Cycles baking material ID's for Quixel - slow baking time(?)

Hi everyone. I recently purchased Quixel Suite for some new texturing options I’d like to incorporate into my workflow. That being said, I’ve watched some of their YT videos of the process for creating material ID’s. I’m attempting to bake material ID’s within Cycles but it seems to be taking way too long.

Does anyone know of a good workflow-tutorial that covers this? Perhaps I need to better optimize my model (it’s less than 100K polys) or adjust samples. However, I typically don’t export my models to other software . . . however, I’m wanting to get more assets out to the general gaming community. This is part of a new goal for myself within the next 6 months.

I’m currently baking with CPU on a quad-core processor with 16GB of RAM. IMO Cycles shouldn’t be taking that long (as in overnight). I assume that for material ID’s it shouldn’t really need anything much since that process is just creating mask-areas(?) for Quixel. Or I could be completely off base with that notion.

Thoughts anyone? I appreciate your help.


I used to export material ID’s using the method I wrote here:

The process to export the ID’s with that addon is very straightforward and since doesn’t involv baking, it’s also very fast. But there’s a downside because the addon doesn’t create any kind of border, useful to minimize texture seams between ID’s (if you really need that). If you want borders, the best way I found to create ID maps is baking them with Blender Internal.

First assign materials with the ID colors to the selected faces of your model.
Now, create a new blank texture map to contain the ID’s. Uncheck alpha.
Go to bake and select “textures”
Check “selected to active” (0.005 and 0.009)
Give margin a 6px value.
And, finally, BAKE and save the texture.

Hope this helps.