Brave uses way to much power playing Videos

I love brave but this issue needs to be solved, if it even can be. I’ve read countless other posts about the same issue and they never get actually answered or fixed… they just run them through the same “is hardware acceleration on” loop. Safari uses a third of the power that brave (in every possible configuration of brave settings: brave rewards off, hardware acceleration off, etc.) does in youtube; now I’m not a big tech expert, but there has to be some programing issue in brave that causes the CPU to go crazy. If anybody has actually had this same issue before and fixed it, any advice would be much appreciated… and don’t mention updating the browser (it’s up to date.)

@lightning17,
When you say too much power, what exactly are you referring to? Memory (RAM), CPU, actual energy impact? On my end I’m seeing comparable numbers in memory and CPU usage when viewing the same Youtube video in both Brave and Safari.

All of the above, safari uses a third (and often less) of the CPU, Memory, and Energy Impact when watching the same youtube video. When I now checked, safari had an energy impact of around 20 while brave was around 120 and up to 164. Chrome was around 95, these numbers are all for the same portion of the same video. CPU, as well as RAM, have proportionally the same differences.

I have a 2018 13inch Macbook pro, 2.3 GHz Intel Core i5 processor, 16 GB 2133 MHz LPDDR3 Ram, and Intel Iris Graphics 655 1536 MB graphics chip.

Do you use brave rewards? When I tried turning it off it seemed to have no impact but I only checked that briefly.

Memory (ram) specific numbers:

Brave:
Brave Browser 299.9 MB
Brave Browser Helper (Renderer) 231.7 MB
Brave Browser Helper (Renderer) 226.3 MB
Brave Browser Helper (GPU) 209.6 MB

Chrome:
Google Chrome 140.6 MB
Google Chrome Helper (GPU) 100.6 MB

Safari:
Safari 69.2 MB

I have about 15 tabs open on brave so that may be impacting how much memory it’s using (again I’m no tech wizard) but CPU and energy impact differences are as stated before even when only a single brave tab is open.

Going to reach out to the team about this. It would be helpful if you could share numbers and/or screenshots of the resource usage in both browsers under the same conditions. That is, have one tab open (one in Brave, one in Safari) to the same youtube video, then compare.

Will reply here when I have more information.

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You shouldn’t turn off Hardware acceleration, GPU has more cores than CPU and of course takes the load off the CPU, never do that, if not it will use full CPU all the time for everything (hardware acceleration is used for more than just playing videos)

You should use Brave/Chromium internal task manager to know what is using what and what, you can’t say something is using more or less CPU because you are not checking which process is which, you are just looking at MacOS processes and assuming it shouldn’t be that way.

You go to Brave’s menu → more tools → task manager.

But by your computer specifications, your computer, the Iris Plus Graphics 655 doesn’t support either decoding the av1 or vp9 which used by Youtube.
To get h264 you need an extension like https://chrome.google.com/webstore/detail/enhanced-h264ify/omkfmpieigblcllmkgbflkikinpkodlk
That’s the only way to get Youtube not to use too much CPU, but then, it will only work in videos up to 1080p, after that 2K+ it will need AV1 decoding which you don’t have.

BTW, Memory RAM has no impact to the power consumption at that level, it’s not like you are pushing the ram to its limits and overclocking it or anything, so your proof about Brave using more power with those numbers are meaningless.

In a way, it makes sense for Brave to consume a little more memory since it has more tools native, like Brave shields/Adblocker, rewards, and other Brave stuff.
Like for example, if you don’t disable Ethereum Wallet or Solana wallet, there will be scripts loading on every page, so if you don’t use that, it might affect something? but I don’t know.
Also, Brave have internal extensions, like you will see Extension: Brave in the task manager and that’s for stuff like Cosmetics element picker and Web Discovery Project.
But Memory is there to be used, therefore memory not used is memory wasted.

Anyway, not much you can do about Youtube, unless you use that extension to use h264 for most videos, but also you could check Chrome and Brave gpu page and compare it and see that its using the exact same settings also to make a comparison. you go to chrome://gpu on both browsers. you also can use brave://media-internals/ if you want to see which encoding is using a video you are playing.

But CPU should be less in Brave, blocking scripts like Brave does, lowers CPU because less crap runs on websites.
I mean, Safari engine and Chromium’s engine are totally different, Apple might be optimizing the JS in a different way so it seems it consumes less CPU and all that, but as you can see by that energy impact, Brave was using less energy than Chrome, which is what you can compare since they run the ‘same’ engine.

But in the end, you can’t properly test what is using more CPU than what unless you do a proper test.

For example on Windows, use a 3rd party resource monitor, and use Brave’s task manager to know which process is which. That way I can truly filter what I want and I can compare Browsers and how they manager the way they look at video.
Plus unless you are focusing on the video, the browser might put the video to low priority so it uses less CPU because it doesn’t have to render video, that’s why sometimes the video goes out of sync.

So unless you test it on the same foreground, you can’t get a real comparison. Since I don’t know Safari, I can’t comment how they do things, but at least on Chrome and Brave you can stop that backgrounding of processes.

The problem is you said you weren’t super tech savvy, so I don’t know how you can test that and especially on MacOS, but I wouldn’t believe those numbers too much, all you need to know is Youtube won’t use your GPU, so you will have to install the extension and then the CPU usage will drop because most modern GPUs are able to decode h.264, but Youtube doesn’t care if 4 or 5 years old computers can’t do it.

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Appreciate it, I’ll try and get that information when I have time sometime in the next week.

This is exactly the type of answer I was looking for, I’ll try all that and report back here soon. Good stuff Emi!