After Effects Rendering Slow [Things To Try + Upgrades]

Is your After Effects rendering slow?

There are 4 possible reasons:

  • Complex project files with unoptimized elements
  • Media file too big or unoptimized for 100% preview
  • Rendering incorrect timeline
  • Your computer needs upgrades

Things To Try

Lower Resolution While Previewing 

after effect rendering resolution scale

Go to the composition window on the bottom left, and change from full to third or quarter for faster previewing performance.

Freeze The Rotoscoping

after effect rotoscoping freezing

After Effects' auto rotoscoping feature is an amazing tool for artists to get complex shots done quickly. Once the rotoscoping is completed, be sure to freeze all the frames to create a cache for playback. 

If you don't do this, every frame is being computed, which slows down the playback rendering performance.

Scene Too Complex

complex after effects scene

As the creator adds more elements and complex layers to the project, the slower After Effects will be.

Be sure to always organize the project as much as you can and always use the uncorrupted files. For faster video playback, be sure to keep the format consistent.

Double Check Rendering Timeline

Very often people forget to check the actual rendering timeline to render. Be sure to check the timeline for the part you need to render and not render hours of empty footage.

Instead of rendering just 4 seconds, and you may have selected 30 seconds. That will slow down rendering.

Use GPU To Do Rendering

after effect gpu cuda

After Effects users often forget to change the GPU settings under "Project Settings".

Instead of using software, please use GPU acceleration CUDA to render the project to speed things up.

Upgrade Computer Parts

rtx 3080 card

Please upgrade your computer if the specs aren't up to the demand for what you need to do.

Increasing memory and graphics card are the two biggest things to consider for After Effects work. A gaming computer with high specs can mostly run projects, but a workstation spec computer design for video editing and 3D work is completely different.

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