Deep Learning for Camera Autofocus

TitleDeep Learning for Camera Autofocus
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2021
AuthorsC Wang, Q Huang, M Cheng, Z Ma, and DJ Brady
JournalIeee Transactions on Computational Imaging
Start Page258
Pagination258 - 271
Date Published01/2021

Most digital cameras use specialized autofocus sensors, such as phase detection, lidar or ultrasound, to directly measure focus state. However, such sensors increase cost and complexity without directly optimizing final image quality. This paper proposes a new pipeline for image-based autofocus and shows that neural image analysis finds focus 5-10x faster than traditional contrast enhancement. We achieve this by learning the direct mapping between an image and its focus position. In further contrast with conventional methods, AI methods can generate scene-based focus trajectories that optimize synthesized image quality for dynamic and three dimensional scenes. We propose a focus control strategy that varies focal position dynamically to maximize image quality as estimated from the focal stack. We propose a rule-based agent and a learned agent for different scenarios and show their advantages over other focus stacking methods.

Short TitleIeee Transactions on Computational Imaging