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Proceedings Paper

Flexible macroblock ordering as a content adaptation tool in H.264/AVC
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Paper Abstract

H.264/AVC is the newest block based video coding standard from MPEG and VCEG. It not only provides superior and efficient video coding at various bit rates, it also has a "network-friendly" representation thanks to a series of new techniques which provide error robustness. Flexible Macroblock Ordering (FMO) is one of the new error resilience tools included in H.264/AVC. Here, we present an alternative use of flexible macroblock ordering, using its idea of combining non-neighboring macroblocks together in one slice. Instead of creating a scattered pattern, which is useful when transmitting the data over an error-prone network, we divide the picture into a number of regions of interest and one remaining region of disinterest. It is assumed that people watching the video will pay much more attention to the regions of interest than to the remainder of the video. So we compress the regions of interest at a higher bit rate than the regions of disinterest, thus lowering the overall bit rate. Simulations show that the overhead introduced by using rectangular regions of interest is minimal, while the bit rate can be reduced by 30% and more in most cases. Even at those reductions the video stays pleasant to watch. Transcoders can use this information as well by reducing only the quality of the regions of disinterest instead of the quality of the entire picture if applying SNR scalability. In extreme cases the regions of disinterest can even be dropped easily, thus reducing the overall bit rate even further.

Paper Details

Date Published: 24 October 2005
PDF: 9 pages
Proc. SPIE 6015, Multimedia Systems and Applications VIII, 601506 (24 October 2005); doi: 10.1117/12.630759
Show Author Affiliations
Yves Dhondt, Ghent Univ. (Belgium)
Peter Lambert, Ghent Univ. (Belgium)
Stijn Notebaert, Ghent Univ. (Belgium)
Rik Van de Walle, Ghent Univ. (Belgium)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 6015:
Multimedia Systems and Applications VIII
Anthony Vetro; Chang Wen Chen; C.-C. J. Kuo; Tong Zhang; Qi Tian; John R. Smith, Editor(s)

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