Learning Dual Priors for JPEG Compression Artifacts Removal
Deep learning (DL)-based methods have achieved great success in solving the ill-posed JPEG compression artifacts removal problem. However, as most DL architectures are designed to directly learn pixel-level mapping relationships, they largely ignore semantic-level information and lack sufficient interpretability. To address the above issues, in this work, we propose an interpretable deep network to learn both pixel-level regressive prior and semantic-level discriminative prior. Specifically, we design a variational model to formulate the image de-blocking problem and propose two prior terms for the image content and gradient, respectively. The content-relevant prior is formulated as a DL-based image-to-image regressor to perform as a de-blocker from the pixel-level. The gradient-relevant prior serves as a DL-based classifier to distinguish whether the image is compressed from the semantic-level. To effectively solve the variational model, we design an alternating minimization algorithm and unfold it into a deep network architecture. In this way, not only the interpretability of the deep network is increased, but also the dual priors can be well estimated from training samples. By integrating the two priors into a single framework, the image de-blocking problem can be well-constrained, leading to a better performance. Experiments on benchmarks and real-world use cases demonstrate the superiority of our method to the existing state-of-the-art approaches.