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Recently, Narozny et al (2005) proposed a new viewpoint in variable high-rate transform coding. They showed that the problem of finding the optimal 1-D linear block transform for a coding system employing entropy-constrained uniform quantization may be viewed as a modified independent component analysis (ICA) problem. By adopting this new view-point, two new ICA-based algorithms, called GCGsup and ICAorth, were then derived for computing respectively the optimal linear transform and the optimal orthogonal transform. In this paper, we show that the transforms returned by GCGsup and ICAorth can achieve better visual image quality (better preservation of lines and contours) than the KLT and 2-D discrete cosine transform (DCT) when applied to the compression of well-known grayscale images.