I agree that V11 can be slower when editing field properties, even via the field list.
Firstly you need to make sure that you're running V11.1 (the latest release). This is much better than the earlier releases of V11 and I seem to remember that there have been patches included to address speed issues with the field list.
Also, you might consider using the facility to edit a model without needing to open / import the database.
If you open the database, create any calculated fields and then create / save a model. That model can subsequently be opened and edited without needing to import the data.
Obviously this makes the editing process much quicker. Just open the model and within the model, open the field list. You can reorder the fields, change the data types etc. as you would normally but without having to refresh the data after every change.
Resave the model and then use this next time you open the database.
I appreciate that it's not perfect for every scenario but, you may find it of some use occasionally.
Hope this helps.