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Elucidating the design space of classifier-guided diffusion generation

Jiajun Ma · Tianyang Hu · Wenjia Wang · Jiacheng Sun

Halle B #38
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Tue 7 May 7:30 a.m. PDT — 9:30 a.m. PDT


Guidance in conditional diffusion generation is of great importance for sample quality and controllability. However, existing guidance schemes are to be desired. On one hand, mainstream methods such as classifier guidance and classifier-free guidance both require extra training with labeled data, which is time-consuming and unable to adapt to new conditions.On the other hand, training-free methods such as universal guidance, though more flexible, have yet to demonstrate comparable performance. In this work, through a comprehensive investigation into the design space, we show that it is possible to achieve significant performance improvements over existing guidance schemes by leveraging off-the-shelf classifiers in a training-free fashion, enjoying the best of both worlds. Employing calibration as a general guideline, we propose several pre-conditioning techniques to better exploit pretrained off-the-shelf classifiers for guiding diffusion generation. Extensive experiments on ImageNet validate our proposed method, showing that state-of-the-art (SOTA) diffusion models (DDPM, EDM, DiT) can be further improved (up to 20\%) using off-the-shelf classifiers with barely any extra computational cost.With the proliferation of publicly available pretrained classifiers, our proposed approach has great potential and can be readily scaled up to text-to-image generation tasks.

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