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Continual but random crashing/freezing - hardware acceleration problem


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I am new to Affinity photo, and I'm extremely impressed except that if I have hardware acceleration enabled every session results in the application freezing with 'application not responding'. I'm not able to reproduce this with some particular 'recipe' and there doesn't seem to be a relationship between the problem and a particular operation, but I never make it through a session without it freezing at some point, at which point I have to force quit the application and hope the recovery file is recent. Sometimes this happens after 10 minutes, sometimes an hour. I can't find any pattern, but it always happens immediately after I click some operation, which can be anything - even 'save' or whatever. 

I have checked the list of known software conflicts and I don't think any of these describes my problem. 

I discovered that if I turn off hardware acceleration the software becomes stable, but obviously this means that I then don't benefit from the acceleration. 

I am using the latest release of Affinity and windows version 11 on a ryzen 5950X pc with a NVIDIA RTX 3070Ti graphics card. All my software is fully up to date and I tried re-installing affinity. 

I'm not sure if this is technically a bug or something else so please forgive me if I'm posting in the wrong place.

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Hi, @MichaelJCand welcome to the forums.

The hardware acceleration works, unfortunately not with all combinations of CPU and GPU. The problem is that the drivers for the graphics cards are all optimised for games, but not for graphics programmes. NVIDIA still offers the option of using the Studio drivers instead of the Game Ready drivers. But even this does not guarantee that the hardware acceleration will work.

AMD Ryzen 7 5700x | INTEL Arc A770 | 32 GB DDR4 3200MHz | Windows 11 Pro (22621.1194)
Affinity Suite V2.0.4
Better translations with: https://www.deepl.com/translator  
SVG preview in Windows Explorer with "SVG-See  Download SVG-See

"The biggest mistake is the arrogance to always believe that others are to blame."

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Thanks for your reply and for telling me about the studio drivers, I didn't know that and I'll give it a go. It would be helpful if there was a list of 'known good' systems, or at least some notification that this can be a problem. Finding out the hard way and having to discover the problem was rather painful and spoiled my first impressions of the software, which otherwise I think is fantastic.

Is there any documentation of which features use GPU acceleration? Is it all or just some? Some more than others?

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Hi @MichaelJC,

Welcome to the Affinity Forums :)

Sorry to hear you've had trouble with this feature - due to the complexity of Hardware Acceleration and the literally infinite combinations of hardware for Windows PCs, our team are aware that certain setups can experience issues with this enabled, such as the 'Not Responding' behaviour you're seeing.

Our team are constantly working to improve this functionality and I will be logging the specifications you've provided here with our developers, so they can keep track of any potential hardware / software incompatibilities etc.

2 hours ago, MichaelJC said:

It would be helpful if there was a list of 'known good' systems

Unfortunately, due to the aforementioned endless list of Windows system specs, including hardware, software (both drivers and 3rd party software) Windows update versions etc - we simply cannot provide such a list, my apologies.

2 hours ago, MichaelJC said:

Finding out the hard way and having to discover the problem was rather painful and spoiled my first impressions of the software, which otherwise I think is fantastic

We certainly appreciate your feedback and I will be sure to pass this through to our development team - it has been discussed internally to have this feature disabled by default, so that users can enable it themselves, should they want to test the feature, and then accurate feedback can be given between the speed improvements with this option enabled, and any issues the user may have experienced since enabling.

2 hours ago, MichaelJC said:

Is there any documentation of which features use GPU acceleration? Is it all or just some? Some more than others?

As I understand it, with the option enabled any Pixel based rendering or calculations will be accelerated by the GPU, which includes brush work, selections, adjustment layers etc.

 

As Komatos has recommended, please ensure your GPU drivers are fully up to date from the manufactures website for the best possible results with Hardware Acceleration, as these are often newer than drivers installed via Windows Updates etc.

I hope this helps :)

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Thanks for getting back to me, I appreciate your responsiveness. 

I've installed the relevant studio driver and I'll see how that plays out. 

Disabling GPU acceleration by default would have been better for me, and some sort of warning dialog when enabling it would be helpful too. The software seems to run fine without GPU acceleration for my use and I certainly value stability over small improvements in speed. 

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  • 6 months later...
On 5/19/2022 at 5:19 AM, Dan C said:
On 5/19/2022 at 2:31 AM, MichaelJC said:

It would be helpful if there was a list of 'known good' systems

Unfortunately, due to the aforementioned endless list of Windows system specs, including hardware, software (both drivers and 3rd party software) Windows update versions etc - we simply cannot provide such a list, my apologies.

What about listing some tested CPU/GPU configs/combos that worked, at least?  From what I'm reading in other posts, it looks like many AMD processors are problematic.  It's not clear what Graphics cards are problematic.

Maybe look at your Tech Support tickets and calculate the number of tickets that contain Intel versus AMD CPUs and the same for GPUs, like Nvidia, Asus, MSI?

Edited by pinetree
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@pinetree

5 hours ago, pinetree said:

...
Maybe look at your Tech Support tickets and calculate the number of tickets that contain Intel versus AMD CPUs and the same for GPUs, like Nvidia, Asus, MSI?

If the users would/could name their hardware and software configurations properly, then one could knit a decent statistic out of it.

Often, outdated drivers or missing updates are the cause that the hardware acceleration does not run or runs incorrectly.

AMD Ryzen 7 5700x | INTEL Arc A770 | 32 GB DDR4 3200MHz | Windows 11 Pro (22621.1194)
Affinity Suite V2.0.4
Better translations with: https://www.deepl.com/translator  
SVG preview in Windows Explorer with "SVG-See  Download SVG-See

"The biggest mistake is the arrogance to always believe that others are to blame."

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