I've been struggling with an issue now for a couple of months and I'm really annoyed at not being able to work as I have for the past 10 years using tablets and Photoshop.
I typically map the eraser function to the bottom side button on my pen for the Wacom Intuos Pro Medium. That's how I've been erasing for many years and how I love painting – I have the brush tool, paint some, and then when I want to erase I just hold in the eraser button and then release.
Here's the problem: When I hold in the eraser button, and erase one or more times, it immediately reverts back to the brush tool even if I still have the eraser button pushed down and haven't released it! This didn't happen during all my years using Photoshop and Wacom tablets. I didn't tamper with it either. I've tried previous Photoshop versions, other drivers for the Wacom tablet, and nothing (I've tried it all!) seems to work.
Here's a video of the issue:
The Wacom diagnostics say the Wacom tablet works perfectly fine, and I've had intensive customer replies through Wacom support, and in the end they told me I probably should turn to Adobe...
What do you guys think? What can I do? Reformat the entire computer? Time Machine?
Macbook Pro 2014 Retina
El Capital 10.11.6
Wacom Intuos Pro Medium
Photoshop CC 2017
Can you try different versions of the Wacom driver?
Hi Peru Bob!
Yes, as I wrote in the post, I've really tried everything I can think of. I've tried about 5 or 6 different drivers, including the absolute newest one that hasn't been released to the public yet, through the help of the Wacom support. I've tried different versions of Photoshop as well by uninstalling and reinstalling.
This is how I have it. Right click on the top button and Erase on the bottom button.
I have a Wacom Intuos 5 with an Art Pen and a Grip Pen.
If I set them up and assign Erase to either button I get no Erase Function at all.
But other Functions such as Pressure Hold work 100%.
Driver is 6.3.20-4 so that's up-to-date.
Main hassle here is - is it a Wacom Driver issue or a Photoshop issue ?
I will continue to look for a solution - but if you come up with one please let me know.
Out of curiosity I'm trying to replicate this. But how on earth do you set the lower Wacom button to become an Erase Tool ?
If I set it to Erase it simply ignores the function.
I see there is a newer driver (although my Wacom Desktop Centre said I was up-to-date) 6.3.21-8.
So I installed it and now the Erase Function in PS works as expected.
I see you have installed many drivers but maybe try uninstalling the Wacom Driver completely using the Wacom Tablet Utility and reinstalling (or have you tried that) ?
I also tried setting up Photoshop specific button assignments but I see Photoshop ignores those completely - and I'm not sure why.
Hey, yeah I've reinstalled pretty much everything imaginable. Even deleted all the files that go with the tablet and Photoshop to have completely fresh installs.
It seems it's something with Photoshop, because the tablet is working as expected. If I hold the button in, it never releases even if I "paint" with it.
I see you have deleted all the files that go with the tablet - but did you uninstall it ?
Uninstall definitely produces a different result.
I installed the new driver and it fixed my Eraser issue.
But then I had the problem of Photoshop specific preferences being ignored.
So I uninstalled the driver (through the Wacom Tablet Utility), restarted the Mac, then re-installed the latest driver and restarted again.
This has fixed everything.
So if you didn't uninstall I would suggest trying that - just in case you didn't !
And apologies if I'm just repeating what you actually did do - I'm just picking on you saying you deleted files (which isn't the same as uninstalling).
Thanks for all your answers, but yes, I did reinstall everything – or in detail: uninstall, delete all the files, and install a fresh driver. Tried it with several ones. I mean I can try again, but it doesn't seem to make any difference. I really don't understand what's causing this very strange issue.
Very puzzling. Sorry, if I may, one or two more suggestions - I'm just as curious now as to why it won't work.
That's a superb answer, Stephen, and of course you may! I am just trying to find a solution.
I tried your suggestion and the Pressure Hold actually works perfectly when I hold down the button, doesn't change at all when I click and paint. It's only the Erase function that reverts to brush tool after the first or a few Erase strokes.
What can that even be? Why ONLY erase? :S
I also tried the Photoshop only, and All others set to Disabled. No luck.
And you are definitely on the latest version of CC 2017 (there were a few tool switching related bugs in the initial version of CC 2017) ?
I'm heading for sleep - getting late here.
I will look into it a bit more in the morning - very puzzling !!
But at least you can rule out a faulty pen - and a bad driver (I think).
Man, I'm sure I tried every single version from the latest Photoshop CS, up to CC, CC 2014, 15, 15.5, all the way up to the current version. Uninstalling, reinstalling, deleting files, completely fresh installs – this reinstall and testing drivers hasn't been getting me anywhere.
But yeah, like you say: I can rule out a faulty driver and pen. I will find my old computer and try it on that one, to see if I can work on it instead of my MBP. I really don't want to change my eraser function as I'm super used to it for a decade now.
Thanks for your help.
I'm back !
With another thing to try.
Can you download SketchBook Pro (±85MB) Download Sketchbook | SketchBook Trial | Autodesk ?
It has an erase function - sign it to your Wacom button and see if it works.
That way we may be able to tell if it is PS related - or if there is just a general Wacom erase function problem ?
Okay, just tried Sketchbook too. It seems that when I press the button, it does indeed go into Erase – BUT, even if I release the button, it still remains on Erase mode, so I have to click the button again to get back to Brush mode.
Does this happen to you as well? That you sort of "switch" it on/off using the Erase-assigned function button on the pen? In Photoshop, the Eraser only shows when you hold in the button, but here it just switches it on and off.
Yes, it does seem to switch on and off rather than stay on when pressed.
I found it a bit tricky and inconsistent.
Oh well, at least that works - and Pressure Hold works in PS.
So it definitely seems to be specific to PS and Erase.
I'll think about it some more.
I've had a similar situation for months now, my eraser side wasn't working and I couldn't figure out how to fix it. I actually found a solution when looking for how to turn off the press and hold to right click option.
Now by "eraser button" I assume you mean the black bulb-like thing on the opposite side of the pen to the side with the nib. I've never once held it down to erase and that might be problem number 1. I'm not sure about the wacom intuos pro, but I don't think the eraser is much of a button rather than a sensor, at least not any more. When I hold the eraser down on my wacom intuos pen and touch (the older version}, it still registers as pen because the pen side is the one touching the tablet. If it ever used to work more like a button, they may have changed it in the recent driver update, or maybe in a photoshop update. So first try flipping the pen as if it were an actual pencil, with the graphite on one side and eraser on the other if you aren't already.
If you are and the eraser still isn't working, go to your control panel and search up Pen and Touch. I'm using windows 10 so mine may not look the same.
Now open it, find the checkbox for "use top of the pen to erase ink".
If the box is checked, uncheck it, click apply, then check it again and apply it again. After doing this my eraser side was working like a charm. It wouldn't select the "eraser" tool in the toolbar, but it was still erasing with whatever settings I had selected for the eraser tool.
I hope this helped!
Make sure that is checked. It works for me.