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Earlio

Levels Histogram (Graph) not appearing

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This seems to happen randomly.  Sometimes the graph showing the levels shows, sometimes not, sometimes does not appear immediately, and then pops up. Very frustrating.

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Hey Earlio,

When this happens, could you switch over to the Develop Persona and see if it appears there? Within the Develop Persona, the app allocates more CPU to render the Histogram so it should be instant. However, within the Photo Persona, the Histogram doesn't get the allocated CPU power so it can take a bit longer. I've seen it take 10 seconds or so before but if you say sometimes it never appears, then that is concerning. 

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Hi Chris,

There would seem to be a misunderstanding.  There is no Levels layer in the Develop Persona.

What appears to be happening is that the Levels layer is not updating immediately, and now is further manifesting with the Levels setting from the previous image, looping for a few moments, then updating.  The graph also often disappears for several seconds as previously mentioned (I have been somewhat more patient and in one case waited for 14 seconds for a Levels layer to update).  So far, as long as I am prepared to wait, the graphic display of the Histogram in the Levels layer has eventually appeared.

Surely, this cannot be right for a layer to take this long to update?

I have attached a video of the issue I am experiencing.

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Hey Earlio,

I was asking if the Histogram Panel updated instantly for you in the Develo Persona. I was just saying that any histogram in Photo Persona may have a second or two delay but the Histogram Panel in Develop should be instant. So the fact we do not allocate additional CPU power in Photo Persona should apply to any Histogram.

I do not think it should be taking as long as it does in your video to update. A second or two I could probably live with but your delay was substantial. 

I don't know if Metal compute has an affect on its speed as enabling/disabling it on my machine doesn't make any difference. Do you have Metal compute enabled or disabled?

Does the delay happen with any image? 

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Hi Chris,

The Metal issue would seem to be a recurring theme with my 2017 MacBook. It is extensively discussed in another thread.  Metal is enabled.

I  waited more than 7 months for the update to solve the Metal Acceleration issues post Mojave update, and could not use Affinity Photo during that time due to the lack of speed due to not being able to use Metal at all, and had to go back to Photoshop during this period.

It happens with every image.  It would seem to update immediately in the Develop Personal, I use RAW, so I would have noticed any lag.  I have just tried another image, and it seems to update instantly when back in Develop Persona.  The Levels layer seems to remember the last setting, and this may be where the issue lie, I cannot think of a reason to retain the setting for the previous image in Levels.  I have also noted that the update of the graph (Histogram) in Levels is particularly slow when working on a selection.

I have tried with Metal disabled, and the issue does not seem to replicate.  I tried with several images, but all seemed to update the graph immediately, however turning off Metal is not an option for me due to the long wait when developing RAW files, and the fact that Parallel Processing is then disabled when Batch Processing.

The amount of time taken for the graph to update varies hugely, and sometimes does not update at all (I left one image for over 20 minutes and the graph had still not appeared).  It would seem to have no relationship to the size of the image, to what else is running (I closed down every other app running except Activity Monitor) and the CPU Usage was under 12% - so does not appear to be a resource issue.  You can see the settings being retained in the video. The indicator lines in the initial graph are those from the previous image, and this information would appear to be retained until the graph updates when the lines return to the default 0% Black and 100% White.  There would appear to be no retention of the previous Levels setting with Metal disabled.

Obviously it is not an option to switch between Metal enabled / disabled as this requires a restart, which is time consuming.

MacBook Pro (15-inch, 2017)

2.9 GHz Intel Core i7

16 GB 2133 MHz LPDDR3

I am disappointed that despite a very long wait for a solution, I still cannot use Affinity Photo to its full potential.

 

Edited by Earlio
Added screen recording

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45 minutes ago, Earlio said:

The Levels layer seems to remember the last setting, and this may be where the issue lie, I cannot think of a reason to retain the setting for the previous image in Levels.

You are absolutely spot on here. I never even noticed that. Mine only takes a second or two to update but it definitely does load the previous Histogram settings from the previous image's adjustment.

I would not expect you to have to wait so long for the Histogram to update... 20+ minutes for the graph to not update is alarming :( 

I appreciate the feedback about Metal compute and I know it is something that everyone wants to be able to use. I'll be feeding all this back to the developers.

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Hi all,

I am facing the same lag (typically around 5s) on the histogram with the levels adjustment layer. Deactivating Metal and switching back to OpenGL fixed it for me. I also noticed layer masks thumbnails were updating way way faster. 

Not ideal though: the screen refreshes way faster with Metal selected in place of OpenGL

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Hi,

Thanks for the post.  Seems to be a similar issue to that which I have been experiencing since the Mojave upgrade.

The problem with the workaround is that without Metal, the speed of (for instance Batch Processing, Tone Mapping,  and other Processor heavy actions) is hugely effected, so going back to OpenGL is not really an option for me.  So the updating of the Levels Panel is a pain, but not enough of a pain to make APhoto unusable, just frustratingly slow when I use it.

Good to know, however.

 

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Just to clarify, I saw this issue with levels also in 1.6 version.  Sometimes the histogram would show up and sometimes it would not.   Thanks

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On 7/7/2019 at 6:21 PM, hanshab said:

Just to clarify, I saw this issue with levels also in 1.6 version.  Sometimes the histogram would show up and sometimes it would not.   Thanks

Thank you for the comment.  Did you also notice the Graph on Levels remembering the settings from the previous image?

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This issue has not been fixed.

I still have to wait - sometimes form a minute or more for the Histogram in Levels to appear.

I do not believe that this is a feature.  When will you guys work out a fix?

With regard to the post by Gerrit Velthuis, here are my details,  and a screenshot showing Metal Acceleration IS enabled.  Turning it off does not seem to make any difference to this bug.

  Model Name: MacBook Pro

  Model Identifier: MacBookPro14,3

  Processor Name: Intel Core i7

  Processor Speed: 2.9 GHz

  Number of Processors: 1

  Total Number of Cores: 4

  L2 Cache (per Core): 256 KB

  L3 Cache: 8 MB

  Hyper-Threading Technology: Enabled

  Memory: 16 GB

  Boot ROM Version: 198.71.1.0.0

  SMC Version (system): 2.45f0

You have seen the videos...

Thanks,

Earl

 

Screenshot 2019-09-17 at 11.41.21.jpg

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Hi Earlio,
Yes, this wasn't fixed yet. I'm not able to reproduce it here - the long delay - but I also see the previous image histogram before it updates however it takes just a couple seconds to update for me. I find strange nobody else has reported such an obvious issue in the forums before. Do you mind creating a new user account and try the same procedure there?  Does it update in a couple seconds or behave the same way?

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Hi MEB,

Can you clarify what you mean by create a new user account.  Do you mean a new user account on my Mac, (a guest account) if so, I have already tried this and there is no discernible difference.

I am not sure what is going on here.  You acknowledged that the LEVELS Histogram does not update immediately and that it is also retains the previous setting.  I have tried a lot of fixes - I have closed all open apps except APh, I have force quit all non critical processes in order to establish if another app was causing the issue - I have even tried in Safe Mode.  No change.

The main Histogram appears to update without issue, and without significant delay, but the same graph either takes quite a bit if time to update, if at all in the Levels panel.  I have left my MBP for more than half an hour before trying again without the Histogram completing the update to the graph.  Often by closing the Levels layer, the Histogram will update after a short delay, however, Levels are one of the most used panels, and the fact that Serif appear unable to identify and fix this issue gives me no confidence in the product for the future, especially as I was basically unable to use Affinity for 7 months due to no fix for the Metal Acceleration issues I previously discussed in other threads.

Do you guys have a 2017 MBP on which to test the issue?  I do not know if there are some hardware quirks with this particular model which do. not appear in prior or later models.

I am getting to the end of my patience with Affinity Photo, and I have also purchased Designer and Publisher.  In designer, the Levels panel also takes a second or two to update, or longer if the Levels panel is being used on a selection.  With Photo it is intermittent, with some images updating quickly and others never (or at least within half an hour).

If you are unable to replicate the issue, will there be a fix? Or should I bite the bullet and go back to Adobe?

The way that Serif deals with the issues I have experienced so far has been poor, unsympathetic and unapologetic.  If there is no fix, I will ask for a refund, as the product is not fit for purpose in my case.

I am hugely frustrated, disappointed and have wasted a huge amount of my time with the learning curve changing to APh,  the 7 month issue that drove me back to Adobe last time, and the cost to my business.

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Hi, MEB, Hi Earlio.

Earlio, I read the whole thread you started somewhere in 2018 (I think). I did turn-off Metal in the prefs, which resulted in a better performance. Was just wondering if Serif had tackled the issue.

Like you I stepped into APh as an alternative for Adobe PS (I have been using it since its first appearance around 1990). AP gives impressive performance for the price, but the overall impression still isn't very consistent and sometimes even rather buggy.

There's lots of issues, for example: APh won't close a file after saving and keeps asking if I want to save; a file is closed but an empty grey window stays behind; every now and then the app crashes (not often, but still); the graph issue in Levels. There is no consistency in keystrokes to confirm actions (Enter sometimes doesn't work where expected).

I'm not a heavy user, so I tend to be rather forgiving (considering the price), but I agree with you that the way these bugs are treated (and the way Serif communicates about the subjects) doesn't generate much confidence for the future of the program.

MEB, I attached my specs

Schermafbeelding 2019-09-17 om 13.51.16.jpg

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Hi Gerrit,

I agree entirely.  I am sorry to hear of your issues.  I note that you have the same model, and some of these issues seem to affect only the 2017 MBP.  Hence my question if Serif have a 2017 model to test on.

After my last experience, I feel that Serif do not consider the user, and the issues that recur are dealt with by either ignoring the issue and hoping it will go away.  I am not happy about going back to PS - the cost is one issue, but I readily admit that the way Masks are handled, the ability to see Blending Modes in a live setting and the Selection algorithm are the things I will miss most when switching back.

The bug reporting response has been poor to non-existent and It is hugely disappointing as many other users have defended Serif, and encouraged me to stick with APh, but if the software is unfit for purpose, then I cannot see any other solution.

MEB, why wait until another user raises the same issue before giving me the information that the issue cannot be replicated?  An organisation need to communicate with its users in order to maintain trust and confidence.

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Hi Earlio,
Yes, I was referring to a new Mac user account/running the system without any third-party utilities running in background to at least rule this out of the equation as you were running a few. Apparently you did that already - thanks for letting me know. If we were able to reproduce the issue here we certainly could do something about it - I didn't say it couldn't be replicated because we are not done yet and are trying to collect additional info in the hope to reproduce this.

I totally understand your frustration but some issues are harder to check than others - they may be limited to very specific circumstances/settings, hardware configs or a combination of both. Any information provided by other users can be useful to limit/circumscribe the issue/diagnose the cause thus the request for Gerrit Velthuis's Mac specs.

After reading the whole thread seems this is indeed a Metal acceleration issue and apparently limited to specific configs/graphic chips - I'm adding this info to our log and trying to get some feedback from the dev team to see if we can get to the bottom of the problem. I appreciate your patience and support.

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Hi MEB,

 

Thank you for the prompt reply.

 I note that you have not answered the question as the whether you have tried to run this on the MBP 2017 model for replication.  The issues seem to be affecting this particular model, and does not seem to be replicated on other models.  I thought that it would be interesting to get an Apple perspective on this, and I am in contact with Apple as to the reason why I am experiencing these issues with APh, and the hardware issues that might be at the heart of the inability to get a stable, working app.

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Hi Earlio,

I checked this yesterday on our 2017 MBP and I was seeing a delay of around 25 seconds at times. Nowhere near the 20 min mark but you wouldn't want to wait for either...

I noticed in your video that you had a selection whilst you performed the Levels Adjustment—could you clarify if the selection makes a difference at all? Selections can notoriously impede performance at times so it's worth investigating! 

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Hi Chris B,

I have no sensible response from Apple, they have basically said this is an issue for the developer.  I have also followed the advice of Apple and completed a clean install of Mojave.

OK, I have been spending a lot of time trying to replicate the behaviours of AP with the Levels graph.

On the Levels graph the biggest delays seem to be when working with selections, as you have noted.  However there are still times when the graph does not update, I have now left on image overnight, with the Mac set to stay awake - after 10 hours, the graph on a selection still fails to appear.  In particular, the smaller the selection, the longer the timespan for appearance of the graph.  I have checked that the Levels Panel has something to work on, having selected a small portion of a a full colour image (approx 300 x 300px) which is monochrome so should give a pretty solid graph, I have tried selection with a number of small areas with in full colour, and the issue remains.  

The controls for the Histogram still work, but the graph (which is designed to be a graphic representation of the image portion) often takes an inordinate amount of time to update, sometimes not updating at all.

Frustrating.

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I'm pretty sure the reason it takes so long is that we do not give the Histogram any additional support from the CPU outside the Develop Persona. Why your particular model 2017 MBP takes forever is a mystery to me. Both myself and MEB have bumped the dev report a few times but we've received no feedback other than what I've just mentioned.

I can't imagine it is image specific as I imagine you've tried with a number of formats. 

I'm sorry Apple couldn't offer any useful advice and I'm sorry you have spent so much time on this without a solution. I really think we need to wait for the developers to come back to us :(  

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I understand the issue, and will await a response.

In the meantime, with OS Catalina coming in October, I am wondering whether to update.  Given the issues suffered last time and there app being unusable for months, and the fact that the 2017 MBP seems to be part of the problem, I would appreciate your advice on updating.  It may solve the issue, but I am also concerned that I may end up with the loss of functionality that occurred last time.  Would you recommend updating, or waiting for a while before taking the chance?

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I'd just like to chime in to say that for me, on a 2018 MacBook Pro 15", the histogram is erratic if metal is switched on. Sometimes it's pretty slow to update. 20+ seconds sounds about right. Also the histogram underlays in the levels and curves popups sometimes take a long time to show up. Often long enough I stop waiting for them. I'm not sure if they would after several minutes, I never waited that long. Also, I use the Marquee option a lot for the histogram and with metal compute on it's useless: chances are it will never update to reflect the marquee selection. Or at least, I'm not going to sit and wait for 5 minutes to check.

When I switch off metal compute all of this is essentially instant, updates to the histogram take < 1sec in all cases, even on huge images. Since metal also slows down the inpainting brush, I keep it on OpenGL.

I must say I'm confused about the effects of metal for the display setting, and metal compute. If I understand the marketing, things should be faster with metal, but all I see are very serious slow downs in essential features. I thought the histogram update problem went away with metal compute off, but I really need to switch back to OpenGL fully for it to be performant for me. By the way, I work almost exclusively on ~24MP 16bit Tiff files.

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