Viewports too slow on MAX 2013

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  10 October 2012
Viewports too slow on MAX 2013

Hi everyone. This is my first post on this forum, wich I respect very much.
Recently I have owned a new PC, and that's how it is:

- AMD FX 8150 (8 core) 3.6GHz
- 16 Gb RAM DDR3 1600
- System and 3ds MAX on SSD drive, other files on standard HDD
- GTX 560 graphics card, latest driver installed
- Windows 7 64.
- Running 3ds max 2013, rendering on VRay

Well, I expected a good performance, and now I'm very upset. It renders like a charm, some medium quality architecture scenes below 5 minutes. That's good for me.
But is still very hard to work on viewports, when I got trees, cars or furniture on the scene. I got huge lag to zoom, pan, move...specially when in wireframe mode.

I tried to switch from "nitrous" to direct3d, and got a little better, but still very slow.
On 3ds max 2010 this problem is not so big, things go a little faster. But on MAX 2013.... well, I'm realy thinking about coming back to MAX 2010, or throw my new PC from the window.

Anyone have any trick to speed up viewports or something?

Thanks a lot, folks.
  10 October 2012
Hey Gabriel,

I can't speak for everyone, but I feel viewport performance in Max is getting slower the newer the version. I used 2013 just for testing purposes and quickly came back to 2010 because I felt it was a little faster. That said, I can manage scenes with more than 6 million polygons on a laptop if properly configured. Basically, use lots of instances and instanced proxies, hide/convert any shape you wouldn't edit anymore to editable meshes.

Max 2013 is great, but nitrous could use some refinement before I completely ditch dx9 while modeling a big scene.
  10 October 2012
There are rules to follow to get the best out of nitrous, as there are for any new tech.
Wireframe is AMAZINGLY fast in Nitrous. This is my experience on my GTX275. I do not believe that a 660 would be slower in that regard.
* Most important rule is disable backface culling for all your objects.
* work in Shaded mode, realistic is for pretty Viewport display, to tweak light situations etc..
* There are performance hits with high objects counts and high Material counts, (same for D3D AFAIK). You could try to switch your display of shaded objects from "Material" to "Object" Color. should be faster if speed is that critical

There are plenty of other things to try, but most important is the backface culling thing...

If you post a scene where you have the performance problems, i could have a look and try to find the bottlenecks. And maybe even be proven wrong about my impression that wireframe is fast in Nitrous ;-)

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Last edited by spacefrog : 10 October 2012 at 06:09 AM.
  10 October 2012
that's the point

Hey, guys. Thanks for the replies.
I've searched for an answer for this issue in the past two days, and met other people having the same problem. Looks like autodesk messed up with this.
Indeed, the backface culling is the key to get higher framerates. You can disable that on "preferences - viewports", but it will not affect old objects in scene.
So I saw some scripts that can turn in off on existing objetcs. I tried this one and it worked:

for obj in $* do (
format "object %\n" obj
obj.backfaceCull = false

There are other ways of this script, but I tried only this one, and my problem was gone.
Looks like we're gonna have to do this workaround until a permanent solution comes out.

Thanks a lot again.
  10 October 2012
Yes! Backface culling! Forgot about that one!
  10 October 2012
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