Mesh deform binding taking forever

Does anyone know which factors affect the time it takes for mesh deform to bind? When I bind at precision 5 it takes a few seconds(still long compared to other meshes at 5) and then 7 can take at least half an hour. I’ve not finished it yet.

This is confusing because a more complex mesh in the same scene binding at 7 to a more complex cage takes 2-3 minutes. I’ve tried merging vertices that were at the same place, applying the lattice modifier, applying the mirror modifier on the cage, deleting inside vertices, but no matter what it still takes a very long time.

Precision is the biggest factor. Other factors are vert count of deformer, deformee. Deformer count seems to matter more. Nothing else should matter-- mesh deform doesn’t care about deformee topo, just its vertices. (But sometimes people forget that running a subdiv, mirror, whatever above a mesh deform increases the vert count…)

I’ve had 9 precision binds take overnight. I no longer do that.

I do all of my mesh deform work with precision 5 (default). The only places where this might be an issue for me would be if I wanted to use a mesh deform for a hand (at the finger webbing). The solution for me is, don’t use a mesh deform to do things like deform fingers. An armature works fine for that.

I often use double-shelled mesh deformers to limit the extent of the mesh deform-- basically just take my deformer mesh, duplicate it in edit, alt s out a bit. I don’t deform the outer shell. That creates a natural interpolation area to reduce artifacts from imperfect precision. An alternative would be to limit with a vertex group.

I can’t help but wonder if something is going buggy. I tested it with two cubes, no subdivisions on either, and it still froze up at 7. The more complex full character meshes work just fine though.