Multipie Dataset


Benchmarks on Multipie Database

Probably for Manuel’s students


The CMU Multi-PIE face database contains more than 750,000 images of 337 people recorded in up to four sessions over the span of five months. Subjects were imaged under 15 view points and 19 illumination conditions while displaying a range of facial expressions. In addition, high resolution frontal images were acquired as well. In total, the database contains more than 305 GB of face data.


The data has been recorded over 4 sessions. For each session, the subjects were asked to display a few different expressions. For each of those expressions, a complete set of 30 pictures is captured that includes 15 different view points times 20 different illumination conditions (18 with various flashes, plus 2 pictures with no flash at all).

Available expressions

  • Session 1 : neutral, smile

  • Session 2 : neutral, surprise, squint

  • Session 3 : neutral, smile, disgust

  • Session 4 : neutral, neutral, scream.

Camera and flash positioning

The different view points are obtained by a set of 13 cameras located at head height, spaced at 15° intervals, from the -90° to the 90° angle, plus 2 additional cameras located above the subject to simulate a typical surveillance view. A flash coincides with each camera, and 3 additional flashes are positioned above the subject, for a total of 18 different possible flashes.

The following picture showcase the positioning of the cameras (in yellow) and of the flashes (in white).

Multipie setup

File paths

The data directory structure and filenames adopt the following structure:


For example, the file


corresponds to * Subject 001 * Session 2 * Second recording -> Expression is surprise * Camera 05_1 -> Frontal view * Shot 07 -> Illumination through the frontal flash


Expression protocol

Protocol E

  • Only frontal view (camera 05_1); only no-flash (shot 0)

  • Enrolled : 1x neutral expression (session 1; recording 1)

  • Probes : 4x neutral expression + other expressions (session 2, 3, 4; all recordings)

Pose protocol

Protocol P

  • Only neutral expression (recording 1 from each session, + recording 2 from session 4); only no-flash (shot 0)

  • Enrolled : 1x frontal view (session 1; camera 05_1)

  • Probes : all views from cameras at head height (i.e excluding 08_1 and 19_1), including camera 05_1 from session 2,3,4.

Illumination protocols

N.B : shot 19 is never used in those protocols as it is redundant with shot 0 (both are no-flash).

Protocol M

  • Only frontal view (camera 05_1); only neutral expression (recording 1 from each session, + recording 2 from session 4)

  • Enrolled : no-flash (session 1; shot 0)

  • Probes : no-flash (session 2, 3, 4; shot 0)

Protocol U

  • Only frontal view (camera 05_1); only neutral expression (recording 1 from each session, + recording 2 from session 4)

  • Enrolled : no-flash (session 1; shot 0)

  • Probes : all shots from session 2, 3, 4, including shot 0.

Protocol G

  • Only frontal view (camera 05_1); only neutral expression (recording 1 from each session, + recording 2 from session 4)

  • Enrolled : all shots (session 1; all shots)

  • Probes : all shots from session 2, 3, 4.

Setting up the database

To use this dataset protocol, you need to have the original files of the MultiPIE dataset. Once you have it downloaded, please run the following command to set the path for Bob

bob config set [MULTIPIE PATH]


Running experiments

You can run the Multipie baselines command with a simple command such as:

bob bio pipeline simple multipie iresnet100 -m -l sge

Note that the default protocol implemented in the resource is the U protocol. The pose protocol is also available using

bob bio pipeline simple multipie_pose iresnet100 -m -l sge

For the other protocols, one has to define its own configuration file (e.g.: as follows:

from import MultipieDatabase
database = MultipieDatabase(protocol="M")

then point to it when calling the pipeline execution:

bob bio pipeline simple iresnet100 -m -l sge


Open Source Face Recognition Library has some customized plots where the FMR and FNMR trade-off in the evaluation set can be plot using operational FMR thresholds from the development set. This is done be the command bob bio face plots multipie-pose command as in the example below:

Pose protocol

tar -xzvf frice_scores.tar.gz
bob bio face plots multipie-pose -e \
     ./frice_scores/multipie-pose/arcface_insightface/scores-{dev,eval}.csv \
     ./frice_scores/multipie-pose/iresnet50_msceleb_arcface_20210623/scores-{dev,eval}.csv \
     ./frice_scores/multipie-pose/attention_net/scores-{dev,eval}.csv \
     ./frice_scores/multipie-pose/facenet_sanderberg/scores-{dev,eval}.csv \
     ./frice_scores/multipie-pose/ISV/scores-{dev,eval}.csv \
     --titles ArcFace-100,Idiap-Resnet50,Zoo-AttentionNet,Facenet-Sandberg,2014-ISV -o plot.pdf

Expression protocol

bob bio face plots multipie-expression -e \
    ./frice_scores/multipie-expression/arcface_insightface/scores-{dev,eval}.csv \
    ./frice_scores/multipie-expression/iresnet50_msceleb_arcface_20210623/scores-{dev,eval}.csv \
    ./frice_scores/multipie-expression/attention_net/scores-{dev,eval}.csv \
    ./frice_scores/multipie-expression/facenet_sanderberg/scores-{dev,eval}.csv \
    ./frice_scores/multipie-expression/ISV/scores-{dev,eval}.csv \
    --titles ArcFace-100,Idiap-Resnet50,Zoo-AttentionNet,Facenet-Sandberg,2014-ISV -o plot.pdf


Always remember, bob bio face plots –help is your friend.