Denoising Task Routing for Diffusion Models

Published on Oct 11, 2023


Diffusion models generate highly realistic images through learning a multi-step denoising process, naturally embodying the principles of multi-task learning (MTL). Despite the inherent connection between diffusion models and MTL, there remains an unexplored area in designing neural architectures that explicitly incorporate MTL into the framework of diffusion models. In this paper, we present Denoising Task Routing (DTR), a simple add-on strategy for existing diffusion model architectures to establish distinct information pathways for individual tasks within a single architecture by selectively activating subsets of channels in the model. What makes DTR particularly compelling is its seamless integration of prior knowledge of denoising tasks into the framework: (1) Task Affinity: DTR activates similar channels for tasks at adjacent timesteps and shifts activated channels as sliding windows through timesteps, capitalizing on the inherent strong affinity between tasks at adjacent timesteps. (2) Task Weights: During the early stages (higher timesteps) of the denoising process, DTR assigns a greater number of task-specific channels, leveraging the insight that diffusion models prioritize reconstructing global structure and perceptually rich contents in earlier stages, and focus on simple noise removal in later stages. Our experiments demonstrate that DTR consistently enhances the performance of diffusion models across various evaluation protocols, all without introducing additional parameters. Furthermore, DTR contributes to accelerating convergence during training. Finally, we show the complementarity between our architectural approach and existing MTL optimization techniques, providing a more complete view of MTL within the context of diffusion training.


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