Insane CPU usage on macOS

Description of the issue:
How can this issue be reproduced?

  1. Start Brave

Expected result:

CPU usage around 1%.

Actual result:

CPU usage of at least 200%. This is with 0 tabs open. When I cleared my complete browsing data, I was also watching my activity monitor and Brave CPU usage went up to 500% (with only the settings opened).

Brave Version( check About Brave):

Brave is up to date
Version 1.33.29 Chromium: 95.0.4638.54 (Official Build) nightly (x86_64)
macOS Big Sur 11.6
MacBook Pro (13-inch, 2020, Four Thunderbolt 3 ports)

Additional Information:

For the past few months, maybe even year, I have noticed my MacBook getting really slow and always hearing the fans spinning. Then I figured I might want to check the activity monitor for once and it turns out, only Brave was causing the problems. Since I have quit Brave, I have not heard the fans one single time (and battery life is also many times better).

In the screenshot, you also see Firefox at 4% CPU usage - note that both Brave and Firefox are idle in the screenshot. But that is even high for Firefox. Firefox was usually around 2% CPU usage with 20 tabs open. Brave is at 300% CPU usage with one tab open.

I found this thread, which suggested that some extension was causing this problem, but that is not the case. First of all, I have never used Grammarly. Second of all, after removing all of my extensions and clearing all of my browsing data, nothing changed. The screenshot was taken after completely clearing the browsing data and I have 0 extensions installed.

I thought it might be Chromium. However, when running Chrome with 3 tabs open on the same machine, I see 5% CPU usage from Chrome.
Brave shows me at least 200-300% CPU usage no matter what I do, peaking way higher if I actively have tabs open that perform work.

2 Likes

In case this seems unbelievable, here is a screen recording of the activity monitor. I have nothing else open on my MacBook. Once I open Brave (with only settings and extensions open), CPU usage immediately goes to 250%.

I have the same problem starting today, just having one brave window open with nothing other than text and the process runs @ 102 % CPU

I’m having a similar issue. Brave is at 125% CPU use.

I’m exhausted hoping for a fix for this. I come on here regularly looking to see if other people have the same problem and I always find a number of threads - I’ve started some of my own.

Each time, the same answers are trotted out which don’t fix anything and then the support staff go on holiday (or so it seems). I’ve tried all the suggestions numerous times and again.

Brave is my preferred browser but I have to watch videos using another Chromium based browser, Dissenter.

This has been going for a month? Two months?
I have no idea why. You close all the windows, and yet the CPU usage is still there. What is Brave doing?
Might be time for me to switch back to Chrome.

i also have this issue - mostly playing an online game. I keep switching back to chrome but prefer brave. however the fan spinning is awful. Not sure how to fix it

Have you try to remove some of Brave addons? My video downloader extension was the problem…

i have the same problem.
none of the plugins consumes much cpu–power — according to the brave task manager just brave itself consumes 134 %.
why is that?
i use a 2021 macbook pro m1 max.

Can you try disabling Hardware Acceleration in settings to see if this resolves the issue?

You’ll find this in Settings --> Additional Settings --> System --> Hardware Acceleration

that helped a bit.
thanks.
which makes me wonder what the brave’s hardware acceleration actually does, what it is good for… :thinking:

Along with disabling hardware acceleration, you could also try disabling Cosmetic Filtering by going to this link in your Brave browser

brave://flags/#brave-adblock-cosmetic-filtering

My CPU usage dropped from 150% to 7-8% (Mac OSX Monterey)

1 Like

@achanda,
Thank you for reporting this – could be very useful to know. I’m going to have someone take a look and see if cosmetic filtering may be causing more wide-spread CPU issues.

How can you know that toggling that flag helped? When I tried that, I had to restart my browser. Of course, restarting Brave always brings me back to a lower CPU. But then, after several hours of use, my CPU goes back up, which is what happened to me in this case: toggling the flag didnt’ help for me (macOS Catalina)

Speaking internally to Anton from Brave-rust regarding cosmetic-filtering flag;

Cosmetic filtering does add some additional load to the browser, but it definitely shouldn’t be that much

I disabled the “Cosmetic Filtering” and while I haven’t seen spiking levels of CPU Usage, I still see memory usage rise as high as 25 GB of RAM!
And I still can’t sync my iMac with my Macbook Pro, and streams still stop every time I raise or lower the volume, an issue that’s been unsolved for well over a year at this point…

I switched back to Chrome, and the problem was identical. This is an upstream issue. Not Brave’s fault

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