Multiple-description coding by dithered delta-sigma quantization

Jan Østergaard*, Ram Zamir

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


We address the connection between the multiple-description (MD) problem and Delta-Sigma quantization. The inherent redundancy due to oversampling in Delta-Sigma quantization, and the simple linear-additive noise model resulting from dithered lattice quantization, allow us to construct a symmetric and time-invariant MD coding scheme. We show that the use of a noise-shaping filter makes it possible to trade off central distortion for side distortion. Asymptotically, as the dimension of the lattice vector quantizer and order of the noise-shaping filter approach infinity, the entropy rate of the dithered Delta-Sigma quantization scheme approaches the symmetric two-channel MD rate-distortion function for a memoryless Gaussian source and mean square error (MSE) fidelity criterion, at any side-to-central distortion ratio and any resolution. In the optimal scheme, the infinite-order noise-shaping filter must be minimum phase and have a piecewise flat power spectrum with a single jump discontinuity. An important advantage of the proposed design is that it is symmetric in rate and distortion by construction, so the coding rates of the descriptions are identical and there is therefore no need for source splitting.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)4661-4675
Number of pages15
JournalIEEE Transactions on Information Theory
Issue number10
StatePublished - 2009


  • Delta-Sigma modulation
  • Dithered lattice quantization
  • Entropy coding
  • Joint source-channel coding
  • Multiple-description (MD) coding
  • Vector quantization


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