LQER: Low-Rank Quantization Error Reconstruction for LLMs

CoRR(2024)

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摘要
Post-training quantization of Large Language Models (LLMs) is challenging. In this work, we introduce Low-rank Quantization Error Reduction (LQER), which combines quantization and low-rank approximation to recover the model capability. LQER leverages an activation-induced scale matrix to drive the singular value distribution of quantization error towards a desirable distribution, which enables nearly-lossless W4A8 quantization on various LLMs and downstream tasks without the need for knowledge distillation, grid search, or gradient-base iterative optimization. Unlike existing methods, the computation pattern of LQER eliminates the need for specialized Scatter and Gather processes to collect high-precision weights from irregular memory locations. Our W4A8 LLMs achieve near-lossless performance on six popular downstream tasks, while using 1.36× fewer hardware resources than the leading state-of-the-art method. We will open-source our framework once the paper is accepted.
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