering applications instead of creating them from scratch.

On the other hand, you can also use splines from 2D files, such as Adobe Illustrator or 2D AutoCAD drawings, import them in 3D rendering applications, and save some time.

8.     Use layers and groups to organize objects!

If you ever worked on complicated projects, you know how hard it is to manage vast amounts of objects. Fortunately, top-class 3D rendering applications have features, settings, and tools that allow artists to organize objects to manage them in a much easier manner.

Most 3D artists use groups to organize objects. Still, it’s much easier to scale, rotate, move, and make all other necessary manipulations with an entire object than with details that object consists of.

Suppose you’re required to work with objects from different categories. In that case, you can place them in different layers in your 3D rendering scene and quickly turn on and off, or hide and unhide all objects in a chosen layer, which significantly cuts down rendering time.

9.     Get rid of the details you don’t need

To save even more time with your rendering, skip all unnecessary, non-important details during the 3D modeling phase to enhance the economy of your project. In some situations, projects don’t call for all objects to be represented in full complexity, so you don’t have to spend time making 3D models of those objects.

10.Keep effective communication with your clients!

The last tip we can give you is less technical, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t important. Do everything you can to keep good relationships and effective communication with your clients. This can help you save time, avoid tons of unnecessary problems, and speed up your rendering.

What Bad Rendering Habits Need to Go?

Now that you know how to save some time on your 3D rendering, let’s go through some of the bad rendering habits that need go:

●        High RAM usage – aside from causing your machine to render slower, high RAM usage can also cause your scene to crash, which is a serious time-related problem.

●        Overblown scenes – using too many effects and overblown scene settings such as sampling, quality, and polycount, may prolong the render times.

●        Long loading times – huge project files take much longer to load, causing longer render times.


We sincerely hope this guide was helpful to you and that you will manage to reduce your render times to respect the deadlines. Since you know how important deadlines are in your line of work, follow these instructions and do some additional research on the things you can do to speed up your rendering even more.

However, keep in mind that you shouldn’t focus solely on speeding up the process, as rushing things is rarely a good thing. Find the ultimate solution that works for both you and your clients and stick to it.