Bring Metric Functions into Diffusion Models


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We introduce a Cascaded Diffusion Model (Cas-DM) that improves a Denoising Diffusion Probabilistic Model (DDPM) by effectively incorporating additional metric functions in training. Metric functions such as the LPIPS loss have been proven highly effective in consistency models derived from the score matching. However, for the diffusion counterparts, the methodology and efficacy of adding extra metric functions remain unclear. One major challenge is the mismatch between the noise predicted by a DDPM at each step and the desired clean image that the metric function works well on. To address this problem, we propose Cas-DM, a network architecture that cascades two network modules to effectively apply metric functions to the diffusion model training. The first module, similar to a standard DDPM, learns to predict the added noise and is unaffected by the metric function. The second cascaded module learns to predict the clean image, thereby facilitating the metric function computation. Experiment results show that the proposed diffusion model backbone enables the effective use of the LPIPS loss, leading to state-of-the-art image quality (FID, sFID, IS) on various established benchmarks.
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