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24 January 2012 Complexities of complex contrast
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Abstract
For the visual system, luminance contrast is a fundamental property of images, and is one of the main inputs of any simulation of visual processing. Many models intended to evaluate visual properties such as image discriminability compute perceived contrast by using contrast sensitivity functions derived from studies of human spatial vision. Such use is of questionable validity even for such applications (i.e. full-reference image quality metrics), but it is usually inappropriate for no-reference image quality measures. In this paper, we outline why the contrast sensitivity functions commonly used are not appropriate in such applications, and why weighting suprathreshold contrasts by any sensitivity function can be misleading. We propose that rather than weighting image contrasts (or contrast differences) by some assumed sensitivity function, it would be more useful for most purposes requiring estimates of perceived contrast or quality to develop an estimate of efficiency: how much of an image is making it past the relevant thresholds.
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Andrew M. Haun and Eli Peli "Complexities of complex contrast", Proc. SPIE 8292, Color Imaging XVII: Displaying, Processing, Hardcopy, and Applications, 82920E (24 January 2012); https://doi.org/10.1117/12.915365
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