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Digital Waveguide Theory

In this appendix, the basic principles of digital waveguide acoustic modeling are derived from a mathematical point of view. For this, the reader is expected to have some background in linear systems and elementary physics. In particular, facility with Laplace transforms [286], Newtonian mechanics [181], and basic differential equations is assumed.

We begin with the partial differential equation (PDE) describing the ideal vibrating string, which we first digitize by converting partial derivatives to finite differences. This yields a discrete-time recursion which approximately simulates the ideal string. Next, we go back and solve the original PDE, obtaining continuous traveling waves as the solution. These traveling waves are then digitized by ordinary sampling, resulting in the digital waveguide model for the ideal string. The digital waveguide simulation is then shown to be equivalent to a particular finite-difference recursion. (This only happens for the lossless ideal vibrating string with a particular choice of sampling intervals, so it is an interesting case.) Next, digital waveguides simulating lossy and dispersive vibrating strings are derived, and alternative choices of wave variables (displacement, velocity, slope, force, power, etc.) are derived. Finally, an introduction to scattering theory for digital waveguides is presented, and various special topics are introduced.

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``Physical Audio Signal Processing'', by Julius O. Smith III, W3K Publishing, 2010, ISBN 978-0-9745607-2-4
Copyright © 2023-08-20 by Julius O. Smith III
Center for Computer Research in Music and Acoustics (CCRMA),   Stanford University