WO2011061470A1 - Bowing sensor for musical instrument - Google Patents

Bowing sensor for musical instrument

Info

Publication number
WO2011061470A1
WO2011061470A1 PCT/GB2010/001911 GB2010001911W WO2011061470A1 WO 2011061470 A1 WO2011061470 A1 WO 2011061470A1 GB 2010001911 W GB2010001911 W GB 2010001911W WO 2011061470 A1 WO2011061470 A1 WO 2011061470A1
Authority
WO
Grant status
Application
Patent type
Prior art keywords
member
bow
sensor
controller
optical
Prior art date
Application number
PCT/GB2010/001911
Other languages
French (fr)
Other versions
WO2011061470A8 (en )
Inventor
Dylan Menzies-Gow
Original Assignee
De Montford University
Priority date (The priority date is an assumption and is not a legal conclusion. Google has not performed a legal analysis and makes no representation as to the accuracy of the date listed.)
Filing date
Publication date

Links

Classifications

    • GPHYSICS
    • G10MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS; ACOUSTICS
    • G10HELECTROPHONIC MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS
    • G10H3/00Instruments in which the tones are generated by electromechanical means
    • G10H3/03Instruments in which the tones are generated by electromechanical means using pick-up means for reading recorded waves, e.g. on rotating discs drums, tapes or wires
    • G10H3/06Instruments in which the tones are generated by electromechanical means using pick-up means for reading recorded waves, e.g. on rotating discs drums, tapes or wires using photoelectric pick-up means
    • GPHYSICS
    • G10MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS; ACOUSTICS
    • G10HELECTROPHONIC MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS
    • G10H1/00Details of electrophonic musical instruments
    • G10H1/02Means for controlling the tone frequencies, e.g. attack, decay; Means for producing special musical effects, e.g. vibrato, glissando
    • G10H1/04Means for controlling the tone frequencies, e.g. attack, decay; Means for producing special musical effects, e.g. vibrato, glissando by additional modulation
    • G10H1/053Means for controlling the tone frequencies, e.g. attack, decay; Means for producing special musical effects, e.g. vibrato, glissando by additional modulation during execution only
    • G10H1/055Means for controlling the tone frequencies, e.g. attack, decay; Means for producing special musical effects, e.g. vibrato, glissando by additional modulation during execution only by switches with variable impedance elements
    • G10H1/0553Means for controlling the tone frequencies, e.g. attack, decay; Means for producing special musical effects, e.g. vibrato, glissando by additional modulation during execution only by switches with variable impedance elements using optical or light-responsive means
    • GPHYSICS
    • G10MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS; ACOUSTICS
    • G10HELECTROPHONIC MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS
    • G10H2220/00Input/output interfacing specifically adapted for electrophonic musical tools or instruments
    • G10H2220/155User input interfaces for electrophonic musical instruments
    • G10H2220/441Image sensing, i.e. capturing images or optical patterns for musical purposes or musical control purposes
    • G10H2220/455Camera input, e.g. analyzing pictures from a video camera and using the analysis results as control data
    • GPHYSICS
    • G10MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS; ACOUSTICS
    • G10HELECTROPHONIC MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS
    • G10H2230/00General physical, ergonomic or hardware implementation of electrophonic musical tools or instruments, e.g. shape or architecture
    • G10H2230/045Special instrument [spint], i.e. mimicking the ergonomy, shape, sound or other characteristic of a specific acoustic musical instrument category
    • G10H2230/075Spint stringed, i.e. mimicking stringed instrument features, electrophonic aspects of acoustic stringed musical instruments without keyboard; MIDI-like control therefor
    • G10H2230/081Spint viola
    • GPHYSICS
    • G10MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS; ACOUSTICS
    • G10HELECTROPHONIC MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS
    • G10H2250/00Aspects of algorithms or signal processing methods without intrinsic musical character, yet specifically adapted for or used in electrophonic musical processing
    • G10H2250/315Sound category-dependent sound synthesis processes [Gensound] for musical use; Sound category-specific synthesis-controlling parameters or control means therefor
    • G10H2250/441Gensound string, i.e. generating the sound of a string instrument, controlling specific features of said sound
    • G10H2250/445Bowed string instrument sound generation, controlling specific features of said sound, e.g. use of fret or bow control parameters for violin effects synthesis

Abstract

The invention provides a music controller, in the form of a bowing sensor. The music controller comprises a musical bow member (4) movable over a guide (2). Associated with the guide (2) is at least one optical flow sensor (6) for monitoring the speed and/or angle of the musical bow member (4) when it is moved longitudinally in contact with the guide, and optionally a pressure sensor (14) for monitoring the pressure of the bow member on the guide. That monitored data, combined with input from a keyboard or ribbon controller (16) enables an attached sound generating device (12) to generate sound that emulates the sound of a real bowed performance or other desired output.

Description

TITLE

BOWING SENSOR FOR MUSICAL INSTRUMENT

DESCRIPTION

Field of the invention

The invention relates to a music controller in the form of a bowing sensor for bowed musical instrument emulation.

Background art

Music controllers are interface devices that are operated by a musician to produce musical sound in a similar way to performing on an acoustic musical instrument. The music controller generates signal data that can be used to control an electronic sound generating device. The music controller and the sound generating device together function as an electronic musical instrument. The sound generating device may emulate an acoustic musical instrument or produce an entirely synthetic sound, and can use a variety of synthesis methods including sample-playback and physical modelling. The most common types of music controller are keyboard devices which operate like a conventional piano keyboard but other types can be used to simulate bowed instruments. It is known for music controllers in the form of bowing sensors to use optical devices to track bow movement. Such music controllers require a specially prepared bow, either with finely spaced marks or a precise graduation of transparency. It is desirable therefore to find a simpler and more practical method of tracking bow movement. Summary of the invention

The invention provides a music controller, being a bowing sensor for bowed musical stringed instrument emulation, comprising a musical bow member, a guide for the musical bow member, and at least one optical sensor associated with the guide for monitoring the speed and direction of the musical bow member whenever it is moved longitudinally in contact with the guide. The at least one optical sensor is preferably an optical flow sensor for capturing optical images of the musical bow member as it is moved across a surface of the optical flow sensor. The music controller compares successive captured optical images of the musical bow member to derive control data related to the speed and/or angle of the musical bow member relative to the guide.

The guide may be a fixed upright member across or against which the bow member is reciprocally moved and which serves to keep the bow member aligned with the optical flow sensor(s) while also allowing some freedom of movement. The speed and/or angle of that movement is accurately sensed and tracked by the optical flow sensor(s) associated with the guide. Such optical flow sensors are small, lightweight, inexpensive and extremely accurate. Similar sensors are in regular use in modern desktop computers, as part of the optical computer 'mouse'. They typically consist of a compact low-resolution video camera focused on the nearfield with an image processor that compares successive images that have been captured by the optical flow sensor and calculates the speed of the adjacent surface which in this case is the moving bow member. More particularly, a light source such as a light emitting diode (LED) or laser illuminates the adjacent surface resulting in a fine pattern that is captured as an image by the video camera. The image processor uses a suitable algorithm (e.g. a block matching algorithm) to compare successive images and calculate the speed and direction of the adjacent surface resulting in a relative measurement of displacement in two dimensions which can then be used to calculate the direction and speed at which the surface is moving. A variety of different optical flow sensors are available. Some use laser illumination and can track most kinds of surface up to speeds of several metres per second, which is well above the maximum bowing speed, and also have a resolution of several 1000 dots per inch enabling the capture of very fine movements. A microprocessor may be used to interface the optical flow sensor and its image processor to a sound generating device.

In use the bow member is drawn backwards and forwards across the surface of the optical flow sensor(s) and that movement is tracked by the music controller to derive control data related to the speed and/or angle of the bow member relative to the guide. The control data can be used by a sound generating device as described in more detail below. The speed of the musical bow member may be used to control gain and the angle of the bow member relative to the guide can be used to control vibrato intensity, for example. The angle of the bow member may be compared against a predetermined axis or line (e.g. a fixed axis of the guide) and the vibrato intensity in the electronic sound generating device may be varied according to the angular deviation from that predetermined axis or line. This provides unified control of bowing expression using just the bow member, without requiring any additional vibrato control. Learning good vibrato technique on a conventional acoustic bowed instrument is very challenging even though it is an important part of the overall playing technique. Likewise, producing cleanly bowed sound is difficult because this requires the initial bowing speed and force profile to be carefully controlled. The music controller of the present invention allows the constraints to be relaxed while still offering substantial expressive control.

The control data can include additional information relating to the operation of the bow member that is tracked or monitored by the music controller. For example, the control data can relate to one or more of: the direction of movement of the bow member, i.e. whether it is moving forwards or backwards across the optical flow sensor(s), even though this does not normally produce a significant musical effect in a conventional acoustic bowed instrument such as a violin; whether the bow member is in contact with either the guide or the surface of the optical flow sensor; and the pressure exerted by the bow member on the guide. In the latter case the music controller may further include a pressure sensor associated with the guide. The electronic sound generating device can use this additional information to emulate an acoustic bowed instrument more accurately, to produce an entirely synthetic sound, or to create novel effects. The bow member may be anything from an actual musical bow, such as a bow for a stringed instrument of the violin family (which term includes violins, violas, cellos and double basses), to an elongate rod. In practice a simple wooden rod is extremely suitable. There is no need for the bow member to have finely spaced marks or a precise graduation of transparency to enable the music controller to track its movement.

In one arrangement the music controller can be combined with a conventional keyboard that is used to control the pitch of the generated sound. The other characteristics or auditory attributes of the generated sound are then preferably determined by the control data that is derived by the music controller. In a simple form the keyboard can be replaced with one or more simple switch pads that can select a pitch from a particular scale or a pitch that is determined externally, e.g. in response to a computer program or game.

In another arrangement the music controller can be combined with a ribbon controller that is able to detect the position of a finger on its length, or the absence of a finger, in a similar way to a fingerboard. The ribbon controller may therefore be used to control the pitch of the generated sound on a continuous scale. Vibrato effects can optionally be provided through the ribbon controller as well as through the angle of the bow member. The guide of the music controller and the ribbon controller may be held together as a single device in the manner of a conventional acoustic bowed instrument. Multiple ribbon controllers can be mounted side by side in order to emulate the arrangement of multiple strings on a conventional acoustic bowed instrument. Each ribbon controller may be associated with its own optical flow sensor to emulate bowing contact on separate strings. This allows sounds to be generated for each ribbon controller only when the bow member is drawn backwards and forwards across the surface of the associated optical flow sensor. If the bow member is drawn backwards and forwards across the surface of two or more optical flow sensors then two separately pitched sounds can be generated.

If the bow member is not moving relative to the guide but remains in contact with either the guide or the surface of the optical flow sensor(s) then the generated sound can cease. If the bow member is no longer in contact with either the guide or the surface of the optical flow sensor(s) then in certain situations this can be used to simulate a ringing open string to emulate a conventional acoustic bowed instrument. It may be possible to detect whether the bow member has come to a stop or has been lifted off the surface of the optical flow sensor(s) by analysing the final image captured by the optical flow sensor or the movement characteristics of the bow member (e.g. its speed profile) as it comes to a stop, for example. The control data may be provided to a sound generating device (e.g. an external sound generating device such as a computer or synthesiser) which generates the desired sound having a pitch that is determined by the keyboard or ribbon controller. The other characteristics or auditory attributes of the generated sounds are determined by the control data, which may optionally be filtered or processed before it is used by the sound generating device. The generated sound may be based on a sample of actual recordings of bowed instruments of the violin family. However, the sample library that is used by the sound generating device may include sound samples of nonexistent or imaginary musical instruments or other sound sources, being sound samples created electronically for example. Bowing-like modifications to the basic sounds so created could be recorded and stored, and the music controller of the invention could then be used to access those sounds. The sound generating device may use algorithms that model the physical processes in instruments and do not require samples. These algorithms can provide very realistic behaviour and can also be modified to create instruments that are unlike any existing acoustic instruments. Moreover, the sound generating device can use any kind of sound synthesis producing sound that may or may not resemble that of acoustic bowed instruments. The music controller of the invention can therefore provide to a composer or sound producer complex articulations with new sounds, thereby creating a powerful new concept for music producers.

Drawings

Figure 1 shows a side view of a bowing sensor according to the present invention; and Figures 2 A and 2B show top views of the bowing sensor of Figure 1.

With reference to Figure 1 , a bowing sensor includes a guide member 2 with a profiled upper surface that is designed to receive a bow member 4. The bow member 4 can have any suitable construction but in the illustrated embodiment it is a wooden rod. The guide member 2 incorporates an optical flow sensor 6 that includes a light source and a compact low-resolution video camera. The optical flow sensor 6 captures images of the bow member 4 as it is passed backwards and forwards over a surface or window 8 of the optical flow sensor. An image processor that is associated with the optical flow sensor 6 compares successive images and uses them to calculate the speed of the bow member relative to the guide member 2. A microprocessor 10 then interfaces the optical flow sensor 6 to a sound generating device 12 as described in more detail below. Figure 2A shows how the bow member 4 can be moved backwards and forwards along a longitudinal axis L of the guide member 2. The bow member 4 can also be moved backwards and forwards at an angle to the axis L as shown in Figure 2B. The image processor can compare successive images captured by the optical flow sensor 6 and use them to calculate the angle of the bow member 4 relative to the axis L. The microprocessor 10 interfaces with the optical flow sensor 6 and can provide control data to a sound generating device 12 such as a computer or synthesiser which can be used to derive an audio output. The control data may be indicative of the speed of the bow member 4 and/or the angle of the bow member as calculated using the images captured by the optical flow sensor 6. The control data may also be indicative of the pressure exerted by the bow member 4 on the guide member 2 which can be sensed by a pressure sensor 1 associated with the guide member. The way in which the bow member 4 is moved across the guide member 2 can therefore be used to control characteristics or auditory attributes of the audio output of the sound generating device 12 such as gain, vibrato intensity etc.

The keyboard or ribbon controller 16 is also connected to the sound generating device 12 and is used to control the pitch of the audio output of the sound generating device.

Claims

1. A music controller, being a bowing sensor for bowed musical stringed instrument emulation, comprising:
a musical bow member (4),
a guide (2) for the musical bow member, and
at least one optical flow sensor (6) associated with the guide (2), the at least one optical flow sensor (6) capturing optical images of the musical bow member (4) as it is moved across a surface (8) of the optical flow sensor (6),
wherein the music controller compares successive captured optical images of the musical bow member (4) to derive control data related to the speed and/or angle of the musical bow member (4) relative to the guide (2).
2. A music controller according to claim 1, further comprising at least one pressure sensor (14) associated with the guide (2) for monitoring the pressure exerted by the bow member (4).
3. A music controller according to claim 1 or claim 2, wherein the control data is further related to the speed, direction, angle and/or pressure of the bow movement across the surface (8) of the optical flow sensor (6).
4. A music controller according to any preceding claim, wherein the bow member is an actual musical bow for a stringed instrument of the violin family.
5. A music controller according to any of claims 1 to 3, wherein the bow member is an elongate rod of a rigid material.
6. A music controller according to claim 5, wherein the bow member is a wooden rod (4).
7. A music controller according to any preceding claim in combination with a keyboard (16) in which the pitch of generated sounds is determined by the keyboard (16) and other characteristics or auditory attributes of the generated sounds are determined by the control data that is derived by the music controller.
8. A music controller according to any of claims 1 to 6 in combination with at least one ribbon controller (16) in which the pitch of generated sounds is determined by the one or more ribbon controllers (16) and other characteristics or auditory attributes of the generated sounds are determined by the control data that is derived by the music controller.
9. A music controller according to any of claims 1 to 6 in combination with a plurality of ribbon controllers, each ribbon controller having an associated optical flow sensor, in which the pitch of generated sounds is determined by the ribbon controllers and other characteristics or auditory attributes of the generated sounds are determined by the control data that is derived by the music controller.
10. A music controller according to any of preceding claim in combination with a sound generating device (12) for generating sounds.
PCT/GB2010/001911 2009-11-17 2010-10-14 Bowing sensor for musical instrument WO2011061470A8 (en)

Priority Applications (2)

Application Number Priority Date Filing Date Title
GB0920120A GB0920120D0 (en) 2009-11-17 2009-11-17 Music controller
GB0920120.3 2009-11-17

Applications Claiming Priority (2)

Application Number Priority Date Filing Date Title
US13509659 US8492641B2 (en) 2009-11-17 2010-10-14 Bowing sensor for musical instrument
US13926123 US20130284001A1 (en) 2009-11-17 2013-06-25 Bowing sensor for musical instrument

Related Child Applications (1)

Application Number Title Priority Date Filing Date
US13926123 Continuation US20130284001A1 (en) 2009-11-17 2013-06-25 Bowing sensor for musical instrument

Publications (2)

Publication Number Publication Date
WO2011061470A1 true true WO2011061470A1 (en) 2011-05-26
WO2011061470A8 true WO2011061470A8 (en) 2011-07-21

Family

ID=41509515

Family Applications (1)

Application Number Title Priority Date Filing Date
PCT/GB2010/001911 WO2011061470A8 (en) 2009-11-17 2010-10-14 Bowing sensor for musical instrument

Country Status (3)

Country Link
US (2) US8492641B2 (en)
GB (2) GB0920120D0 (en)
WO (1) WO2011061470A8 (en)

Families Citing this family (6)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
JP5605192B2 (en) * 2010-12-02 2014-10-15 ヤマハ株式会社 Tone signal synthesis method, a program and a musical tone signal synthesizer
US9767706B2 (en) * 2013-11-05 2017-09-19 Jeffrey James Hsu Stringless bowed musical instrument
CN104392714B (en) * 2014-10-30 2017-11-17 广州音乐猫乐器科技有限公司 An electronic violin
KR20160109819A (en) * 2015-03-13 2016-09-21 삼성전자주식회사 Electronic device, sensing method of playing string instrument and feedback method of playing string instrument
US9947237B2 (en) * 2015-09-30 2018-04-17 Douglas Mark Bown Electronic push-button contrabass trainer
US20170103741A1 (en) * 2015-10-09 2017-04-13 Jeffrey James Hsu Stringless bowed musical instrument

Citations (5)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US5038662A (en) * 1990-04-05 1991-08-13 Ho Tracy K Method and apparatus for teaching the production of tone in the bowing of a stringed instrument
US5117730A (en) * 1989-07-17 1992-06-02 Yamaha Corporation String type tone signal controlling device
US20040046736A1 (en) * 1997-08-22 2004-03-11 Pryor Timothy R. Novel man machine interfaces and applications
WO2004093053A1 (en) * 2003-04-14 2004-10-28 Ssd Company Limited Automatic musical instrument, automatic music performing method and automatic music performing program
US20070126700A1 (en) * 2005-12-05 2007-06-07 Cypress Semiconductor Corporation Method and apparatus for sensing motion of a user interface mechanism using optical navigation technology

Family Cites Families (9)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US5661253A (en) * 1989-11-01 1997-08-26 Yamaha Corporation Control apparatus and electronic musical instrument using the same
JPH03184095A (en) * 1989-12-14 1991-08-12 Yamaha Corp Electronic musical instrument
JP3008419B2 (en) * 1990-01-19 2000-02-14 ヤマハ株式会社 Electronic musical instrument
JP3134438B2 (en) * 1991-12-11 2001-02-13 ヤマハ株式会社 Musical tone control apparatus
JPH09212162A (en) * 1996-02-06 1997-08-15 Casio Comput Co Ltd Electronic rubbed string instrument
JP3704828B2 (en) * 1996-09-05 2005-10-12 ヤマハ株式会社 Electronic musical instrument
US8017858B2 (en) * 2004-12-30 2011-09-13 Steve Mann Acoustic, hyperacoustic, or electrically amplified hydraulophones or multimedia interfaces
JP5034481B2 (en) * 2006-12-19 2012-09-26 ヤマハ株式会社 Keyboard instrument
WO2008152644A3 (en) * 2007-06-12 2010-02-25 Eyecue Vision Technologies Ltd. System and method for physically interactive music games

Patent Citations (5)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US5117730A (en) * 1989-07-17 1992-06-02 Yamaha Corporation String type tone signal controlling device
US5038662A (en) * 1990-04-05 1991-08-13 Ho Tracy K Method and apparatus for teaching the production of tone in the bowing of a stringed instrument
US20040046736A1 (en) * 1997-08-22 2004-03-11 Pryor Timothy R. Novel man machine interfaces and applications
WO2004093053A1 (en) * 2003-04-14 2004-10-28 Ssd Company Limited Automatic musical instrument, automatic music performing method and automatic music performing program
US20070126700A1 (en) * 2005-12-05 2007-06-07 Cypress Semiconductor Corporation Method and apparatus for sensing motion of a user interface mechanism using optical navigation technology

Non-Patent Citations (2)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Title
Dylan Menzies: "The CyberWhistle and O-Bow: Minimalist controllers inspired by traditional instruments", eContact! online journal for electroacoustics, Canadian Electroacoustics Community eContact!, vol. 12.3 instrument interface June 2010 (2010-06), XP002617096, Retrieved from the Internet: URL:http://cec.concordia.ca/econtact/12_3/menzies_controllers.html [retrieved on 2011-01-18] *
None

Also Published As

Publication number Publication date Type
US8492641B2 (en) 2013-07-23 grant
US20120272814A1 (en) 2012-11-01 application
GB2475339A (en) 2011-05-18 application
US20130284001A1 (en) 2013-10-31 application
GB2475372B (en) 2011-10-12 grant
GB2475372A (en) 2011-05-18 application
GB201017332D0 (en) 2010-11-24 grant
GB0920120D0 (en) 2009-12-30 grant
WO2011061470A8 (en) 2011-07-21 application

Similar Documents

Publication Publication Date Title
Bevilacqua et al. Continuous realtime gesture following and recognition
Wanderley et al. Gestural control of sound synthesis
US6689947B2 (en) Real-time floor controller for control of music, signal processing, mixing, video, lighting, and other systems
Rovan et al. Instrumental gestural mapping strategies as expressivity determinants in computer music performance
US6610917B2 (en) Activity indication, external source, and processing loop provisions for driven vibrating-element environments
US20080190272A1 (en) Music-Based Search Engine
US5117730A (en) String type tone signal controlling device
US7667125B2 (en) Music transcription
Bevilacqua et al. The augmented violin project: research, composition and performance report
US7598449B2 (en) Musical instrument
Wessel et al. Problems and prospects for intimate musical control of computers
US5085119A (en) Guitar-style synthesizer-controllers
US20050120870A1 (en) Envelope-controlled dynamic layering of audio signal processing and synthesis for music applications
Clarke Empirical methods in the study of performance
US5140887A (en) Stringless fingerboard synthesizer controller
Cook Principles for designing computer music controllers
Miranda et al. New digital musical instruments: control and interaction beyond the keyboard
US20090100992A1 (en) Electronic fingerboard for stringed instrument
US20040007116A1 (en) Keys for musical instruments and musical methods
US20090114079A1 (en) Virtual Reality Composer Platform System
Paradiso Electronic music: new ways to play
Fels et al. Mapping transparency through metaphor: towards more expressive musical instruments
US20130180385A1 (en) Synthetic multi-string musical instrument with score coded performance effect cues and/or chord sounding gesture capture
US5488196A (en) Electronic musical re-performance and editing system
US20100263521A1 (en) Stringed Instrument with Active String Termination Motion Control

Legal Events

Date Code Title Description
121 Ep: the epo has been informed by wipo that ep was designated in this application

Ref document number: 10775847

Country of ref document: EP

Kind code of ref document: A1

WWE Wipo information: entry into national phase

Ref document number: 13509659

Country of ref document: US

NENP Non-entry into the national phase in:

Ref country code: DE

122 Ep: pct app. not ent. europ. phase

Ref document number: 10775847

Country of ref document: EP

Kind code of ref document: A1