Your raster data source does not contain a raster pyramid. This is one of a number of ways to improve performance for raster data display.
- Calculate raster pyramids for your raster dataset.
- Alternatively, you can specify scale-dependent drawing for your raster dataset, especially if it is not possible to generate a raster pyramid for your data. You can design your layer so that it turns on at appropriate visibility scales and will not draw at other scales. For example, a detailed ortho image that has a 1-foot resolution should only be displayed as users zoom in on areas at larger scales. You can support this by using scale-dependent drawing. Your raster layer would be turned on in the display at an appropriate range of visibility scales, and its display would turn off outside the scale range.
A helpful approach is to work with your map by navigating—zooming in and out—until you find appropriate map scales for turning on the raster display. See Setting a visible scale based on the current scale to help you set the proper map scales for scale-dependent rendering.
Pyramids are reduced-resolution representations of your dataset used to improve performance. Pyramids can speed up the display of raster data by retrieving only the data at a specified resolution that is required for the display. With pyramids, a lower-resolution copy of the data displays quickly when drawing the entire dataset. As you zoom in, levels with finer resolutions are drawn; performance is maintained because you're drawing successively smaller areas.
ArcGIS automatically chooses the most appropriate pyramid level based on the map display scale.