Decoupling-and-Aggregating for Image Exposure Correction
The images captured under improper exposure conditions often suffer from contrast degradation and detail distortion. Contrast degradation will destroy the statistical properties of low-frequency components, while detail distortion will disturb the structural properties of high-frequency components, leading to the low-frequency and high-frequency components being mixed and inseparable. This will limit the statistical and structural modeling capacity for exposure correction. To address this issue, this paper proposes to decouple the contrast enhancement and detail restoration within each convolution process. It is based on the observation that, in the local regions covered by convolution kernels, the feature response of low-/high-frequency can be decoupled by addition/difference operation. To this end, we inject the addition/difference operation into the convolution process and devise a Contrast Aware (CA) unit and a Detail Aware (DA) unit to facilitate the statistical and structural regularities modeling. The proposed CA and DA can be plugged into existing CNN-based exposure correction networks to substitute the Traditional Convolution (TConv) to improve the performance. Furthermore, to maintain the computational costs of the network without changing, we aggregate two units into a single TConv kernel using structural re-parameterization. Evaluations of nine methods and five benchmark datasets demonstrate that our proposed method can comprehensively improve the performance of existing methods without introducing extra computational costs compared with the original networks. The codes will be publicly available.