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iOS Core ML implementation of waifu2x
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waifu2x on iOS


This is a Core ML implementation of waifu2x. The target of this project is to run waifu2x models right on iOS devices even without network. For macOS version please refer to waifu2x-mac.


  • XCode 9+
  • iOS 11+

Image format

Images with RGB color space works fine. Others should be converted to RGB before processing otherwise output image will be broken. Alpha channel is scaled using bicubic interpolation. Generally it runs on GPU. It automatically falls back to CPU if image is too large for Metal to process, which is extremely slow. (A bad idea)

About models

This repository includes all the models converted from waifu2x-caffe. If you want to dig into Core ML, it is recommended that you should convert them by yourself.

You can convert pre-trained models to Core ML format and then import them to XCode. The pre-trained model can be obtained from waifu2x-caffe.

You can use the same method described in MobileNet-CoreML. You should not specify any input and output layer in python script.

A working model should have input and output like the following example:



  • iPhone6s - waifu2x-ios on iPhone 6s with iOS 11.1
  • iPhone8 - waifu2x-ios on iPhone 8 with iOS 11.0
  • iPad - waifu2x-ios on iPad Pro 10.5 with iOS 11.1
  • PC - waifu2x-caffe on Windows 10 16278 with GTX 960M


All of the tests are running denoise level 2 with scale 2x model on anime-style images from Pixiv.


Image resolution: 600*849

Device Time(s)
iPhone6s 6.8
iPhone8 4.0
iPad 2.9
PC 2.1


Image resolution: 3000*3328

Device Time(s)
iPhone6s 129.2
iPhone8 73.5
iPad 49.2
PC 37.5


Device: iPad Image resolution: 3000*3328

Milestone Time(s) RAM usage(GB)
Before using upconv models 141.7 1.86
After using upconv models 63.6 1.28
After adding pipeline on output 56.8 1.28
After adding pipeline on prediction 49.2 0.38
Pure MPSCNN implementation* 29.6 1.06

*: With crop size of 384 and double command buffers.


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