Selection tolerance does not apply for selecting handles and is broken for points
Selection tolerance does not work for handles selection. You need to be very precise to select them. When smart guides are on, it works, but not when they are off.. For my type of work it's better to work without smart guides.
Scott Deyett commented
I haven't had this issue until the recent update to the newest version. Completely aggravating having to stop/slow progress on a project to try and meticulously move the cursor over the point, hope it's the right place to grab, only to find out... nope. You just selected the entire form again. It is such a time and project momentum killer.
Alexandre Soubrier commented
This is unfortunately not a new issue and Adobe is not listening... The issue should have hundred votes to be listened. Ask your communities to vote for it
25.4.1, still an issue. Please fix this critical bug.
When you have an anchor point selected and you click on a bezier handle... have it move the handle instead of selecting the artwork underneath it. Make the clickable zone of the bezier handle something like 50px radius... because it seems even being 1px away doesn't select the handle, tolerance in the prefs does nothing and one must either be olympic level precise in wacom/mouse moving skills or zoom in to 6000% percent. See attached video.
Logic to code should be: User has anchor point selected > user clicks near to anchor point handle (distance a prefs setting?) > user can now move handle of bezier.
Current code logic = user clicks 1px next to a bezier handle of a selected anchor point = user must be wanting to change selection to artwork behind!!? Really Adobe, no...
Currently its unusable.
25.3.1, still an issue. Please fix this, how long can i take for the programmers?
It's a bug. And it's still there.
The selection tolerance setting in the preferences is actually supposed to affect handles AND points. That's how it works in CS6 and older versions. So this is clearly a bug.
Please vote for this post in the bugs section instead: https://illustrator.uservoice.com/forums/601447-illustrator-desktop-bugs/suggestions/39393367-selection-tolerance-setting-on-bezier-handles-has
The selection tolerance setting for handles is clearly broken. It's stuck at 1 pixel, no matter what you set it to in the preferences.
I compared with CS6 where it works fine.
Please vote for this post in the bugs section:
Yeah, the tolerance setting doesn't work anymore. It seems to stay at 1 pixel (for the handles, it works for the anchor points) no matter what you set the tolerance to in the preferences.
Tried different tolerance settings in CS6 and it works fine. PLEASE fix this... it's extremely frustrating having to grab handles with perfect precision.
Johan Ståhl commented
When I slip and miss the anchor point by a micrometer when trying to move it the marked illustration gets unmarked and I loose it. Instead a start to mark empty air. See attached picture. I would like to see an "symbol change" while hovering with the cursor right above the anchor points, just so I know I got the grip. I loose milliseconds all the time now and there are a lot of milliseconds through out history. It is frustrating in the long run. In my designs there are 1000 anchor points. The retouch process is taking a long time and I imagine it would go more smooth if I see I'm right on it instead of slipping next to it all the time.
All the best!
Update: I polled my Instagram followers about this and 64% reported having this problem (200 respondents).
This has been around for so long now that I just don't think it's going to get fixed. They did a prerelease version where the tolerance was adjustable up to 24 instead of 8, but it still only affected the points, not the handles, and considering we've still got a max of 8 in the retail versions then it must have been scrapped. Either way, it's just a frustrating mess on Windows and borderline unusable on a high PPI screen (because I think whatever the tolerance is on those bezier points, it doesn't multiply for app scaling - eg running the program at 2K instead of 4K).
And its problems like this that make Adobe's decision to kill previous versions of programs apart from the last 2 releases so problematic. I never had any of these problems in old versions. I've been using Illustrator for around 20 years and I'm at a point where I just dread using it nowadays.
This is still broken in the latest version in Feb 2021 - particularly on PC. Unusable without Smart Guides on but still not the greatest with Smart Guides on either. The issue exists on the Mac version with Smart Guides off as well. I've given up using Illustrator on PC.
My workaround on Mac has been to turn Smart Guides on and turn all the features of Smart Guides off except for object highlighting.
Johan, grabbing a point with a Pen tool? What do you mean?
Can you record a small GIF or a video or just make a screenshot showing the problem?
Johan Ståhl commented
Cursor needs to change appearance (or something) while grabbing Anchor Point during the work with pen tool (P) . When you think you got it you just missed it by an micro meter and the dashed square appears and you missed everything. A small but REALLY annoying problem. It happens ALL the time. Am I the only one?
Update: this bug now also occurs on Mac in Illustrator 2020. Maddening.
This is an incredibly annoying issue, I've been waiting for some sort of solution for a long time no, but just changing the size of the anchor point size without actually increasing the clickable area is ridiculous (snap also, only works for points, not handles, why?).
Btw, MOHO animation software has solved this issue really well, it's an absolute joy to manipulate the anchor points and their tangent handles, check it out Adobe team!
Absolutely correct. Really precise work in Illustrator is nearly impossible unless you take the (incredibly time-consuming) step of zooming in to maximum magnification. Carpal tunnel zooming ad nauseam.
For years the selection tool has been the most frustrating tool to use in illustrator. The amount of time wasted having to zoom in to make a selection. No matter what setting is in preferences for selection it still isn't precise enough. It's great if you want to pickup points or set a pickup auto distance etc. But the sheer lack of accuracy of the pointer/object relationship is awful. When 2 small objects are next to each other and you make a selection, when the very end of the pointer is over the object you want and it goes and selects the other object. Even though the very tip was over the shape you wanted! This basic fault needs to be fixed... you've had 33 years to get this right! The interruption to working, to constantly have to zoom in is immeasurable.
Windows 10 - 1909
When trying to select bezier handles the cursor needs to be extremely accurate to successfully select a bezier handle. A pixel off and it creates a marquee instead meaning I frequently miss the handle. Changing the Selection Tolerance in preferences has no effect on the bezier handles, only the anchor points.
This is not the case on Mac OS where the bezier handles are also affected by the Selection Tolerance preference (I can select them within a few pixels outside of the physical handle)
I thought this may have something to do with high density displays and the inbuilt Windows scaling but I have tried playing with those settings to no avail and also tested on a regular 1920x1080 display with the problem the same. It occurs regardless as to whether I am using a Wacom pen or mouse.
The problem also occurs with GPU Performance on or off.
Judging by a forum search, this problem has already existed for quite some time but I wanted to add my experience to the chorus. As it stands now, it is unusable for me in a fast paced work environment so I've had to revert to using my Mac machine for any Illustrator work (which isn't ideal).
Note: working with Smart Guides on is not a viable workaround.