Mask AI - Cleaning up masks a pain

I have been using Remask 5 for a long time, but recently purchased Mask AI. I have to say that is proving to be a disappointment.

When using Remask 5, my normal procedure after setting up the trimap and running the first “Compute mask”, is to then clean up the mask where necessary by applying a series of “dots” with either the Keep or the Cut brush, set to a small size. The update to the mask after placing each dot is almost immediate.

With Mask AI, again after the AI mode compute, when I come to clean up the mask, if Auto compute mask is turned on, in comparison with Remask 5 there is a significant delay after placing each dot, with “Processing mask” and the percentage counter showing, making the clean up task a total pain.

If I turn off Auto Compute I get no live update, so that is not a workable solution. If I select Contrast mode, then it first recomputes the mask, generally with a poorer result to the original compute in AI mode. The response to the clean up “dots” in this mode is faster, but without the AI, I might as well just use Remask 5.

It is not as though there is a lack of computer power. This is on a desktop PC that is less than 6 months old, i7-10700 Gen10 CPU, 32GB memory with a GTX-1660 6GB graphics card.
The SSD’s are both on board M.2 NVMe. The OS is Windows 10 Pro 2004 Build 19041.685.

Graphics Info.
Application & Version: Topaz Mask AI Version 1.3.6
Operating System: Windows 10 Version 2004
Graphics Hardware: GeForce GTX 1660/PCIe/SSE2
OpenGL Driver: 3.3.0 NVIDIA 457.51
CPU RAM: 32688 MB
Video RAM: 6144 MB
Preview Limit: 7993 Pixels

Any suggestions would be welcome.

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OK, having watched a Joel Wolfson demo (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_qg-QzFQCVY) of what I think is an earlier version of Mask AI (and I’m aware he is using a Mac, where as I’m on Windows) it does appear to be another instance where a later version has regressed.

In the demo, working on a photo of his daughter, he does the initial compute in AI mode, but then swaps to Contrast mode to do the cleanup. When he changes mode, there is no forced re-compute, and the cleanup in Contrast mode is done to the AI computed mask. In the current version I can’t do that. Having done the initial compute in AI mode, as soon as I change to Contrast mode, a new compute mask button appears. If I ignore it, there is no update to clean up dots. If I click on the compute button before applying any dots, it makes a new mask that is significantly worse than the AI version.

Can anyone tell me what was the last version before that change was made, and is that version still available.

The situation seems to have improved considerably with the release of 1.3.7. Whilst it is still necessary to do a recalculate immediately after moving to Contrast mode, the mask doesn’t seem to be deteriorating as much as it was, and the reduction in the change of the brush “size affected” versus brush size selected in this version has made cleaning up the mask much easier.

After running some tests as suggested by Topaz Support, I’ve found on my system the optimum preference setting is to use the GPU, but with the GPU optimization turned OFF. Having it turned on causes a significant increase in compute time.

I understand there could be good reasons for having to do a recalculate after moving from a Compute AI to Translucent mode (and perhaps it would be better to start in Translucent mode for those images)… Maybe there is when moving from Compute AI to Contrast mode too, but I still think it would be nice to be able to clean up a Compute AI mask in contrast mode without having to produce a complete new mask first.

Anyhow, for me 1.3.7 is step forward.