Sunday, March 11, 2012

Some good "Digital Communications" books

Over the years I have read a number of excellent books related to "Digital Communications". Usually each book excels in one or a few areas but not all of the areas. Digital communication world is very big and has advanced so much that it is very difficult for one author or a few co-authors to be the best in all areas related to digital communications. Even sub-areas of digital communications have been grown so rapidly that it is difficult to be an expert in all of them. As an example in the area of channel coding there are so many coding methods that one can hardly be expert in all. Some are experts on LDPC codes, others experts on traditional block codes, and some are experts in the information theoretic aspects of codes.

So with the understanding that it is highly unlikely that one book has it all, here are some suggestions for books that are very good overall:
One of the best books that explains the theory of digital communications is "Digital Communications" by John G. Proakis and Masoud Salehi. I have seen this book being thought in many high ranking schools and have personally used the book. This is not a book for people that have been just exposed to digital communications theory, but as a book for graduate students is excellent. For undergraduate level "Digital Communications: Fundamentals and Applications" by Bernard Sklar is a good book. There many other good books in this area, however my all time favorite is "Digital Communication" by John  R. Barry, Edward A. Lee, and David G. Messerschmitt. The reason that I love this book is that it is covered by a lot, and I mean a lot of practical concepts. This is also a graduate level book, but its main advantage is its practicality. So for working professionals if you want just to use one digital communications book this is the one.

Here is a list of my suggestions for different categories and use cases:

Overall graduate level:
Digital Communication: by John Barry, Edward Lee, and David Messerschmitt
Digital Communications : by John Proakis and Masoud Salehi
Overall undergraduate level:
Digital Communications: Fundamentals and Applications by Bernard Sklar
Communication Systems: by Simon Haykin and Michael Moher
Wireless communications:
Fundamentals of Wireless Communication: by David Tse and Parmod Viswanath
Wireless Communications: by Andreas Molsch
Error control coding:
- Error Control Coding: by: Shu Lin and Daniel Costello
- Error Control Systems for Digital Communication and Storage: by Stephen Wicker
Information theory:
- Elements of Information Theory: by Thomas Cover and Joy Thomas
Information Theory, Inference and Learning Algorithms: by David MacKay
Here is a great website with fantastic lists of technical and none technical books:
That would be interesting to hear from you and see your suggestions.

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