March 4, 2020

796 words 4 mins read



An easy to use PyTorch to TensorRT converter

repo name NVIDIA-AI-IOT/torch2trt
repo link
language Python
size (curr.) 286 kB
stars (curr.) 1037
created 2019-04-27
license MIT License


torch2trt is a PyTorch to TensorRT converter which utilizes the TensorRT Python API. The converter is

  • Easy to use - Convert modules with a single function call torch2trt

  • Easy to extend - Write your own layer converter in Python and register it with @tensorrt_converter

If you find an issue, please let us know!

Please note, this converter has limited coverage of TensorRT / PyTorch. We created it primarily to easily optimize the models used in the JetBot project. If you find the converter helpful with other models, please let us know.


Below are some usage examples, for more check out the notebooks.


import torch
from torch2trt import torch2trt
from torchvision.models.alexnet import alexnet

# create some regular pytorch model...
model = alexnet(pretrained=True).eval().cuda()

# create example data
x = torch.ones((1, 3, 224, 224)).cuda()

# convert to TensorRT feeding sample data as input
model_trt = torch2trt(model, [x])


We can execute the returned TRTModule just like the original PyTorch model

y = model(x)
y_trt = model_trt(x)

# check the output against PyTorch
print(torch.max(torch.abs(y - y_trt)))

Save and load

We can save the model as a state_dict., 'alexnet_trt.pth')

We can load the saved model into a TRTModule

from torch2trt import TRTModule

model_trt = TRTModule()



We tested the converter against these models using the script. You can generate the results by calling


The results below show the throughput in FPS. You can find the raw output, which includes latency, in the benchmarks folder.

Model Nano (PyTorch) Nano (TensorRT) Xavier (PyTorch) Xavier (TensorRT)
alexnet 46.4 69.9 250 580
squeezenet1_0 44 137 130 890
squeezenet1_1 76.6 248 132 1390
resnet18 29.4 90.2 140 712
resnet34 15.5 50.7 79.2 393
resnet50 12.4 34.2 55.5 312
resnet101 7.18 19.9 28.5 170
resnet152 4.96 14.1 18.9 121
densenet121 11.5 41.9 23.0 168
densenet169 8.25 33.2 16.3 118
densenet201 6.84 25.4 13.3 90.9
densenet161 4.71 15.6 17.2 82.4
vgg11 8.9 18.3 85.2 201
vgg13 6.53 14.7 71.9 166
vgg16 5.09 11.9 61.7 139
vgg19 54.1 121
vgg11_bn 8.74 18.4 81.8 201
vgg13_bn 6.31 14.8 68.0 166
vgg16_bn 4.96 12.0 58.5 140
vgg19_bn 51.4 121


Option 1 - Without plugins

To install without compiling plugins, call the following

git clone
cd torch2trt
sudo python install

Option 2 - With plugins (experimental)

To install with plugins to support some operations in PyTorch that are not natviely supported with TensorRT, call the following

This currently only includes a plugin for torch.nn.functional.interpolate

sudo apt-get install libprotobuf* protobuf-compiler ninja-build
git clone
cd torch2trt
sudo python install --plugins

torch2trt is tested against a system configured with the JetCard setup. Different system configurations may require additional steps.

How does it work?

This converter works by attaching conversion functions (like convert_ReLU) to the original PyTorch functional calls (like torch.nn.ReLU.forward). The sample input data is passed through the network, just as before, except now whenever a registered function (torch.nn.ReLU.forward) is encountered, the corresponding converter (convert_ReLU) is also called afterwards. The converter is passed the arguments and return statement of the original PyTorch function, as well as the TensorRT network that is being constructed. The input tensors to the original PyTorch function are modified to have an attribute _trt, which is the TensorRT counterpart to the PyTorch tensor. The conversion function uses this _trt to add layers to the TensorRT network, and then sets the _trt attribute for relevant output tensors. Once the model is fully executed, the final tensors returns are marked as outputs of the TensorRT network, and the optimized TensorRT engine is built.

How to add (or override) a converter

Here we show how to add a converter for the ReLU module using the TensorRT python API.

import tensorrt as trt
from torch2trt import tensorrt_converter

def convert_ReLU(ctx):
    input = ctx.method_args[1]
    output = ctx.method_return
    layer =, type=trt.ActivationType.RELU)  
    output._trt = layer.get_output(0)

The converter takes one argument, a ConversionContext, which will contain the following

  • - The TensorRT network that is being constructed.

  • ctx.method_args - Positional arguments that were passed to the specified PyTorch function. The _trt attribute is set for relevant input tensors.

  • ctx.method_kwargs - Keyword arguments that were passed to the specified PyTorch function.

  • ctx.method_return - The value returned by the specified PyTorch function. The converter must set the _trt attribute where relevant.

Please see this folder for more examples.

See also

  • JetBot - An educational AI robot based on NVIDIA Jetson Nano

  • JetRacer - An educational AI racecar using NVIDIA Jetson Nano

  • JetCam - An easy to use Python camera interface for NVIDIA Jetson

  • JetCard - An SD card image for web programming AI projects with NVIDIA Jetson Nano

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