After a long time of not using PS, today I've noticed a weird behavior with my smooth brush. The strokes look very pixelated, especially when I zoom in on the canvas. I'm using the standard brush.

If you open this image in a new tab, or zoom in on it, you can see the weird lines on the edge of the stroke where it should be seamlessly smooth.

Weird brush behavior What could be the problem and how can I fix it?

These are my brush settings:

enter image description here

  • how high is the resolution of your file? – Vincent Jun 18 '17 at 16:48
  • the resolution is 1440x1080 – Sparky Jun 18 '17 at 17:02
  • PPI not size... – Scott Jun 18 '17 at 17:08
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    Could be the zoom level, that is 155,9%. Check how it looks if you do 100%. – Joonas Jun 18 '17 at 17:26
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    Okay, I've resolved the problem by updating the GPU drivers and enabling GPU render. Thank you @Joonas for narrowing down the problem. :D – Sparky Jun 18 '17 at 18:17

It just looks like a soft edge brush...

Check the brush settings... make sure the Hardness is set correctly... make certain Wet Edges isn't ticked, all in the Brushes Panel.

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  • I've updated the post, and as the image shows, wet edges isn't ticked, and increasing the hardness didn't help. – Sparky Jun 18 '17 at 17:17
  • @Sparky The updated image leads to more confusion, not less -- because it contains clearly harder edged brush strokes in addition to softer edged strokes. Quite honestly.. it looks like some strokes are made with a brush.. and some are made with the Pencil tool. – Scott Jun 18 '17 at 17:19
  • I was trying multiple hardness values, but the pixeliness isn't gone no matter how hard/soft the brush is. – Sparky Jun 18 '17 at 17:23
  • Well there are pixels.. but I don't see anything out of the ordinary. I mean, your monitor has to use pixels to display things and zooming in will always make that more apparent. Are you expecting absolutely no indication of pixels? – Scott Jun 18 '17 at 17:26
  • The following screenshot is of an older version of PS, from a different computer. The image size is about the same, and if you compare the strokes with the ones on the first two screenshots, there is an obvious difference, the strokes on this image are much smoother. imgur.com/a/whQSP – Sparky Jun 18 '17 at 17:34

I've resolved the problem by updating the GPU drivers and enabling GPU render.

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  • If you solved your question yourself, please consider marking your own answer as 'accepted'. This is not just good for site stats, but also tells later visitors that this is the solution to the problem. Thanks! – Vincent Jun 19 '17 at 13:42
  • I wanted to, but I have to wait 3 days for some reason. At the time I'm writing this, I have to wait 18 more hours, hopefully I won't forget it. – Sparky Jun 19 '17 at 21:42
  • I don't understand the reason behind the -1, because this DID resolve my problem. The rendering performance is obviously better when it's done by the GPU. Since I'm using the newest version of PS, it didn't recognize the outdated driver, and the rendering was done by the CPU, and that's why zooming in on the canvas made the edges look weird. – Sparky Jun 19 '17 at 21:46
  • I guess the downvoter downvoted because they thought this a very short answer without any explanation. If you explain a bit more about what and how, you might have a better answer on your hands. – Vincent Jun 19 '17 at 22:17

Increase your hardness. It's not pixelated - the hardness controls the edges of the line.

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