1. Limited time only! Sign up for a free 30min personal tutor trial with Chegg Tutors
    Dismiss Notice
Dismiss Notice
Join Physics Forums Today!
The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

Quantum Griffiths or Zettili?

  1. Dec 9, 2016 #1
    Hello all!

    You'll see, I am self studying physics, and have already finished with Kleppner - Kolenkow mechanics (complemented with Morin) and Griffiths electrodynamics.

    Now I think I am prepared for QM, but I do not know which textbook is better for me. I have reduced my options to Griffiths or Zettili.

    1) Griffiths.
    Pros: I LOVED his electrodynamics book, like conversational textbooks, like his style (I am a teacher as well), plan to continue with griffiths intro. to elementary particles (so I guess his QM textbook is the best for it).
    Cons: Many people seem to dislike it, they say it often confuses students.

    2) Zetilli.
    Pros: Many people here seem to like it, many solved problems.
    Cons: Seems to be much more advenced than Griffiths, maybe not an undergraduate or intro text (which is what I am looking for).

    What do you think? Anyone of you has used both books and can tell me something?

  2. jcsd
  3. Dec 9, 2016 #2


    User Avatar
    Gold Member

    Its at the right level for undergrads and I think its a better textbook than Griffiths'.
  4. Dec 9, 2016 #3
    Last edited by a moderator: May 8, 2017
  5. Dec 10, 2016 #4
    If you're planning to study Griffths elementary particles, then Zetilli will prepare you better ( I kid you not ), though If you can afford it, getting both books is better than just one.
  6. Dec 11, 2016 #5
    I have had the opportunity of taking a look to Zettili, and in the second chapter (mathematical tools for QM) he talks about Cauchy sequences, Hilbert spaces, dual spaces... and all this in the first few pages. I have studied algebra, but it does not ring me a bell. Maybe I am not prepared for this book. At least Griffiths gives you a review of linear algebra, while Zettili does not...
  7. Dec 11, 2016 #6
    You should have covered Cauchy sequences in calculus II or III, and dual spaces in linear algebra. It's normal, however, for Hilbert spaces to be encountered first in a physics class.
  8. Dec 11, 2016 #7


    User Avatar
    Science Advisor
    Homework Helper
    Gold Member

    This thread and all the others on QM text books show what a personal thing it is. For example, I couldn't imagine starting with Sakurai. It's excellent, but is very abstract. It's a great follow-up to Griffiths, but as a starter, you'd have to be really on the ball. Zettili seems to me to take a long time to get going and from what I've seen I'm not convinced by it. Griffiths just gets stuck in with the Schroedinger equation on page 1!

    You might also want to take a look at: https://www.physicsforums.com/threads/starting-books-for-quantum-mechanics.893236/#post-5639613

    As you can see, some very different views. However, whatever book you choose, you yourself will really have to be on the ball. IMHO, QM is a heavy subject.

    PS If you do go for Griffiths, don't get the cheap Pearson international edition. The printing is shocking. The new edition from Cambridge University Press is well-priced.
  9. Dec 11, 2016 #8


    User Avatar
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member
    2017 Award

    Ok, if you want a book to read before one of the level of Sakurai, I'd suggest the Feynman Lectures vol. III. That starts with wave mechanics rather than the abstract Hilbert-space formalism. It seems to be really very individual, but for me it was a revelation and it made "click" in my mind when I got introduced to the formalism. With the representation-free approach the concepts are much easier to crasp than with working in the position representation all the time (which finally is what "wave mechanics" really is).
  10. Dec 12, 2016 #9
    Well, so it seems to me that, in my particular case, the best introduction will be Griffiths' book. We'll see.

    Thanks you all for your contributions.
  11. Dec 12, 2016 #10


    User Avatar
    Science Advisor

    Since you already liked one Griffiths, there are good chances that you will also like the other one. So in your case, I would recommend Griffiths.
  12. Dec 19, 2016 #11
    By the way, i have read someteré that there is a third edition of Griffiths' QM book about to come. Do you know when will it be on sale?
  13. Dec 20, 2016 #12


    User Avatar

    Staff: Mentor

    He didn't give us more details:
    Reference https://www.physicsforums.com/insights/interview-physicist-david-j-griffiths/
Share this great discussion with others via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook

Have something to add?
Draft saved Draft deleted