Multi-grained Attention Networks for Single Image Super-Resolution

26 Sep 2019  ·  Huapeng Wu, Zhengxia Zou, Jie Gui, Wen-Jun Zeng, Jieping Ye, Jun Zhang, Hongyi Liu, Zhihui Wei ·

Deep Convolutional Neural Networks (CNN) have drawn great attention in image super-resolution (SR). Recently, visual attention mechanism, which exploits both of the feature importance and contextual cues, has been introduced to image SR and proves to be effective to improve CNN-based SR performance. In this paper, we make a thorough investigation on the attention mechanisms in a SR model and shed light on how simple and effective improvements on these ideas improve the state-of-the-arts. We further propose a unified approach called "multi-grained attention networks (MGAN)" which fully exploits the advantages of multi-scale and attention mechanisms in SR tasks. In our method, the importance of each neuron is computed according to its surrounding regions in a multi-grained fashion and then is used to adaptively re-scale the feature responses. More importantly, the "channel attention" and "spatial attention" strategies in previous methods can be essentially considered as two special cases of our method. We also introduce multi-scale dense connections to extract the image features at multiple scales and capture the features of different layers through dense skip connections. Ablation studies on benchmark datasets demonstrate the effectiveness of our method. In comparison with other state-of-the-art SR methods, our method shows the superiority in terms of both accuracy and model size.

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