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verysame

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I understand people want to add a lot of cool and nice new features.

I say it's time to make only two requests: stability and performance.

 

I know devs are already working in this area, but here's the problem.

They have been working on improving in those two areas for months now, at least on the Windows side (that's how long I have been following the developments).

Nonetheless, there have been requests to add this or that thing, and part of these requests have been filled, taking out precious time to improve in the two main areas above.

Now, I don't know how many of the frequenters here are using (or trying to use) Affinity's products in a professional production environment.

I'm personally trying and when it comes to work fast and get things done, colored layers, pen's improvement or whatever other request is filling these forums, don't matter one single bit. What really matters is: working fast (hence a fast program that can keep up) and stability.

It's like a building's foundation, without it adding windows, doors and so on, it's like building on top of a precarious wire frame.

 

I never complained about stability and performance, and I'm not certainly starting now. I know it takes time and lot of work. But since people keep requesting new features and, one way or another, a part of these have to be taken into account, this can only slow down other areas.

 

Let's get Affinity Photo and Designer working with no major issues first, then let's embellish it.

 

This comes after hours spent working (especially with Photo) and getting consistent crashes, odd behavior (my other post Brush doesn't work) and being forced to either restart Photo or re-open the documents. I know I have to deal with this, there are many reasons why this has to be expected (these are young software, resources are limited and that's all fine, especially considered how much I spent for them!). But when I read to add this or that other feature when the programs are not even stable and fast yet, it really sounds counter intuitive.

 

So, I would personally take a break, let them take AP&AD to a more stable stage, and then let's make our requests again.


Andrew
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I may disagree here. Actually, our team still don't use it in production after testing, not due to performance, but due to features missing, like layer colors, cycling tools, unsticky settings and lot of enhancement needed here and there, actually slowing workflow. Performance could be better for sure, but working fast is actually more a workflow thing than a pure performance thing. And regarding workflow, for all day long production, we really miss stuff.

https://forum.affinity.serif.com/index.php?/topic/34112-apwin-151-complete-feedback-wishes/


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I'm going through your list KiboOst - not done yet, there's quite a lot to read :)

 

So far it seems they are valid points to me. But let's consider this: would you rather wait months (being optimistic I suppose), if not more to get some of those requests integrated or have Photo & Designer stable and fast soon? Of course, that's all hypothetical, I have no idea how long it could take to get the apps stable and fast. But assuming for a moment that this could be the scenario, would you really wait that long to get the features baked into something that, still, will be unstable and slow?

What would be the benefit after all the waiting?

 

For sure, there are many things I miss and which I'd like to have fixed or properly implemented. But at the end of the day, I can get the work done if I have to look at the toolbar to make sure I'm using the paint brush tool and not the color replacement tool. In case I'm using the wrong tool it takes a sec. to switch to the right tool. Whereas, having crashes, or working and seeing the performance getting slower and slower as the document increases (and I'm working on a double Xeon here on a SSD drive) has no workaround.

So, do you really think that getting those features implemented, most likely sacrificing other parts of the development such as stability and performance, is worth it?


Andrew
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Yes, you're right of course. My experience with AP anyway is that it is rather fast, and didn't got crashes. So for me, workflow is first. But you're right, number one point for production is stability. Performance could be better, but it's not a stop breaker actually.

But yes, before we use it in production, it will have to have all three: stability, workflow improvements, performances :wub:

Actually, it's a good start and nice hopes. But stability/performance alone won't make it production ready.


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... and in the meantime, I just got another crash  :mellow:

Trying to finish some work, It's been a long day indeed.


Andrew
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I understand people want to add a lot of cool and nice new features.

I say it's time to make only two requests: stability and performance.

Hi verysame,

I can understand your position since apparently your main concern is the crash with Photo, but I also agree with KiboOst. Let me explain:

I'm not a professional, just an individual who discovered the vector design in 2001 after using Microsoft Publisher.

Currently I only very seldom use Designer because it lacks tools "indispensable" to perform certain tasks. I tried to remake with Designer logos or other drawings that I had made with other software and for many of them I am blocked, for example by the absence of tool perspective or envelope (among others) .

The workarounds proposed by the members of this forum are always astute and welcome but it does not exist for everything. These workarounds are longer to implement than a dedicated function and cause professionals to waste time and money.

I must add that I have no problems with stability or operation with Designer 1.5.1.43, so that's not why I use it only rarely. I continue to learn and I take my trouble patiently hoping that future updates will bring me the missing tools, as you expect better stability. The needs are different according to the users and it is difficult to fill everyone at the same time.

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[...] The needs are different according to the users and it is difficult to fill everyone at the same time.

 

Absolutely.

Two things: it seems your main area of interest is vector design and I should have been more specific as the main issue to me seems to be Photo.

 

The other thing is, I guess at this point it would make sense trying to get an estimation of how stable/fast is Photo for the other users, and also take into account what's the type of work done with Photo. My usual document easily goes from a minimum of 60mb to 1gb, being 500-600mb the average.


Andrew
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Absolutely.

Two things: it seems your main area of interest is vector design and I should have been more specific as the main issue to me seems to be Photo.

 

The other thing is, I guess at this point it would make sense trying to get an estimation of how stable/fast is Photo for the other users, and also take into account what's the type of work done with Photo. My usual document easily goes from a minimum of 60mb to 1gb, being 500-600mb the average.

Actually, I use only Designer, I do not have Photo.

 

For your second point, it will definitely be useful to have feedback from other Photo users with the types of work done. It is likely that not everyone gets files as large as yours and do not have a crash. Not being a user of Photo I am not qualified to debate. :)

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I pretty much have to agree w. @verysames view. Serif must maintain a core focus. Tho' obviously talented, the personnel ratio between Serif and an immense enterprise like Adobe is what, 1 to 75/100?

 

Yes, there are lots of features that really should be implemented. But reliability is essential to production.

 

As a side question, AD has an auto save, default every 5 minutes. Doesn't AP also? 


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[...]

 

As a side question, AD has an auto save, default every 5 minutes. Doesn't AP also? 

 

Yes, it does but in some occasions, it didn't work and I lost the work done.


Andrew
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Win10 x64 AMD Threadripper 1950x, 64GB, 512GB M.2 PCIe NVMe SSD + 2TB, dual GTX 1080ti
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As a side question, AD has an auto save, default every 5 minutes. Doesn't AP also? 

 

 

Yes, it does but in some occasions, it didn't work and I lost the work done.

 

For what it's worth, I've never liked auto-save. The function has a nasty habit of kicking in at inconvenient moments (and, as noted, it doesn't always work properly anyway). I much prefer to save manually following any major changes, which may be after as little as two or three minutes or may be only after half an hour or more. Doing it manually also affords me the opportunity to do a 'Save As...' instead of a 'Save', so that I can have different versions available if I decide to revert; this also protects me against the potentially disastrous effects of doing a bad save on top of a good one.


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Affinity Designer/Photo/Publisher 1.7.3.481 • Windows 10 Home (4th gen Core i3 CPU)
Affinity Photo for iPad 1.7.3.155 • Designer for iPad 1.7.3.1 • iOS 12.4.1 (iPad Air 2)

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For what it's worth, I've never like auto-save. The function has a nasty habit of kicking in at inconvenient moments (and, as noted, it doesn't always work properly anyway). I much prefer to save manually following any major changes, which may be after as little as two or three minutes or may be only after half an hour or more. Doing it manually also affords me the opportunity to do a 'Save As...' instead of a 'Save', so that I can have different versions available if I decide to revert; this also protects me against the potentially disastrous effects of doing a bad save on top of a good one.

 

Agree with that and I think you can feel my frustration as yesterday I was literally hitting CTRL+S every minute. The moment I didn't it crashed.

 

Probably was the same frustration that made me think about the feature requests we fill this forum with and how important instead is having Photo at a stable stage first.


Andrew
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Win10 x64 AMD Threadripper 1950x, 64GB, 512GB M.2 PCIe NVMe SSD + 2TB, dual GTX 1080ti
Dual Monitor Dell Ultra HD 4k P2715Q 27-Inch

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Long time ago, a fellow asked on a 3D forum "How long did your render last?" Folks came back w. stuff like "I had one that took 7 days." Which was followed by "I had 1 frame that took 2 weeks" To which the OP responded, "No, you don't understand. I meant how long between crashes? My record was 9 minutes."

 

So, yeah, I hit save every few minutes. I've never trusted either OS or app stability. Just hoped for it.

 

I did maintain departmental files. I don't recall the software, but I set up a system that backed the databases 4 times per work day to our NAS, and then triplicated them to other storage devices. It only worked on the various desktops when they were momentarily idle. Never had anyone complain.


iMac 27" Retina, c. 2015: OS X 10.11.5: 3.3 GHz I c-5: 32 Gb,  AMD Radeon R9 M290 2048 Mb

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gdenby,

 

I'm not sure to understand: are you saying that crashes are the norm and we only need to be prepared?


Andrew
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... Tho' obviously talented, the personnel ratio between Serif and an immense enterprise like Adobe is what, 1 to 75/100?

 

I think it's more than 150 to 1.  Just a small difference... :)

 

Adobe = 14154 employees (Source: Adobe Systems Investor Relations Data Sheet from 2016)

Serif = 90 employees (Source: Nottingham Post article from 2016)

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In regards to the last point, I want to be clear: I'm not complaining about the fact that crashes happen. Like I said, this has to be expected considered several factors (the age of the software, the resources on Serif's side and so on).


Andrew
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Win10 x64 AMD Threadripper 1950x, 64GB, 512GB M.2 PCIe NVMe SSD + 2TB, dual GTX 1080ti
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gdenby,

 

I'm not sure to understand: are you saying that crashes are the norm and we only need to be prepared?

 

Crashes used to be the norm. Many were hardware related, and now mostly fixed. Hard drives were very very delicate. I had a 500 Mb HD, huge at the time, have a head crash that wiped out 6 months of work. The machine literally ripped itself to death. The various chips would overheat easily. I had to put a desk fan next to a production machine that I maintained , and instructed the users to run it during use. It was standard to save and shut down for at least 30 sec. to let the hardware cool down when programs started becoming "flakey."

 

Crappy software just made things worse. Developers might try for a performance boost by writing to addresses that were designated for system use, but at the time not well protected. Etc.

 

So my experience conditioned me. Save and back up. Often. By Habit. They're just machines, and programmers aren't godzzes.


iMac 27" Retina, c. 2015: OS X 10.11.5: 3.3 GHz I c-5: 32 Gb,  AMD Radeon R9 M290 2048 Mb

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Got it,

 

Thanks for the explanation.

Like I said, I agree with this attitude. Being prepared is always the best approach.

That said, users can't live with the fear of imminent crashes, doesn't help the creative flow nor the focus.

I personally have to deal with a good amount of software:

  • 3ds Max, which surprisingly has got stable, 2017 almost never crash here
  • C4D, 17 was quite good, with 18 is not going so well
  • PFTrack, never had an issue
  • Blender 3D, very, very stable
  • Houdini, stable
  • Adobe CS6, stable, CC, unstable
  • Nuke, Stable

Anyway, my topic wasn't only about stability but also performance which is another critical element to me.


Andrew
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Win10 x64 AMD Threadripper 1950x, 64GB, 512GB M.2 PCIe NVMe SSD + 2TB, dual GTX 1080ti
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Regarding stability & to a lesser extent performance, the Mac versions are significantly better than the Windows ones. There are two main reasons for this:

 

1. The obvious one: the Mac versions have been in development longer.

2. The maybe not so obvious one: there are relatively few Mac hardware configurations to support, maybe 20-30 at most, while there are many times more Windows ones.

 

So there are two ways Affinity could deal with this:

 

1. Delay adding any new features to the apps until the Windows ones reach comparable levels of stability & performance, or

2. Do what they are doing now, which is to work on doing both concurrently.

 

Since the Windows development team is separate from the Mac one, the first alternative does not make much sense -- it would mean the Mac people would be just sitting around doing nothing.


Affinity Photo 1.7.3, Affinity Designer 1.7.3, Affinity Publisher 1.7.3; macOS High Sierra 10.13.6 iMac (27-inch, Late 2012); 2.9GHz i5 CPU; NVIDIA GeForce GTX 660M; 8GB RAM
Affinity Photo 1.7.3.155 & Affinity Designer 1.7.3.1 for iPad; 6th Generation iPad 32 GB; Apple Pencil; iPadOS 13.1.2

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R C-R,

 

Sorry, I had missed your post.

You've some good points.

As for the two ways you're mentioning, I actually think it wouldn't be that bad going with the first option and I don't think Mac devs should wait either.

Yes, that would mean having the Windows versions behind for a while but also getting rid of a good amount of performance/stability issues would speed up the process later on when it comes to catch-up on the features to add, which, by the way, will unlikely be that many. 


Andrew
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Win10 x64 AMD Threadripper 1950x, 64GB, 512GB M.2 PCIe NVMe SSD + 2TB, dual GTX 1080ti
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I understand people want to add a lot of cool and nice new features.

I say it's time to make only two requests: stability and performance.

 

I know devs are already working in this area, but here's the problem.

They have been working on improving in those two areas for months now, at least on the Windows side (that's how long I have been following the developments).

Nonetheless, there have been requests to add this or that thing, and part of these requests have been filled, taking out precious time to improve in the two main areas above.

Now, I don't know how many of the frequenters here are using (or trying to use) Affinity's products in a professional production environment.

I'm personally trying and when it comes to work fast and get things done, colored layers, pen's improvement or whatever other request is filling these forums, don't matter one single bit. What really matters is: working fast (hence a fast program that can keep up) and stability.

It's like a building's foundation, without it adding windows, doors and so on, it's like building on top of a precarious wire frame.

 

I never complained about stability and performance, and I'm not certainly starting now. I know it takes time and lot of work. But since people keep requesting new features and, one way or another, a part of these have to be taken into account, this can only slow down other areas.

 

Let's get Affinity Photo and Designer working with no major issues first, then let's embellish it.

 

This comes after hours spent working (especially with Photo) and getting consistent crashes, odd behavior (my other post Brush doesn't work) and being forced to either restart Photo or re-open the documents. I know I have to deal with this, there are many reasons why this has to be expected (these are young software, resources are limited and that's all fine, especially considered how much I spent for them!). But when I read to add this or that other feature when the programs are not even stable and fast yet, it really sounds counter intuitive.

 

So, I would personally take a break, let them take AP&AD to a more stable stage, and then let's make our requests again.

I agree 100%.

 

I stopped using Affinity Photo after trying for a week and realizing it needs stability and speed in order to present a legitimate alternative to Adobe's Lightroom/Photoshop combo. The potential is there, the momentum is there, but the performance is not (at least in a production environment).

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Yes, that would mean having the Windows versions behind for a while but also getting rid of a good amount of performance/stability issues would speed up the process later on when it comes to catch-up on the features to add, which, by the way, will unlikely be that many. 

It also needs to be considered that some Windows users are reporting no performance or (more commonly) stability problems. This suggests that the reported issues could have multiple causes, including hardware, OS version, & system configuration differences, plus various kinds of software conflicts. It could take a very long time to sort all that out, particularly in the absence of comprehensive data about the affected & unaffected systems.

 

So it would probably speed things up considerably if Windows users could supply much more of that data -- the CPU/GPU/RAM specs are only a small part of that.

 

It also means that Windows users not experiencing these issues would not benefit at all from a moratorium on adding new features or improving existing ones. It is likely they would not be happy about this, particularly if they are waiting for something critical to their workflows that is already on the roadmap.

 

Yet another consequence that must be considered is feature parity across the two platforms is very important for those using both the Mac & Windows versions. Switching back & forth between them would create significant problems if the Windows versions fell behind in this respect.


Affinity Photo 1.7.3, Affinity Designer 1.7.3, Affinity Publisher 1.7.3; macOS High Sierra 10.13.6 iMac (27-inch, Late 2012); 2.9GHz i5 CPU; NVIDIA GeForce GTX 660M; 8GB RAM
Affinity Photo 1.7.3.155 & Affinity Designer 1.7.3.1 for iPad; 6th Generation iPad 32 GB; Apple Pencil; iPadOS 13.1.2

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As for multi-platform users, yes that's a good point, although I wonder how many multi-OS users are using Affinity.

For what concerns the users who might not need performance and stability now, I think it must be thought as a preemptive measure as no one knows how the needs of those users may change in the near future (granted, they might not, but who knows?).


Andrew
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Win10 x64 AMD Threadripper 1950x, 64GB, 512GB M.2 PCIe NVMe SSD + 2TB, dual GTX 1080ti
Dual Monitor Dell Ultra HD 4k P2715Q 27-Inch

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For what concerns the users who might not need performance and stability now, I think it must be thought as a preemptive measure as no one knows how the needs of those users may change in the near future (granted, they might not, but who knows?).

I an not sure what you mean by that: there are Windows users not experiencing performance or stability problems, so it isn't as if they do not "need" that, it is that they already have it.


Affinity Photo 1.7.3, Affinity Designer 1.7.3, Affinity Publisher 1.7.3; macOS High Sierra 10.13.6 iMac (27-inch, Late 2012); 2.9GHz i5 CPU; NVIDIA GeForce GTX 660M; 8GB RAM
Affinity Photo 1.7.3.155 & Affinity Designer 1.7.3.1 for iPad; 6th Generation iPad 32 GB; Apple Pencil; iPadOS 13.1.2

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What I meant is that there are users who don't experience performance problems now, not only because for some it is 'simply' working, but because of their working scenario.

That survey helped me to get a grasp of what the situation is. Most likely they don't have those problems because they deal with smaller files and most of them don't even develop RAW.

If for any reason they should soon change their workflow their needs will change accordingly and they'll experience the same issues as some of us do.


Andrew
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Win10 x64 AMD Threadripper 1950x, 64GB, 512GB M.2 PCIe NVMe SSD + 2TB, dual GTX 1080ti
Dual Monitor Dell Ultra HD 4k P2715Q 27-Inch

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