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Topic: DSP prerequisites? (Read 3190 times) previous topic - next topic

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  • bennetng
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DSP prerequisites?
I am a Bachelor of Arts and only have some basic maths/science knowledge not better than a 16-year-old student. What kinds of maths/science subjects should I learn before studying subjects like sinc function, FFT and other related stuffs? It is obvious that I don't understand some formulae in a typical DSP textbook, Wikipedia and so on.

For example, what should I learn if I want to design a typical parametric EQ with highpass/lowpass/notch/Q value, or a resampler at least better than linear interpolation?

Thanks!

  • benski
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DSP prerequisites?
Reply #1
The Scientist and Engineer's Guide to Digital Signal Processing is freely available online and provides a good introduction without getting too academic.

When I got started, I found that the excessive use of complex numbers (real + imaginary) made most formal textbooks difficult to understand.  A good understanding of Euler's Formula and the imaginary plane goes a long way.

Julius O. Smith's website is another great reference, but requires more prerequisite knowledge.
  • Last Edit: 29 April, 2013, 03:22:01 PM by benski

  • saratoga
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DSP prerequisites?
Reply #2
I am a Bachelor of Arts and only have some basic maths/science knowledge not better than a 16-year-old student. What kinds of maths/science subjects should I learn before studying subjects like sinc function, FFT and other related stuffs? It is obvious that I don't understand some formulae in a typical DSP textbook, Wikipedia and so on.


To actually understand proofs and relations, you need highschool level differential and integral calculus.  Linear algebra and differential equations are also useful, but texts exist that comprehensively cover DSP without assuming knowledge of either, so I would not consider them essential.  If you actually need to understand at that level is debatable though.  If you just want to write software you don't necessarily need to understand exactly what you're doing.  When I was learning about codecs, I often wrote or adapted code without fully understanding it until much later.

For example, what should I learn if I want to design a typical parametric EQ with highpass/lowpass/notch/Q value, or a resampler at least better than linear interpolation?


Depends what you mean by design.  If you mean derive from scratch using first principles, then the above.  If you mean just use other people's formulas and code, but adapted for your needs, then you might not need any math at all beyond algebra. 

What is your actual goal here?

  • bennetng
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DSP prerequisites?
Reply #3
My goal is to understand the underlying theories and put them into practice. Thanks for the replies and I will take a look to the subjects mentioned above.