Chapter 1

Introduction

It is hardly possible to make a start in the field of digital audio signal processing without having a first insight into the variety of technical devices and systems of audio technology. In this introductory chapter, the fields of application for digital audio signal processing are presented. Starting from recording in a studio or in a concert hall, the whole chain of signal processing is shown, up to the reproduction at home or in a car (see Fig. 1.1). The fields of application can be divided into the following areas:

  • studio technology;
  • digital transmission systems;
  • storage media;
  • audio components for home entertainment.

The basic principles of the above-mentioned fields of application will be presented as an overview in order to exhibit the uses of digital signal processing. Special technical devices and systems are outside the focus of this chapter. These devices and systems are strongly driven by the development of the computer technology with yearly changes and new devices based on new technologies. The goal of this introduction is a trend-independent presentation of the entire processing chain from the instrument or singer to the listener and consumer of music. The presentation of signal processing techniques and their algorithms will be discussed in the following chapters.

1.1 Studio Technology

While recording speech or music in a studio or in a concert hall, the analog signal from a microphone is first digitized, fed to a digital mixing console ...

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