Free transform lags considerably for mysterious reasons

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  • Problem
  • Updated 2 years ago
  • (Edited)
I'm working on a web design in Photoshop and I've been using few artboards and many layer comps to organize my content.
I've been noticing that Free Transform would lag considerably even for
the most basic shapes (say a 20px ellipse with one fill color). I've fiddled around a bit and it turns out that if I delete the artboards, then suddenly the Free Transform tool works fluently again, with the exact same document.

There also seem to be two different modes with the Free Transform tool. Sometimes it live-previews the transformation while I'm dragging, sometimes it does only preview the outlines of the objects while transforming. I haven't been able to figure out what exactly caused Photoshop to use one mode or the other. The lagging only happens when Photoshop tries to live-preview the shape while transforming.

It seems to me that using Artboards, even if it is only one single Artboard, has significant negative impact on performance.

EDIT: It seems I have been mistaken about the root of this being Artboards. I had this issue resurface today with the same document, this time without using artboards at all.

The strange thing I noticed is this: When Free Transform starts lagging and I delete any layer out of the tree (can be a simple text layer), suddenly the Free Tranform tool starts working fluently again. If I save and reload the document, then the lagging is back. I delete some random layer again, and there it is working fluently. I suspect there is some issue going on in the background that gets resolved when the layer tree is updated or something like that.
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Alexander Rechsteiner

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Posted 2 years ago

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