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A frame quality control mechanism for H.264/AVC is proposed in this research. The research objective is to ensure that a suitable quantization parameter (QP) can be assigned to each frame so that the target quality of each frame will be achieved. One of the potential application is consistently maintaining frame quality during the encoding process to facilitate video archiving and/or video surveillance. A single-parameter distortion to quantization (D–Q) model is derived by training a large number of frame blocks. The model parameter can be determined from the frame content before the exact encoding process. Given the target quality for a video frame, we can then select an appropriate QP according to the proposed D–Q model. Model refinement and QP adjustment of subsequent frames can be applied by examining the coding results of previous data. Such quality measurements as peak signal to noise ratio (PSNR) and structural similarity (SSIM) can be employed. The experimental results verify the feasibility of the proposed constant quality video coding framework.