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I'm rendering edited footage using blender, meaning everything is basically an emission shader with basic textures, so the samples are only at 1. However, the video is over 5500 frames long, and for some reason (I think it's because I'm using CPU rendering, not GPU - I don't have a graphics card) my computer hums really loud and it gets really annoying. I wouldn't mind if I only had to render for an hour or so, but since each frame takes an average 2 seconds to render (yes, I watched some videos and read a few articles on how to speed up renders), and I have over 5500 frames, my computer will be screaming for over 3 hours. Is there a way I could make my CPU not work as hard? Is that even possible?

NOTE: I don't mind if it takes longer to render

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    $\begingroup$ If your computer hums real loud it means that the fans are increasing the speed to cool off the CPU. Maybe you want to look into getting a quieter fan or use liquid cooling, which will not only prevent overheating in a more efficient way, but would make your computer whisper quiet $\endgroup$ – cegaton Jul 13 '17 at 5:09
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    $\begingroup$ Loud fans also are a sign that you have dust built up in there. Time open up your computer and clean it out. (With a clean system even when the CPU going at 100% usage the fans should not be screamingly loud.) $\endgroup$ – David Jul 13 '17 at 15:21
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    $\begingroup$ It's typical for power users to buy better CPU coolers, including liquid-coolant systems, to keep their CPU's cool under long, heavy loads with minimal noise. The Corsair H-100's (or their newer models) are a popular choice. Adding better cooling fans to the computer case can also help a lot, especially if your CPU and GPU are both using fans that just blow heat around inside the case. $\endgroup$ – Nat Jul 13 '17 at 15:25
  • $\begingroup$ @David♦ @Nat Thanks for the feedback! I will be sure to look into getting a better computer, especially one that has a GPU. In the meantime, I'll have to clean out my computer. I don't have experience with that, so I'll just take it over to a computer store. $\endgroup$ – Squirrel Jul 13 '17 at 15:35
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    $\begingroup$ From the description I would bet this is coil whine, not just fan noise. $\endgroup$ – Chuu Jul 13 '17 at 16:12
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Under Performance, set the number of threads to "Fixed" and just use one or two threads. That should help keep the temperature lower and your fan slower if that's what's making the noise. It will take proportionally longer to render though (just leave it on overnight). Other than placing your computer in another room, that's about it.

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    $\begingroup$ I put my laptop into the fridge to cool it down while rendering images for my diploma:). If I only knew your solution then... $\endgroup$ – Paul Gonet Jul 18 '17 at 20:25
  • $\begingroup$ @PaulGonet - Ha! I've got a centrifugal blower that I use while rendering $\endgroup$ – bertmoog Jul 18 '17 at 20:29
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I know that an answer specific for Blender was already posted, but some generic alternatives, to achieve this goal that I regularly use on Windows, are:

  • Battle Encoder Shirase: a program, that throttles CPU-usage on per process basis by regularly sending it to sleep. The program was originally developped for keeping the CPU cool while encoding media files but was also in large use in the BOINC-community
  • setting a lower process priority in task manager (doesn't help with overheating but keeps other processes responsive)
  • setting the maximum CPU-performance in the energy saving settings to for example 60%
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