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Subjective Quality Assessment of V-PCC-Compressed Dynamic Point Clouds Degraded by Packet Losses

Dumic, E. ; Cruz, L. A. S. C.

Sensors Vol. 23, Nº 12, pp. 5623 - 5623, June, 2023.

ISSN (print): 1424-3210
ISSN (online): 1424-8220

Scimago Journal Ranking: 0,76 (in 2022)

Digital Object Identifier: 10.3390/s23125623

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This article describes an empirical exploration on the effect of information loss affecting compressed representations of dynamic point clouds on the subjective quality of the reconstructed point clouds. The study involved compressing a set of test dynamic point clouds using the MPEG V- PCC (Video-based Point Cloud Compression) codec at 5 different levels of compression and applying simulated packet losses with three packet loss rates (0.5%, 1% and 2%) to the V-PCC sub-bitstreams prior to decoding and reconstructing the dynamic point clouds. The recovered dynamic point clouds qualities were then assessed by human observers in experiments conducted at two research laboratories in Croatia and Portugal, to collect MOS (Mean Opinion Score) values. These scores were subject to a set of statistical analyses to measure the degree of correlation of the data from the two laboratories, as well as the degree of correlation between the MOS values and a selection of objective quality measures, while taking into account compression level and packet loss rates. The subjective quality measures considered, all of the full-reference type, included point cloud specific measures, as well as others adapted from image and video quality measures. In the case of image-based quality measures, FSIM (Feature Similarity index), MSE (Mean Squared Error), and SSIM (Structural Similarity index) yielded the highest correlation with subjective scores in both laboratories, while PCQM (Point Cloud Quality Metric) showed the highest correlation among all point cloud-specific objective measures. The study showed that even 0.5% packet loss rates reduce the decoded point clouds subjective quality by more than 1 to 1.5 MOS scale units, pointing out the need to adequately protect the bitstreams against losses. The results also showed that the degradations in V-PCC occupancy and geometry sub-bitstreams have significantly higher (negative) impact on decoded point cloud subjective quality than degradations of the attribute sub-bitstream.