You are a render farm client, are you being robbed?

It is a slow Sunday morning. I have decided to spend some time with the cost calculators that are available on many render farm websites. In hope to come up with some new way of marketing our great prices… after 30 minutes or so of research, I have noticed something really strange. One calculator’s results were showing really awkward numbers of Ghz used for planned rendering.

After some more research, I figured that the farm is charging you for Hyper Threading! It looks like the customer is paying for mere 80% of the virtual processor power at the price of full one. This is ridiculous. We all know that HT is speeding up the calculations but not that much. It can be anything between 0-50% – sometimes more – but not very often. On top of it – it depends on render engine and scene that you are rendering. Not to mention that you will be charged for non-existent processor. It is just dishonest (to put it mildly).

Well, it is possible that they just have a bad bug in their on-line calculator and let’s assume that is the case.

So here you have what I came up with. Me and my two biggest competitors. One scene that has 600 frames and which takes 25 days to render on one Intel Q6600 processor.

company A = $1100 (or as little as $330 if you make one $24,000 payment for this and future rendering with them)

company B = $780 (or as little as $312 if you make one $15,873 payment for this and future downloads)

GarageFarm = $270 (high priority), or $139 (medium priority, if you want to render it faster – skipping all the movies and TV series that we render here), or $69 (low priority, if there isn’t any crazy deadline and the job does not need to be done ASAP).

If you use our services, you can be sure that all the benefits of HyperThreading are already included – free of charge

So in most circumstances, we are 4-18 times cheaper but even in the ‘worst case scenario’ we are still 10% cheaper, plus you would have to have $15-24k to get all possible discounts that are available somewhere else. I have based all my calculations on assumption that the calculator was in some way broken- not on honesty of the marketing department :)