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Adobe Photoshop Family

27 Messages


536 Points

Sun, Apr 22, 2018 4:11 PM

Photoshop: Tool change by hotkey presses switches back under high RAM (CPU) load

I am quite certain this problem was introduced with the hold-down-to-use tool key behavior which was added as a new feature some years back... CS6 or CC.

It has been like this ever since.

Reproduce me:

(optional: Put on spotify, soundcloud, mpc-hc or a youtube video in a lone tab in a chrome or firefox window on one monitor, work on a second.)

Work on a fair sized doc, something like 1 to 1.5 GB in RAM.

As PSCC starts to lag, switch tool using hotkey, ie. any tool from a tool with stroke action use case to a similar tool: zoom to rotate, brush to eraser, eraser to zoom...

Hit the key quickly or with a slow release, no difference. I can't out-speed this issue.

Start a stroke (scrub zoom, brush, erase, rotate) and mid-stroke, see if PS switches the active tool back to the previous one, rendering the stroke an erase stroke if you switched from eraser to brush or zoom tool for instance.

PS should show the switched-to tool as you begin the stroke and swap cursor and tool to previous one midstroke, altering the outcome of the stroke on the doc.

I typically experience this switch-back issue at something like 500-2000ms after the key release of the tool changing hotkey press and I always see the tool changing before performing the next stylus press / stroke. It does switch back, it did not fail to switch.

Proposed fix: Let there be a checkbox in the settings to enable/disable the hold-to-modulate-active-tool feature so tool hotkey presses are never interpreted as a hold-to-modulate action if the user does not want to use this feature at all and prefers the legacy / default behavior of tool hotkeys.

I am sure with investigation a fix to make this hold-to-modulate / hold-to-use-release-to-switch-back feature could be debugged.

Prior to I would very much like to stress how an option to turn it off should exist and should exist for all and any of such new behavior-changing features that get added.

I am a PSCC subscriber and professional illustrator. I still do not mean to have a top-notch workstation always and will work under a situation of possible lag. My proposed fix would make me perfectly pleased and pain-point resolved while any lag may pertain to my responsibility to choose OS and machine to let PS keep evolving which I appreciate!

PS: Lately PSCC is seeing much more lag than CS6 used to even on larger docs, on an inferior machine, on Windows 7. I could try going back to Windows 7...

Suspected related topics:
tool change bug:

Thanks for your time and work!

PSCC System Info:




625 Messages


14.6K Points

3 years ago

Just wanted to give a shout out to the thoroughness, specificity, and politeness of this bug report. Thank you. I can't actually help, since I don't work for Adobe but I wish every post were like this.