I have animations in 4 different scenes in my Blender file that I would like to batch render.

Is there a way to batch render all the scenes, instead of only the scene I am working in?

  • Try creating multiple copies of the blender application! Worked for me. My computer hates my for it though... Just make sure you open the file through Blender or your file browser will get mixed up. – Cplusplusplus Nov 24 '15 at 22:22
up vote 33 down vote accepted

Yes, you can use

blender -b file_name.blend -x 1 -o //file -F AVI_JPEG -s 001 -e 250 -S scene_name -a


-b: tells blender to run in background

-x: is used to add an extension to the movie

-o: sets the directory + Target image file

-F: sets the output image type

-s: 001 -e 250 -a set the start frame to 001 and end frame to 250. Important: You can use -s or -e, but if they're not in order, they'll not work!

-S: sets the scene name to render (spaces in the name are not supported)

-a: renders the animation

The above command should render whatever scene name you specify to -S. To avoid certain problems where similar files can get overwritten, its best to use a script to render each scene on a different line. For example:

batch_render.sh / .bat

blender -b file_name.blend -x 1 -S scene_name001 -o //file -F AVI_JPEG -s 1 -e 250 -a
blender -b file_name.blend -x 1 -S scene_name002 -o //file -F AVI_JPEG -s 1 -e 250 -a

You could also do this in one command - as follows:

blender -b file_name.blend -x 1 \
    -S scene_name001 -o //file -F AVI_JPEG -s 1 -e 250 -a \
    -S scene_name002 -o //file -F AVI_JPEG -s 1 -e 250 -a

However launching blender isn't typically a bottleneck, so it may end up being less trouble to run a new blender instance for each scene.

To get a better understanding of the parameters, you can see the wiki.

  • 1
    There is in fact no reason need to run blender multiple times. You can do: blender file_name.blend -b -S Scene1 -s 1 -e 250 -a -S Scene2 -s 10 -e 50 -a -S Scene3 -s 5 -e 10 -a Just remember arguments are executed in order given, so change scene, set frame then render. – ideasman42 May 25 '13 at 1:27
  • 1
    @ideasman42 ah, the -s was the part I forgot when I tested it, the second scene would overwrite the first, please edit as necessary. Thanks. – iKlsR May 25 '13 at 1:29
  • Does this work with any render engine? – Daniel Pendergast Aug 12 '13 at 15:25

As iKlsR wrote, you can use command-line options to render scenes in batch. If you have saved all the necessary settings such as the start and end frames, the output format, and the output file names in your blend file and all you want is just render the animations in specific scenes, then you do not have to specify many command-line options and you can do it with just

blender -b file.blend -S Scene1 -a -S Scene2 -a

This means:

  • -b: Run Blender in the batch mode (do not open a window).
  • file.blend: Open a file called file.blend.
  • -S Scene1: Switch to Scene1.
  • -a: Execute the Render > Render Animation command.
  • -S Scene2: Switch to Scene2.
  • -a: Execute the Render > Render Animation command.

Make sure you set the output directories and the file names of each scene correctly in the blend file so that the render result from one scene will not be overwritten by the render result from another scene.

Note that a file name just means “open this file.” You can also render scenes in different files in one batch by using a command line like:

blender -b A.blend -S A1 -a -S A2 -a B.blend -S B1 -a -S B2 -a

This renders the animations in four scenes in total: scenes A1 and A2 in file A.blend and scenes B1 and B2 in file B.blend.

Command-line

blender -b one.blend -a two.blend -a

Run blender -h (or man blender) to list of options with descriptions.

Video sequencer

  1. (If in separate files) link the desired scenes.
  2. Add scene strips to the VSE.
  3. Render.

(Distributed) rendering manager

The answers above worked for me (on Windows 10) but only after I did some research. For those like me who have no idea how to take what is written above and make it work for your project, here is what I did:

cd "C:\Program Files\Blender Foundation\Blender" blender -b "E:\Project Folder\03_projects\Blend Files\Render Me.blend" -S Scene_1 -a -S Scene_2 -a

  • First, and yes it took some trial and error to figure out, you need to launch Command Prompt for Windows to run this batch operation. It isn't supposed to be run from the command line within Blender. Launch Command Prompt in Windows by hitting the 'Windows' key, typing "Command" or "cmd", then hitting enter.
  • The explanations above didn't include that you need to navigate your Command Prompt session to see the folder that your blender.exe file is in. It won't just 'know' where to look. cd is the change directory command that I used.
  • You'll need to use " " to contain the folder structure (I assume because the folder names have spaces in them).
  • You also need to point Command Prompt to the location of the .blend file you want to render. You'll need to use " " for this too, and you'll want to include the .blend file within the quotations.

I hope this helps someone. There's bound to be others who don't know anything about command line, lol.

Happy Googling

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