20 January, 2022
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Bluebeam Revu: Tips for improving performance

20 January, 2022

Why did I create this article?

Every software can experience slowdowns from time to time with Bluebeam Revu being no exception.

Some PDF’s can be quite graphics intensive or large and having an idea of some simple fixes that can speed things up is handy to have for future reference.

Some common Problems that this article will look to address:

  • Slow document rendering and refreshing when zooming and navigating.
  • Opening documents takes longer than usual.
  • Program becomes unresponsive.
  • Interface is slow to respond to input.


I’ve listed below Bluebeam’s suggested solutions to address the issues above. I’ve also added in some comments of my own based on my years of experience doing tech support. They are arranged in order going from easy to more advanced. So simply start at the top of the list and work your way down if you don’t resolve it immediately. Most issues are usually fixed in the first 2 steps 😉


1. Change the Rendering Engine in Revu

Revu has multiple rendering engine options. Hardware rendering generally works best, especially if you have a dedicated graphics card. In a lot of cases, especially if you are using a laptop, the graphics card on your machine may be a quite low powered chip that is integrated into your main CPU. It is designed to offer a compact an low power consumption solution but can struggle with some more advanced graphics.

  1. In Revu 2018 and newer, go to Revu > Preferences , or press Ctrl+K. In Revu 2017 and older, go to Settings > Preferences > Rendering.
  2. Click Advanced on the left. Make sure you are in the 2D Rendering tab.
  3. Select Hardware in the Rendering Engine drop-down menu, and click OK.
  • If you are experiencing issues with hardware rendering, you can try switching to Software instead.
  • If you are using Revu 2018 or older, try switching your rendering engine to Skia, as you will not have Hardware available.

2. Change the Rendering Mode in Revu

The Wait for Completion rendering mode disables partial redrawing of the display. Instead, the screen will not update until the full page is ready to display. This will reduce the total redraw time for the PDF, especially for 4k displays.

  1. In Revu, click Revu > Preferences  or press Ctrl+K.
  2. Click Advanced on the left. Make sure you are in the 2D Rendering tab.
  3. Select Wait for completion in the Rendering Mode dropdown menu and click OK.

3. Change the power settings in Windows 10

Aggressive power saving settings sacrifice display performance in order to reduce power consumption and extend battery life. They affect both laptops and desktops.

  1. Click Start, type power settings and select Power & sleep settings.
  2. Click Additional power settings, which will open the Power Options in the Control Panel.
  3. Click on Show additional plans to display the hidden plans.
  4. Select the High performance or Maximum performance setting.

If you’re using a laptop, this change will reduce your battery life. You may want to return to your original settings if this doesn’t improve your performance in Revu.

4. Update the Microsoft® Visual C++ Redistributable:

Install the latest version of the Microsoft Visual C++ Redistributable. These updates will improve Revu’s rendering performance for large images and scans. You may need to consult with your I.T. people to get this done 😉

5. Update the Microsoft .NET Framework

Install the latest Microsoft .NET Framework that your PC can work with. Click here to find which Windows version you’re running, and then check this page to find the latest version of .NET that your version of Windows supports.

This is a pretty fundamental change to a major Windows component so you’ll most likely have to save everything and do a reboot to affect the change. You won’t get any improvement if you don’t reboot when requested!

6. File size and graphics

If the file size is very large then don’t forget that Revu has a feature built into it to reduce file size. Note that the feature will work more effectively if there are lots of images and graphics in the PDF. A pure text file will not alter much at all.

Go to Menu > Document > Reduce File Size.

Experiment with less extreme compression settings first to see if that helps then increase the settings if required. Save a COPY of the file otherwise your original will be over written. You can make PDF’s quite small but graphic quality will suffer on higher compression settings.

Lastly, in terms of graphics, it can be the case that fill patterns with very dense / fine patterns can sometime affect performance in extreme cases. You can always change the fill pattern setting in the program that generated the PDF, assuming it was created in-house. If you don’t have access to the original program that created the file then using the Reduce File Size function may alleviate some of the issues.

7. Contact support

If all else fails and you believe that there is nothing unusual about your PDF and / or you are having issues across multiple PDF’s then hit up Bluebeam support. It is not unheard of for Windows updates to cause your programs to perform poorly or misbehave. Support can look at the issue and see if there are any factors that might not be included in the list above.


Hopefully you won’t ever need to do any of the troubleshooting steps above but if things start to go slow, keep this article in mind 😉

AEC Technician