Viewport vs Final Render Speed

Today I was testing my Mac laptop’s performance rendering on CPU against a PC rendering on GPU with a GTX1080 and I noticed something really weird.

With the same scene loaded on each computer, if I was in the viewport and pressed Shift + Z to enter rendered mode, the GTX1080 PC would absolutely smoke my laptop and render way way way faster. However, when I pressed the “render” button in the render tab to complete a final render; my laptop was actually performing faster! How is this possible, are there some settings I’m missing?

The viewport by default uses a dynamic BVH structure, which renders slower but allows you to move around the scene and move objects without having to completely rebuild the BVH. You can change this to the static BVH structure in the performance panel in the render settings.

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