Noise-based Enhancement for Foveated Rendering

Taimoor Tariq1     Cara Tursun1,2     Piotr Didyk1

1UniversitĂ  della Svizzera italiana    2University of Groningen


Human visual sensitivity to spatial details declines towards the periphery. Novel image synthesis techniques, so-called foveated rendering, exploit this observation and reduce the spatial resolution of synthesized images for the periphery, avoiding the synthesis of high-spatial-frequency details that are costly to generate but not perceived by a viewer. However, contemporary techniques do not make a clear distinction between the range of spatial frequencies that must be reproduced and those that can be omitted. For a given eccentricity, there is a range of frequencies that are detectable but not resolvable. While the accurate reproduction of these frequencies is not required, an observer can detect their absence if completely omitted. We use this observation to improve the performance of existing foveated rendering techniques. We demonstrate that this specific range of frequencies can be efficiently replaced with procedural noise whose parameters are carefully tuned to image content and human perception. Consequently, these frequencies do not have to be synthesized during rendering, allowing more aggressive foveation, and they can be replaced by noise generated in a less expensive post-processing step, leading to improved performance of the rendering system. Our main contribution is a perceptually-inspired technique for deriving the parameters of the noise required for the enhancement and its calibration. The method operates on rendering output and runs at rates exceeding 200 FPS at 4K resolution, making it suitable for integration with real-time foveated rendering systems for VR and AR devices. We validate our results and compare them to the existing contrast enhancement technique in user experiments.


Sample results:

Scene courtesy of Morgan McGuire.

Scene courtesy of Vokselia.


This project has received funding from the European Research Council (ERC) under the European Union's Horizon 2020 research and innovation program (grant agreement Nâ—¦ 804226 PERDY).