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This paper investigates the channel estimation methods of LS, MMSE, DFT and DCT for LTE downlink in Rayleigh fading environments. From this, we propose symmetry extension DFT-based channel estimation algorithm which can mitigate the aliasing error and high-frequency distortion of the discrete Fourier transform (DFT)-based channel estimation. Furthermore, symmetry extension DFT-based channel estimation algorithm has the advantages of utilizing mature FFT algorithm on IC, avoiding the additional IC required for the DCT implementation. Simulation results demonstrate that the proposed algorithm can improve the MSE performance compared with conventional DFT-based channel estimation.