US3534649A - Metronome with accentuated beats - Google Patents

Metronome with accentuated beats Download PDF

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US3534649A
US3534649A US3534649DA US3534649A US 3534649 A US3534649 A US 3534649A US 3534649D A US3534649D A US 3534649DA US 3534649 A US3534649 A US 3534649A
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signals
flip
oscillator
output
flop
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Per Lennart Andersson
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Andersson Lennart
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    • GPHYSICS
    • G04HOROLOGY
    • G04FTIME-INTERVAL MEASURING
    • G04F5/00Apparatus for producing preselected time intervals for use as timing standards
    • G04F5/02Metronomes
    • G04F5/025Electronic metronomes
    • GPHYSICS
    • G04HOROLOGY
    • G04FTIME-INTERVAL MEASURING
    • G04F5/00Apparatus for producing preselected time intervals for use as timing standards
    • G04F5/02Metronomes

Description

United' States Patent lnventor Per Lennart Anderson 7 150 Dayleview Road, Benvyn,

Pennsylvania 19312 Appl. No. 744,379 I Filed ,July 12, 1968 Oct. l0, 1970 Patented METRONOME WITH ACCENTUATED BEATS 8 Claims, 1 Drawing Fig.

U.S.Cl 84/484,

. 58/130 Int. Cl G04b 21/00 Field ofSearch 84/484;

[56] References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,522,492 9/1950 Andersen 58/ l 30 3,380,332 4/1968 Panicci et al. 84/484 Primary Examiner-Richard B. Wilkinson Assistant ExaminerLawrence R. Franklin Attorney-Edward M. Farrell ABSTRACT: A metronome produces audible signals at a transducer which are variable over a predetermined frequency range. Means are provided to selectively accentuate different ones of the beat signals. A pulse oscillator produces electrical signals which are applied to the transducer as well as to a counter circuit. Means are provided for selectively applying signals from the counter circuit to produce the accentuated audible beat signals.

Patented 0a. 20, 1910 3,534,649

iii l- O v INVENTOR.

m v PER LENNARTANDERSSOIQ ATTORNEY METRONOME WITH ACCENTUATED BEATS Metronomes for producing audible beat signals are well known. The beat signals produced are generally variable over a frequency range from 40 to 208 beats per minute, for example. Such metronomes have included mechanical devices which are manually wound to buildup spring tension with the gradual release of the spring tension causing a mechanical hammer to strike against a solid structure to cause audible beat signals.

Metronomes have also included electrical and electromechanical devices. in some of the electrical devices, resistor-capacitor charging and discharge networks in conjunction with neon bulbs have been used to produce electrical signals for a loudspeaker. with the variable beat being produced by varying the time constant of the RC network.

Metronomes with accentuated beats have also been considered in the past but, in the main. have been disgarded as being too expensive, too cumbersome or otherwise not economically feasible.

Most of the mechanical devices previously suggested have been unduly cumbersome; Some of the electrical mechanical approaches have, in addition to being cumbersome, been unacceptable due to their inaccuracies, inability to produce sharp click" signals or for other reasons.

Metronomes with accentuated beats enable a person learning music to accurately follow certain rhythms. For example, most music is written in two, three or four-quarter or sixeighth time. While following the beat is very important to a beginner learning a musical instrument, following the music in correct rhythm is also very important and difficult for beginners.

It is an object of this invention to provide an improved metronome with accentuated audible beat signals.

It is a further object of this invention to provide an improved metronome with accentuated beats which may be built compactly and economically.

It is still a further object of this invention to provide an improved, metronome with accentuated audible beat signals wherein the volume of the audible signals may be varied.

It is still a futher object of this invention to provide an improved metronome with accentuated audible beats wherein the audible beats are accompanied by flashing light signals.

In accordance with the present invention, a low frequency oscillator generates variable electrical pulse signals. The pulse signals are applied through a first path to a loudspeaker to produce audible signals. The pulse signals are also applied through a second path to 'a counter network, capable of producing output signals corresponding to submultiple frequencies of signals applied thereto. The output signals from the counter network are made wider in duration than the signals from the oscillator and selectively applied to the transducer whereby selected ones of the audible signals produced by the transducer are characteristically different from other of the audible signals.

Other objects and advantages of the present invention will be apparent to those skilled in the art, from a reading of the following specification and claims; in conjunction with the accompanying drawing, in which the solefigure includes a schematic diagram, partly in block form, of an improved metronome, in accordance with the present invention.

Referring to the drawing, an oscillator is provided for generating pulse signals at a relatively low frequency rate, such as from 40 to 208 cycles per minute, which represents the frequency range of conventional metronomes presently being marketed. This oscillator may be a resistance-coupledtype oscillator including a pair of inverter amplifiers l2 and 14, which are indicated by the conventional symbols of triangles with dots at the output circuits. The amplifier l2-is coupled to the amplifier 14 through a capacitor 16. A portion of the output signals from the amplifier 14 is fed back to the amplifier 12 through a capacitor 18. The capacitors l6 and 18 are connected to resistors 20and 22, respectively. The values of the resistors and capacitors are chosen in accordance with the frequency of oscillation desired, in the present case between 40 and 208 .cycles per minute. Resistance-coupled oscillators per se are well known to those skilled in the art.

A variable resistor 24 is connected to the resistor 20 and 22. This resistor provides means for varying the RC time constant of the circuit illustrated thereby providing means for varying the frequency of oscillation of the oscillator 10.

The output signals from the oscillator 10 are applied through an inverting amplifier 26 to a counter circuit 28. The counter circuit, capable of counting up to eight, includes three flip-flop circuits 30, 32, and 34.

The output pulse signals from the amplifier 26 are applied to the flip-flop circuits 30 and 32 to switch them to their opposite states from which they were operating when the pulse signals are applied. The flip-flop circuits 30, 32 and 34 are associated with a pair of selector switches 36 and 38. Dependent upon the positions of the selector switches 36 and 38, output pulse signals will be developed at the line 40. The signals at the line 40 will be a lower frequency of the oscillator 10 and represent the signals which are to be accentuated or distinguished from the other signals from the oscillator.

The output pulse signals from the oscillator 10 are applied through a line 42 to an inverter amplifier circuit 44 and then to a two-input NOR gate circuit 45. The output signals from the circuit 45 are applied to a buffer amplifier 46. A capacitor 43, which may be a Z-microfarad capacitor, controls to some extent the width of the pulses applied to the amplifier 46.

Output pulse signals from the buffer amplifier 46 are applied through an inverter amplifier 47 and a pair of diodes 49 and 51 to an output amplifier including a pair of transistors 48 and 50, and their associated circuitry.

A loudspeaker 52, including a cone 54 and a voice coil 56, is connected in the collector circuit of the transistor 50. When input pulse signals are applied to the transistor 50, output click" or audible signals are produced at the loudspeaker 52.

A potentiometer 58 is provided to control the volume of the audible sounds produced by the loudspeaker 52. A neon bulb 60 may also be connected to the amplifier 50 to produce a flashing visible signal each time an audible beat is produced by the loudspeaker 52. 1

In the absence of any signals produced at the line 40, beat signals will be produced at the loudspeaker 52 with the frequency of the beats corresponding to the frequency of the oscillator 10.

The countercircuit 28 is designed to generate output pulse signals for every second, third, fourth, sixth or eighth signal produced by the oscillator 10. The particular signal generated is dependentupon the positions of the selector switches 36 and 38, the arms of which are ganged to switch simultaneously.

When the arms of the switches 36 and 38 are in the 0 positions, no output signals will be applied from the counter circuit to the line 40. In this case, only the regular beat signals from the oscillator 10 will drive the loudspeaker 52. The system will then act in a manner of a conventional metronome, providing audible beat signals which may be varied between about 40 and 208 beats per minute.

When the selector switches are set in the 2 positions the contact 2 on'the switch 36 is open and therefore this switch has no effect on the operation of the circuitry.

The set 5 side of the flip-flop circuit 30 is connected to the 2 position of the switch 38 connecting its output signals from this point to the line 40. As is well known in counter flip-flop circuits, the output states are changed once for each two input signals. Therefore the signal from S of the flip-flop circuit 30 will be one half the frequency of the oscillator 10.

The output signals from the line 40 are applied to the buffer amplifier 46 through amplifier 62, inverter amplifier 64, and the two input NOR gate circuit 65.

The output pulse signals from the buffer circuit are designed to be slightly wider in width than the pulse signals from the circuit 45. A capacitor 51, is a higher value than the capacitor 43 and is in the order of 10 microfarads, so that the output pulse signals from the NOR gate 65 are relatively wide. These wider pulse signals are eventually applied through transistors 48 and 50 to drive the loudspeaker 52 to produce audible beat signals which are characteristically different from the beat signals produced by the pulse signals from the oscillator which are not applied through the countercircuit 28. Thus when the selector switches 36 and 38 are in position 2 variable audible beat signals are produced which may have accentuated beats. The accentuated beats may provide a rhythm, which may correspond to music being played in two-quarter time, for example, where it is desirable to accentuate every second beat.

When the selector switches 36 and 38 are in position 3, the output signals from the reset R side of the flip-flop circuit 30 are applied to the input circuits of the flip-flop circuit 32. An output signal from the R side of the flip-flop circuit 32 is applied to the line 40 through the 3 contact of the switch 48. The arrangement of the input signal from the flip-flop 30 and input signal from the oscillator I0 and amplifier 26 are such that a changing output signal at R of the flip-flop circuit 32 will be developed for every third beat of the oscillator 10. it is noted that with the selector switch 32 in the 3 position the S side of the flip-flop 32 is coupled to the input of the flip-flop 30. Whenever the flip-flop 32 is in the l or set state, it will cause the flip-flop 30 to switch-operating states. When in the 0 state, the flip-flop 32 does not affect flip-flop 30. The timing of the signals are such that the reset R side of flip-flop 32 produces a signal at the line 40 corresponding to every third beat of the oscillator.

Thus when the selector switch 36 and 38 are in the 3 positions, the loudspeaker 52 will generate a variable audible beat signal in much the same manner as that described with the positions of the selector switches in the 2 positions, except that now every third beat is accentuated. Accentuating every third beat corresponds to the popular three-quarter time in music.

With the selector switches 36 and 38 in the 4 positions, the switch 36 is in the inoperative position. The R output side of the flip-flop circuit 32 is connected through the 4 position of the selector switch 38 to the line 40. it is noted that the flip-flop circuit 32 does not apply any signals back to flipflop 30 as when the selector swithces were in position 3. Because of the timing of the input signal to the flip-flop circuit 32, one output signal from R will be generated for every fourth signal generated by the oscillator 10.

Subsequent application of these signals to drive the loudspeaker 52 results in the generation of a variable audible beat signal from 40 to 208 cycles per minute in which each fourth beat is accentuated. This corresponds to music being played in four-quarter time.

When the selector switches 36 and 38 are in the 6 positions, connection of the flip-flop circuits 30 and 32 are somewhat similar to the arrangement for the 3 position, with a signal being fed back from the flip-flop 32 to switch the operating state of the flip-flop 30. Input signals are applied to the flip-flop circuit 34 from the S output circuit of the flip-flop circuit 32. The timing of the input signals are such that an output signal (Le. a change in operating states from a first to a second state occurs) is produced at the S output circuit of the flip-flop circuit 34 once for every six signals produced by the oscillator circuit 10. This output signal from the S output circuit of the flip-flop circuit 34 is applied to the line 40 and is used to produce an accentuated output signal at the loudspeaker 52 for every sixth beat. This rhythm may correspond to music played in six-eighths time.

When the selector switches 36 and 38 are set in the 8 positions, the S output circuit of the flip-flop circuit 34 generates a pulse signal at the line 40 every eighth time as related to the frequency of the oscillator 10. It is noted that the feedback from flip-flop 32 to flip-flop 30 is not present when the selector switches 36 and 38 are in position 8, as was the case when the switches were in position 6. Consequently, because of the timing involved, S from the flip-flop 34 will generate one signal for every eight pulse signals in the oscillator. As previously mentioned, the signal at the line 40 produces output-accentuated signals at the loudspeaker 52 once for every eight cycles of operation of the oscillator 10, which produces the regular or normal beat signals.

A full wave rectifier power supply circuit 70 provides the necessary DC voltages to operate the circuitry illustrated. Such a circuit may beconventional in design and hence it is not described in detail.

The flip-flop circuits 30, 32 and 34; which provide means for producing the accentuated beat signals, are conventional to those found in many countercircuits used in computer systems. Except when the switches 36 and 38 are in the 3 or 6 positions, the three flip-flops may be considered as a counter which counts to eight. in the 3 position, the flip-flop circuits 30 and 32, produce signals from the R side offlipflop 32 corresponding to the count of three. in the 6 position, the S output of the flip-flop 34 produces signals corresponding to a six count.

It is noted that a count of three is obtained with only two flip-flop circuits and a count of six with only three flip-flop circuits. The normal use of a conventional counter, would require three flip-flop circuits for a 3-count. This saving of one flip-flop circuit carries over to the 6-count.

Because flip-flop circuits, inverters, NOR gates and other circuitry illustrated symbolically are well known to those skilled in the art; detailed showings of such circuitry are not given for purposes of clarity. Such circuit details are only incidentally related to the present invention.

It is well known in computer and other systems that voltage levels are readily transformed into pulse signals by using capacitors to detect changes in such levels.

For example, while the output signals from the oscillator and countercircuits may be rectangular or square wave signals, they are translated into the pulse signals which produce the audible sounds.

it is apparent that numerous modifications in the embodiment illustrated are possible without departing from 52 scope of the invention. For example, in some cases, the sixth and eighth accentuated beats may not be required, in which case the flip-flop 34 may be left out and the selector switches 36 and 38 would only require four positions, 0, 2, 3 and 4.

The light 60 may be left out if only sound is desired. A switch could be provided to switch the light in or out of the circuits. For example, there would be provided switching to permit light-on-sound-on", light-on-sound-off", or lightoff-sound-on". Also, if desired, two lights may be provided, with one light to accompany the regular beat and the second of higher intensity to provide light flashes to accompany the accentuated beats.

- Most of the electronic circuitry illustrated may invlove small compact solid-state devices. Consequently, metronome units may be built relatively compact.

While the so called accentuated" beats are achieved by making the pulses longer than the pulses produced by the oscillator, it is apparent that accentuation could also be attained by increasing the amplitudes of the signals to be accentuated.

lclaim:

l. A metronome comprising an oscillator for producing electrical signals, means for varying frequency of said oscillator signals, means including a countercircuit having a plurality of output terminals for generating output signals in response to input signals from said oscillator applied thereto, the characteristic of said output signals being different than the signals from said oscillator, the frequencies of said output signals being lower than the frequency of signals applied thereto, means'for applying said signals from said oscillator to said countercircuit to produce said signals of lower frequency at said plurality of output terminals, a transducer for translating electrical signals applied thereto into corresponding acoustical signals, means for applying said signals from said oscillator to said transducer, means for selectively applying signals from one of said output terminals to said transducer along with the signals from said oscillator to produce acoustical signals wherein the acoustical signals produced by the signals from said selected output terminal are different than the acoustical signals produced by the signals from said oscillator whereby variable audible beat signals are produced with selected ones of the beat signals being accentuated.

2. A metronome as set forth in claim 1 wherein said countercircuit includes at least three flip-flop circuits and a selector switch is connected to said output terminals to connect the output signals to be accentuated to said transducer.

3. The invention as set forth in claim 2 wherein two of said flip-flop circuits include output terminals for generating second, third and fourth submultiple signals of said oscillator for subsequent accentuation at said transducer.

4. The invention as set forth in claim 3 wherein the third said flip flop includes an output terminal for generating one output signal for every six signals applied to said counter from said oscillator, for subsequent accentuation at said transducer.

5. The invention as set forth in claim 4 wherein a transistor amplifier includes said transducer in its output circuit, with the input circuit of said transistor amplifier including input means for receiving signals from said oscillator and said countercircuit.

6. The invention as set forth in claim 5 wherein means are provided in said transistor amplifier to produce flashes of light to accompanyithe acoustical signals produced by said transducer.

7. The invention as set forth in claim 6 wherein said oscillator comprises a resistance-capacitance coupled oscillator, and the means for varying the frequency comprises a variable resistor connected in the oscillator circuit.

8. The invention as set forth in claim 7 wherein means are included in said selector switch to disconnect said countercircuit from said transducer whereby only the signals from said oscillator produce acoustical signals at said transducer.

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Cited By (9)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US3818693A (en) * 1973-10-25 1974-06-25 F Allard Electronic metronome
US4014167A (en) * 1972-03-21 1977-03-29 Ryozo Hasegawa Electronic metronome
US4018131A (en) * 1975-05-27 1977-04-19 Cannon Robert L Electronic metronome
US4204400A (en) * 1976-10-28 1980-05-27 Kabushiki Kaisha Daini Seikosha Electronic metronome
US4218874A (en) * 1978-01-18 1980-08-26 Kabushiki Kaisha Daini Seikosha Electronic metronome
FR2474712A1 (en) * 1980-01-25 1981-07-31 Bruggen Hendrik V D A sound indication of time of a musical measure
US4583443A (en) * 1984-04-05 1986-04-22 Harry Yokel Electronic metronome and rhythm generator
US4655113A (en) * 1980-04-24 1987-04-07 Baldwin Piano & Organ Company Rythm rate and tempo monitor for electronic musical instruments having automatic rhythm accompaniment
US4733593A (en) * 1987-03-19 1988-03-29 Peter Rothbart Mixed meter metronome

Cited By (9)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US4014167A (en) * 1972-03-21 1977-03-29 Ryozo Hasegawa Electronic metronome
US3818693A (en) * 1973-10-25 1974-06-25 F Allard Electronic metronome
US4018131A (en) * 1975-05-27 1977-04-19 Cannon Robert L Electronic metronome
US4204400A (en) * 1976-10-28 1980-05-27 Kabushiki Kaisha Daini Seikosha Electronic metronome
US4218874A (en) * 1978-01-18 1980-08-26 Kabushiki Kaisha Daini Seikosha Electronic metronome
FR2474712A1 (en) * 1980-01-25 1981-07-31 Bruggen Hendrik V D A sound indication of time of a musical measure
US4655113A (en) * 1980-04-24 1987-04-07 Baldwin Piano & Organ Company Rythm rate and tempo monitor for electronic musical instruments having automatic rhythm accompaniment
US4583443A (en) * 1984-04-05 1986-04-22 Harry Yokel Electronic metronome and rhythm generator
US4733593A (en) * 1987-03-19 1988-03-29 Peter Rothbart Mixed meter metronome

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