How to use Nanite in Unreal Engine 5 ?

Last updated on August 22nd, 2023 at 04:51 pm

Hello everyone! Welcome to this tutorial on Nanite, one of the most striking features of Unreal Engine 5. In this tutorial, I’m going to tell you everything you need to know about Nanite: its advantages, disadvantages and limitations. And of course, I’ll show you how to use it. So, without further ado, let’s get started!

What is Nanite ?

Nanite is essentially an extremely efficient way to render triangles on the screen. This is made possible thanks to a feature called “cluster culling”. By using this feature, Nanite divides your model into a very large number of clusters, which are all groups of triangles. These clusters are updated based on their size, distance to the screen and resolution. This allows Nanite to handle millions and millions of triangles on screen without slowing down your computer. Additionally, all opaque objects can be rendered in a single draw call, which means Nanite is highly optimized.

How to use Nanite ?

It is very easy to use Nanite. To import an object as Nanite, simply check the “Build Nanite” box in the import dialog. To convert an existing static mesh to Nanite, simply open the static mesh editor and check the “Enabled” box in the Nanite settings. If you no longer want to use Nanite, just uncheck that box. That’s it!

nanite batch enable menu
For static mesh asset batches that you want to enable Nanite on, use the Content Browser to select them all. Right-click and choose Nanite > Enable from the context menu.Image (c) epic games

The advantages of Nanite

The main advantage of Nanite is its triangle density. Nanite can handle millions and millions of triangles on screen without slowing down your computer, allowing you to create very detailed scenes. Additionally, Nanite is highly optimized, meaning you can use many instances without worrying about performance. Nanite is also very efficient at managing memory and takes up little disk space. Finally, thanks to the “cluster culling” feature, Nanite can handle very detailed objects without slowing down your computer.

The disadvantages of Nanite

The main disadvantage of Nanite is that it can become very costly in terms of performance if you use very high resolutions. Additionally, Nanite struggles with occlusion culling when you have many layers of geometry stacked on top of each other. Finally, Nanite does not support translucent or masked materials, two-sided faces, deformable objects like skeletal meshes, tessellation, or displacement.

When to use Nanite?

Nanite is ideal for objects that contain a lot of triangles or that have very small triangles on screen. It is also ideal for objects that have many instances or act as major occluders for other Nanite objects. However, it’s important to keep in mind Nanite’s limitations, especially regarding occlusion culling and translucent materials. Ultimately, you need to experiment to find what works best for you.

View Modes

level viewport show nanite visualizations menu
In the level viewport, under the View Modes dropdown, hover over Nanite Visualization and choose from the selection. Image (c) epic games
level viewport show nanite visualizations overview
The Overview visualization displays the scene rendered in the center of the image with some Nanite visualizations around the screen for reference. Image (c) epic games

Want to learn more right now ? Check out the full documentation on the official website.


So there you have it, everything you need to know about Nanite in Unreal Engine 5. I hope this tutorial was useful to you and that you learned something new. Feel free to try out Nanite and share your experience by leaving a comment below. And if you have any questions or feedback, don’t hesitate to share those as well. Thank you for watching and see you soon!

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