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Title: Complexity management for video encoders.
Authors: Zhao, Yafan
Supervisors: Richardson, I. E. G.
Miller, Tony
Shan, Lin
Grecos, Christos
Issue Date: Mar-2004
Publisher: Robert Gordon University
Citation: ZHAO, Y. and RICHARDSON, I. E. G., 2003. Macroblock classification for complexity management of video encoders. Signal Processing: Image Communication, 18 (9), pp. 801-811
RICHARDSON, I. E. G. and ZHAO, Y., 2002. Adaptive management of video encoder complexity. Journal of Real-Time Imaging, 8 (4), pp. 291-301
ZHAO, Y. and RICHARDSON, I. E. G., 2003. Macroblock skip-mode prediction for complexity control of video encoders. In: Proceedings of the IEEE Visual Information Engineering. 7-9 July 2003. Surrey. pp. 5-8
ZHAO, Y. and RICHARDSON, I. E. G., 2003. Macroblock classification for video encoder complexity management. In: Proceedings of International Picture Coding Symposium. 23-25 April 2003. Saint-Malo. pp. 371-376
ZHAO, Y. and RICHARDSON, I. E. G., 2002. Complexity management for video encoders. In: Doctoral Symposium, ACM Multimedia Conference. 1-6 December 2002. Juan Les Pins. pp. 647-649
ZHAO, Y., MUIR, L. and RICHARDSON, I. E. G., 2002. Implementing MPEG-4 Visual in software. In: IEE Seminar on Visual Media Standards. 25 April 2002.
ZHAO, Y. and RICHARDSON, I. E. G., 2002. Computational complexity management of motion estimation in video encoders. In: IEEE Data Compression Conference. 2-4 April 2002. Snowbird, UT. p. 483
RICHARDSON, I. E. G. and ZHAO, Y., 2001. Adaptive algorithms for variable-complexity video coding. In: Proceedings of the Internal Conference on Image Processing. 7-10 October 2001. Thessaloniki, Greece. pp. 457-460
RICHARDSON, I. E. G. and ZHAO, Y., 2001. Video CODEC complexity management. In: Proceedings of the Picture Coding Symposium. 25-27 April 2001. Seoul, Korea. pp. 267-270
RICHARDSON, I. E. G. and ZHAO, Y., 2004. Macroblock Classification for Complexity Management of Video Encoders. UK patent application 0229354.6, filed 18 December 2002
Abstract: Software implementation of block-based video coding standards has been used in a wide range of applications. In many cases, such as real-time multimedia systems or power-constrained systems, the coding performance of software-only video encoders and decoders is limited by computational complexity. This thesis presents research work to develop techniques to manage computational complexity of video encoders. These techniques aim to provide significant complexity saving as well as adaptively controlling the computational complexity. This thesis first investigates experimentally the most computationally intensive functions in a video encoder. Based on the results of profile tests, several functions are selected as candidates, on which complexity reduction algorithms will be performed. These functions include discrete cosine transform and related functions as well as motion estimation. Adaptive complexity-reduction algorithms are proposed for computationally expensive functions: discrete cosine transform and motion estimation functions respectively. It is shown that these algorithms can flexibly control the computational complexity of each function with negligible loss of video quality. The inherent characteristics of coded macroblocks are investigated through experimental tests and they are categorized into "skipped" and" unskipped" macroblocks based on two parameters. An innovative algorithm is developed to reduce the computational complexity by predicting "skipped" macroblock prior to encoding and not carrying out the coding process on these macroblocks. The approaches described in this thesis can not only achieve adaptive control of the computational complexity of a video encoder, but also can manage the trade-off between complexity and distortion. These proposed algorithms are evaluated in terms of complexity reduction performance, rate-distortion performance and subjective and objective visual quality by experimental testing.The advantages and disadvantages of each algorithm are discussed.
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