1671 reviews / burnout / please help

Hello, this is a crosspost to:

Hello everybody, I’m about to throw in the towel because I can’t keep up with the reviews anymore. Yesterday I reviewed 1671 cards which took me all day (pomodoro method). Been using vanilla settings until yesterday when I realized I must be doing something wrong.

Looked up “ease hell” and found out that most of my cards I pressed “hard” too often. Afterwards I used the ease-reset-plugin to return the cards to 250% (many were at 130%).

I changed my settings to:

New Cards

  • Steps: 25 1440
  • New Cards/day: 100 (1)
  • Graduating interval: 3 days
  • Starting ease: 300%
    (1) haven’t been adding new cards for several days; used filtered decks for due cards


  • Steps 25 1440
  • New interval 25%
  • Minimum 2 days
  • Leech treshold 4 lapses, tag only

Exams are in May and I’m facing insurmountable amounts of information.

I finished 4/12 book chapters and I feel like I’m not gonna make it. I would love if you could provide hints / help me strategize.



This might not be the answer you’d like to get, but it really does sound like you’re putting too much pressure on yourself trying to learn too much content in too little time. The amount of cards you’re trying to study is just unbearable (for me anyways). You should face the sad truth that Anki can’t do “magic”.

Considering you have a deadline coming up, you should reevaluate your notes and keep only the uttermost essential ones. You may need to make compromises and summarize an entire chapter in only a few cards. You should suspend all non-essential cards and only resume them once you feel the workload becomes manageable.

Edit: Hitting hard too often may also be a symptom of violating rule 2 (learn before you memorize) from the twenty rules of formulating knowledge.

Anyway, I don’t really have experience with using Anki for exams, so take my advice with a grain of salt. Good luck and keep it up—and most importantly stay healthy!


A good strategy to prevent ease hell is to set up more learning steps. These are intervals you can set up in your deck options that basically hard-code the intervals until your graduating interval is reached.
In this phase, the ease factor won’t change.

Steps are set in minutes (use Google for quick calculation from days to minutes).
The default setting (1 10) is graduating cards wayyy to fast. Also, seeing a failed new card after a minute is just using your very-short-term memory. I recommend a learning phase of around a week and a first step between 10 and 20 minutes (see my settings below to orient yourself).
The graduating interval should be continuing the learning steps, so it must be higher than the last step.

Also, try to figure out which starting ease is best for you.
(For the medical field, the default 250% are way too high, so I went for 180% but I might even lower it a bit.)

Also: I never press easy. You might as well suspend the card because you should already know the info if you’re pressing easy.

Lastly, if you decide on using more steps, I recommend a switch to the “experimental” 2.1 scheduler, because it allows for a more fine-tuned learning phase by adding a “hard” button for learning-cards.

These settings are by no means ideal (not yet sure about the lapse intervals), but they are a big step up from default imo:

I used these settings for a big exam next thursday (2700 cards) and I started a month ago, but really started two weeks ago with the hardcore learning phase. Most cards are graduating now and when they do, I can send them off with the good feeling that I really internalised their information.
(peak was 1381 cards, last week’s average around 1000)

For a rough estimation of the workload with different settings, use Anki Simulator.


Thank you both, Lilalas and kleinerpirat.

  1. The changes you have made will make the Retention worse.

2, The retention charts – they have to be made for each major deck so that each deck intervals can be adjusted separately.

  1. Make the charts for one major deck; time range - maximum 3month.

Honestly, this is what I did:
I made three filtered decks
One with 1 day overdue cards
One with 1 week overdue cards
and one with all the remaining overdue cards

Prioritize the one day overdue cards firsts o you dont make your situation worse and then do the one week overdue etc

and every day just rebuild these three decks until you have it all completed. 1671 is completely doable I promise you- I did this technique when I had 7000+ cards due!

If you would like to join the Anki group on discord for motivation, click below: