Constant Time Median and Bilateral Filtering

Qingxiong Yang, Narendra Ahuja, Kar Han Tan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This paper formulates both the median filter and bilateral filter as a cost volume aggregation problem whose computational complexity is independent of the filter kernel size. Unlike most of the previous works, the proposed framework results in a general bilateral filter that can have arbitrary spatial1 and arbitrary range filter kernels. This bilateral filter takes about 3.5 s to exactly filter a one megapixel 8-bit grayscale image on a 3.2 GHz Intel Core i7 CPU. In practice, the intensity/range and spatial domain can be downsampled to improve the efficiency. This compression can maintain very high accuracy (e.g., 40 dB) but over 100× faster.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)307-318
Number of pages12
JournalInternational Journal of Computer Vision
Issue number3
StatePublished - May 1 2015


  • Bilateral filtering
  • Edge-preserving smoothing
  • Recursive filtering

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Software
  • Computer Vision and Pattern Recognition
  • Artificial Intelligence


Dive into the research topics of 'Constant Time Median and Bilateral Filtering'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this