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This work developed a modified direct form based on the radix-4 Booth algorithm to realize a finite impulse response (FIR) architecture with programmable dynamic ranges of input data and filter coefficients. This architecture comprises a preprocessing unit, data latches, configurable connection units, double Booth decoders, coefficient registers, a path control unit, and a postprocessing unit. Programmable dynamic ranges of input data and filter coefficients can be any positive even numbers or multiple of a word length of coefficient registers, using configurable connection units or a path control unit, respectively. In particular, the proposed architecture employs only data-path controls to accomplish programmable operations, without changing word lengths and components of data latches and filter taps. A practical 8-bit and 16-bit FIR processor has also been implemented by using the TSMC 5 V 0.6 /spl mu/m CMOS technology. It is suitable for operations of asymmetric, symmetric, and anti-symmetric filters at 64, 63, 32, 31, and 16 taps, and is well explored to optimize its functional units. The proposed processor has throughput rates of 50 M and 25 M samples/s for 8-bit and 16-bit input data of various filter applications, respectively.