PURPOSE: To encode not only a multi-value color picture and a binary color picture but also a color picture being a mixture of both the pictures in an excellent way by encoding a multi-value color picture of a block discriminated to be an edge part, encoding a difference of the binary and multi-value color picture of the block discriminated to be the edge part and encoding the multi- value color picture of a block discriminated to be a non-edge part.
CONSTITUTION: A multi-value color picture signal 100 from a picture memory 20 is binarized for each color by a binarizing circuit 21 and a block edge discrimination section 19 discriminated whether or not each block of a prescribed size is an edge part. A binarizing signal 101 is selected by a selector 28 from a block discriminated to be an edge part and a mask signal 110 is selected from a block discriminated to be a non-edge part. Then a binary color signal 108 read from a binary picture memory 22 is code-processed by a coder A 25 for binary color signal coding and a multi-value color picture code suitable for a photographic picture is obtained. Similarly, a difference between a binary and a multi-value color picture and a multi-value color picture at a non-edge are coded at a coder 26 via a differential coder and a various coding picture is obtained.