Eevee, Material Preview vs. Rendered

These two Shading modes appear to be identical to me.

Picture-wise and playback-wise, with the same fps for each.

So…, do we need material preview anymore?


  • EEVEE doesn’t have many differences between Material Preview & Rendered. But Cycles does.

EEVEE - Material Preview

EEVEE - Rendered

EEVEE - Material Preview

Cycles - Rendered


  • Material Preview
    • " Render the 3D Viewport with Eevee and an HDRI environment. This mode is particularly suited for previewing materials and texture painting. You can select different lighting conditions to test your materials."
  • Rendered
    • " Render the 3D Viewport with the scene Render Engine, for interactive rendering. By default the scene lights are used for lighting. An HDRI environment can be used as well, with the same options as Material Preview mode."

Exactly my point.

BTW, how did you mark my post “Solved”?

I didn’t. @josephhansen did.

In any case, any users who have the Regular badge are given the privilege of marking any posts in the #support or #game-engine category and a few categories in the #coding category other than the OP.


Exactly my point.

Material Preview is basically “use Eevee instead of the active render engine to get a quick preview of lights and shaders you’re working on”. Naturally, this mode is a little silly when Eevee IS the active render engine.

Material Preview mostly exists for when you’re using other, slower engines. I think at some point in the Blender 2.8 development there was actually a time where you didn’t have separate mat preview and rendered draw modes when Eevee was the active render engine for the scene. Material Preview eventually got some other features like the ability to use a stock HDRI in place of the scene world lighting, so the rendered/material preview split still exists with Eevee to keep access to those features.


On a scene with a lot of lights, disabling scene lights in material preview will improve viewport performance quite a bit.

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