Layer Effects too Low Resolution

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Herbert123
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Layer Effects too Low Resolution

Post by Herbert123 »

I think I mentioned this before within the context of an extremely large file, but now I am encountering it with "normal" resolution files as well.

For example, I create a 8196px by 8196px image file. This is a common resolution nowadays for textures in games, for example. Or for print purposes.

I then type text:
r0.png
And add a shadow effect. But when I zoom in the layer effect resolution is much lower than the file resolution (I set it to "Page" so it should use the 8196px resolution:
r1.png
Turn off anti-aliasing, and we see that the resolution of the layer effect is much too low:
r2.png
Worse, when I add an outline, it completely destroys the original resolution of the lettering:
r3.png
In its current state the layer effects are unusable for high resolution artwork or compositing. It seems to me that PhotoLine caps the layer effect resolution internally to 2048px, or similar?

I checked in other image editors (Krita, Photoshop, Affinity) and there are no issues there. Krita is slow, though that is expected. The other two work fine and respond in real time.

A secondary issue is that the layer effects are not meant to work at these higher resolutions: dragging the shadow effect in the viewport doesn't result in a good controllable repositioning when working zoomed in.

It means I cannot use PhotoLine's layer effects for the job I am working on right now. :(

Can this be fixed? PhotoLine should use the original resolution of the file for rendering the layer effects.
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shijan
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Re: Layer Effects too Low Resolution

Post by shijan »

For my personal opinion current PhotoLine's layer Styles are not usable for real serious work in high resolution and high bit depth images. This is a global problem and i asked about improvement long long time ago here https://www.pl32.com/forum3/viewtopic.php?f=1&t=6776 and there https://www.pl32.com/forum3/viewtopic.p ... 720#p47720
Layer Styles (as well as 3D Light Effects, Brushes, Mask/Lasso Clipping) are 8 bit only, even if used in 16 or 32 bit document or layer. Problem became even more visible when multiple low bit depth effects are combined.
Maximum allowed effect size is too small.
It is impossible to control independently in easy way Opacity of Effect and Layer.

For high quality shadow it is better to use Blur effect (or multiple Blur effects, because maximum allowed Blur size also too small).
Use Vector Outlines if possible (but they also have strange limitation - in curved vector objects large sized Outline Outside looks low polygonal resolution)

Current PhotoLine is a great app for advanced photo editing, but there are still too many problems and limitations for serious design work.
PhotoLine UI Icons Customization Project: https://www.pl32.com/forum3/viewtopic.php?f=3&t=6302
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Hoogo
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Re: Layer Effects too Low Resolution

Post by Hoogo »

I know that problem, it appears when caching of the effects kick in.
In some circumstances you can get rid of them for some seconds, but it's hard to describe and not for long.
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Herbert123
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Re: Layer Effects too Low Resolution

Post by Herbert123 »

I understand these limitations are probably a legacy of improving the performance and memory usage when computers had less resources and CPU power.

Nowadays it shouldn't be a problem to render the effects at higher resolutions anymore.

An option to render the layer effects at the native resolution of the file could be added if performance is still an issue: render the final effect during previews and final output, and while working on the file render them at a lower resolution to keep performance snappy.

PS I am running into the same issue once more with textures: the max size is set to 2048px. But I am working with higher resolution game art work nowadays, and it would be nice if that could be doubled to 4096px (or even 8192px). Leave it up to the user to take responsibility.

Or perhaps a checkbox option in the preferences: "allow high resolution layer effects and textures (warning: requires beefy computer!". ;-)
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Herbert123
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Re: Layer Effects too Low Resolution

Post by Herbert123 »

shijan wrote: Mon 21 Nov 2022 16:15 Layer Styles (as well as 3D Light Effects, Brushes, Mask/Lasso Clipping) are 8 bit only, even if used in 16 or 32 bit document or layer. Problem became even more visible when multiple low bit depth effects are combined.
We need to be realistic: Photoshop's layer effects do not work at full 16bit either.

And Photoshop's 16bit mode is actually a pseudo 15bit one with an extra bit for 0-32768 values.
Photoshop's layer effects are calculated at a mere 11bit (2048 values). (If you want to check this for yourself: create a 32678px wide 16bit file, draw a vector box, and assign it a layer effect with a gradient overlay from white to black. Then zoom in at pixel level and check the values of each pixel horizontally: the value changes each 8 pixels!)

It makes sense to render these effects at a lower bit depth rather than full 16bit, because for what the average user and uses it just doesn't make sense to exponentially increase performance, storage, and CPU processing.

I've NEVER heard any Photoshop user complain about the quality of layer effects being rendered at 11bit. I would argue that that bit depth seems fine for professional use, so I'd say 11bit will suffice for PhotoLine too.
shijan wrote: Mon 21 Nov 2022 16:15 Maximum allowed effect size is too small.
Only for certain effects in my opinion. I do agree that I have on occasion hit the proverbial wall when adding an outside shadow (dropshadow) and I desperately wanted a softer border.
shijan wrote: Mon 21 Nov 2022 16:15 It is impossible to control independently in easy way Opacity of Effect and Layer.
Difference between FILL and OPACITY? Yes, would be nice to have that extra level of control.
shijan wrote: Mon 21 Nov 2022 16:15 Current PhotoLine is a great app for advanced photo editing, but there are still too many problems and limitations for serious design work.
I disagree somewhat with that statement. It's awesome for serious 2d game work, and I use it for professional comic printing as well.

I've done quite a few other design jobs in PhotoLine as well.

As for the layer effects dialog: I wish that would be a non-modal panel or something. It is rather frustrating that the layer effects dialog blocks the user from any other interaction until the dialog is closed.

That and the resolution limit are my main frustrations with PhotoLine's layer effects. Increasing the bit depth to 11bit would also be nice.
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shijan
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Re: Layer Effects too Low Resolution

Post by shijan »

Yep, i knew about 15-bit limit in Photoshop, but didn't knew about 11-bit layer effects. Guess Brushes may use same reduced bit depth there because from my tests visually they looked like better than 8-bit but not a real 16-bit.
If it helps to increase performance, 10-bit or 12bit for layer style effects in PhotoLine also should be OK. It also could be user option preferences - Calculate Layer Styles in 16-bit or Calculate Layer Styles in 10-bit.

Photoshop and other apps allow large sized drop shadow, stroke and other layer style effects. Blur effect also way larger sized there. In PhotoLine i forced to add double/triple blur effect for desired large soft shadow. I really have no idea why is it all so limited in PhotoLine. Is it so complex to change 100% to 1000% in code for layer styles and 255px to 1000px size for Motion Blur and Gaussian Blur and other similar effects?
No quick assess to FILL and OPACITY sliders.
Even simple Layer Styles divided into General/Color tabs, where literally 2-3 sliders placed sliders in near empty tab. Why don't combine it?
It is possible to design nice things in PhotoLine, like your Blender button example looked great. It is OK for creation of something like small sized UI elements. But i just don't like all those tiny uncomfortable things and artificial limitations that combined into huge slowdowns in work, or always bring me to some point where i can't do some simple task because tool is limited.
PhotoLine UI Icons Customization Project: https://www.pl32.com/forum3/viewtopic.php?f=3&t=6302