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This paper presents optimized synchronization algorithms and architecture designs of a downlink baseband receiver for multiband orthogonal frequency division multiplexing ultra wideband (MB-OFDM UWB). The receiver system targets at low complexity and low power under the premise of good performance. At algorithm level, dual-threshold (DT) detection method is proposed for robust detection performance in timing synchronization; multipartite table method (MTM) is employed to implement arctangent and sin/cos functions in coarse frequency synchronization. MTM outperforms other state-of-the-art methods in power and area. A highly simplified phase tracking method is proposed with better performance in fine frequency synchronization. At architecture level, we focus on optimizing matched filter of packet detector, carrier frequency offset (CFO) corrector and FFT output reorder buffer. The proposed downlink baseband receiver is implemented with 0.13 /mi CMOS technology. The core area of layout is 2.66 × 0.94 mm2, which saves 45.1% hardware cost due to the low-complexity synchronization algorithms and architecture optimization. The postlayout power consumption is 170 mW at 132 MHz clock frequency, which is equivalent to 88 pJ/b energy efficiency at 480 Mbps data rate.