Eulerian Video Magnification for Revealing Subtle Changes in the World

Hao-Yu Wu1 Michael Rubinstein1 Eugene Shih2 John Guttag1 Frédo Durand1 William T. Freeman1
1MIT CSAIL 2Quanta Research Cambridge, Inc.
An example of using our Eulerian Video Magnification framework for

visualizing the human pulse. (a) Four frames from the original video

sequence. (b) The same four frames with the subject’s pulse signal

amplified. (c) A vertical scan line from the input (top) and output

(bottom) videos plotted over time shows how our method amplifies

the periodic color variation. In the input sequence the signal is

imperceptible, but in the magnified sequence the variation is clear.


Our goal is to reveal temporal variations in videos that are difficult or impossible to see with the naked eye and display them in an indicative manner. Our method, which we call Eulerian Video Magnification, takes a standard video sequence as input, and applies spatial decomposition, followed by temporal filtering to the frames. The resulting signal is then amplified to reveal hidden information. Using our method, we are able to visualize the flow of blood as it fills the face and also to amplify and reveal small motions. Our technique can run in real time to show phenomena occurring at temporal frequencies selected by the user.

author = {Hao-Yu Wu and Michael Rubinstein and Eugene Shih and John Guttag and Fr'{e}do Durand and William T. Freeman},
title = {Eulerian Video Magnification for Revealing Subtle Changes in the World},
journal = {ACM Trans. Graph. (Proceedings SIGGRAPH 2012)},
year = {2012},
volume = {31},
number = {4},

Paper: pdf (errata)

Supplemental: pdf (the derivation in Appendix A in the paper given in more detail)

SIGGRAPH 2012 Presentation: zip (150 MB)

Visualization of Eulerian motion magnification (Courtesy of Lili Sun)

Check out Videoscope by Quanta Research – upload your videos and have them magnified!

SIGGRAPH Supplemental Video:

Download: mov (220 MB)

Media Coverage

MIT News Researchers amplify variations in video, making the invisible visible Video
Technology Review Software Detects Motion that the Human Eye Can’t See
BBC Radio interview MIT Video colour amplification
Wired (UK) MIT algorithm measures your pulse by looking at your face
Gizmodo New X-Ray Vision-Style Video Can Show a Pulse Beating Through Skin
PetaPixel Magnifying the Subtle Changes in Video to Reveal the Invisible
Huffington Post MIT’s New Video Technology Could Give You Superhuman Sight
Spiegel Online (German) Video software can make pulse visible
Imaging Resource Is baby still breathing? Find out… from a video!


Matlab (2 MB, v1.1 2013-03-02) – reproduces all the results in the paper (see README.txt for details).

This code is provided for non-commercial research purposes only. By downloading and using the code, you are consenting to be bound by all terms of this software release agreement. Contact the authors if you wish to use the code commercially.

Please cite our paper if you use any part of the code or data supplied on this web page.

* This work is patent pending


All videos are in MPEG-4 format and encoded using H.264.

source result source result source result source result (color)

result (motion)

source result (low E) result (A)
source result source result source result source result


We would like to thank Guha Balakrishnan, Steve Lewin-Berlin and Neal Wadhwa for their helpful feedback, and the SIGGRAPH reviewers for their comments. We thank Ce Liu and Deqing Sun for helpful discussions on the Eulerian vs. Lagrangian analysis. We also thank Dr. Donna Brezinski, Dr. Karen McAlmon, and the Winchester Hospital staff for helping us collect videos of newborn babies. This work was partially supported by DARPA SCENICC program, NSF CGV-1111415, and Quanta Computer. Michael Rubinstein was partially supported by an NVIDIA Graduate Fellowship.

Last updated: Nov 2012

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