* This blog post is a summary of this video.

Explore SSD 1B: A Smaller, Faster Alternative to Stable Diffusion for Image Generation

Author: Nerdy RodentTime: 2024-03-23 10:30:00

Table of Contents

Introducing SSD 1B: A More Accessible AI Image Generator

SSD 1B is a new AI image generation model that is a smaller version of Stable Diffusion, weighing in at just 4.5GB compared to the 7GB of the original Stable Diffusion model. Being smaller provides a couple key advantages:

First, it requires less VRAM to run, so you don't need as powerful of a GPU. This makes SSD 1B more accessible to those without top-of-the-line hardware.

Second, image generations are faster with SSD 1B, clocking in around 40% faster than Stable Diffusion at 3 seconds per 1024x1024 image.

Key Specs and Features

Like Stable Diffusion, SSD 1B supports multiple image resolutions. So if you haven't been able to run Stable Diffusion before due to hardware limitations, this may be your chance. There is even a Hugging Face Spaces demo available for trying SSD 1B in your web browser if you don't have a GPU. While SSD 1B is a different class of model, you can still train new latent diffusion models with it faster and with less VRAM than regular Stable Diffusion. This opens up at-home model training to those with lower-end GPUs.

Performance Benchmarks

In testing, SSD 1B used only 8GB of VRAM to generate 1024x1024 images at 6 iterations per second in Automatic1111. Comparatively, Stable Diffusion takes 5 seconds per image and runs at only 4 iterations per second. In comfy UI, SSD 1B achieved 3.5 iterations per second with 9GB of VRAM usage. So performance is on par or better than original Stable Diffusion, but with greatly reduced hardware requirements.

Leveraging SSD 1B in Automatic1111 and Comfy UI

SSD 1B is compatible with existing GUI tools like Automatic1111 and Comfy UI for easy integration into existing workflows.

For Comfy UI, there is a ready-made workflow available for download to start using SSD 1B right away. It uses just 8GB of VRAM to generate images in around 3 seconds each.

In Automatic1111, you'll need to install the SSD 1B safe tensor. Then select the model and you can start generating images with similar performance to Comfy UI.

Configuring Workflows

The Comfy UI workflow for SSD 1B is optimized for fast, efficient image generation that needs less than half the VRAM of original Stable Diffusion. For Automatic1111, just install the SSD 1B safe tensor and select the model to unlocked the improved performance and accessibility. Both GUIs detected that a less powerful GPU was in use and automatically adjusted to not use tiling in order to maximize SSD 1B's capabilities given the hardware constraints.

Comparing Image Quality

In head-to-head tests against baseline Stable Diffusion, SSD 1B holds its own in terms of image quality and coherence. While the overall style differs slightly, images from the two models are comparable in quality, with no clearly discernible winner. So SSD 1B manages to improve performance and accessibility without sacrificing measurable quality or capabilities.

Additional Capabilities of SSD 1B

Beyond just standard image generation, SSD 1B retains much of the advanced functionality of Stable Diffusion models.

For example, control nets for guiding image generations work successfully with SSD 1B.

This allows for directed image manipulations like changing shapes or attributes based on an input depth map or sketch.


To test control net capabilities, an input depth map of a car shape was provided to SSD 1B. The generated image accurately reflected the depth map, creating a coherent car image guided by the spatial constraints. So SSD 1B retains this key functionality to allow users to further control and direct image generations based on additional inputs like sketches or segmentation maps.

Retaining Core Functions

While SSD 1B is optimized for efficiency over absolute accuracy compared to Stable Diffusion, testing shows it retains much of the core functionality. Advanced capabilities like control nets demonstrate SSD 1B's flexibility despite its smaller size. And most importantly, image quality remains highly detailed and coherent, staying competitive with its much larger peers.

Who Can Benefit from Using SSD 1B?

The reduced size and hardware requirements of SSD 1B open up AI image generation to a wider audience of users who previously lacked accessible options due to GPU constraints.

Casual hobbyists can now experiment with cutting edge diffusion models using consumer-grade hardware that may have struggled to run Stable Diffusion.

Researchers can prototype and iterate image generation models faster by training SSD 1B-based latent diffusion models in less time and using less energy.

Conclusion and Recommendations

SSD 1B makes diffusion models more accessible without sacrificing meaningful functionality or quality. Lower hardware requirements combined with improved performance underscore its viability for hobbyists and professionals alike.

For those seeking to maximize accessibility and iteration speed, SSD 1B presents an appealing new option in AI image generation.

The model confidently holds its own against other diffusion models while requiring less specialized hardware, putting more power into the hands of everyday users.


Q: What are the key differences between SSD 1B and Stable Diffusion?
A: SSD 1B is smaller (4.5GB vs 7GB), faster (40% quicker image generation), and uses less VRAM (8GB vs 10+GB). However, it is a different model so workflows and image quality may vary.

Q: Can I use my existing Stable Diffusion workflows with SSD 1B?
A: Not directly. You'll need to create new workflows optimized for SSD 1B. ControlNets can be reused but other components like text encoders may need to be changed.

Q: What hardware do I need to run SSD 1B?
A: You can run SSD 1B on lower-end hardware than Stable Diffusion. A GPU with at least 8GB VRAM is recommended, such as an Nvidia GTX 1070 or above.

Q: Does SSD 1B produce images and art of the same quality as Stable Diffusion?
A: Image quality is highly comparable between the two models. With tuning, SSD 1B can achieve artistic results on par with Stable Diffusion in many cases.

Q: Should I switch from Stable Diffusion to SSD 1B?
A: If you have limited VRAM or want faster iteration, SSD 1B is likely the better choice. For most users with sufficient VRAM, Stable Diffusion may still be preferable for reuse of existing workflows.

Q: What guidance scale and settings work best for SSD 1B?
A: A guidance scale of 7-9 is recommended by the creators. You can get good results with or without negative prompts as well.

Q: Can I train my own models with SSD 1B?
A: Yes, SSD 1B's smaller size allows for faster and lower resource model training compared to standard Stable Diffusion.

Q: Where can I learn more about SSD 1B?
A: Check out the links in the video description for official resources, workflows, and the latest updates around SSD 1B capabilities.

Q: What types of images and content can SSD 1B generate?
A: As an AI image generator based on Stable Diffusion, SSD 1B can create a wide range of artistic images, illustrations, photos and more in various styles.

Q: Can SSD 1B help my business or creative workflows?
A: Definitely! SSD 1B can help teams iterate on design concepts faster, increase productivity in media creation, and enhance creative workflows across many industries.