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Publication numberUS3881387 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateMay 6, 1975
Filing dateFeb 13, 1974
Priority dateFeb 19, 1973
Publication numberUS 3881387 A, US 3881387A, US-A-3881387, US3881387 A, US3881387A
InventorsKawakami Fukushi
Original AssigneeNippon Musical Instruments Mfg
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Electronic musical instrument with effect control dependent on expression and keyboard manipulation
US 3881387 A
Abstract
Tone signals delivered from a tone source section are passed through a variable amplifier for amplitude modification and a variable filter for frequency spectrum modification. A vibrato signal generator, a tremolo signal generator and a filter control signal generator are respectively connected to the tone source section, the variable amplifier and the variable filter for respective controls. The generators are controlled by manual controls in a control pannel section. An expression control provides a voltage representing the expression state and a keyboard provides a voltage representing the depressed key. There voltages are applied via polarity selectors to the respective generators for automatic control dependent on the expression and the keyboard manipulation.
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

United States Patent 1 1 1111 3,881,387 Kawakami 1 1 May 6, 1975 [54] ELECTRONIC MUSICAL INSTRUMENT 3,553,338 1 1971 Holman 84 1.19 X WITH EFFECT CONTROL DEPENDENT 0 3,626,078 12/1971 Sekiguchi 84/l.24 3,647,928 3/1972 Turner 84/l.24 EXPRESISION AND KEYBOARD 3,715,447 2/1973 Ohno 84/l.24 MANIPLLATION 3,762,265 10/1973 Adachi.... 84/1.24 75 Inventor: Fukushi Kawakami gklamoto 0 1n ah 3,835,237 9/1974 Adachi..... 84 1.24 p 3,840,690 10/1974 Davoli .3 84/l.0l [73] Assignee: Nippon Gakki Seizo Kabushiki Kaisha Primary Examiner-Joseph W. Hartary Filed: Feb. 1974 Asszstant ExammerStanley .l. W1tkowsk1 Attorney, Agent, or FirmRobert E. Burns; Emmanuel J. Lobato; Bruce L. Adams [30] Foreign Application Priority Data [57] ABSTRACT F b I9 1973 J 48 21524 Tone slgnals del1vered from a tone source section are e apan passed through a variable amplifier for amplitude I modification and a variable filter for frequency spec- [52] US. Cl. 84/l.24, 84/l.l 1, 8844//11.l295, trum modification. A vibrato Signal generator a trem olo signal generator and a filter control signal generagz g Rigg tor are respectively connected to the tone source sec. 84/1 19 27 G tion, the variable amplifier and the variable filter for respective controls. The generators are controlled by manual controls in a control pannel section. An ex- [56] References cued pression control provides a voltage representing the UNITED STATES PATENTS expression state and a keyboard provides a voltage 3,007,361 11/1961 Wayne, Jr 84/1.01 representing the depressed key. There voltages are ap- 3 3 4/ 1967 Peterson plied via polarity selectors to the respective generators Jkjlaeotbwkwl for automatic control dependent on the expression ar me a..... 3,499,094 3/1970 Hoshino 84/1.25 and the keyboard mampulanon 3,510,565 5/1970 Morez 84/1.25 X 4 Claims, 2 Drawing Figures TONE VARIABLE VARIABLE SOURCE AMPLIFIER FILTER VB VR- VF h VBD VOLT. CONT. VRD VOLT. CONT. r 1 L Egb mv ER AIVPLFI not ANPLIFIER I 1 1 f VOLT. CONT. voLT.co-T. 1 5 1 r OSCILLATOR OSCILLATOR 1\ I 5b VFD m 2o 1 N I\ 4a 2|S 1 VHS VRS if *l *2 1 1 I 229 I 31D -|o-+1ov 31s 32D 325 330 I 1 2 1 1 i 1 LAMP LAMP LAMP LAMP LAMP o {Q36 POLARITY POLARITY POLARITY POlARfl'Y m CONTROL CONTROL CONTROL CONTROL 1 23D l I l 1 4| D 4| S 42D 42 S 43D Q POLARITY CONTROL MIXER 26 ELECTRONIC MUSICAL INSTRUMENT WITH EFFECT CONTROL DEPENDENT ON EXPRESSION AND KEYBOARD MANIP ULATION BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION This invention relates to electronic musical instruments in which tonal effects such a vibrato effect and a tremolo effect can be added to musical tones as desired by the performer.

It is known that while playing a natural musical instrument, the performer plays the instrument in such a manner that the frequency and depth (or amplitude) of vibrato and tremolo increase with the sound level of musical tones and in this playing harmonic components included in the musical tones is reduced. Furthermore, it is known that he plays the instrument in such a manner that the frequency and depth of vibrato increase as the playing tone region becomes higher and in this playing also the harmonic components included in the musical tones becomes less.

Therefore, in the case when an electronic organ is played. if the electronic organ is so designed that substantially the same effects as those added in the playing of the natural musical instrument are added in the playing of the electronic organ, the playing of the electronic organ will have the same effects in tonal quality as those in the playing of the natural musical instrument. Furthermore, with the electronic organ, there is a demand for the addition of the effects opposite to those added in the playing of the natural musical instrument.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION Accordingly, a primary object of this invention is to provide an electronic musical instrument in which two contradictory demands for the addition of tonal effects in the playing thereof are satisfied, that is, not only a demand for adding the same tonal effects as those in the playing of a natural musical instrument but also a demand for adding the opposite tonal effects in the playing are satisfied.

Another object of the invention is to provide an electronic musical instrument in which kinds and qualities of tonal effects can be readily selected and combined as desired by the performer whereby he can express musical effects intended by him in the performance.

The manner in which the foregoing objects and other objects are achieved by this invention will become more apparent from the following detailed description and the appended claims when read in conjunction with the accompanying drawings.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS In the accompanying drawings:

FIG. I is a block diagram illustrating one example of an electronic musical instrument according to this invention; and

FIG. 2 is a graphical representation indicating the characteristic curves of a variable filter shown in FIG. 1.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION With reference to FIG. 1, there is shown one example of an electronic musical instrument according to this invention in which a vibrato effect, a tremolo effect and a harmonic-component changing effect (hereinafter referred to as a filter effect) can be attained.

This electronic musical instrument comprises a tone source section I including conventional master oscillators, frequency dividers and tone keyers, a vibrato signal generator 2 for producing a vibrato signal V which controls the master oscillators, a voltage-controlled type variable amplifier 3 for amplitude-modulating tone signal outputs from the tone source section 1 by a tremolo signal V from a tremolo signal generator 4, and a voltage-controlled type variable filter 6 whose frequency characteristic is changed by a filter controlling signal V from a filter control signal generator 7.

The tone signal output from the tone source section 1 is frequency-modulated by the vibrato signal V from the vibrato signal generator 2, so that the vibrato effect having a vibrato speed and depth which are determined by the frequency and amplitude of the vibrato signal V,, can be added to the musical tones. The vibrato signal generator 2 is provided with a voltage-controlled type oscillator 2a and a voltage-controlled type amplifier 2b. The oscillator 2a varies its oscillation frequency in accordance with a vibrato-speed controlling voltage signal V described later, while the amplifier 2b amplifies the oscillation output from the oscillator 2a at a variable amplification degree determined by a vibratodepth controlling voltage signal V described later. The oscillation output from the oscillator 2a is sinusoidal.

In the variable amplifier 3, the output from the tone source section 1 is amplitude-modulated by the tremolo signal V from the tremolo signal generator 4 as was described above, whereby the tremolo effect having a tremolo speed and depth which are determined by the frequency and amplitude of the tremolo signal V is added to the musical tones. The tremolo signal generator 4 comprises a voltage-controlled type oscillator 40 which is controlled by a tremolo-speed controlling voltage signal V described later and a voltage-controlled type amplifier 4b which is controlled by a tremolodepth controlling voltage signal V described later.

The oscillator 4a is provided with a switch 5. When the moving contact of the switch 5 is set at a position 5a the oscillator 4a produces a sinusoidal output, while when the moving contact is set at the other position 5b the oscillator 4a produces a saw-tooth output. One embodiment of the oscillator 4a includes a phase-shift oscillator and a relaxation oscillator. The terminal 50 is connected to the power input of the phase-shift oscillator while the terminal 51) is connected to the power input of the relaxation oscillator. The outputs of both oscillators are connected to the amplifier 4b. Other suitable waveshapes such as square wave and triangular wave can be utilized.

The voltage-controlled type variable filter 6 is connected to the output of the variable amplifier 3 for receiving amplitude modified tone signals. The frequency characteristic of this variable filter 6 is changed by the filter controlling signal V from the filter control signal generator 7 as was described before, for modifying the frequency spectrum of the tone signals passing therethrough. More specifically, in this example of the invention, the variable filter 6 operates in such a manner that it shows higher frequency region suppressing characteristic as is indicated by a curve I in FIG. 2 when the signal V; is small (low dc voltage), while it shows a higher frequency region emphasizing characteristic as is indicated by a curve II in FIG. 2 when the signal V is great (high dc voltage). A particularly simple embodiment of the filter 6 comprises a first filter section having the characteristic 11, shown in FIG. 2, and ahighcut tone control circuit (Shunt-type filter) connected in cascade with the first filter section. The filter control signal generator 7 is an amplifier which amplifies a filter controlling voltage signal V described later to form the filter controlling signal V The vibrato signal generator 2, the tremolo signal generator 4 and the filter control signal generator 7 are controlled by output voltages from a control panel section 10 which is provided with manipulating tablets on a panel, and in addition by output voltages from an expression-keyboard controlled section 13 which operates in connection with the manipulation of an expression control device 11 and a keyboard 12 as will be described in detail later. These output voltages are the voltage signals V V V V and V described before.

The control panel section 10 is provided with a vibrato-depth control circuit 21D, a vibrato-speed control circuit 218, a tremolo-depth control circuit 22D, a tremolo-speed control circuit 22S and a filter control circuit 23D. Each of these control circuits is constituted, for instance, by a potentiometer connected to a dc power source (not shown) to produce a dc control voltage of, for instance, from volt to volts through the manipulation of the respective tablet.

In the expression control device 11, an expression state representing voltage is produced which varies within the range of, for instance, from 0 volt to 10 volts in accordance with the manipulation angle of the foot pedal of the expression control device 11, while in the keyboard 12, a pitch representing voltage is produced which varies within the range of, for instance, from 0 volt to 10 volts in accordance with the tone pitch of the depressed key in the keyboard 12. These two representative voltages are applied to two ends of a mixing variable resistor 26 provided in a mixer 25. Therefore, the expression state representing voltage and the pitch representing voltage thus applied are mixed through the variable resistor 26, the mixing ratio depending on the position of the sliding contact of the variable resistor 26. Thus, the mixer 25 produces an mixed output voltage of from 0 volt to 10 volts.

The mixed output voltage thus produced is applied through change-over switches 41D, 41S, 42D, 42S and 43D to polarity selector circuits 31D, 31S, 32D, 32S and 33D, respectively, which are provided corresponding to the control circuits 21D, 21S, 22D, 22S and 23D on the panel control section 10, for selecting the polarity and value of the mixed output from the mixer 25.

The selector circuit 31D is provided with a variable resistor k. The mixed output voltage described above is applied directly to one of the terminals of the variable resistor k and to the other terminal through an inverter INV. Therefore, when the sliding contact of the variable resistor k is set at one end (+lOO%) of the resistor k (hereinafter referred to as a +l00% position) the mixed output voltage is applied to the sliding contact as it is; however, when the sliding contact is positioned at the other end (l00%) (hereinafter referred to as a l00% position), the mixed output voltage is applied to the sliding contact with its polarity inverted. Thus, an output voltage from the variable resistor k is 0 volt when the sliding contact is positioned at the center of the resistor k (hereinafter referred to as a,0% position), a voltage of from 0 volt to +10 volts when the sliding contact is positioned on the position side of the resistor k, and a voltage of from 0 volt to l0 volts when the sliding contact is positioned on the 100% position side of the same. The other selector circuits 31S, 32D, 32S and 33D have the same construction as that of the selector circuit 31D. Each of the selector circuits 31D, 31S, 32D, 32S and 33D is provided with a pilot lamp [which is turned on when the output voltage from the variable resistor k is 0 volt. Such a lamp circuit can be arbitrarily designed by an engineer in this field.

The output terminal of the control circuit 21D on the panel control section 10 and the output terminal of the selector circuit 31D in the expression-keyboard controlled section 13 are connected together, if necessary through resistor r and r respectively. When the switch 41D in the section 13 is off, that is, the movable contact is thrown to the ground side, an output voltage from the control circuit 21D is applied only, as the vibrato-depth controlling voltage signal V to the amplifier 2b in the vibrato signal generator 2. When the switch 41D is on, an output voltage from the selector circuit 31D is also applied, as the vibrato-depth controlling voltage signal V to the amplifier 2b.

The constructions of the selector circuits 31S, 32D, 32S and 33D and the connections between these selector circuits and the control circuits 21S, 22D, 22S and 23D are the same as that of the selector circuit 31D and that between this selector circuit and the control circuit 21D described above. More specifically, when the switch 41S is off (or on), an output voltage from the control circuit 21S (or also the selector circuit 31S) is applied, as the vibrato-speed controlling voltage signal V to the oscillator 2a in the vibrato signal generator 2. When the switch 42D is off (or on), an output voltage from the control circuit 22D (or also the selecting circuit 32D) is applied, as the tremolo-depth controlling voltage signal V to the amplifier 4b in the tremolo signal generator 4. When the switch 42S is off (or on), an output voltage from the control circuit 228 (or also the selector circuit 32S) is applied, as the tremolospeed controlling voltage signal V to the oscillator 4a. Furthermore, when the switch 43D is off (or on), an output voltage from the control circuit 23D (or also the selector circuit 33D) is applied, as the filter controlling voltage signal V to the amplifier 7.

With the musical instrument thus organized, the addition of tonal effects to musical tones regardless of the expression and pitch of the musical tones can be achieved as on a conventional musical instrument by setting the poles of the switches 41D, 41S, 42D, 42S and 43D at the off-positions. That is the vibrato depth and speed the tremolo depth and speed and the harmonic components included in the musical tone can be changed as much as desired, by manually controlling the control circuits 21D, 21S, 22D, 22S and 23D respectively through the tablets provided on the panel.

In the case where the tonal effects are to be changed relative to the expression and pitch of musical tones, it can be achieved by closing the switches 41D, 41S, 42D, 42S and 43D. In this operation, if the position of the sliding contact of the variable resistor 26 is adjusted, the vibrato depth and speed, the tremolo depth and speed and the harmonic components included in the musical tone can be changed with the variation in sound volume (expression) which is caused by the manipulation of the expression device 11 and the variation 5 in tone pitch which is caused by selectively depressing the keys on the keyboard 12. In this operation, the degrees of contribution of the expression device 11 and the keyboard 12 to the addition of the tonal effects to the musical notes are determined by the position of the sliding contact of the variable resistor 26.

When the switches 41D through 43D are on, the output voltages from the selector circuits 31D through 33D can be volt. a positive voltage, and a negative voltage respectively as the sliding contact of the variable resistor k is set at the 0% position, the +1 00% position and the l00% position. In this connection, when the sliding contact is set at the 0% position, the tonal effects such as vibrato effect can no longer be changed by the manipulation of the expression device 11 and keyboard 12. When the sliding contact is set at the +1 00% position, if musical tones are produced with the manipulation of the expression device 11 and the keyboard 12 in such a manner that the sound volume and pitch are increased, the tonal effects such as a vibrato effect increase also. In contrast, when the sliding contact is set at the lOO% position, if the musical tones are produced with the manipulation of the expression device 11 and keyboard 12 in such a manner that the sound volume and pitch are increased, the tonal effects decrease.

When the movable contact of the switch provided in the oscillator 4a is set at the position 5a, a tonal effect such as is similar to the tremolo effect on the vibraphone is imparted to the musical tones. When the pole is thrown to the position 5b, a tonal effect such as is similar to the tremolo effect on the mandolin is imparted to the musical tones.

The switches 41D through 43D should be manipulated without causing the production of unnaturalness in the musical tones being played. For this purpose, the circuit shown in FIG. 1 is so formed that the performer should preferably manipulate the switches only when the pilot lamps L are lighted on. Since the output voltages of the selector circuits 31D through 33D are 0 volt when the pilot lamps L are on, the tonal effect control conditions by the control panel section can be smoothly changed to those by the expression-keyboard controlled section 13 without production of unnaturalness in musical tones.

Thus, according to this invention, an electronic organ in which the depth and speed of vibrato, the depth and speed of tremolo and the harmonic components (spectra) included in musical tones can of course be controlled by the control panel section only regardless of the variation in sound volume and pitch of the musical tones, and in addition the tonal effects dependent on the variation in volume and pitch of the musical tones can also be attained in connection with the expression-keyboard controlled section 13. According to the circuit of HO. 1, the tonal effect control by the expression-keyboard controlled section 13 can be carried out by selectively combining the tonal effect which becomes deeper and faster with the increase of the volume and pitch and also the opposite tonal effect, and therefore the tonal effects intended by the performer can be satisfactorily practiced by the circuit. Further more, these effects can be attained by a simple operation such as the manipulation of the switches and the sliding of the sliding contacts of the variable resistors included in the circuit shown in FIG. 1.

This invention has been described in connection with three tonal effects; vibrato effect, tremolo effect and filter effect; however it can be applied to the case also where a sustain effect, marimba effect or the like are to be added to the musical tones.

I claim:

1. An electronic musical instrument which comprises:

a controllable tone source section for developing tone signals;

at least one tone modifying circuit cooperative with said controllable tone source and receptive of said tone signals for developing time variations of the frequency and amplitude of said tone signals to modify the tonal effect of said tone signals;

at least one modification signal generator which develops modification signals applied to said tone modifying circuit for determining the frequency and amplitude variations of said tone signals developed by said tone modifying circuit;

a control panel section which produces at least one first control voltage applied to said modification signal generator for controlling said modification signal;

an expression-keyboard controlled section including manually set expression control device and a keyboard for producing at least one second control voltage whose value is representative of the setting of said expression control device and said keyboard;

and means for selectively applying said second control voltage to said modification signal generator for controlling said modification signal.

2. An electronic musical instrument which comprises:

a controllable tone source section for developing tone signals;

a controllable variable amplifier connected to said controllable tone source section for receiving the tone signals;

a variable filter connected to said variable amplifier for receiving an amplified tone signal output from said variable amplifier;

a vibrato signal generator for developing a vibrato signal and connected to said tone source section for modifying the frequency of said tone signals;

a tremolo signal generator for developing a tremolo signal and connected to said variable amplifier for varying the amplitude of said amplified tone signal output;

a filter control signal generator producing a filter controlling signal and connected to said variable filter for modifying the frequency spectrum of the amplified tone signal passing through said variable filter;

a control panel section producing first control voltages which are applied to said vibrato signal generator, said tremolo signal generator and said filter control signal generator, respectively, to control their operation;

and an expression-keyboard controlled section including manually set expression control device and a keyboard for developing second control voltages whose values are representative of the setting of the expression control device and the operation of said keyboard;

and means for selectively applying said second control voltages to said vibrato signal generator, said tremolo signal generator and said filter control signal generator, respectively, to control their operation; whereby the amplitude and frequency variations developed in said tone signals may be developed independently of or dependently of said tone signals. 3. An electronic musical instrument as claimed in claim 2 in which said control panel section comprises control circuits for producing said first control voltages; and said expression-keyboard controlled section comprises polarity control circuits for developing said second control voltages; a mixer circuit for mixing outputs from said expression device and keyboard; and switching means for selectively applying an output from the mixer circuit to selected ones of the polarity control circuits.

4. An electronic musical instrument as claimed in claim 3 in which each of said polarity control circuits is provided with a variable resistor having a sliding contact and having one end directly connected to said switching means and its other end connected through an inverter to said switching means so that the polarity and value of said control voltage output from said polarity control circuit is developed by adjusting the position of a sliding contact of the variable resistor.

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Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3952624 *Nov 1, 1974Apr 27, 1976Nippon Gakki Seizo Kabushiki KaishaElectronic musical instrument capable of generating tone signals having pitch frequency, tone color and volume envelope varied with time
US3978754 *Feb 25, 1975Sep 7, 1976Nippon Gakki Seizo Kabushiki KaishaVoltage controlled type electronic musical instrument
US3986426 *Aug 28, 1975Oct 19, 1976Mark Edwin FaulhaberMusic synthesizer
US4018125 *Oct 21, 1975Apr 19, 1977Nippon Gakki Seizo Kabushiki KaishaElectronic musical instrument
US4291604 *Aug 1, 1979Sep 29, 1981Norlin Industries, Inc.Memory override system for programmed electronic synthesizer
US4352311 *May 22, 1980Oct 5, 1982Norlin Industries, Inc.Synthesizer preset editing techniques
US4554857 *May 31, 1983Nov 26, 1985Nippon Gakki Seizo Kabushiki KaishaElectronic musical instrument capable of varying a tone synthesis operation algorithm
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Classifications
U.S. Classification84/700, 84/706, 984/377, 84/705
International ClassificationG10H1/12, G10H1/043, G10H1/24, G10H5/00, G10H1/053, G10H1/04, G10H1/06, H03G3/02
Cooperative ClassificationG10H5/002
European ClassificationG10H5/00B