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In H.264/AVC, tree structured motion estimation enhances the coding efficiency significantly while dramatically increasing the computational complexity of block matching. In the paper, a successive elimination algorithm (SEA) is implemented in tree structured motion estimation with a simple and effective method to determine the initial motion vector, which exploits the strong correlation among the partially overlapped variable-size blocks. With identical performance to a full search algorithm, computations for block matching can be reduced to 1%-20%. Further, the SEA can be improved by incorporating two early termination conditions, then named 'Quick SEA'. Finally, a novel fast motion estimation algorithm, successive elimination diamond search (SEDS), is proposed by efficiently integrating the Quick SEA and a modified diamond search pattern. Simulation results show that the proposed Quick SEA can reduce the computational complexity of block matching by 3-5 times compared to the basic SEA. SEDS further reduces by about one-half the computations of Quick SEA. With similar rate distortion performance, 0.2%-1% block matching distortion is calculated for SEDS with corresponding speed-up factors of 100 to 500 in comparison with the full search algorithm.
Vision, Image and Signal Processing, IEE Proceedings - (Volume:151 , Issue: 5 )
Date of Publication: 30 Oct. 2004