Maximum likelihood difference scaling of image quality in compression-degraded images

Christophe Charrier, Laurence T. Maloney, Hocine Cherifi, Kenneth Knoblaunch

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Lossy image compression techniques allow arbitrarily high compression rates but at the price of poor image quality. We applied maximum likelihood difference scaling to evaluate image quality of nine images, each compressed via vector quantization to ten different levels, within two different color spaces, RGB and CIE 1976 L*a*b*. In L*a*b* space, images could be compressed on average by 32% more than in RGB space, with little additional loss in quality. Further compression led to marked perceptual changes. Our approach permits a rapid, direct measurement of the consequences of image compression for human observers.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3418-3426
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of the Optical Society of America A: Optics and Image Science, and Vision
Issue number11
StatePublished - Nov 2007

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics
  • Computer Vision and Pattern Recognition


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