Recent Advances in Rate Control: From Optimisation to Implementation and Beyond

Xuekai WEI, Mingliang ZHOU, Heqiang WANG, Haoyan YANG, Lei CHEN, Sam KWONG

Research output: Journal PublicationsJournal Article (refereed)peer-review


Video coding is a video compression technique that compresses the original video sequence to produce a smaller archive file or reduce the transmission bandwidth under constraints on the visual quality loss. Rate control (RC) plays a critical role in video coding. It can achieve stable stream output in practical applications, especially real-time video applications such as video conferencing or game live streaming. Most RC algorithms either directly or indirectly characterise the relationship between the bit rate (R) and quantisation (Q) and then allocate bits to every coding unit so as to guarantee the global bit rate and video quality level. This paper comprehensively reviews the classic RC technologies used in international video standards of past generations, analyses the mathematical models and implementation mechanisms of various schemes, and compares the performance of recent state-of-the-art RC algorithms. Finally, we discuss future directions and new application areas for RC methods. We hope that this review can help support the development, implementation, and application of RC for new video coding standards.

Original languageEnglish
JournalIEEE Transactions on Circuits and Systems for Video Technology
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 19 Jun 2023
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:


  • Adaptation models
  • AVC
  • Bit rate
  • Encoding
  • HEVC
  • Integrated circuit modeling
  • rate control
  • Standards
  • Streaming media
  • Video coding
  • VVC


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