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ChristiduToit

Tablet Stylus Accuracy Issue

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I've touched on this bug quite a lot in an earlier post about the lasso/freehand selection tool, but this is a different bug, seemingly caused by a similar (if not the same) issue.


There seems to be a precision/accuracy bug exclusive to Affinity which causes my drawing tablet(s) (Yiynova MVP22U, Wacom Cintiq 13HD, and Wacom Intuos Pro) to not line up where I place my stylus/cursor correctly. Where I place my stylus on my tablet shows the cursor on screen in the correct place, but the app doesn't register that it's in that spot on the screen. I've heard this echoed by pretty much every other user who also uses a drawing tablet for their work in the apps.
As I mentioned, this only happens in Affinity, and is not an issue at all in other graphics applications. 

The result of the bug causes my cursor to react a few pixels away from where it is actually placed, but not all of the time. This makes it really difficult to sometimes select small buttons (like for example, the layer opacity slider) as when I click on the opacity slider, Affinity seems to think that my cursor is not on it. This leaves me having to repeatedly click in the same spot until my cursor finally realign/register correctly. Sometimes I need to lift my cursor and wait a few seconds (almost like I need to give the app a change to think first) before it lines up correctly to where my pen is. This is definitely linked to a bug relating to the accuracy of my stylus/tablet pen within the apps (all three do this, Photo, Designer, and Publisher). This is not linked to my tablet's screen calibration, as the only time when I experience this is when using Affinity apps. It causes quite a lot of unnecessary delays and inaccurate selection, which is a real workflow killer.

What this also causes is intermittent delays from when I start drawing or working with my stylus. For instance, if I select the freehand selection tool and start creating a selection, it will sometimes delay for a few pixels after I've started drawing the line before it registers that I'm creating a selection.

Hopefully that makes sense - let me know if you need more clarity. It's kind of a big issue not having that exact precision when using a drawing tablet with Affinity apps, as they're excessively used by (quite possibly) a majority of Affinity users. Sorting this out would have a monumental positive impact on anyone and everyone using your apps with a drawing tablet.

I've seen there is a "High precision tablet input (experimental)" in preferences, but it's only available to Windows users for some reason, and I'm using an iMac. I think this could be a step towards the solution, however, I'm unable to access this feature with my iMac. Will this be included in a future update for Apple users too, or potentially baked into the coding/development? I don't see why you would not want high tablet precision when working with professional design software - it almost seems odd that there's a preference for this instead of just having it as part of the apps by default.

For what it's worth, here's the post I previously put up about the stylus inaccuracy: 


Hopefully this helps resolve this issue!

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Here's another look at what also happens because of this - I've done a screen recording for reference. It causes my clicks to be 'sticky', as in, the app doesn't register where I'm clicking, and then when I click it sometimes holds that click, even after I lift my stylus from my tablet. 
In the video you can see me trying to select a layer multiple times, but the app is not registering that I'm clicking (but the screen recording clearly shows each click). When I finally manage to select the layer, the app think I still have my tablet stylus 'clicked' on the layer when i try to draw, and as I draw the app thinks I'm trying to move the layer instead of using my brush to draw.

Direct link to the screen recording: https://youtu.be/KJmXMwAKHhk

 

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Here's another screen recording which more clearly shows how the the app doesn't register where I'm clicking when/where I click accurately: https://youtu.be/0Le_ZaCTTyA
As I mentioned in the first post/comment, the cursor registers that I'm clicking, but it doesn't register that I'm clicking on the opacity slider. 

 

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Hey ChristiduToit,

Are you drawing on the tablet and looking at its screen or are you using the tablet and looking at your iMac screen? This might be crucial to figuring this one out.

Windows has that option but it will be removed soon. It causes too much lag and we're going back to the drawing board with it. I believe it was removed from macOS some time ago but I cannot recall when.

I can quite clearly see you are having an issue so I'm not shrugging it off. You're also getting it across 3 devices so it isn't likely due to a fault, bad drivers or a calibration issue.

 

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2 hours ago, Chris B said:

Are you drawing on the tablet and looking at its screen or are you using the tablet and looking at your iMac screen? This might be crucial to figuring this one out.

Hi @Chris B
Yeah, unfortunately it's kind of a biggie, as working with the tablet is a huge part of my work - as in, I couldn't do my work without it (and I'm sure I'm not the only one). :)

I am working with a tablet that has a display/screen (Yiynova MVP22U - http://www.yiynova.eu), but it's also prevalent with other tablets too, such as the Wacom Cintiq 13HD (which also has a display/screen). I am almost certain that it is the same issue that's causing the weird lasso selections I mentioned earlier and logged as a post. There is a big issue with how Affinity inaccurately interprets stylus/pen inputs from tablets, and it's causing all kinds of havoc. As I've mentioned a few times, none of my other apps have this issue, it's only in Affinity, so it's definitely linked to the apps specifically. In my other post you were also able to recreate the freehand selection issue, so it's definitely not just me experiencing weird behaviour regarding stylus input.

For what it's worth, I've realised that using Hej Stylus (https://hejstylus.com) does help to eliminate the Freehand Selection issue from earlier, but it's only a temporary fix until it's fixed within the apps. Unfortunately it doesn't solve the greater issue, but it at least makes the Freehand Selection Tool somewhat manageable for the moment. I believe that Hej Stylus is overriding the default stylus input within Affinity, which is helping to smooth it out again, but sadly it doesn't solve the 'sticky' clicks, or the other issues I've addressed in this post. 

The fact that so many other graphics apps don't have this issue makes me think that there must be an easy fix for it - perhaps a small, unnoticed bit of wrong coding in the apps or something.

Please keep me in the loop regarding this topic, because I've been having to subscribe to, and use, Photoshop CC for a few recent projects as Affinity has become quite difficult to work with when using my tablet. I'm really hoping for a fix soon so that I can get back to using Photo for my work!

If there's any way that I can assist in getting to the bottom of this issue, please let me know. I can even send you my email address if it would be easier for you to contact me in that way. I'm getting a bit desperate here, so I'm more than happy to help in any way that I can. 

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14 hours ago, ChristiduToit said:

In my other post you were also able to recreate the freehand selection issue, so it's definitely not just me experiencing weird behaviour regarding stylus input.

Yes, I can get that one. However, I cannot reproduce the layer opacity selection or sticky clicks :( I've been toying with the Cintiq HD and an XP Pen (both have their own screen).

I'll keep one of them plugged in today and see if I notice it when I'm not trying to reproduce it just by generally using the tablet. 

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@Chris B Ah man, that's a bummer. I can't imagine what could be causing it, but I don't have this issue in Photoshop at all (or any other apps). For what it's worth, I work fairly quickly, and it feels a bit like the tablet can't keep up in a way, and sometimes lags a bit from my last task (like clicking a layer) over to the new one (like drawing on the artboard). Hopefully we can get to the bottom of this. If I notice anything else that may be of help to the developers, I'll be sure to comment here. 

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