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Publication numberUS3892478 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateJul 1, 1975
Filing dateSep 27, 1973
Priority dateSep 27, 1973
Publication numberUS 3892478 A, US 3892478A, US-A-3892478, US3892478 A, US3892478A
InventorsLampkin James G
Original AssigneeLissatronic Corp
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Sound to image translator
US 3892478 A
Abstract
A sound to image translator is disclosed for converting signals at audio frequencies into projected light patterns. The system includes a light source which may be a laser light source or an ordinary lamp and lens arrangement for producing a beam of light which is directed onto a first pivotally mounted light reflector. The light beam reflects off this first reflector onto a second pivotally mounted light reflector having its pivot axis arranged at the 90 DEG angle to the pivot axis of the first light reflector. Oscillating means responsive to audio signals are provided to oscillate both reflectors to thereby project Lissajous patterns on a viewing surface.
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

United States Patent Lampkin SOUND TO IMAGE TRANSLATOR [75] Inventor: James G. Lampkin, Cincinnati,

[2]] Appl. No.: 401,416

[ July 1,1975

3,7l9,780 3/1973 Gazard et al. 350/6 Primary Examiner-Richard E. Aegerter Assistant ExaminerMichael H. Thaler Attorney, Agent, or FirmWood, Herron & Evans [57] ABSTRACT A sound to image translator is disclosed for converting signals at audio frequencies into projected light patterns. The system includes a light source which may be a laser light source or an ordinary lamp and lens arrangement for producing a beam of light which is directed onto a first pivotally mounted light reflector. The light beam reflects 05 this first reflector onto a second pivotally mounted light reflector having its pivot axis arranged at the 90 angle to the pivot axis of the first light reflector. Oscillating means responsive to audio signals are provided to oscillate both reflectors to thereby project Lissajous patterns on a viewing surface.

25 Claims, 12 Drawing Figures [52] US. Cl. 353/15; 84/464; 353/99 [5 1) Int. Cl. G03b 31/00 [58] Field of Search 353/51, [5, 77, 78, 122, 353/], 2, 99; 84/464; 240/31; 40/138, 139; 350/6 [56] References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 3,343,45l 9/[967 Durocher 350/6 3,506,779 4/1970 Brown et a]. 3,6O3,l95 9/l97l Williams 353/15 X 3,609,339 9/l97l Smith v. 353/1 X SHEET DIVIDER HP FILTER AUDIO SIGNAL AUDIO SIGNAL SOURCE AUDIO K SIGNAL SOURCE SOUND TO IMAGE TRANSLATOR BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION This invention relates particularly to sound to image translators and more specifically to an apparatus for producing projected Lissajous patterns in response to audio frequency signals.

Numerous image producing systems have been developed in the field commonly known as visual music. In this field. a combination of visual and musical stimuli is generated and this combined stimuli produces a dramatic impact on the human senses. An early device in the field of visual music is known as the Color Organ. This instrument has a series of gas illuminating jets which were controlled by an organ keyboard. The jets were located behind tinted glass of different colors so that when the jet was activated, the jet illumination passes through the colored glass thereby producing a colored light as perceived by the viewer.

More advanced color organs have been subsequently developed which utilize electronic circuitry to control colored lights. Typically, an audio amplifier system is employed which generally includes a frequency filter so that the output signal will be responsive to input signals at specified frequencies. Several such output signals power different light sources thereby permitting several different colored lights to be turned on in response to signals at different frequencies. Additionally, the amplitude of a particular frequency which actuates a particular light may be operative to control the intensity of that colored light.

Another image translator developed more recently includes mirrors attached to a membrane which is vibrated by acoustical sound waves. In another form, the mirrors are mounted on the diaphram of an audio speaker. In either form, however, the mirrors are vi brated by acoustical signals. By directing a source of light onto the acoustically vibrated mirrors, the light reflected therefrom is projected onto a viewing surface thereby producing a visual pattern. The pattern generated, however, is random and not symetrical like the Lissajous images produced by the current invention.

The foregoing image translators, while producing visual stimuli for enhancing listener-viewer response, are generally large in size and not easily transported.

The prior art audio to visual translators have also been, in many instances, expensive and, therefore, not easily purchased by individuals for home use but have, rather, been restricted primarily to commercial and professional entertainment.

Other prior art translators have included mirrors mounted on speakers with light projectors mounted remotely to the mirrors. When light is projected onto these vibrated mirrors, the reflected light provides a pattern on a viewing surface, however, these systems are comprised of many separate elements and are subject to becoming misaligned when a person accidently bumps into either the speaker assembly or the light projector assembly. When this occurs. the visual pattern generated by the system may be interrupted or misdirected.

It is the primary objective of this invention to provide an audio to image translator which projects Lissajous light patterns.

The objective of this invention is generally achieved by an assembly which includes a light source for producing a beam of light. This beam of light is directed onto a first pivotally mounted reflector which prefera bly has its pivot axis disposed substantially in the same plane as the beam of light generated by the light source. A second pivotally mounted mirror is provided which has a pivot axis arranged at a angle to the pivot axis of the first mirror.

Each of the pivotally mounted mirrors has associated therewith a means responsive to audio signals to oscillate each respective light reflector about its pivot axis in response to the audio signals. Since the mirrors are pivotally positioned as described, the light reflected from the second pivotally mounted mirror is seen on a viewing surface as a brilliant moving dot of light which forms Lissajous patterns.

One advantage achieved by the translator of this invention is that the design lends itself to miniaturized construction. That is, the translator can be made physically smaller than prior art devices and, therefore, more easily moved from one location to another. A further advantage is that this translator can be manufactured for less cost than prior art devices and, therefore, the translator can be purchased by individuals for home entertainment purposes. Further, since the translator can be manufactured as a unit, the system is less easily misaligned.

The foregoing and other objects, advantages, and features of the invention will become more clear on the following detailed description of preferred embodiments thereof taken in connection with the drawings which form a part of the original disclosure.

DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS FIG. 1 shows a typical Lissajous pattern generated by the sound to image translator of this invention.

FIG. 2 is a side view of a mirror actuator of this invention.

FIG. 3 is an end view of a mirror actuator of this invention, partially in section and taken along line 3-3 of FIG. 2.

FIG. 4 is a side view of two mirror actuators positioned in a support assembly.

FIG. 5 is a top view of the support assembly and actuator of FIG. 4, the top plate being omitted.

FIG. 6 is a schematic top view showing an alternative configuration for the actuator.

FIG. 7 is a top view of a modified assembly with an alignment mirror and an adjustable support permitting adjustment of the assembly so that the image will be projected on a desired viewing surface.

FIG. 8 is a front view of the assembly in FIG. 7.

FIG. 9 shows the electronic circuitry for powering one mirror actuator wherein the two coils of the actua tor are connected together in series.

FIG. 10 shows the electronic circuitry for powering the actuators in response to quadraphonic audio signals.

FIG. 11 shows a schematic diagram of the electronic circuitry for powering each coil of a mirror actuator.

FIG. 12 is a schematic drawing of a translator which produces rotating Lissajous patterns.

GENERAL DESCRIPTION FIG. 1 is a pattern much like a Lissajous pattern and is typical of the patterns generated by the translator of this invention. Indeed, the pattern formed by the translator on a viewing surface is continually changing in response to audio signals presented to the translator.

Consequently, no one drawing can show all of the possible combinations of patterns which can be generated by the translator.

The actual image seen by the viewer is generated by a sound to image translator of this invention which includes a beam of light generated by some light source and a projector assembly including oscillatable light reflectors which are oscillated in response to audio signals. The beam of light is projected by the sound to image translator onto a viewing surface. Where it is seen as a moving dot of light which follows a path on the viewing surface much like that indicated by the path shown in FIG. 1. The color associated with the pattern is that of the light source, however, the color can be changed if, for example, the translator includes a white light" source and a color wheel or other color changer mounted between the light source and the viewing surface. Altematively, the system can include several different laser light sources producing different colored beams with each laser source having associated therewith an image translator of the type according to the invention. Each of these assemblies projects a pattern onto a viewing surface to create a plurality of patterns of the type shown generally in FIG. 1. At the intersection point between each of the individual projected light patterns, a dot of light is created which has a different color than that of the individual beams of light. Consequently, a multi-colored image is generated which greatly enhances the beauty of the Lissajous pattern,

DETAILED DESCRIPTION Referring now to FlG. 2, a side view of a reflector or mirror actuator is shown. Advantageously, each actua tor used in the preferred audio to image translator is constructed indentically to each other actuator although, as will become more clear later, the actual size and shape of the actuator can be difi'erent from the preferred form.

Each actuator assembly, shown generally as 10, includes a support member 12 which is preferably made of a printed circuit borad material such as high-grade Bakelit, polystyrene sheets, epoxy glass bases or other similar boardlike material which are suitable for mounting components thereon. The support member 12 is shaped so its external dimension is that of a square. By so forming each support member 12 in the shape of a square, each actuator assembly can be manufactured identically even though, as will become more clear later, the actuators are positioned in the translator support assembly with different positioning for the reflectors supported thereby. The support member 12 includes a generally rectangular aperture 14 cut therethrough. This aperture 14, as will become more clear later, permits the reflector to oscillate freely about its support or pivot axis without hitting the support member 12.

Each actuator assembly 10 has a support wire 16 which extends between and passes through the holes 18 and 20 through the support member 12. The holes 18 and 20 are preferably arranged along the longitudinal center line of the rectangular aperture 14. Alternatively, grooves cut in the edge of the support member 12 may be used in place of the holes 18 and 20. The support wire 16 may be secured to the support member 12 or, alternatively, may comprise a complete loop with the wire disposed on opposite sides of the support member 12 and passing through the holes 18 and 20. While the support wire 16 is preferably made of steel wire, other materials can also be used such as wires of other elements or compounds, monofilament fishing line, or any other threadlike or bandlike materials having sufficient strength to support the reflector assembly as hereinafter described.

As viewed in FIG. 3, a substantially planar permanent magnet 22 is mounted on the support wire 16 and positioned centrally with respect to the rectangular aperture 14 as viewed in FIG. 2. The magnetic field generated by the magnet 22 is arranged perpendicularly to the support 12 as shown by the arrow passing through the magnet 22 in FIG. 3. The magnet 22 is preferably a permanent magnet like that described in US. Pat. No. 2,999,275, approximately 0.06 inches thick, manufactured by the 3-M Company and sold under the trade name Plastiform although other permanent magnets can be used. The magnet 22 is secured to the support wire 16 by glue or other suitable attachment means and is positioned thereon so that the plane in which the magnet 22 lies is substantially parallel to the plane of the support member 12.

A thin, lightweight substantially planar reflector 24 is mounted on the surface 23 of the permanent magnet 22. This reflector 24 is preferably a planar front surfaced mirror although rear surface mirrors or other light reflectors may be utilized. The front surface mirror has an advantage, however, in that it produces less optical distortion. The reflector 24 is secured to the permanent magnet 22 by any suitable adhesive attachment such as glue or the like. The reflector 24, as viewed in FIG. 2, is generally rectangular in shape and substantially the same size as the surface 23 of the permanent magnet 22 to which the reflector 24 is adhesively attached. As will become more clear later, however, the first light reflector along the optical path through the image translator of this invention may actually be a small square mirror or the like located substantially at the center of the permanent magnet 22. Such a smaller mirror is shown generally at 25 in FIG. 4.

As viewed in FIG. 3, an electromagnet assembly 26 is mounted on the support member 12 on the opposite side from the permanent magnet 22. The electromagnet assembly 26 includes a generally U-shaped metal core 28 made of magnetic material of the type used in electrical transformers and the like. Wound around the U-shaped metal core 28 are two coils shown generally at 30. Each of these coils 30 comprise a plurality of windings of electrically conductive insulated wire around the U-shaped metal core 28. The wire employed is preferably an insulated copper wire of the type used in electrical transformers. The ends of one transformer coil 30 are electrically connected to connection terminals 32 and 34 and the ends of the other transformer coil are connected to connection terminals 36 and 38. In operation of the translator, each of these transformer coils 30 is connected to an audio signal source such as the output of an audio amplifier in a manner described in greater detail later. These audio signals produce an alternating magnetic field which interacts with the magnetic field of the permanent magnet 22 to produce a force on the permanent magnet 22 which tends to oscillate the permanent magnet 22 about the axis of the support wire 16, hereinafter referred to as the pivot axis. Consequently, whenever an audio signal is applied to one or both of the transformer coils 30, the reflector 24 mounted on the permanent magnet 22 is oscillated about the pivot axis and the light reflected thereby is directed in a different direction.

Referring now to FIG. 4, a front view of the translator assembly 40 is shown with a first actuator 42 and a second actuator 44 positioned therein. The translator assembly 40 includes a rectangular shaped top plate 46 and a rectangular shaped bottom plate 48 which are positioned in parallel spaced relationship by spacer members 50 positioned between the four corners of the top plate 46 and the bottom plate 48. The top plate 46 and bottom plate 48 are preferably made from a sheetlike material such as Plexiglas, plastic, or other substantially rigid sheet like material. The spacer members 50 are preferably non-magnetic metal although suitably rigid materials such as wood. plastic or other nonmagnetic materials may also be employed. Each spacer member 50 is internally threaded at opposite ends as shown generally at 52 for receiving therein a screw 54 each of which passes through either the top plate 46 or the bottom plate 48 and engage the threads 52 of the spacer 50 to thereby position the plates 46 and 48 in parallel spaced relationship to each other.

Mounted on the undersurface of the top plate 46 are two channel guides 56 and 58, each guide including a channel with width sufficient to slidably receive an actuator.

Two additional channel members 67 and 68 are disposed on the upper surface of the bottom plate 48. These members 67 and 68 also have a channel therein for slidably receiving an actuator. The channel member 67 is disposed on the upper surface of the bottom plate 48 in parallel spaced relation with the channel member 56 so that the first actuator 42 will be slidably received thereby and positioned vertically between the top plate 46 and the bottom plate 48. Similarly, the channel member 68 is positioned in parallel spaced relation with the channel member 58 so that the second actuator 44 will also be positioned vertically between the top plate 46 and the bottom plate 48.

As viewed in FIG. 5, the channel members 56, 58, 67 and 68 are each disposed at a 45 angle to the longitudinal center line of the translator assembly 40 and are also disposed so that the first actuator 42 lies in a plane which is substantially perpendicular to the plane of the second actuator 44. Consequently, when a beam of light enters the actuator 40 along a path generally shown by the dotted arrow 60, this beam is reflected by the reflector 66 of the first actuator 42 along a path indicated as 62 to thereby strike the reflector 70 of the actuator 44. The beam of light is then reflected by the second actuator 44 along a path indicated generally by the dotted arrow 64. The path of light 64, as will become more clear later, actually varies both vertically and horizontally due to the oscillation of the first and second reflectors.

It should be noted from FIG. 4 that the reflector 66 on the first actuator 42 may actually be a square reflector as shown rather than a rectangular shaped reflector as shown in FIGS. 2 and 3. Since, as will become more clear, the reflector 66 is the first reflector along the optical path as the beam passes through the translator, the beam itself can be aimed at the center of the actuator thereby eliminating the need for a large reflector. By making the reflector 66 smaller than the reflector 68 of the second actuator 44, a significant saving in reflector cost is realizedv Consequently. the actuators can be manufactured substantially identically except for the reflectors. If reflector cost is not a problem of manufacture. the actuators can be manufactured identically.

In operation, the translator assembly 40 is positioned so that a beam of light generated by a light source, such as a laser, will travel along a path 60 as indicated in FIG. 5. This light path 60 is arranged to strike the mirror 66 of the actuator 42 so that the axis of rotation through the support wire 16 is disposed at an angle of less than 90 to the path of light 60. The second actuator 44 is positioned to receive the light reflected by the first reflector 66 along the path 62. The second actuator 44 is also positioned with the pivot axis of the second reflector 70 arranged perpendicularly to the pivot axis of the first rerflector 66. As such, the light re flected from the second reflector 70 forms Lissajous patterns which are viewable on a viewing surface 69 such as a wall, projection screen or the like.

As indicated earlier, it is advantageous for the light beam to first strike an actuator having a pivot axis for its associated reflector arranged at an acute angle to the path of light entering the translator. The advantage achieved by this arrangement is that the reflector on the second actuator 44 can be made physically smaller in size than would be required for the second actuator if the light entered the assembly and struck a first mir ror which was arranged to pivot about a pivot axis arranged at a 90 angle to the entering path of light.

Referring now to FIG. 6, a schematic top view of an alternative translator assembly 74 is shown. In this alternative form, the actuators 76 and 78 are disposed between the top plate and bottom plate in a manner similar to that shown in FIG. 4, however, the planes of the actuators 76 and 78 are arranged substantially parallel to each other although at a 45 angle to the longitudinal center line of the assembly. In this configuration, the entering beam of light 80 moves from the bottom towards the top of FIG. 6 and the exiting beam of light shown generally at 82 also moves in a direction from the bottom to the top. A further feature of the translator in FIG. 6 is the beam color changer 85. The beam color changer may comprise a filter for modifying the color of a filament light source. It may also be a color wheel. The color changer 85 is positioned between the light source 86 and the first actuator 76, however, it could be positioned anywhere between the light source 86 and the viewing surface 84.

Referring now to FIGS. 7 and 8, a preferred form of the audio to image translator is shown. This configuration is particularly useful, as will become more clear later, because it permits easy alignment of the image on the desired viewing surface. The image translator shown generally as 88 includes a first actuator 90 and a second actuator 91 of the type described earlier.

The translator 88 includes an alignment reflector or mirror assembly which is operative to reflect the beam of light 96, generated by a light source shown generally at 97 along the path 92 and onto the mirror surface 93. The alignment reflector assembly 95 includes a horizontal support bracket 98 secured to the bottom plate 48 of the translator assembly 88 by a screw 99 which passes through the bottom plate 48 and engages a nut 100 permitting the horizontal support bracket 98 to be located in a fixed spacial relationship with respect to the other elements of the translator 88.

As viewed in FIG. 8, a vertically positioned reflector support member 101 is secured at its lowermost end to the upper surface of the horizontal support bracket 98. The vertical reflector support member 99 has an alignment reflector 102 mounted thereon for reflecting the beam of light 96 generated by the light source 97 along the light path 92 to strike the mirror 93 mounted on the first mirror actuator 90.

As viewed in FIG. 8, a translator support bracket 103 is connected to the under surface of the bottom plate 48 as shown generally at 104. This connection at 104 rigidly supports the translator 88 in fixed spacial relationship to the light source shown generally at 97.

In one form of this invention, the light source 97 comprises a laser for producing a beam of light that travels along the path 96 as viewed in FIG. 7. The light source 97 alternatively may comprise an incandescent or similar bulb with an optical system for producing a beam of light traveling along the path 96. The light source 97 is preferably housed in a rotatable housing 105 and preferably positioned within the housing 105 so that the beam of light 96 produced thereby will coincide with the axis of rotation.

The translator support bracket 103 has a flange portion shown generally at 106 which has an inner surface slightly larger than the outer surface of the housing 105. Therefore, the flange 106 can fit over the end of the housing 105 in a manner shown in both FIGS. 7 and 8. The flange 106 has a threaded hole passing therethrough shown generally at 107 to receive a lock screw 108 which, when tightened against the outer surface of the housing 105, is operative to fixedly locate the translator 88 with respect to the housing 105. Those skilled in the art will readily recognize other attachments for fixedly locating the translator with respect to the light source.

When the translator 88 is mounted in the preferred manner permitting rotation about an axis which corresponds to the path of light 96, the support bracket 98 and the reflector 102 must be positioned as shown so that the light beam will be directed onto the first and second actuators 90 and 91 so as to produce Lissajous like patterns on a viewing surface 109. Since the translator is mounted for rotation, the image generated by the translator 88 can be positioned on the viewing surface 109 along a generally vertical path simply by loosening the lock screw 108 and turning the translator 88 to the desired position. For horizontal position control, the whole assembly including the translator 88, the light source 97 and the rotatable housing 105 is moved with respect to the viewing surface 95.

In another form, the translator may be mounted on an extension of the housing 105 in a position like that shown in FIG. 7. In this form, the housing extension will surround the translator to thereby protect its parts. An aperture in the housing extension, however, permits the light projected by the translator to strike the desired viewing surface. To raise or lower the pattern seen on the viewing surface, the whole housing 105 is rotated.

A further alternative involves an approach for producing a rotating Lissajous pattern. This is shown schematically in FIG. 12. A translator 150 of the type shown in FIG. 6 is mounted in a rotatable housing 151 so that the axis of the light beam reflected by the second reflector 153 is identical to the axis of the light beam 154 which is generated by an external light source not shown. Fixed alignment mirrors 155 and 156 aim the light onto the first reflector 157. In this configuration. the whole housing 151 can be rotated by a motor or other drive about the axis of the light beam 154 to thereby produce on the viewing surface a rotating Lissajous pattern.

Referring now to Fig. 9, the electrical circuitry associated with a single actuator is shown. The actuator, as indicated above, preferably includes two actuator coils L1 and L2. Two coils L1 and L2 are provided so that each actuator can be electrically powered in several differrent ways as will become more clear later. In its simplest form, these two coils are connected together in series as shown in FIG. 9 so that audio signals produced by an audio signal source will pass through each of these actuator coils to produce an alternating magnetic field which oscillates the reflector about its pivot axis. The audio signal source 110 is most advantageously one channel of a stereo amplifier system although a monaural source of audio signals can be utilized. The audio signal source 110 should have a sufficient audio output power to permit the generation of currents in the actuator coils L1 and L2 of sufficient magnitude to produce an alternating magnetic field at the actuator for oscillating the reflector mirror about is pivot axis. Should the audio signal source 110 selected by the user provide only a weak signal, operational results can be improved by inserting an audio amplifier between the audio signal source and the two series connected mirror actuator coils L1 and L2.

The second translator actuator, not shown in FIG. 9, is connected in an identical manner to that thereshown. The second actuator is preferably connected to the second channel of a stereo amplifier system thereby connecting the second actuator to a different audio signal source than the first actuator. Consequently, each of the actuators is driven by a different signal source thereby causing the reflectors responding thereto to oscillate about their respective pivot axes at different rates thus producing Lissajous patterns like that of FIG. 1.

Referring now to FIG. 10, four actuator coils L1, L2, L3 and L4 of two different actuator assemblies shown with each coil connected to a different audio signal source 111, 112, 113 and 114. These four audio signal sources may be four independent audio signals such as four different radios or, and preferably, comprises the four audio outputs for a quadraphonic audio system. In the configuration shown in FIG. 10, each of the actuator coils L1, L2, L3 and L4 is connected to an independent audio source. Consequently, each actuator with two coils is powered by two different audio signals at any given time to thereby assure that the reflector on each of the actuators is oscillated differently thus producing complex Lissajous patterns like that of FIG. 1.

Referring now to FIG. 11, further alternative electrical circuitry associated with one actuator is shown. As indicated generally above, each actuator of the present invention is preferably formed with two independent windings wound on a metal core. In FIG. 11, L1 and L2 represent the two independent windings of a single actuator. An audio signal source 120, such as one stereo channel, is provided to produce signals at audio frequencies. It has been found that the signals which produce the larger and more interesting patterns lie in the range between 0 and 1,000 Hz because the natural resonant frequency of the actuators generally lies in this range.

The output of the audio signal source 120 is connected to a low pass filter 124 which is connected in series between the actuator coil L1 and the audio signal source 120. The function of the low pass filter 124 is to filter high frequencies present in the signal at the output of the audio signal source l20 so that the actuator coil L1 is driven mostly by low frequency signals.

In order to translate more of the audio signal into a Lissajous pattern, the circuitry series connected between the actuator coil L2 and the audio signal source 120 includes a frequency divider 126 and also a high pass filter 128. The frequency divider 126 is operative to translate audio signals received from the audio signal source 120 into other lower frequency audio signals. That is. the higher frequency signals are divided so that they become lower frequency signals thereby altering the signal content in the frequency range between and L000 Hz. A high pass filter 128 is optionally connected in series before the frequency divider 126 to fil ter out low frequency signals. Consequently, the signal supplied to the actuator coil L2 is different from the signal at L] and preferably lies in the range between 0 and 1.000 H2. The signal at the coil L2, therefore, is operative to produce a different alternating magnetic field within the actuator than is produced at the actuator coil Ll.

While the foregoing description has been made with particular emphasis on filters which preferably have a band pass between 1 and 1,000 Hz, it will be recognized by those skilled in the art that the band width of these filters may indeed be wider or narrower to complement the operation of the mirror actuator structure to which they are electrically connected. Further, it will be recognized by those skilled in the art that additional audio signal amplification may be required between the audio signal source 120 and the mirror actuator coils Ll and L2.

While the foregoing description has been made with particular emphasis on preferred embodiments and certain modifications therefor, it will be recognized by those skilled in the art that other modifications in form only may be made without departing from the spirit and scope of this invention as defined by the following claims.

What is claimed is:

l. A visual sound system comprising:

a source of electrical audio frequency sound signals,

and

an improved sound to image translator for producing a moving beam of light which, when projected on a screen, forms Lissajous patterns correlated to the sound. said translator including:

a light source for providing a beam of light,

a screen upon which a beam of light can be projected.

a first light reflector positioned to reflect said beam of light, from said source, said first reflector being pivotally supported for movement about a first pivot axis;

means responsive to electrical audio sound signals provided by said sound source for oscillating said first reflector about said first pivot axis;

a second light reflector positioned to reflect light re flected by said first reflector, said second reflector being pivotally supported for movement about a second pivot axis arranged at a 90 angle to said first pivot axis, and

means responsive to electrical audio sound signals provided by said sound source for oscillating said second reflector about said second pivot axis, the light reflected from said second reflector. when projected on said screen, forming a moving dot of light which makes Lissajous patterns correlated to the sound from said sourcev 2. The system of claim 1 wherein said first pivot axis is positioned in a plane in which the beam of light is also positioned.

3. The system of claim 1 wherein the beam of light strikes said first reflector in a direction which forms an acute included angle between the beam of light and said first pivot axis.

4. The system of claim 1 wherein each said light reflector comprises a substantially planar mirror.

5. The system of claim 4 wherein each said mirror is a front surfaced mirror.

6. The system of claim 4 wherein the plane of each said mirror is arranged perpendicularly to the plane of the other mirror.

7. The system of claim 1 additionally including means to change the color of the light forming the Lissajous patterns.

8. The system of claim 1 wherein each means for oscillating a reflector includes a coil mounted on a core, the electrical audio sound signals producing an alternating current in said coil to produce an alternating magnetic field in said core, a permanent magnet mounted for pivotal movement, the field of said permanent magnet and said alternating field interacting to produce an oscillating force on said permanent magnet, said permanent magnet having a reflector attached thereto.

9. The system of claim 8 wherein each permanent magnet comprises an approximately planar member of permanent magnetic material with the magnetic field produced thereby being substantially perpendicular to the plane of said magnet.

10. A visual sound system comprising:

a source of electrical audio frequency sound signals,

and

an improved sound to image translator for producing a moving beam of light which, when projected on a screen, forms Lissajous patterns correlated to the sound, said translator including:

a light source for providing a beam of light,

a screen on which a beam of light can be projected,

a first permanent magnet mounted for pivotal movement about a first pivot axis,

a first reflector means mounted on said first pennanent magnet, said first permanent magnet and said first reflector means being positioned to reflect said light source beam from said first reflector means,

a first electromagnet responsive to electrical audio sound signals provided by said sound source to produce a first alternating magnetic field, said first electromagnet being positioned adjacent said first permanent magnet so that said first alternating magnetic field will interact with the field produced by said first permanent magnet to cause said first magnet and said mounted first reflector to oscillate about said first pivot axis,

a second permanent magnet mounted for pivotal movement about a second pivot axis, said second pivot axis being arranged at a angle to said first pivot axis,

a second reflector means mounted on said second permanent magnet. said second permanent magnet and said second reflector means being positioned to reflect the beam of light reflected from said first reflector means, and

a second electromgnet responsive to electrical audio sound signals provided by said sound source to produce a second alternating magnetic field, said second electromagnet being positioned adjacent said second permanent magnet so that second alternating magnetic field will interact with the field produced by said second magnet to cause said second permanent magnet and said mounted second reflector means to oscillate about said second pivot axis, the light beam reflected from said second reflector means forming. when projected on said screen, a moving dot of light which makes Lissa jous patterns correlated to the sound from said source.

11. The system of claim further including signal derivation means responsive to said source of electrical audio frequency sound signals for deriving therefrom first and second different electrical audio frequency sound signals. and wherein each said electromagnet is responsive to a different one of said first and second different electrical audio sound signals.

12. The system of claim 10 further including signal derivation means responsive to said source of electrical audio frequency sound signals for deriving therefrom first and second different electrical audio frequency sound signals, and wherein each said electromagnet includes two separate windings, one of each said first and second electromagnet being responsive to said first electrical audio sound signal and another winding of each said first and second electromagnet being responsive to said second electrical audio sound signal different from said first electrical audio sound signal.

13. The system of claim 10 wherein each said permanent magnet comprises an approximately planar member of permanent magnetic material with the field generated thereby being substantially perpendicular to the plane of said magnet.

14. The system of claim 10 wherein said signal derivation means includes:

a first frequency selective circuit responsive to said electrical audio sound signal source for producing at its output electrical audio sound signals having a first frequency distribution frequency selective circuit being connected to said first electromagnet,

a second frequency selective circuit responsive to said electrical audio signal sound source for producing at its output electrical audio sound signals having a different frequency distribution than the output of said first frequency selective circuit, said output of said second frequency selective circuit being connected to said second electromagnet.

15. The system of claim 10 wherein said first and second electromagnets each include first and second windings, said translator additionally including:

low pass filter means connected between said sound source and said first winding of said first electromagnet,

high pass filter means connected between said sound source and said second winding of said first electromagnet,

low pass filter means connected between said sound source and said first winding of said second electromagnet,

high pass filter means connected between said sound source and said second winding of said second electromagnet.

16. The system of claim 10 wherein said beam of light strikes said first reflector in a direction which forms an acute angle between the beam of light and said first pivot axis.

17. The system of claim 10 wherein each said light reflector comprises a substantially planar mirror.

18. The translator of claim 17 wherein said mirror is a front surface mirror.

19. The system of claim 17 wherein the plane of each said mirror is arranged perpendicularly to the plane of the other mirror.

20. The system of claim 10 additionally including means to change the color of the light beam.

21. A visual sound system comprising:

a souce of electrical audio frequency sound signals,

and

an improved sound to image translator for producing a moving beam of light which, when projected on a screen, forms a Lissajous patterns correlated to the sound, said translatorincluding:

means for producing a beam of light,

a screen onto which a beam of light can be projected,

rotatable mounting means mounted for rotation about an axis substantially coinciding with said beam of light from said source,

an adjustably mounted alignment mirror mounted on said rotatably mounting means and adjustably positioned to reflect said beam of light from said source,

a first permanent magnet supported by said rotatable mounting means and mounted for pivotal movement about a first pivot axis,

a first reflector means mounted on said first permanent magnet, said first permanent magnet and said first reflector means being positioned to reflect the beam of light reflected from said alignment mirror,

a first electromagnet supported by said rotatable mounting means and responsive to electrical audio sound signals provided by said source to produce a first alternating magnetic field, said first electromagnet being positioned adjacent said first permanent magnet so that said first alternating magnetic field will interact with the field produced by said first permanent magnet to cause said first permanent magnet and said first mounted reflector to oscillate about said first pivot axis,

a second permanent magnet supported by said rotatable mounting means and mounted for pivotal movement about a second pivot axis, said second pivot axis being arranged at a angle to said first pivot axis,

a second reflector means mounted on said second permanent magnet, said second permanent magnet and said second reflector means being positioned to reflect the beam of light reflected from said first reflector means, and

a second electromagnet supported by said rotatable mounting means and responsive to electrical audio sound signals provided by said sound source to produce a second alternating magnetic field, said second electromagnet being positioned adjacent said second permanent magnet so that said second alternating magnetic field will interact with the field produced by said second permanent magnet to cause said second permanent magnet and said mounted second reflector means to oscillate about said second pivot axis. the light beam reflected by said second reflector means forming a moving dot oflight when projected on said screen which makes Lissajous patterns correlated to said sound.

22. A method of transforming electrical audio frequency sound signals into a visual pattern correlated thereto comprising the steps of:

producing a beam of light with a light source;

directing the light beam from the source toward the first light reflector which is pivotally supported for movement about a pivot axis,

oscillating the first light reflector in response to electrical audio sound signals to produce a first oscillatory light beam. directing the first oscillatory light beam toward a second light reflector pivotally supported for movement about a second pivot axis arranged at a 90 angle to the pivot axis of the first reflector,

oscillating the second light reflector in response to the electrical audio sound signals to produce a moving light beam having a movement correlated to the movement of both reflectors. and

projecting the moving light beam reflected by the second reflector onto a screen to produce a moving dot of light in the form of a visible changing Lissa jous pattern correlated to the sound signals 23. The method of claim 22 further including the steps of:

deriving different electrical audio frequency sound signals from the sound source, and

oscillating the first and second light reflectors differ ently in response to different ones of the derived electrical audio frequency sound signals. thereby producing complex Lissajous patterns when the moving light beam from the second reflector is projected on a screen.

24. The system of claim 1 wherein said screen includes a viewing surface which is physically separate and remote from said light source, said first and second light reflectors, and said means for oscillating said first and second reflectors.

25. The method of claim 22 wherein said step of projecting said moving beam onto said screen includes projecting said moving beam onto a viewing surface which is physically separate and remote from said light source, first and second reflectors, and the means for oscillating said first and second reflectors.

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Classifications
U.S. Classification353/15, 84/464.00R, 353/99, 359/202.1
International ClassificationA63J17/00
Cooperative ClassificationA63J17/00
European ClassificationA63J17/00