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How to fix brush lag in Photoshop CC with a Cintiq 13 HD (on apple's Mavericks OS)?

Community Beginner ,
Sep 24, 2014

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I bought a Cintiq 13 HD about a month ago and have been using it with Photoshop to do a book cover and to teach concept art at a university.

Everything with Adobe Photoshop was working fine, as far as I can remember/noticed, until this last week or so.

All of a sudden there is a significant amount of brush lag—to the point of Photoshop being completely unusable.

I have spent hours pouring through the web looking for answers, but to no avail.

In Photoshop, however, there is anywhere from a tiny delay to a full 1 second delay—afterwards the brush *usually* catches back up with me.

If I try to jot down a dozen small lines quickly, sometimes Photoshop skips brush strokes altogether, or only puts down one brush stroke "space" or stamp, whatever you call it.

This happens even if I'm using the most basic airbrush with default settings—I'll have a delay, an occasional skipped brush stroke altogether, and an occasional tiny dot where I first started the brush stroke followed by nothing until I lift up the pen and go to the next stroke.

I also use Corel Painter X3 in my work, and there is no lag whatsoever. I jot down a dozen tiny lines as fast as I can and the Cintiq and Corel keep right up with me.

I have tried playing with the GPU and OpenGL to no avail. My GPU drivers are up to date (I'm on a mac, so it's automatic). I've tried changing the Performance Preferences to Basic, Normal, and Advanced (being sure to restart Photoshop each time) without any real solution. (I will say that changing the GPU settings down from Advanced seemed to produce a slightly faster brush stroke in general, but not in the sense that I'm talking about in this post. More of just the regular lag kind of thing that's to be expected.)

I'm on a Mid-2010 Macbook Pro

2.53 GHz Intel Core i5

8 GB Ram

NVIDIA GeForce GT 330M 512 MB graphics card

Using a SSD drive 512 GB free space

OS X 10.9.5

All Adobe products are completely up to date and I've tried reinstalling the Cintiq drivers.

I'm out of ideas.

At my university I'll be teaching my class the basics of vehicle design very soon here, and I would prefer to use Photoshop over Painter for this sort of thing, due to its superior non-painting tools. But I can't paint when my brush strokes randomly don't appear on the screen, or lag so much that I can't see what I'm doing if I'm working quickly.

Thank you for your help.

Bryan Beus

Correct answer by bryanbeus | Community Beginner

Solution...found!

The problem is in the Cintiq driver.

I figured it out because as I switch over to Corel to do my work, I noticed that my lines were wobbly.

Really, really irritating.

But...by searching for solutions to this problem I saw that most people resolved it by installing older versions of the drivers.

I installed Cintiq 13HD driver 6.5.3-5 , from March of 2013

Works like a charm.

It was this new, faulty driver 6.3.9-3 that was the issue on all accounts.

Such a relief!!!

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How to fix brush lag in Photoshop CC with a Cintiq 13 HD (on apple's Mavericks OS)?

Community Beginner ,
Sep 24, 2014

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I bought a Cintiq 13 HD about a month ago and have been using it with Photoshop to do a book cover and to teach concept art at a university.

Everything with Adobe Photoshop was working fine, as far as I can remember/noticed, until this last week or so.

All of a sudden there is a significant amount of brush lag—to the point of Photoshop being completely unusable.

I have spent hours pouring through the web looking for answers, but to no avail.

In Photoshop, however, there is anywhere from a tiny delay to a full 1 second delay—afterwards the brush *usually* catches back up with me.

If I try to jot down a dozen small lines quickly, sometimes Photoshop skips brush strokes altogether, or only puts down one brush stroke "space" or stamp, whatever you call it.

This happens even if I'm using the most basic airbrush with default settings—I'll have a delay, an occasional skipped brush stroke altogether, and an occasional tiny dot where I first started the brush stroke followed by nothing until I lift up the pen and go to the next stroke.

I also use Corel Painter X3 in my work, and there is no lag whatsoever. I jot down a dozen tiny lines as fast as I can and the Cintiq and Corel keep right up with me.

I have tried playing with the GPU and OpenGL to no avail. My GPU drivers are up to date (I'm on a mac, so it's automatic). I've tried changing the Performance Preferences to Basic, Normal, and Advanced (being sure to restart Photoshop each time) without any real solution. (I will say that changing the GPU settings down from Advanced seemed to produce a slightly faster brush stroke in general, but not in the sense that I'm talking about in this post. More of just the regular lag kind of thing that's to be expected.)

I'm on a Mid-2010 Macbook Pro

2.53 GHz Intel Core i5

8 GB Ram

NVIDIA GeForce GT 330M 512 MB graphics card

Using a SSD drive 512 GB free space

OS X 10.9.5

All Adobe products are completely up to date and I've tried reinstalling the Cintiq drivers.

I'm out of ideas.

At my university I'll be teaching my class the basics of vehicle design very soon here, and I would prefer to use Photoshop over Painter for this sort of thing, due to its superior non-painting tools. But I can't paint when my brush strokes randomly don't appear on the screen, or lag so much that I can't see what I'm doing if I'm working quickly.

Thank you for your help.

Bryan Beus

Correct answer by bryanbeus | Community Beginner

Solution...found!

The problem is in the Cintiq driver.

I figured it out because as I switch over to Corel to do my work, I noticed that my lines were wobbly.

Really, really irritating.

But...by searching for solutions to this problem I saw that most people resolved it by installing older versions of the drivers.

I installed Cintiq 13HD driver 6.5.3-5 , from March of 2013

Works like a charm.

It was this new, faulty driver 6.3.9-3 that was the issue on all accounts.

Such a relief!!!

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Most Valuable Participant ,
Sep 24, 2014

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First I use a PC not a mac and a wacom intuos not a cintiq.

Do you have a lag problem when your painting in actual pixel when the image is zoomed to 100% ie  menu View>100%.

I find if your zoomed way out where each brush stroke and changing millions of pixels the way brush strokes are done in Photoshop even very fast powerful machines can not manipulate that many pixels in real time.

Photoshop was not designed as a Painter application, It works on the document actual pixels.  A paint program design may be very different. They may paint on the small displayed image and apply the paint to the actual large canvas in a background  task so what you see being painted is the small scaled down painting.  You don't see the actual pixel till you zoom to 100% and the background task has completed the job of painting the larger canvas.

My workstation has two slow six core xeon processors and 40GB of Ram zoomed out I have lag.  Zoomed to 100% even wet mixer brushes perform well even with large tips brush sizes..

JJMack

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Community Beginner ,
Sep 24, 2014

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First of all, thank you so much for taking the time to try to help out. It

is much appreciated.

The two things that first come to mind are: I have many friends in the

industry who paint solely in Photoshop and do just fine. My computer is

technically "old," but the specs are still just fine—even the graphics card

is the exact same one that is in the new Cintiq Companions (the all-in-one

computer/cintiq machines).

And, more so, I was painting on it for a few weeks without noticing

anything. A part of me wonders, did I just not notice it until it became

dramatically worse?

I do remember painting fur, which requires making tons of small brush

strokes over an extended period of time, and I don't remember there being

any lag.

By the way, I forgot to mention: I've even tried going into the Performance

preferences and disabling the graphics card altogether. No luck. Still an

issue.

As far as painting at 100%: I do notice an amount of improvement. The one

brush stamp, or space, whatever you call it, issue only happened on the

first brush stroke (every time) and then just once otherwise. The lag was

tremendous—and I compared it to Painter's performance, which had no issues

whatsoever.

I am really hoping to be able to rely on Photoshop more and more, as its

tools for other aspects of image manipulation are far more robust than

Painter's. And the working compatibility with Adobe InDesign, Flash, and

Adobe Media Encoder are sooooooo useful for speeding up the workflow.

Hopefully we can find out what's going wrong.

I'm truly baffled on this one.

Bryan Beus

Artist and Author

www.bryanbeus.com

Sent from my Tardis

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Community Beginner ,
Sep 24, 2014

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Oh...and: I had a minute yesterday to spend with a student's Intuos tablet.

With this plugged in and the Cintiq removed, Photoshop returned to

performing with its usual responsiveness. Like I said, though, I only had a

minute or so to make a series of rapid brush strokes with a default

airbrush, though. I didn't have time to try out anything more robust.

I do not have an Intuos, so I can't utilize this option. And, (I may be a

spoiled brat saying this) the Cintiq has become a part of my

workflow—especially in that it enables me to skip the stage of sketching on

paper altogether.

Bryan Beus

Artist and Author

www.bryanbeus.com

Sent from my Tardis

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Community Beginner ,
Sep 24, 2014

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Oh...and: I had a minute yesterday to spend with a student's Intuos tablet. With this plugged in and the Cintiq removed, Photoshop returned to performing with its usual responsiveness. Like I said, though, I only had a minute or so to make a series of rapid brush strokes with a default airbrush, though. I didn't have time to try out anything more robust.

I do not have an Intuos, so I can't utilize this option. And, (I may be a spoiled brat saying this) the Cintiq has become a part of my workflow—especially in that it enables me to skip the stage of sketching on paper altogether.

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Community Beginner ,
Sep 26, 2014

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Solution...found!

The problem is in the Cintiq driver.

I figured it out because as I switch over to Corel to do my work, I noticed that my lines were wobbly.

Really, really irritating.

But...by searching for solutions to this problem I saw that most people resolved it by installing older versions of the drivers.

I installed Cintiq 13HD driver 6.5.3-5 , from March of 2013

Works like a charm.

It was this new, faulty driver 6.3.9-3 that was the issue on all accounts.

Such a relief!!!

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New Here ,
Jan 24, 2015

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do you still have that driver?
I think I have same problem, trying to fix it now

I want to try your method but I can't find driver 6.5.3-5

Please tell me where to get that version?@

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