Image and video processing is currently active research field during the past few years. Different coding schemes are available in the literature for image and video compression to improve compression ratio while maintaining picture quality. Many of the algorithms use ROI coding such as saliency based concept using different image features. But very few works related to depth cues preserving compression. In this paper, we present a behavioral study to state that the images compressed using defocus cue preserving compression yields better depth perception as compared to standard JPEG compression. We compare images compressed using different schemes against the original image. We collect data from different participants by showing original and compressed images to them. The responses are analyzed using analysis of variance. The analysis shows that the images compressed using defocus cue based compression provides the better perception of the raw image as compared to standard JPEG compressed image. © Springer International Publishing AG 2017.