JPEG 2000 requires far greater decompression time than JPEG and allows more sophisticated progressive downloads, yet averages similar compression rates. JPEG 2000 becomes increasingly blurred with higher compression ratios rather than generating JPEG's "blocking and ringing" artifacts, complicating direct comparison of their respective compression rates.
For traditional JPEG, additional meta-data, e.g. lighting and exposure conditions, is kept in an application marker in the Exif format specified by the JEITA. JPEG2000 chooses a different route, encoding the same meta data in XML form. The reference between the Exif tags and the XML elements is standardized by the ISO TC42 committee in the standard 12234-1.4.
More advantages associated with JPEG 2000 can be referred to from the Official JPEG 2000 page
The aim of JPEG 2000 is not only improved compression performance over JPEG but also adding (or improving) features such as scalability and editability. In fact, JPEG 2000's improvement in compression performance relative to the original JPEG standard is actually rather modest and should not ordinarily be the primary consideration for evaluating the design. Very low and very high compression rates are supported in JPEG 2000. In fact, the graceful ability of the design to handle a very large range of effective bit rates is one of the strengths of JPEG 2000. For example, to reduce the number of bits for a picture below a certain amount, the advisable thing to do with the first JPEG standard is to reduce the resolution of the input image before encoding it. That's unnecessary when using JPEG 2000, because JPEG 2000 already does this automatically through its multiresolution decomposition structure. The following sections describe the algorithm of JPEG 2000.
The chrominance components can be, but do not necessarily have to be, down-scaled in resolution; in fact, since the wavelet transformation already separates images into scales, downsampling is more effectively handled by dropping the finest wavelet scale. This step is called multiple component transformation in the JPEG 2000 language since its usage is not restricted to the RGB color model.
After color transformation, the image is split into so-called tiles, rectangular regions of the image that are transformed and encoded separately. Tiles can be any size, and it is also possible to consider the whole image as one single tile. Once the size is chosen, all the tiles will have the same size (except optionally those on the right and bottom borders). Dividing the image into tiles is advantageous in that the decoder will need less memory to decode the image and it can opt to decode only selected tiles to achieve a partial decoding of the image. The disadvantage of this approach is that the quality of the picture decreases due to a lower peak signal-to-noise ratio. Using many tiles can create a blocking effect similar to the older JPEG 1992 standard.
After the wavelet transform, the coefficients are scalar-quantized to reduce the amount of bits to represent them, at the expense of a loss of quality. The output is a set of integer numbers which have to be encoded bit-by-bit. The parameter that can be changed to set the final quality is the quantization step: the greater the step, the greater is the compression and the loss of quality. With a quantization step that equals 1, no quantization is performed (it is used in lossless compression).
The result of the previous process is a collection of sub-bands which represent several approximation scales. A sub-band is a set of coefficients — real numbers which represent aspects of the image associated with a certain frequency range as well as a spatial area of the image.
The quantized sub-bands are split further into precincts, rectangular regions in the wavelet domain. They are typically selected in a way that the coefficients within them across the sub-bands form approximately spatial blocks in the (reconstructed) image domain, though this is not a requirement.
Precincts are split further into code blocks. Code blocks are located in a single sub-band and have equal sizes — except those located at the edges of the image. The encoder has to encode the bits of all quantized coefficients of a code block, starting with the most significant bits and progressing to less significant bits by a process called the EBCOT scheme. EBCOT here stands for Embedded Block Coding with Optimal Truncation. In this encoding process, each bit plane of the code block gets encoded in three so-called coding passes, first encoding bits (and signs) of insignificant coefficients with significant neighbors (i.e., with 1-bits in higher bit planes), then refinement bits of significant coefficients and finally coefficients without significant neighbors. The three passes are called Significance Propagation, Magnitude Refinement and Cleanup pass, respectively.
Clearly, in lossless mode all bit planes have to be encoded by the EBCOT, and no bit planes can be dropped.
The bits selected by these coding passes then get encoded by a context-driven binary arithmetic coder, namely the binary MQ-coder. The context of a coefficient is formed by the state of its nine neighbors in the code block.
The result is a bit-stream that is split into packets where a packet groups selected passes of all code blocks from a precinct into one indivisible unit. Packets are the key to quality scalability (i.e., packets containing less significant bits can be discarded to achieve lower bit rates and higher distortion).
Packets from all sub-bands are then collected in so-called layers. The way the packets are built up from the code-block coding passes, and thus which packets a layer will contain, is not defined by the JPEG 2000 standard, but in general a codec will try to build layers in such a way that the image quality will increase monotonically with each layer, and the image distortion will shrink from layer to layer. Thus, layers define the progression by image quality within the code stream.
The problem is now to find the optimal packet length for all code blocks which minimizes the overall distortion in a way that the generated target bitrate equals the demanded bit rate.
While the standard does not define a procedure as to how to perform this form of rate–distortion optimization, the general outline is given in one of its many appendices: For each bit encoded by the EBCOT coder, the improvement in image quality, defined as mean square error, gets measured; this can be implemented by an easy table-lookup algorithm. Furthermore, the length of the resulting code stream gets measured. This forms for each code block a graph in the rate–distortion plane, giving image quality over bitstream length. The optimal selection for the truncation points, thus for the packet-build-up points is then given by defining critical slopes of these curves, and picking all those coding passes whose curve in the rate–distortion graph is steeper than the given critical slope. This method can be seen as a special application of the method of Lagrange multiplier which is used for optimization problems under constraints. The Lagrange multiplier, typically denoted by λ, turns out to be the critical slope, the constraint is the demanded target bitrate, and the value to optimize is the overall distortion.
Packets can be reordered almost arbitrarily in the JPEG 2000 bit-stream; this gives the encoder as well as image servers a high degree of freedom.
Already encoded images can be sent over networks with arbitrary bit rates by using a layer-progressive encoding order. On the other hand, color components can be moved back in the bit-stream; lower resolutions (corresponding to low-frequency sub-bands) could be sent first for image previewing. Finally, spatial browsing of large images is possible through appropriate tile and/or partition selection. All these operations do not require any re-encoding but only byte-wise copy operations.
JPEG 2000 gains up to about 20% compression performance for medium compression rates in comparison to the first JPEG standard. For lower or higher compression rates, the improvement can be somewhat greater (especially if altering the input resolution to the codec is not considered as a technique for effective use of the older JPEG standard). Good applications for JPEG 2000 are large images, images with low-contrast edges — e.g., medical images.
It has, however, notably higher computational and memory demands.
Similar to JPEG-1, JPEG2000 defines both a file format and a code stream. Whereas the latter entirely describes the image samples, the former includes additional meta-information as the resolution of the image or the color space that has been used to encode the image. JPEG2000 images should — if stored as files — be boxed in the JPEG2000 file format, where they get the .jp2 extender. The part-2 extension to JPEG2000, i.e., ISO/IEC 15444-2, also enriches this file format by including mechanisms for animation or composition of several code streams into one single image. Images in this extended file-format use the .jpx extension.
There is no standardized extension for code-stream data because code-stream data is not to be considered to be stored in files in first place, though when done for testing purposes, the extension .jpc or .j2k appear frequently.
The markets and applications better served by this standard are listed below:
The PNG (Portable Network Graphics) format is still more space-efficient in the case of images with many pixels of the same color, and supports special compression features that JPEG 2000 does not.
It can be expected that PNG will be more heavily used for compressing diagram-type images and JPEG 2000 for photograph-type images, assuming no further changes to either standard.
JPEG 2000 is by itself licensed, but the contributing companies and organizations agreed that licenses for its first part — the core coding system — can be obtained free of charge from all contributors.
The JPEG committee has stated:
However, the JPEG committee has also noted that undeclared and obscure submarine patents may still present a hazard:
Because of this statement, controversy remains in the software community concerning the legal status of the JPEG2000 standard.
Several additional parts of the JPEG 2000 standard exist; Amongst them are ISO/IEC 15444-2:2000, JPEG 2000 extensions defining the .jpx file format, featuring for example Trellis quantization, an extended file format and additional color spaces, ISO/IEC 15444-4:2000, the reference testing and ISO/IEC 15444-6:2000, the compound image file format, allowing compression of compound text/image graphics.
Extensions for secure image transfer, JPSEC, enhanced error-correction schemes for wireless applications, JPWL, are also already available from the ISO, and extensions for encoding of volumetric images, JP3D are under discussion.
In 2005, a JPEG2000 based image browsing protocol, called JPIP has been published as ISO/IEC 15444-9. Within this framework, only selected regions of potentially huge images have to be transmitted from an image server on the request of a client, thus reducing the required bandwidth.
Motion JPEG 2000 (often referenced as MJ2 or MJP2) is the leading digital cinema standard currently supported by Digital Cinema Initiatives (a consortium of most major studios and vendors) for the storage, distribution and exhibition of motion pictures. It also is under consideration as a digital archival format by the Library of Congress. It is an open ISO standard and an advanced update to MJPEG (or MJ), which was based on the legacy JPEG format. Unlike common video codecs, such as MPEG-4, WMV, and DivX, MJ2 does not employ temporal or inter-frame compression. Instead, each frame is an independent entity encoded by either a lossy or lossless variant of JPEG 2000. Its physical structure does not depend on time ordering, but it does employ a separate profile to complement the data. For audio, it supports LPCM encoding, as well as various MPEG-4 variants, as "raw" or complement data.
|Pixel image editor||Proprietary|
|FastStone Image Viewer||Proprietary|
|Paint Shop Pro||Proprietary|
|FFmpeg||in progress||in progress||LGPL|
|GTK (from 2.14)||LGPL|