Understanding Costs


Submitting any job for cloud processing involves three unique costs: compute instance time, license consumption, and storage.

Compute Instance Time: You are billed by the minute for any time that a compute instance is running for the execution of your job, with a 10-minute minimum. This does not include transferring data to or from Conductor or any of the synchronization processes that happen behind the scenes. Compute instances vary in cost depending on their memory and processing power.

License Consumption: Conductor monitors all license usage in the process of executing your jobs. Charges are incurred on a per-minute basis for each of the licenses used. There is no minimum.

Storage: All data transferred to and generated within Conductor will be subject to a storage fee. This is based on the average number of Gigabytes used over the course of a month (measured every 15-minutes). Storage is charged separately at $0.18 per GB/Month.

Understanding the first 2 variables, you can use our Cost Calculator to get a general idea to the cost of your job using different machine configurations. Adjusting the machine configuration will give you a sense of cost per instance hour for each configuration. Once uploaded and processed, storage of dependencies and resulting frames continues until removed from the project.

In the above example, we can assume that the render time per task for the second configuration will be about ½ that of the first.

Rendering in the cloud introduces another important, fundamental shift in how to think about the cost of rendering. The number of machines you have working on your behalf at any given time no longer has any impact on final budget. Questions like "how big is your render farm" are largely irrelevant to cost. The only thing that matters is how much work you need to do. Here's an example:

  • 100 frames running on 10 machines at an hour per frame: 10 hours turnaround, $145 cost*
  • 100 frames running on 100 machines at an hour per frame: 1 hour turnaround, $145 cost*

So, as you can see, scaling up has a dramatic, positive impact on turnaround time, and no impact on final cost because you're just paying for how much total computing needed to be done.

What's different between the examples above, and a new concept if you're used to local rendering, is the rate of spend: $14.50/hr vs $145/hr.


Credit Card – Like any other recurring account where consumption is covered with a credit card, (Amazon, etc.) Credit Card information will be required. This is done once per project and all jobs submitted to this project will be covered by the same card. Once submitted, rendering can begin immediately. Card changes can be made at anytime in the account interface. 

Accounts created with a credit card are billed when a threshold of $500 is crossed. Large jobs may cross that threshold more than once and will be charged each time the threshold is reached. At the end of the month, any remaining balance is also charged.

If you would like to have a higher billing threshold, you can download and fill out the Credit Application Form below and submit it to [email protected]. Our finance team will review your application, and once approved, we will update your account to the approved amount.

Manual Billing – This is a traditional extension of credit where consumption is billed monthly. Because credit and payment methods must be established, this process may take days or weeks before rendering can begin.

To apply for Manual billing, download and fill out the Credit Application Form below and submit it to [email protected]. Our finance team will review your application, and once approved, we will activate your account.

You can find more detailed information on this payment method in our payment options and terms.

Changing billing information once the account is established

The person who performed this initial set will be designated as the 'owner' of the account. Unless changed, they will be the person to change the billing information via the "Payment Information" tab on the admin page.