I want to start learning about audio signal processing but I cannot find a good starting point. Please suggest books or lecture series.

  • $\begingroup$ I think that a general book on signal processing (plus linear algebra and statistics) is a good starting point. If you want to specialize in audio, it depends on your interest. Speech processing? Music? Stage, movie, games, VR...? Machine learning and acoustics would be useful. $\endgroup$
    – Knut Inge
    Commented Mar 14, 2020 at 20:37
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Make sure you get the basics down: Sampling and reconstruction theorem, Fourier Transforms, Convolution. After that you'll get to think about non-linear and time-variant techniques, but get the LTI down first. $\endgroup$ Commented Mar 14, 2020 at 22:38

3 Answers 3


If you can get it:

Zölzer, Udo (1997). Digital Audio Signal Processing. John Wiley and Sons. ISBN 0-471-97226-6



might have to buy them used.

is your interest music processing and synthesis?

there are some nice online books. Look for anything Julius Smith. But there are others, but i can't remember any names to search for.

Remembered one:

Davide Rocchesso

here's another link

another old one:

Ken Steiglitz

  • $\begingroup$ +1 for Orfanidis. Zölzer is also okay, even though the formulas in that book have to be taken with a grain of salt. $\endgroup$
    – Matt L.
    Commented Mar 15, 2020 at 11:46
  • $\begingroup$ i knew Orfanidis before he did that book. he did a sorta generalization to my "Equivalence" paper in the '90s. Knud Christianson did a better one, but Orfanidis was first to do something to nail down the 5th degree of freedom. $\endgroup$ Commented Mar 15, 2020 at 16:01
  • $\begingroup$ With Orfandis, is there a significant difference between the "Introduction to" book you linked to and another I found: amazon.co.uk/dp/0070477949 I can't tell if they're the same with slightly different titles/covers. $\endgroup$
    – moinudin
    Commented Feb 21, 2021 at 7:49
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    $\begingroup$ i don't think that they are the same book, @moinudin. $\endgroup$ Commented Feb 21, 2021 at 17:14
  • $\begingroup$ Phew. Because I was finding that one really difficult. Fortunately I found the introductory one, and I can see its quite different. Thanks! $\endgroup$
    – moinudin
    Commented Feb 21, 2021 at 18:53

My personal favorite, though I don't usually do much audio signal processing, are Julius O. Smith III's Spectral Audio Signal Processing and Physical Audio Signal Processing. They're available online here and here.

A while ago, he made the Physical book available in paperback on Amazon.


Many years ago, when I was studying audio DSP in my university, I had to read the following:

Y. You, “Audio Coding: Theory and Applications,” Springer, 2010 here

A. Spanias, T. Painter, V. Atti, “Audio Signal Processing and Coding,” Wiley, 2007 here.

I was very dissapointed by both. Spanias & Painter provide a nice and thorough overview of MP3 coding (but it contains many typos) though. After a couple of years, I read the books by J. O. Smith III, also mentioned by @Peter K. These are indeed excellent textbooks.


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