Rendering Speed

How can I improve KeyShot's Rendering Speed?


Your computer's CPU is what powers KeyShot's render engine. Computers with higher core counts allow KeyShot to render more tiles per second. This leads to shorter render times.

Besides CPU cores, the only other thing that affects render speed is image quality. Image quality, in turn depends on the image's resolution and the output settings used to render the image.

How to Improve KeyShot's Render Speed:

1. Reduce your output resolution.
To change your output resolution go to Render -> Render -> Output.

2. Use the Basic preset for real-time lighting.
In KeyShot 6 and later, you may find this lighting preset under Project -> Lighting. This preset provides simple, direct lighting with shadows, which is best for basic scenes and fast performance. Use basic lighting when rendering simple models illuminated by the environment.

For more information about the real-time lighting settings, click here.

3. Use a different render quality setting: Maximum Samples, Maximum Time, or Advanced Control

Maximum Samples
Maximum Samples is one of the easiest rendering methods as it uses a single Samples setting to determine image quality. To find the right number of samples, you can perform the following steps:

1. Open your scene and press the H key to reveal the heads-up display (HUD).
2. Go to Project  > Image tab and enable Region (Pro only).
3. Adjust the region marquee to focus on a small area on your model. 
4. Let your image res up without disturbing the realtime window.
5. Once your region looks as desired, make a note of the Samples count in the HUD.

Use the HUD setting in your final output (for Maximum Samples only). If your version of KeyShot does not include Region rendering, you may instead zoom into an area of your model and reduce your real-time resolution.

These quick tip videos walk you trough the process outlined above:

Quick Tip: Using Region Rendering
Quick Tip: Output Render Samples

Maximum Time
You can always render with Maximum Time.  Maximum Time will provide you with the best possible image in the amount of time that you specify.  The beauty of using Maximum Time is that you can always click Stop and Save (the image) before time is up if all looks as expected.

Advanced Control
This is a custom render mode that allows you to control all quality settings. Advanced Control will sometimes resolve grainy materials at a lower Sample count. Use Advanced Control if Maximum Samples is not giving you the desired results after 500 samples.

For best result, you may leave all settings at their default values and just modify the Samples count. Settings like Shadow and Ray Bounces are only relevant in certain situations. For more information about the advanced control render settings click here.

How to find the right number of Samples:

1. The rule of thumb is to start with 32 Samples.
2. Render a test image at lower resolution (say, 800x800).
3. If your low-resolution image looks good, then you can render at the desired resolution with 32 Samples.
4. Otherwise, double the number of samples (64 Samples) and test again.

Repeat this process until you achieve the desired output.

4. Increase your CPU power with KeyShot Network Rendering.
For more information about KeyShot Network Rendering, please go to our product page or consult the Network Rendering Manual.  You may also contact our sales department at

5. Third Party Render Farms.
If you are unable to modify your scene or your hardware setup, you have the option to send your scene to a third party for rendering. Companies such as 3D Off the Page and RevUp Render have their own KeyShot Network Rendering farm and offer such services.

If you are still experiencing slow performance, please contact us at