How to Make Photoshop Faster

How to Make Photoshop Faster

Hey everyone, welcome to FilterGrade. If you’re reading this post, then Adobe Photoshop is probably running poorly or slow on your computer. In this tutorial, we’re going to share our knowledge of the Adobe creative suite and suggest a few things that can make Photoshop run faster for you.

Watch the video tutorial!

How to tell if Photoshop is struggling:

Besides the obvious signs of sluggishness, you can tell that Photoshop is running poorly by looking at the Efficiency Bar. You can enable this by clicking on the little pop out menu at the bottom of the screen, and checking “efficiency”. If the number stays at 100%, then you’re looking good. If it goes below 100%, that means that Photoshop is using all of your computer’s RAM and you need to allocate more to Photoshop, add more RAM to your computer, or

Turn off the home screen:

The home screen in Photoshop shows your most recent projects and some Adobe education suggestions. If your Photoshop takes a long time to open you can try to speed it up by removing the home screen. Just go to Edit, Preferences, General, then uncheck the box titled “Auto Show the Home Screen”. Next time you start Photoshop, it won’t open to that screen.

Don’t use the clipboard:

If memory is an issue, you should avoid copying and pasting, and instead drag and drop elements in your design. Copying adds that item to your clipboard and uses memory, meaning a large file can bog down your system and slow Photoshop down.

Use a scratch disk:

This tip is incredibly useful for Premiere Pro as well as Photoshop. A scratch disk is an additional storage drive, usually a fast solid-state drive, where Photoshop will move some processing work if the RAM is too saturated. To change to a new scratch disk, go to Edit, Preferences, Scratch Disks, and check the disk of disks that you’d like Photoshop to use.

Increase Photoshop’s RAM capacity:

If you have limited RAM and Photoshop is maxing it out, you can adjust how much RAM is devoted to Photoshop and how much is devoted to other programs while Photoshop is running. To access this, go to Edit, Preferences, Performance, and adjust the RAM amount. Around 80% should be ideal, but you can even bump it up a little higher if you generally don’t have much else running while you work in Photoshop.

Be aware of image dimensions:

Working with a massive file on a huge canvas can really slow down your work. Keep in mind the image size you require. If you only need a 1000 by 1000 pixel image, there’s no reason to work on it in an 8000 x 8000 canvas. Working in an appropriately sized canvas will ensure that your Photoshop doesn’t try to use more resources than it has to.

Purge history and clipboard:

If you have a long history of changes and a lot of content on your clipboard, you can purge the history by clicking Edit, Purge, and then selecting All. This can clear up some memory on your computer, especially if you’re at a point where you don’t need your edit history.

Upgrade your graphics card:

Current versions of Photoshop actually make use of dedicated graphics cards to accelerate many effects. Photoshop’s own minimum specifications ask for a Nvidia Geforce GTX 1050, and recommend a NVidia Geforce GTX 1660. These are lower-end gaming graphics cards, but users who work on a more basic PC, standard mini office PC, or another device not made for gaming or professional content creation, may need an upgraded system in order to use these features. Photoshop has several features that require a GPU, although the built-in display graphics on any computer should be able to handle these to some degree. Other effects are GPU-accelerated, meaning they can render much faster on a computer that has a dedicated graphics card. While a new graphics card won’t fix everything, it may speed up the specific tasks Adobe mentions.

Related: How to Pick a Graphics Card for Video Editing

Upgrade your computer:

In addition to the graphics card, Photoshop has recommended specs concerning other PC components. In terms of the CPU, or processor, Photoshop’s minimum specifications are pretty vague, but they do suggest that a six-core processor should be ideal for Photoshop work, and that going with a CPU with more cores might result in diminishing returns. They also recommend a minimum of 2 gigabytes of RAM and suggest 8 as a recommended amount. If your machine is slow, it’s probably due to a low RAM amount. It’s difficult to find a computer with as low as 2 gigabytes of RAM these days, and 8 has been a common minimum for a while now. Adobe also recommends using a fast, modern SSD as a scratch disk, but reminds users that it’s unnecessary if your efficiency rating is above 95%.

Turn off visual aids:

Many of the helpful visual aids in Photoshop use valuable resources, and you may not need them on. The first is guide lines and overlays. To hide guide lines, go to View, and uncheck Rulers. To disable overlays, go to View, Show, then uncheck any elements you want to turn off. Layer thumbnails also update every time you change something, but you can disable those by right-clicking on the layers panel and selecting small thumbnails or no thumbnails – you just might want to be very specific in your labelling.

Hopefully at least one of these tips helps speed up your Adobe Photoshop on your computer. If it doesn’t, then go ahead and type in the comments below and hopefully the FilterGrade community will be able to help you solve your problems!

Related: The Best Photoshop Blogs with Tutorials & Resources

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