By ‘performance’, I’m guessing it’s not render speed you’re after, but development speed - building the scenes.
Yes, there are several things you can try. Some boil down to scene organisation, some down to workflow, but all of them are about reducing the amount Bryce has to draw on screen while you’re working - the more lines Bryce has to draw while you’re rotating, tracking or moving objects in your scene, the slower the performance becomes. So all these tips are geared to reduce line-draw. Give a couple of these things a try and see how you get on.
Global (Advanced Display Palette)
Take a look at the bottom right palette. Going down the list of icons, try these settings:
Demo Marker: Not relevant
Spray Can: Used to get a quick view of a local, irregular area (Plop Render is probably better)
Interface Max/Min: Not relevant.
Background Paper: Select a solid color, not the default Paper background.
Nano Editor: Good for speeding up Director repositioning in a scene (and Camera as well, but.. well, you’ll see). Turn it on, then use the left hand navigation tools (rotation ball, translation arrows) to move around your scene. Watch what happens. You’ll get it.
Plop Render: Great tool for mini-location renders. Click the main Render button then stop the render immediately. When Plop Render is engaged, drag rectangles over the scene to render selected portions.
Depth Cue: Helps estimate distance, but doesn’t really speed up performance significantly.
Wireframe Shadows: Off to improve performance.
Underground: Not really a big deal performance-wise, but is another helpful horizon cue.
Wireframe Resolution: OK, THIS is a big deal, and can drastically affect performance. You set the amount of detail your wireframes have in three areas: the wireframe detail drawn when you’re moving an object, detail when the object is not moving, and detail when the object is simply selected. These are personal settings: play with these numbers to get a result you’re happy with. I tend to have a high degree of detail for selected or moving objects and very low levels for static objects, but the other way around works too, or some intermediate settings. Your call. Keep LoD On.
Display modes: Keep it on Wireframe only.
Object Local Settings
Edit the attributes of your groups or objects to hide some lines, or hide the object entirely.
General > Show as Box: Selected object is represented in wireframe as a box.A good setting to have with ‘completed’ elements of your scene.
Animation > Show When selected: The animation trajectory is only shown if the object it’s associated with is selected.
Selections: the right-most bottom tools are the Select By Category tools: from left to right you can select by object type, or family, or the reveal triangle has a lot of other categories you can select. The key here is that you can sharply increase performance by quickly hiding all the objects you don’t really need to work with immediately.
Solo Selection: A great tool to completely shut out the ‘noise’. Select the object or objects you want to work with. click the green Solo button. Carry on working. When you’re finished, re-click the Solo button and you have your scene back.
Tip: Use the Solo button in conjunction with Families. That way you have a fast way to select groups of otherwise unrelated objects (or elements of nested boolean groups) to perform texture operations or re-sizing.
AVOID GROUPING:USE PARENTING. Use Boolean grouping only for shape modeling. Don’t use Boolean groups if you’re just locking in one object to another. When a Boolean group is created, an all-enclosing box is generated in the scene: more lines for Bryce to draw! Making groups of groups becomes an insane task to work with.
Rather, Parent one object to another. Parenting works much like grouping: copy an object that has other objects parented to it, and you’ll copy the entire parent-child relationship. Parenting also has a couple of flexible options: you might want one object to move with another object but not RESIZE if the parent object is resized… or rotated, or other attributes.
The bottom line is: Parenting reduces screen clutter markedly in complex scenes, allowing you clearer scene construction and faster scene redraw performance when rotating or translating views.
That should be enough to start you rocketing through a Bryce scene. There are others as well, but this should be more than enough to see significant improvements with your scene construction technique. Good Luck
Click thumbnail to see full-size image