This paper presents the design, implementation and evaluation of a micro-network, or Network-on-Chip (NoC), based on a generic pipeline router architecture. The router is designed to efficiently support traffic generated by multimedia applications on embedded multi-core systems. It employs a simplest routing mechanism and implements the round-robin scheduling strategy to resolve output port contentions and minimize latency. A virtual channel flow control is applied to avoid the head-of-line blocking problem and enhance performance in the NoC. The hardware design of the router architecture has been implemented at the register transfer level; its functionality is evaluated in the case of the two dimensional Mesh/Torus topology, and performance results are derived from ModelSim simulator and Xilinx ISE 9.2i synthesis tool. An example of a multi-core image processing system utilizing the NoC structure has been implemented and validated to demonstrate the capability of the proposed micro-network architecture. To reduce complexity of the image compression and decompression architecture, the system use image processing algorithm based on classical discrete cosine transform with an efficient zonal processing approach. The experimental results have confirmed that both the proposed image compression scheme and NoC architecture can achieve a reasonable image quality with lower processing time.