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Physical Audio Signal Processing: for Musical Instruments and Audio Effects
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  • Title Physical Audio Signal Processing: for Musical Instruments and Audio Effects
  • Author(s) Julius O. Smith III
  • Publisher: W3K Publishing (December 21, 2010)
  • Paperback 826 pages
  • eBook HTML
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B001V9CUDO
  • ISBN-10: 0974560723
  • ISBN-13: 978-0974560724
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Book Description

This book describes signal-processing models and methods that are used in constructing virtual musical instruments and audio effects. Specific topics considered include delay effects such as phasing, flanging, the Leslie effect, and artificial reverberation; virtual acoustic musical instruments such as guitars, pianos, bowed strings, woodwinds, and brasses; and various component technologies such as digital waveguide modeling, wave digital modeling, commuted synthesis, resonator factoring, feedback delay networks, digital interpolation, Doppler simulation, nonlinear elements, finite difference schemes, passive signal processing, and associated software.

This book was developed for the course "Signal Processing Models in Musical Acoustics". The course was created for graduate students in computer music and engineering interested in efficient computational modeling of musical instruments. You should already understand digital signal processing, physics, and acoustics. Knowledge of the theory of algorithms and the basics of control theory wouldn't do you any harm either.

The goal of this book is to enable the reader in developing virtual musical instruments and audio effects that can be boiled down to algorithms and executed by a computer. One purpose of this book is how to avoid the computational expense associated with using general purpose differential equation solvers, such as finite difference schemes. The book is also is about the art of determining the essential components of an acoustic instrument and taking advantage of data reduction inherent in human hearing in order to minimize computational expense. Did I mention that it is fun to read too? It's great when you can either see or - in this case - hear the result of your work.

About the Authors
  • Julius O. Smith is a research engineer and musician devoted to developing new technologies for music. He received the B.S.E.E. degree from Rice University, Houston, TX, in 1975 (Control, Circuits, and Communication). He received the M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in E.E. from Stanford University, Stanford, CA, in 1978 and 1983, respectively. His Ph.D. research was devoted to improved methods for digital filter design and system identification applied to music and audio systems. From 1975 to 1977 he worked in the Signal Processing Department at ESL, Sunnyvale, CA, on systems for digital communications. From 1982 to 1986 he was with the Adaptive Systems Department at Systems Control Technology, Palo Alto, CA, where he worked in the areas of adaptive filtering and spectral estimation. From 1986 to 1991 he was employed at NeXT Computer, Inc., responsible for sound, music, and signal processing software for the NeXT computer workstation. After NeXT, he became an Associate Professor at the Center for Computer Research in Music and Acoustics (CCRMA) at Stanford, teaching courses and pursuing research related to signal processing techniques applied to music and audio systems. Continuing this work, he is presently a Professor of Music and Associate Professor of Electrical Engineering (by courtesy) at Stanford University. For more information, see

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