A complete overview of Arnold GPU render engine

A complete overview of Arnold GPU render engine

If you are working in the 3D industry, we will ensure that at least one of the times you hear about Arnold render engine. Arnold is one of the market’s most popular rendering engines. From Arnold 6, this software supports rendering both on GPU  and CPU. Within the scope of this article, we will explore Arnold GPU render.

A complete overview of Arnold GPU render engine

What is Arnold GPU render?

First, we will explore what is Arnold renderer. Arnold is an advanced Monte Carlo ray tracing rendering engine built for the demands of feature-length animation and visual effects. Arnold is a powerful render engine with simple and intuitive controls, provides professional-grade rendering with full artistic control and you can get immediate results with interactive rendering.

Arnold is used by over 300 studios worldwide and it is the main renderer of Sony Imageworks. It is a standalone rendered or can be used with almost 3D software like Maya, Houdini, Cinema 3D, 3ds Max, and Katana. 

From Arnold 6, this software allows rendering on both the CPU and GPU. So, what is Arnold GPU render? Arnold GPU render is a render engine based on NVIDIA’s OptiX framework and optimized to take advantage of NVIDIA RTX Technology. It is simple as Arnold renderer rendering on GPU.

Arnold GPU has several advantages and new features to help you work faster and more efficiently. You can find out a collection of components for Arnold in the USD ecosystem, and updates to Arnold plugins.

How much does Arnold render GPU cost?

Arnold offers three different packages, you can choose the suitable one for your demand.

  • Paid every 3 years: $1,085/3 year (savings of 40% compared to monthly subscription).
  • Paid annually: $380/year (saving of 37% compared to monthly subscription).
  • Paid monthly: $50

Besides that, Arnold has more discounts for specific software that use with Arnold. You can via here to see the detail. You can also try Arnold with a free 30-day trial. 

The advantage of Arnold GPU

Arnold GPU provides the speed and flexibility to adapt to a fast-paced working environment and scale rendering capacity to accommodate the ebbs and flows of production. Arnold has an intuitive interface, so you can easy to toggle between CPU and GPU rendering, maintaining the same settings with a single click.

Besides that, Arnold GPU delivers performance gains that will help lighten the load with the same high-quality render results that the CPU renderer is known for. Arnold GPU toolset is one of the best advantages of Arnold. It improved across lights, cameras, shader, and on-demand texture loading, it also supports Open Shading Language (OSL) and OpenVDB volumes. Besides that, Autodesk also accelerates the adoption of open standards, a collection of components for Arnold in the USD ecosystem is available online.

A complete overview of Arnold GPU render engine

Image source: Autodesk Maya

The hardware recommendation for Arnold GPU

According to Autodesk, Arnold will work on pretty much any 64-bit system where Houdini, Cinema 4D, 3ds Max, or Katana works. Here are the minimum requirements of Autodesk:

  • OS: Windows 10 or later; Linux with at least Glibc 2.17 and libstdc++ 4.8.5 (GCC 4.8.5), equivalent to RHEL/CentOs 7; macOS 10.13 or later.
  • CPU: need to support the SSE4.1 instruction set.
  • GPU: NVIDIA GPU of the Ampere, Turing, Volta, Pascal, or Maxwell architecture.
  • Optix™ denoiser requires an NVidia GPU with CUDA™ Compute Capability 5.0 and above.

However, for running Arnold GPU render with high-speed and pretty results, Radarrender recommends you use the hardware requirements below:

  • CPU: Intel Core i9 10900x, 10 cores, 20 threads with a maximum clock speed of 4.50GHz; Intel Xeon W-2155 with 10 cores and 20 threads; AMD Ryzen Threadripper PRO 3955WX with a maximum clock speed of 3.9 GHz.
  • GPU:  NVIDIA Quadro RTX A6000 with 48 GB VRAM; NVIDIA Quadro RTX A5000 with 24GB VRAM; NVIDIA Quadro RTX A4000 with 16 GB VRAM; NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3070Ti/3080Ti/3090 or RTX 4090.
  • RAM: 32GB or 64 GB of RAM.

What is the best render farm for Arnold GPU?

If you don’t want to spend a lot of money on upgrading your workstation, you can use another solution a render farm. The render farm will have you easier, faster, and high quality when rendering with Arnold GPU. 

According to our experience, here are some best names of render farms for Arnold GPU renderings that you can consider when choosing the right one for your project. You can check the detail of the best render farm for Arnold GPU here.


Along with the strong development of GPU, rendering on GPU is one of the best ways to get high-quality results faster than rendering CPU. So, Arnold GPU render is one of the best choices for any 3D artist, studio, and freelancer. However, when using this render engine, you need to care about your hardware system to make the most of the power of Arnold GPU. 

Thank you for your reading!

See more: The full list of the all cloud render farms

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