Why is there no GPU rendering in AI

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    Helena Carter

    Hi,

    We've been using GPUs for a long time now to speed up some processes such as of opening RAWs, denoising and a few other things. More powerful hardware can accelerate these processes. But please, note that not all technologies that we have in Luminar at the moment can be transferred to the GPU in the form they are now.

    Further, we're planning to use the technologies that will help us with a significant acceleration of rendering on CPUs of current generations.

    As far as the performance concerned, let's investigate this.

    Could you please let us know the following:

    - How much time does it take for each operation?

    - How many images are there in your Luminar Library?

    - Are they located on the internal or external drive?

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    Felix Schuchmann

    Hi, same problem here. Really powerful gaming PC. Already activated GPU acceleration in Windows for the "Luminar AI.exe".

    My pictures are saved on a NAS drive that can handle 100MB/s. Those Canon RAW files are ~25MB. With Windows Gallery I can near instant click through those images, same in Lightroom. Luminar AI takes several seconds! It becomes worse once I view edited images, there it shows a complete broken color and takes 8s! to view the sharp and edited image. I click left and right to see the image again: Bam, again 8s wait. Zooming in takes 2s - every time I zoom in and out.

    This is literally unusable and the slowest software I ever had.

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    Chris Forsyth

    I will be honest, performance considers is why I didn't pre-order Luminar AI. Adobe, Capture 1,  On1 Photo raw, Topaz labs, all support GPU off loading. The irony here is this a huge missed opportunity for Luminar to be a world class editor. Leveraging NVIDIA CUDA tech could be a serious competitive advantage against all of the other lessor known editors and would have put Luminar on par with Adobe.

    I like Luminar, been a customer since version 2018. I saw huge potential with it, It's why I purchased, v3 and v4. It's also why I was hopeful that there would be a demo version of Luminar AI. The business strategy is flawed. Luminar aggressively markets next generation technology that isn't ready to meet customers expectations. The very public backlash to the DAM feature suffered from the same broken strategy. It also makes you extremely vulnerable to competition as many people in the photo community see Luminar as a half baked solution. On1 photo has started to adopt some of the ideas you guys put forward in Luminar 3/4. It's why I initially started to there solution, and while I prefer Luminar, I recently purchased the upgrade to On1 Photo Raw, because it's more usable. It allows me to do things I need/want to do.

     

    My two cents, and please share these with upper management. 1st: Get a beta program with potential customers so you can get feedback into the dev cycle prior to release. 2nd: Listen to your customers. You need a way to take customer request from these forums and get them incorporated into the dev cycle. There is a reason in every business their is the phrase "the customer is always right" It's because I'm looking for something, and if Luminar can't do it, then I will spend my money on a project that does. 3rd get real world feedback. In a camera shop or having drinks with fellow photographers the "I hate Adobe's subscription model comes up, and then the next topic is what is the alternative? and if anyone mentions Luminar it's always followed by the DAM is terrible. Don't let Luminar become Microsoft "Vista" of the photo editing world. 

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    McWafflesPK

    Oh Helena you're not gonna like my response. I've got a Ryzen 3700x with an all-core clock to 4.4 Ghz and a 2080 super. I've also got 32 gbs of cl14 3200 ram with custom timings.

    If I zoom in on an image, 10 second wait per zoom. If I drag the image left or right by even a centimeter, 5 second wait. If I make any change to the photo it could be instant or up to 10 seconds until I see the results. Face slimming feature take 5 seconds after each drag to load. Skin texture take 3-5 seconds to load. The only thing I've seen that doesn't make you wait is changing your color temperature. So while AI was marketed at being faster. My work flow is now 5x slower.

    I current have 3 images in my library. THREE. ONLY THREE.

    All of my images are kept on a Samsung 970 evo 2TB m.2 drive with read and write speeds of 2500mbps. It's your software. Lightroom and photoshoot don't have these wait times. It's actually instantaneous with my current computer

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    Felix Schuchmann

    I made a video of just navigating images: https://youtu.be/QmiKr19aXCE

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    Leon Caruana

    Same for me here, I concur with the views expressed by others. I am a first-time customer of Luminar, and was surprised to see that most of the processing is done via the CPU and not dedicated GPU.

    Will consider asking for a refund unless concrete official plans are announced to rectify this.

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    Mark Haskell-Cooper

    I must add my voice here too - this is a great shame, because this could be fixed by changing the way the program works. I feel this is an opportunity missed by Skylum. I do like luminar Ai, and I think it has the potential to be really great software - but not yet - are you listening Skylum??????

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    Leon Caruana

    Another question to ask is whether any of the affiliates that had access to beta versions noted the heavy reliance on CPU processing and little or no GPU processing - and if they noticed whether they actually brought this to the attention of Skylum as well as their followers.

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    Marco Marrocco

    Leon Caruana

    I don't think they did, at least not in public because of the NDAs, but then again I have stopped trusting "early reviewers" on Youtube alogether, since what you're seeing these days are pretty much undisclosed paid promotions. I'd rather wait and make up my own mind when demos/trials come out.

    As far as the GPU woes are concerned, you're dealing with a problem that's been there since at least Luminar 3 / Aurora 2018, which are the earliest software I bought from Skylum. A really...familiar problem, mind you: the GPU implementation is partial, by their own admission, inconsistent across platforms and GPU brands/models and overall...not good.

    Case in point: I had to set up special rules in the Nvidia control panel in order for all my instances of Luminar and Aurora to ditch CUDA when processing raws, otherwise they would both crash and/or BSOD on my old computer.

    tl;dr Very old issue at this point, never seen an honest attempt at getting this sorted out. Don't really count on it for the immediate future.

    Sorry about the pessimism. Regards,

    --

    Marco

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    Leon Caruana

    Thank you Marco.

    I have not used Skylum software before so was unaware that lack of GPU is something long outstanding in their products. That this old issue was not rectified in a new product is very telling about the lack of serious consideration by Skylum for product improvement.

    I'll give the software a couple of more weeks use to see if this is something I can live with, otherwise will ask for a refund.

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    Barry Levine

    Four images in "Single Image Edits". Exporting (any) one of them to disk (after a number of edits) takes about 24 seconds.

    Core i7 4790 @ 3.60 GHz, 24GB RAM, SSDs for both C: (where Luminar is installed) and D: (where my photos are stored).

    I've told Windows to use max GPU (GTX 1660 Super). Doesn't seem to make a difference. Love the app but it's the poky little puppy.

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    McWafflesPK

    You guys want to hear something crazy. Luminar edits pictures on my I5 6300q laptop (that’s 6 years old) faster than my ryzen 3700x and rtx 2080.... like excuse me

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    Mark Haskell-Cooper

    McwafflesPK - that is just ridiculous. What gives??????

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    McWafflesPK

    Could have something to do with AMD vs Intel. But my clock speeds and IPC are both higher on the ryzen chip so I really don’t have an explanation

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    Jocelyn McCalla

    Skylum promoted Luminar AI as a time saver which would in addition render spectacular results. It's not a time saver. I compared several image editing software to Luminar AI: it comes in dead last. Here's the data compiled on my windows computer which exceeds the basic requirements for running the software:

    1. On1 2020 -- 00:14:14
    2. Lightroom Classic -- 00:36:34
    3. Photoshop -- 00:37:38
    4. Affinity Photo -- 01:16:99
    5. Luminar 4 -- 2:57:33
    6. DXO photolab 4 -- 3:42:07
    7. Luminar Ai -- 4:05:00

    Luminar AI takes as much time to load as a filter on photoshop. This is absolutely unacceptable. It gives much reason for pause, because it undermines both the promise of AI rendering and time savings.

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    Barry Levine

    Jocelyn,

    Agreed; Luminar Ai has tremendous promise but, until it can get out of its own way, it's not going to replace any of the first four on your list. The problem I have with it is that the glacial performance fools me into thinking the trackpad tap I just made wasn't recognized. I'll be hopeful that some "point" releases address the (lack of) speed issue but, until they do, I'll only use Luminar Ai for occasional tasks.

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    Jocelyn McCalla

    Agreed: it's not ready for prime time. Hopefully the Luminar folks are listening and working on fixes. Loading time is just one issue. Frequent crashes and catalog malfunctions are another, e.g. rendering even a 32kb jpg image seems like a huge endeavor!

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    Felix Schuchmann

    Jocelyn McCalla what exactly did you do for that comparison? I wanted to test DXO next, but maybe should also compare it to On1 based on your data.

    For me it was just comparing photos (open them and arrow click left, right) that was freaking unusable in Luminar AI.

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    Jocelyn McCalla

    Felix Schuchman, I compared how long it took each software to "come alive" so to speak, from clicking to open them to when they opened to their library (or catalogue) to a picture that I could edit or pictures that I could pick from. I used the stopwatch function of my smartphone to measure the time. On1 2020 won my speed test hands down. All of these photo editing software use AI in one form or another.

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    Elena Blum

    Hi Jocelyn McCalla,

    Normally performance depends on several factors such as your hardware configuration, Library size, and image format (it can take a bit more time to load RAW/TIFF/DNG files and generate the previews).

    Please contact our support team https://skylum.com/support and we will do our best to take a closer look at what’s going on right away.

     

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    Chris Forsyth

    Hard Truth here: Luminar targeted for consumers to edit cell phone photos, not professional or prosumers.  

    Evidence: For starters read, this Interview with the CEO of Skylum: https://www.digitalcameraworld.com/au/features/interview-ceo-of-skylum-alex-tsepko-reveals-luminars-winning-philosophy

    in there he says "we not building a clone of lightroom"

    GPU support after 3 major releases NOPE. Elena is saying it will take more time to load RAW/TIFF/DNGs. aka luminar is optimized for jpg and not lossly photos types. Want more hints at this reality. Read some of my other thread topics. Want to export more than 15,000 pixels to print professional photos. NOPE, Can Luminar actually use Aurora HDR as a plugin, yes but it only support 1 file instead of 3. Awesome, that is extremely useless. 

    I wish Luminar was designed for the professional market, but it's just not. My 2 cents: I've been using On1 Photo raw more and more since Luminar 4 couldn't fix the issues i discovered in version 3 and 2018. It's a new interface with a steeper learning curve but it's actually targeted for professionals/prosumers.

    The irony is the Luminar team actually has extremely good ideas, but Skylum hasn't put out a baseline product to make them a reality for the professional/prosumer market. This gives their competition time to adopt them. On1 now support the slider model for color modification. Topaz Labs Adjust AI is a usable competing product for Luminar AI.  

    Instead the marketing team is tossing good money after bad chasing the professional market. Post COVID and walk into a photoshop. You'll see an advertisement for Luminar and the pros will tell you something along the lines of it's not ready yet or it's half baked if they are being kind.

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    Marco Marrocco

    > Luminar targeted for consumers to edit cell phone photos, not professional or prosumers

    I wholeheartedly agree, and judging from the wasted potential I think it's a pity; this, however, makes the entire launch fiasco even more baffling:

    why even bother keeping the overall same application (no I'm not falling for the "rebuilt from the ground up" marketing ploy*) to desktop, when your target userbase is supposedly mobile exclusive or near-exclusive?

    Why claim that the "traditional" editing workflow so far has been wasteful and time consuming, when you have people constantly complaining about how bad the performance still is and how some of the basic operations have become needlessly convoluted because of the removed features - all the while neglecting to address some of the shortcomings from two generations past?

    What Skylum needs the most right now, is someone in charge who has at least the faintest idea of what photographers really need (or is willing to follow up with the feedback they receive, I think there's plenty of it), otherwise this will turn into a sinking ship quite fast; once again, coming from someone who has been using their products since they were still called Macphun, I think THIS is a waste of time and potential - making things beautiful is not.

    *Oh, and don't get me started about the constant hammering via email and youtube 'influencers'. Yeah, right, like I'm going to believe that a program that's not even feature-complete and barely anyone has seen is the best thing since bread and butter. Do you also want me to play Raid Shadow Legends, while we're at it?

    Regards,

    --

    Marco

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    Chris Forsyth

    From a business perspective I think they could learn a lot from Topaz labs. While they do build a main editing studio, they really focus on their standalone single purpose function software. There denoise solution: top knotch. There up scaling solution: amazing. Would I like a single software that can do it all, absolutely, but software dev cost money.  If they create amazing solutions that work as a plugin to other professional editors, until they can build an amazing all in one solution, then  I'm happy to support them. 

    If Skylum wanted to make solution that could generate a lot of revenue they should absolutely make a basic "Looks only" solution for iphone and android. No reason to support raw, a prefect erasers, or other professional tools. Target consumer cell phone photographers that they can easily apply what they thing are filters with sliders that are superior to instagram. Consumers would buy it all day long. 

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    Marco Marrocco

    Chris Forsyth

    You know what saddens me most about this current state of affairs? In my opinion they HAD an ace in their sleeve in the form of Aurora and, I think, a bunch of the other legacy single-purpose applications, like the denoise one (never had the occasion to demo them, but I have read around they were well revered in the Mac community).

    Aurora was (well, still is, although support on it has been really sparse since they started working on Luminar) exactly this: a single purpose application that works reasonably well in standalone and does a lot of what it promises; it has a whole lot of the usual shortcomings, like eating up RAM, a questionable GPU support that leads to crashes, batch processes that can take up to a whole day (true story)...but in the end it results in a very...clean? tasteful? workflow for compositing bracketed exposures, which is why I decided to fork the money for it in the first place.

    Seeing this potential being neglected in favor of chasing the latest buzzwords is something, from a professional point of view as a photographer and a longtime software developer, I really, really can't understand; but then again this is why I'm not in marketing.

    Oh well enough venting.

    Regards,

    --

    Marco

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    Leandro Cordeiro

    Facing the same sluggish performance as many have listed on this thread. 

    My machine is powered by a very decent CPU: Intel Core i7-8565U CPU @ 1.80GHz 1.99 GHz

    Love the app but not sure I will keep it after all. 

     

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    Elena O'Brien

    Hi Leandro Cordeiro,

    Please contact our support team at https://skylum.com/support and we will take a closer look at the issue you are facing and will do our absolute best to help!

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    Chris Forsyth

    Sadly Luminar performance has been an issue since 2017/2018 release. After waiting for 5/6 years for them to resolve this, I gave up. I primarily use either Capture One or On1 Photo Raw for everything now. I will admit I feel for the support staff here. Management has zero concern for their customers, and they are on the front lines trying to help people who purchase their inferior software. I've lost a lot of respect for places like Fstoppers as they are involved in promoting Luminar products.

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    Barry Levine

    Yep; Much as I would love to switch away from Lightroom, LuminarAI (and even v4) can't be my daily driver as it's just too pokey. I do use it when a sky replacement might be warranted but how long will it be until there's a plugin for Lightroom that will do this with aplomb? It's just too frustrating to sit around waiting for Skylum to get its sh-- together.

    Just in case anyone might think I'm using inadequate hardware: Lenovo T7i tower with Intel Core-i9, 16GB RAM, Nvidia RTX 2080 Super (although the GPU is only used in Luminar to slap an image up on the screen after the Core i9 finishes image refresh). Think about that: An Intel Core i9 (3.70GHz) can't make Luminar sing. *sigh*

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    darryl ruiz

    I also use lightroom side by side with this software although the output of this software is great it does not support GPU acceleration and the difference of the 2 is night and day with lightroom opening raw files in only 1 sec while luminar needs 40s to load .NEF files without changes. I have my 8GB Gpu and its useless in this ai technology 

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    Roy Blackwell

    darryl ruiz: Not useless if you do this:

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