A novel algorithm for field programmable gate array (FPGA) realization of kNN classifier is presented in this paper. The algorithm identifies first k closest vectors in the design set of a kNN classifier for each input vector by performing the partial distance search (PDS) in the wavelet domain. It employs subspace search, bitplane reduction and multiple-coefficient accumulation techniques for the effective reduction of the area complexity and computation latency. The proposed implementation has been embedded in a softcore CPU for physical performance measurement. Experimental results show that the implementation provides a cost-effective solution to the FPGA realization of kNN classification systems where both high throughput and low area cost are desired.