US 3087028 A
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Description (OCR text may contain errors)
April 23, 1963 L. E. BONNIN 3,08 ,0 8
HEAD MOUNTING FOR CONTACT MICROPHONES Filed Feb. 10, 1961 3 Sheets-Sheet 1 April 1963 E. BONNIN 3,087,028
HEAD MOUNTING FOR CONTACT MICROPHONES Filed Feb. 10, 1961 3 Sheets-Sheet 2 April 23, 1963 L. E. BONNIN 3,087,028
HEAD MOUNTING FOR CONTACT MICROPHONES Filed Feb. 10, 1961 5 Sheets-Sheet 3 3,087,028 HEAD MDUNTING FOR CONTACT MICRORHGNES Louis Ernest Bonnin, 30 Bis, Rue Reaurnur, Vitry-sur-Seine, France Filed Feb. 10, 1961, Ser. No. 88,443 Claims priority, application France Feb. 24, 1960 4 Claims. (Cl. 179-156) This invention relates in general to contact microphones and also has reference to a method of utilizing microphones of this type.
It is known to use various types of piezoelectric microphones, electromagnetic microphones, dynamic microphones or carbon microphones, etc., as well as electromagnetic or carbon throat microphones, permitting the modulation of amplifying or transmitting systems of any types.
All known microphones have drawbacks. Thus, hand microphones are characterized by the fact that they must be held by the user and are hardly utilizable in noisy media, even if they are of the dilferential type. When they are operated in a combined set comprising an earphone-carrying head-set, they are also objectionable in that they are a source of discomfort for the user.
To avoid these drawbacks, throat microphones are currently used which are generally better protected against external noises than conventional microphones. However, they are also a source of discomfort in operation and their reproduction quality is questionable due to their poor efiiciency in the high voice-frequency range.
It is the object of the present invention to eliminate the inconveniences set forth hereinabove by providing a novel method of mounting and utilizing contact microphones which is remarkable notably in that it consists in applying the microphone against a bony portion of the users skull or face.
Preferably, a contact microphone of the dynamic type a is used of which the characteristics outperform those of electromagnetic or carbon throat microphones notably by having the advantage of allowing to pass a spectrum of the highest frequencies and therefore of improving the reproduction of the acoustic spectrum.
Besides, irrespective of the type of contact microphone used, it will be seen that the transmission has a better quality with the arrangement according to this invention than with conventional throat microphones.
Moreover, with the method broadly set forth hereinabove, very practical combined microphones and earphone head-sets can be devised.
Thus, this invention is concerned with a method of constructing combined head-sets of this character which is remarkable notably in that earphones and a contact microphone are mounted on a common support adapted to-be secured on the users head, the assembly being so arranged that said microphone engages a bony portion of the users skull or face.
Preferably, the aforesaid support has an ear-flap or earpiece configuration, and an earphone associated with a contact microphone is incorporated in said support, so that the contact microphone will be located substantially at the base of the temporal bone of the user.
Thus, it will be seen that by incorporating the contact microphone in an earpiece consisting preferably of flexice ible material such as polyvinyl foam, cellular rubber or like materials having the property of absorbing noise, the contact microphone is efiiciently protected against all external noises. This advantage is particularly valuable in the case of radio navigators on board aircrafts in which, in spite of a high degree of soundproofing, a substantial background noise still exists.
The combined head-set according to this invention is advantageous in that the user keeps both hands free, unlike conventional microphones, and that it is not attended by any detrimental elfect as in the case of combined sets of the so-called rail microphone type.
This invention is also concerned by way of novel industrial product with an apparatus constituting a combined microphone and earphone head-set arranged in accordance with the teachings of the method broadly set forth hereinabove, which is remarkable notably in that it comprises a support adapted to be secured on the users head, this support carrying on the one hand the earphones and on the other hand a contact microphone, the assembly being so disposed that said microphone engages a bony portion of the users skull or face.
According to a modified embodiment of the present invention the combined microphone and earphone headset comprises a support adapted to be secured on the users head and, at the ends of this support, a pair of earpieces adapted to engage the users ears, one earpiece incorporating (or consisting of) an earphone, the other earpiece leaving the auditory duct unobstructed, a contact microphone being secured on or incorporated in at least one of said earpieces, and so arranged that it engages a bony portion of the users head.
Thus, in this last instance it will be seen that the user can operate the apparatus of this invention while listening to external sounds. The use of this apparatus is not tiresome for it has the same shape, and gives exactly the same feeling, as conventional two-earphone headsets.
Other features and advantages of the present invention will appear as the following description proceeds with reference to the accompanying drawings illustrating schematically by way of example, a few typical forms of embodiment of the combined heat-set of this invention. In the drawings:
FIGURE 1 is a perspective view showing a combined microphone and earphone head-set constructed according to a first typical form of embodiment of this invention;
FIGURE 2 is a fragmentary vertical section showing the structure of one earpiece of the head-set of FIG- URE 1;
FIGURE 3 illustrates schematically in lateral elevation, a combined microphone and earphone head-set of FIGURES l and 2 fitted on the users head;
FIGURE 4 is another perspective view showing a helmet-shaped combined microphone and earphone head set constituting a modified embodiment of the invention;
FIGURE 5 illustrates a modified embodiment of the apparatus shown in FIGURE 4;
FIGURE 6 is a perspective view showing another modified embodiment of a combined microphone and earphone headset;
FIGURE 7 is a schematical lateral elevational view showing the apparatus of FIGURE 6 fitted on the users head; and
FIGURE 8 illustrates in perspective view still another modified embodiment of the same apparatus.
As shown in the drawings, and notably in FIGURES 1 to 3 thereof, a combined microphone and earphone headset constructed according to this invention comprises a helmet-shaped support 1 adapted to be secured on the users head, and .a pair of ear-flap or earpiece elements 2 mounted, for example, by means of adjusting rods 3 on the ends 4 of the helmet sides.
An earpiece such as 2 has incorporated therein an earphone 5 and a contact microphone 6, the latter being preferably but not.compulsorily of the dynamic type.
There is schematically shown. in FIGURE 2 a voltage M amplifier 7 associated with-the circuit of microphone 6, which is also incorporated in the earpiece 2.
Preferably, this earpiece 2 consists of a flexible plastic material including the portion thereof in whichthe contact microphone 6 is embedded, in order to protect the latter from external noises.
Also preferably, both earpieces have the shape shown in the'figures, so that the contact microphone '6 will lie substantially at the base of the temporal bone of the user, as shown in FIGURE 3, andwill receive sound vibration indirectly therefrom;
Of course, any suitable adjustmentmeans such as a screw 8 with a knurled head, or any other conventional means for adapting the apparatus to the users head, may be associated with the apparatus.
It would not constitute a departure from the present invention to so position the contact microphone- 6 as to cause same to engage another bony portion of the users face or skull, this microphone being either incorporated in an earpiece of a shape differing more or less from the shape illustrated, or carried by the'head-set or helmet, independently of the earphones, or carried by a separate, special support.
In the example illustrated in FIGURE 4, the earpieces already described hereinabove are also designated by the reference numeral 2 and each of them comprises an earphone 5 and a contact microphone 6. In this structure the earpieces 2 are made preferably of flexible plastic material and secured, for example, by sewing, gluing'or otherwise on either side of a head-dress 10 consisting, if desired, and as illustrated, of two lateral portions 11, 12 assembled by means of a central strip 13.
The earpieces 2 are protected externally by caps 15 a of leather or other adequate shock-resisting material.
These caps are formed with substantially flat annular flanges or marginal portions 16 adapted to impart a certain stiffness to the head-dress portions fitting on the users ears and cheeks. Each flange 16 is formed preferably with a front extension 17 following the marginal portion of the head-dress where the latter contacts the users cheek, and the front portion of the head-dress is provided with an elastic strip 18 having its ends secured to the caps 15, for example by means of rivets 19. This elasticstrip 18 c auses the head-dress to properly fit on the ,users foreheadwithout applying any unpleasant pressure on his face, for the specific shape of the caps 15 limits the tension exerted by the strip 18 to the front portion of the users head.
On the other hand, elastic or non-elastic belts or strips '20, 21, adjustable by means of buckles 20 21,, are providedfor properly adjusting the head-dress, 10 orthe users neck and chin,
The top portion of the head-dress comprises a longitudinal bellows 22 whereby the device can be adapted to heads of different shapes and sizes. Of course, the headdress couldv comprise a plurality .of these bellows of different shapes, dimensionsand directions, without departing from the spirit and scope of the invention.
On the other hand, in order. to ensure the users comfort, the headdress consists "preferably of air-pervious the head-dress it), instead of consisting of fabric, is made of interlaced strips 23, for example of a slightly elastic material and similarly providing adequate aeration.
In the other modified embodiment illustrated in FIG- URES 6 and 7 of the drawings, an apparatus constituting a combined microphone and earphone headset comprises a helmet-shaped support 24 adapted to be secured on the users head. An earphone 25 is mounted on one end 26 of the helmet sides, for example by means of an adjustable rod 27, and a ring-shaped. or like member 28 is se cured on the other end 29 of the helmet sides, for example through a similarly adjustable rod 30.
This ring-shaped member 28, when the helmet is carried by the user, is applied on or about the --users external ear somewhat in the fashion of the aforesaid earphone 25, but due to its shape it leaves the auditory duct unobstructed (see FIGURE 7). The ring-shaped member 28 carries at the same time a contactmicrophone 31, preferably of the dynamic type, which is fastened on, said support, for example by means of screws, bolts or the like, so that the microphone 31 engages substantially the otic petrosal bone (position shown in fulllines in FIGURE 7).
A voltage amplifier 32 is interposed in themicrophone circuit and housed, for example, on thecord or conductor, in the connector as illustrated or in the support 24, etc.
According to a modified embodiment, the microphone is so secured on the support-24 it bears against the-base of the temporal bone (position 31', shown in dotted lines.
in FIGURE 7 FIGURE 8 illustrates another embodiment wherein the apparatus comprises two microphones, one microphone 31 being carried as in the preceding example by the member 28, and the other microphone 33 being secured on the earphone 25. The additional microphone 33 may be incorporated, if desired, in anearpiece carrying at the same time the earphone 25 of the type illustrated in FIG- URES l to 5.
In certain cases, the microphone 31 carried by the ring-shaped member 28 may be dispensed with, and thus the apparatus will comprise only one microphone 33 carried by the earphone-25. :In this case the only function of support 24 or member 28,will consist in maintaining the'head-set on the users head.
A voltage amplifier 32. may be interposed'in the circuit of the microphone or microphones and located in the support 24, in the cord, in the connector, etc.
Of course, this apparatusmay, be associated with any desired and adequate adjustment means "for adapting it microphone head-set, comprising at least one earpiece to be applied to the head of the user and surrounding the ear, said earpiece having disposed therein an earphone to face the auditory duct and a microphone to be applied against the base of the temporal bone, and supporting means for securing said head-set on the users head.
2. Apparatus constituting a combined earphone and microphone head-set, comprising two-earpieces to be applied to the head of the user and each surrounding an ear, each earpiece containing an earphone to face the associated auditory duct, at least one of said earpieces containing a microphoneto be appliedagainstthebase of the temporal bone, and supporting means for securing said head-set on the users head.
3. Apparatus constituting a combined earphone and microphone head-set, comprising a support adapted to be secured on the users head, a pair of earpieces mounted .on said support and adapted to be applied to the head surrounding an ear, one of said earpieces incorporating an earphone, the other earpiece consisting of a ringshaped member surrounding the users ear and leaving the auditory duct unobstructed, and a contact microphone incorporated in at least one of said earpieces to engage a bony portion of the users head in the vicinity of the associated ear.
4. Apparatus according to claim 3, wherein said microphone is carried by said ring-shaped member, and including means for adjusting the position of said member in relation to the users face.
References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,810,022 Finken 61. a1. OCt. 15, 1957 2,942,072 Cunningham June 21, 1960 10 2,946,862 Wadsworth et a1 July 26, 1960