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Chapter 15: Moving Average Filters

Frequency Response

Figure 15-2 shows the frequency response of the moving average filter. It is mathematically described by the Fourier transform of the rectangular pulse, as discussed in Chapter 11:

The roll-off is very slow and the stopband attenuation is ghastly. Clearly, the moving average filter cannot separate one band of frequencies from another. Remember, good performance in the time domain results in poor performance in the frequency domain, and vice versa. In short, the moving average is an exceptionally good smoothing filter (the action in the time domain), but an exceptionally bad low-pass filter (the action in the frequency domain).

Next Section: Relatives of the Moving Average Filter