(19)
(11)EP 1 901 582 B1

(12)EUROPEAN PATENT SPECIFICATION

(45)Mention of the grant of the patent:
04.12.2019 Bulletin 2019/49

(21)Application number: 06747103.7

(22)Date of filing:  02.06.2006
(51)Int. Cl.: 
H04R 1/40  (2006.01)
H04S 5/02  (2006.01)
H04R 29/00  (2006.01)
H04R 5/02  (2006.01)
H04R 27/00  (2006.01)
(86)International application number:
PCT/JP2006/311059
(87)International publication number:
WO 2006/132136 (14.12.2006 Gazette  2006/50)

(54)

AUDIO DEVICE AND AUDIO BEAM CONTROL METHOD

AUDIOEINRICHTUNG UND AUDIOSTRAHL-STEUERVERFAHREN

DISPOSITIF AUDIO ET MÉTHODE DE CONTRÔLE DE FAISCEAU AUDIO


(84)Designated Contracting States:
DE FR GB

(30)Priority: 06.06.2005 JP 2005166230

(43)Date of publication of application:
19.03.2008 Bulletin 2008/12

(73)Proprietor: YAMAHA CORPORATION
Hamamatsu-shi Shizuoka-ken 430-8650 (JP)

(72)Inventor:
  • TAKUMAI, Susumu c/o YAMAHA CORPORATION
    Hamamatsu-shi, Shizuoka 430-8650 (JP)

(74)Representative: Emde, Eric 
Wagner & Geyer Partnerschaft mbB Patent- und Rechtsanwälte Gewürzmühlstrasse 5
80538 München
80538 München (DE)


(56)References cited: : 
WO-A2-01/23104
JP-A- 2004 363 697
US-A1- 2004 151 325
JP-A- 10 234 094
US-A- 3 308 237
US-A1- 2004 240 697
  
      
    Note: Within nine months from the publication of the mention of the grant of the European patent, any person may give notice to the European Patent Office of opposition to the European patent granted. Notice of opposition shall be filed in a written reasoned statement. It shall not be deemed to have been filed until the opposition fee has been paid. (Art. 99(1) European Patent Convention).


    Description

    TECHNICAL FIELD



    [0001] The present invention relates to audio devices using speaker arrays, and in particular to sound beam control methods in which sound beams having prescribed directivities are generated in response to audio signals and are controlled in directivities.

    BACKGROUND ART



    [0002] At present, people living in cities of industrialized countries have enjoyed a variety of life styles and have acted in various time cycles. Accompanied with increasing population, housings have been concentrated in cities in particular; hence, there is a tendency that noise pollution increases not only with respect to inmate family members but with respect to surrounding people. For example, when a viewer watches and listens to an audio-visual device (e.g., a television receiver) so as to generate a relatively large volume of sound in the night, noise pollution occurs which can cause annoyance for other persons other than the viewer. In terms of the protection of privacy of people, it is necessary to reduce the noise pollution.

    [0003] Until now, a viewer may pay attention to avoid causing noise pollution to the neighboring persons by reducing sound volume; however, when sound volume is simply reduced, there is a disadvantage in that it may be difficult to hear the audio contents (or programs).

    [0004] When a viewer is at a place distanced from an audio-visual device (e.g., a kitchen distanced from a living room), or when an aged person having poor hearing watches and listens to an audio-visual device, it is necessary to adequately increase the sound volume. However, when a viewer at a surrounding position of the audio-visual device or a viewer having adequate hearing watches and listens to the same contents (or programs) together with the others, there is a problem in that discomfort may occur by the increasing sound volume. In addition, increasing the sound volume may cause noise pollution with respect to inmate family members having no intention to watch and listen to the contents (or programs) and with respect to neighboring persons.

    [0005] In order to solve the aforementioned problems, local speaker amplifiers arranged in the surrounding areas of specific viewers are put to practical use (see "Mimimoto-kun α mild in ears", which can be retrieved online via the Internet: URL: http://home.s00.itscom.net/large/CS-30P/).

    [0006] However, such a device is constituted using an amplifier speaker (or an earphone) arranged in the surrounding area of a specific viewer; hence, it is necessary to connect the device with a television receiver via a cable. Thus, the cable and amplifier speaker may cause disturbance and are troublesome to set up.

    [0007] US 2004/0151325 A1 discloses a method and apparatus to create a sound field and was used as a basis for the preamble of the independent claims 1 and 3.

    [0008] WO 01/23104 A2 relates to sonic steerable antennae and their use to achieve a variety of effects. The invention refers to a method and apparatus for taking an input signal, replicating it a number of times and modifying each of the replicas before routing them to respective output transducers such that a desired sound field is created. This sound field may comprise a directed beam, focus beam or a simulated origin. Further, "anti-sound" may be directed so as to create nulls (quiet spots) in an already existing sound field. The input signal replicas may also be modified in way which changes their amplitude or they may be filtered to provide the desired delaying.

    [0009] US 2004/240697 A1 describes a loudspeaker which is provided for receiving an incoming electrical signal and transmitting an acoustical signal that is directional and has a substantially constant beam width over a wide frequency range. The loudspeaker may include an array of speaker drivers coupled to a mounting plate. Each speaker driver may be driven by an electrical signal having a respective amplitude that is a function of the speaker driver's respective location on the mounting plate. The function may be a Legendre function. Alternatively, the loudspeaker may include a flat mounting plate. In this case, the respective electrical signal driving each speaker may have a phase delay that virtually positions the speaker onto a curved surface.

    [0010] US 3 308 237 A discloses a loudspeaker system designed to limit reverberation and equalize loudness at various positions when used in large auditoriums.

    [0011] JP 2004/363697 A discloses an array speaker system. In order to provide an array speaker system the directivity of which is enhanced by decreasing a difference of a directivity distribution shape between high and low frequencies, an LPF and an HPF separate an input acoustic signal into low and high frequency signals. A delay circuit provides a delay corresponding to a desired focal position to the low frequency signal by each speaker unit and thereafter multipliers provide a weight by a window function for the low frequency signal to the resulting signal. A delay circuit provides a similar delay to the high frequency signal and thereafter multipliers provide a weight by a window function for the high frequency signal to the resulting signal. Corresponding adders sum outputs of the multipliers and thereafter the sum is outputted from speaker units via an amplifier. The window function for the low frequency is more relaxed than the window function for the high frequency, resulting in that a difference of the directivity between the low and high frequencies is decreased.

    DISCLOSURE OF INVENTION


    PROBLEMS TO BE SOLVED BY THE INVENTION



    [0012] It is an object of the present invention to provide an audio device and a sound beam control method, which allow all the viewers at a surrounding area of an audio-visual device, viewers distanced from it, and viewers having poor hearing, to listen to the same audio contents with the same sound volume and the same sound quality without arranging another speaker in the surrounding area of a specific viewer.

    MEANS FOR SOLVING THE PROBLEMS



    [0013] In a first aspect of the invention, an audio device is provided as set forth in claim 1.

    [0014] In a second aspect of the invention, there is provided a beam control method adapted to an audio device equipped with a speaker array aligning a plurality of speaker units, as set forth in claim 3. Preferred embodiments of the present invention may be gathered from the dependent claims.

    EFFECT OF THE INVENTION



    [0015] In the present invention, when the user of an audio device listens to the audio contents alone, it is possible to set up it so as to reduce leaked sound. While plural persons listen to the same audio contents, even when a specific person therein is distanced from a speaker array device, or even when a specific person therein is an aged person having poor hearing, it is possible to transmit sound to the specific person with a large sound volume (or a high sound pressure), and it is possible to transmit sound to the other persons with a normal sound volume and a normal sound quality.

    BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS



    [0016] 

    [FIG. 1] A drawing for use in the explanation of a sound beam forming method using a speaker array device.

    [FIG. 2] (A): A graph showing the characteristics of the sound beams that are formed by driving the speaker array device based on audio signals subjected to timing control only, (B): A graph showing the characteristics of the sound beams that are formed based on audio signals subjected to sound volume adjustment using a window function, (C): A graph showing high-band beam characteristics.

    [FIG. 3] (A): A front view showing the exterior appearance of the system combining an audio device and a television receiver, (B): A block diagram showing the constitution of the system.

    [FIG. 4] A block diagram showing the internal constitution of the audio device.

    [FIG. 5] (A): A drawing showing beam control for outputting a sound beam having non-directivity by use of the speaker array device, (B): A drawing showing that the speaker array device outputs high-frequency components only without performing beam control.

    [FIG. 6] A graph showing the relationship between beam angles of sound beams emitted from the speaker array device and high-frequency components.

    [FIG. 7] (A): Graphs showing examples of applied window functions in relation to sound volumes and beam angles in beam processing of audio signals, (B): a graph showing the relationship between applied window functions, sound volumes, and beam angles.


    (Explanation of Sound Beam)



    [0017] An audio device according to a preferred embodiment of the present invention will be described with reference to the accompanied drawings. This audio device can be connected to an audio-visual device such as a television receiver, or the audio device can be used independently.

    [0018] The audio device of the present invention is equipped with a speaker array device. FIG. 1 is a drawing for use in the explanation of a sound beam forming method using the speaker array device. The speaker array device is an alignment of plural speaker units in a horizontal direction. Suppose that the speaker array device is formed by aligning forty small-size speakers in three lines (which can be retrieved via the Internet: URL: http://www.yamaha.co.jp/news/2004/04111601.html), for example. Each of the speaker units is supplied with the same audio signal, whereas the supply timing and sound volume can be independently controlled with respect to each speaker unit. The output timings (i.e., delay times) of the speaker units are controlled as shown in FIG. 1. Thus, sound waves propagating in the P direction (focal direction or main beam direction) match each other in terms of phases of sounds emitted from speaker units so as to form sound beams having high sound pressures. As described above, it is possible to reduce the attenuation depending upon the distance by use of sound beams having high sound pressures.

    [0019] Sound waves output from speaker units are shifted from each other in phases in other directions (i.e., off-beam directions) other than the main beam direction, so that they cancel each other and are damped, and they are thus reduced in sound pressure.

    [0020] That is, the sound beam is formed to allow a clear sound having a high sound pressure to be transmitted in the main beam direction while the sound pressure is suppressed in the off-beam direction so as to realize the transmission of a low-level leaked sound only.

    [0021] Since a focal point is set to the rear side of the speaker array device so as to perform delay control as shown in FIG. 5(A), it is possible to output audio signals with broad directivity characteristics (or non-directivity).

    [0022] FIGS. 2(A) to 2(C) show the characteristics (i.e., beam characteristics or sound pressure distribution) of various sound beams formed using the speaker array device. Since the speaker array device has a limited length, sound beams are formed with side lobes. When plural speaker units forming the speaker array device are supplied with audio signals having the same sound volume subjected to timing control, side lobes having relatively high levels occur as shown in FIG. 2(A), and leaked sound having a relatively high volume propagates in the off-beam direction externally of the main beam direction.

    [0023] When audio signals supplied to plural speaker units included in the speaker array device are adjusted using a window function in volume such that the volume gradually decreases from the center to the both ends of the speaker array device, a high-level main beam is formed in the center of the front face of the speaker array device, while side lobes are reduced smaller in level. This makes it possible to realize the propagation of a low-level leaked sound in the off-beam direction.

    [0024] Both of FIGS. 2(A) and 2(B) show the beam characteristics of sound beams corresponding to intermediate-band audio signals. FIG. 2(C) shows the beam characteristics of sound beams corresponding to high-band audio signals, which are subjected to beam characteristic control using a window function shown in FIG. 2(B). Audio signals become sharp in beam characteristics as the frequencies thereof increase, while a leaked sound is reduced in level. In addition, a reflected sound on a wall and the like becomes small in level; hence, in a beam control mode, particularly high-band sound components are damped in the off-beam direction.

    (Explanation of the Audio Device of the Present Embodiment)



    [0025] The audio device of the present embodiment uses the aforementioned beam characteristics of the speaker array device so as to allow the user to freely set up and release a beam control mode and to set up a focal position (defined by the main beam direction and distance) of a sound beam by use of a remote control. In addition, the audio device performs the following two sound volume controls in the off-beam direction based on the sound volume set up in the beam control mode under the presumption of the user's utilization manner.

    (1) First Case



    [0026] This is the case for controlling the sound volume to be higher than the intermediate sound volume in the beam control mode. It is presumed that plural persons listen to the audio contents by use of the audio device but a specific person therein is positioned at a kitchen and the like distanced from the audio device or but a specific person therein is an aged person having poor hearing, wherein a sound beam is directed to the specific person while the other persons are positioned in the off-beam direction.

    [0027] The following processing is performed so as to transmit leaked sounds of the normal volume to the other persons existing in the off-beam direction.
    1. (a) High-frequency components of audio signals are extracted and are additionally output with a non-directivity in the off-beam direction.
    2. (b) Side lobes are increased by reducing the weight of the window function applied to the speaker units. This allows audio signals, in which damping is suppressed with respect to high-frequency components, to be transmitted to the listener who listens to the audio contents in the off-beam direction.

    (2) Second Case



    [0028] This is the case in which the sound volume is controlled to be reduced in the beam control mode. The following processing is performed under the presumption in which a sound beam is set to a single listener in order not to cause trouble to the surrounding others at midnight, for example.
    1. (a) Side lobes are reduced by increasing the weight of the window function applied to the speaker units.
    2. (b) The addition of the aforementioned high-frequency components is stopped.


    [0029] Due to the beam control, audio signals of a low sound volume can reach the listener with a precise clearness. Due to the low sound volume of audio signals, the leaked sound, which occurs due to side lobes or reflection, does not cause discomfort and does not cause trouble to the surrounding others.

    [0030] The constitution of the audio device realizing the aforementioned beam control will be described with reference to FIGS. 3(A) and 3(B).

    [0031] FIG. 3(A) is a front view showing the exterior appearance of the system combining the audio device and the audio-visual device. In this system, the audio device (including a speaker array device 2) is connected to the lower portion of a 106,68 cm (42-inch) television receiver (including a display 3).

    [0032] FIG. 3(B) is a block diagram showing the constitution of the system combining the audio device and the television receiver. Herein, a television tuner 11 outputs video signals and audio signals. Video signals are supplied to a video signal processing section 13, in which color signals, luminance signals, and synchronizing signals are isolated and are supplied to the display 3. The display 3 displays a video image based on input signals thereof.

    [0033] Audio signals are supplied to an audio signal processing section 12 inside of the audio device 1. The audio signal processing section 12 performs sound volume control on audio signals, and it also performs delay control and sound volume control on the speaker units forming the speaker array device 2.

    [0034] A control section 10 manages the delay control and sound volume control in the audio signal processing section 12. The audio device 1 is equipped with an infrared remote control 4, wherein the user operates the infrared remote control 4 so as to turn on or off the beam control mode, to set up the focal position (defined by the main beam direction and distance), and to designate the sound volume with respect to the control section 10.

    [0035] FIG. 4 is a block diagram showing the internal constitution of the audio signal processing section 12. The audio signal processing section 12 can be formed by use of a processing circuit of analog signals or a processor for processing digital signals. In the present embodiment, the audio signal processing section 12 is formed using the processor for processing digital signals. Input audio signals are collectively adjusted in sound volume by means of a main volume 21. Thereafter, audio signals are branched into a main processing section and a sub-processing section (i.e., a high-band control section).

    [0036] The main processing section performs prescribed processing on audio signals, wherein it includes a beam processing section 22. The beam processing section 22 controls the speaker array device 2 to generate sound beams based on audio signals; alternatively, it controls the timings and volumes of audio signals supplied to the speaker units so as to output sound with non-directivity. For this reason, the beam processing section 22 includes a delay processor and a gain controller independently in correspondence with each of the speaker units. Since the beam processing section 22 controls delay times of audio signals supplied to the speaker units, the speaker array device 2 outputs sound beams towards the focal position P as shown in FIG. 1. When the timing control is performed on audio signals such that delay times decrease in the center portion of the speaker array device 2, it is possible to form a sound beam that is broadened in the front side while forming a focal point in the rear side of the speaker array device 2, thus generating sound with non-directivity.

    [0037] As described above, audio signals, which are controlled in timing and volume with respect to each of the speaker units, are supplied to each of the speaker units forming the speaker array device 2 via an adder 23 and a power amplifier 24, which are installed in each of the speaker units.

    [0038] The high-band control section is used to apply high-frequency components in the off-beam direction, wherein it includes a high-pass filter 25, a sound volume controller 26, and a beam processing section 27. The high-pass filter 25 is an active filter that allows the cutoff frequency and the Q factor representing the cutoff steepness to be changed by means of the control section 10, wherein it is set up in response to the beam angle and sound volume. The sound volume controller 26 controls the sound volume of high-frequency audio signals extracted by the high-pass filter 25. The beam processing section 27 has the same constitution as the beam processing section 22 included in the main processing section, wherein it performs delay control and sound volume control (realizing the window function) on high-frequency components, which are controlled in volume, with respect to each of the speaker units, thus supplying the output signals thereof to the adder 23. The adder 23 adds the output signal of the main processing section and the output signal of the high-frequency control section with respect to each of the speaker units.

    [0039] Incidentally, the high-frequency control section is controlled by the control section 10 in such a way that it operates upon the setup of an intermediate sound volume or more by means of the main volume 21.

    [0040] As described above, the high-frequency control section outputs audio signals with the directivity characteristics realizing a broad range distribution of high-frequency components or with non-directivity in the off-beam direction. When the speaker array device 2 outputs audio signals with broad-range directivity or non-directivity, the beam processing section 27 is set up to realize the beam distributions shown in FIGS. 5(A) and 5(B).

    [0041] FIG. 5(A) shows a timing control method, in which a focal point is set in the rear side of the speaker array device 2 so that sound is diffused therefrom, with respect to each of the speaker units. This method performs the timing control in such a way that maximum delay times are applied to the speaker units arranged in both ends of the speaker array device 2, while a substantially zero delay time is applied to the speaker unit positioned in the center portion of the speaker array device 2.

    [0042]  FIG. 5(B) shows a method in which high-frequency components are only output by use of the speaker units forming a part of the speaker array device 2 without performing beam control using the speaker array device 2. In this method, the speaker array device 2 outputs no sound beam, wherein high-frequency components of audio signals are only output with the directivity characteristics solely applied to a prescribed speaker unit.

    (Explanation of Addition of High-Frequency Components and Window Function Control)



    [0043] FIG. 6 is a graph for use in the explanation of the addition control of high-frequency components (i.e., the setup control of the sound volume control section 26) in response to the sound volume set to the main volume 21 and the beam angle (i.e., the angle of the emission direction of the sound beam diffused in the front face direction of the speaker array device 2) set to the beam processing section 22 in the main processing section.

    [0044] When the sound volume is low, high-frequency components are not added to the sound beam emitted from the speaker array device 2. This is because it is presumed that, in the case of low volume, the user of the audio device 1 enjoys the audio contents alone without causing trouble to the surrounding others, wherein it is unnecessary to output audio signals in any directions other than the main beam direction.

    [0045] In the case of intermediate volume or more, it is presumed that plural persons listen to the same audio contents, and a specific person therein should listen to the sound with a relatively high volume. In this case, it is necessary to set a sound beam to the specific person and to have the other persons listen to the leaked sound emitted in the off-beam direction. Therefore, high-frequency components are added in the off-beam direction so as to emphasize high-frequency components of the leaked sound, thus generating sound having flat characteristics.

    [0046] In the aforementioned case, when the sound volume is increased, low-frequency components are emphasized, while high-frequency components are weakened. To compensate for it, the amount of high-frequency components being added is increased as shown by the graph of FIG. 6.

    [0047] When the beam angle is increased, high-frequency components may be extremely damped in the place deviated from the main beam direction; hence, in the case of the large beam angle compared with the case of the small beam angle, the amount of high-frequency components being added is increased.

    [0048] FIGS. 7(A) and 7(B) show a method for controlling the weight of the window function applied to the beam processing section 27 in response to the sound volume set to the main volume 21 and the beam angle set to the beam processing section 22 of the main processing section. That is, the window function, in which the sound volume is gradually decreased from the center portion to both ends of the speaker array, is subjected to weighting between the condition, in which side lobes become minimum, and the condition, in which the window function is not multiplied.

    [0049] In the case of the low sound volume and the small beam angle, the weight of the window function being applied is increased (see a in FIGS. 7(A) and 7(B)). This makes it possible to extremely reduce the leaked sound in the surroundings. As the sound volume increases, or as the beam angle increases, the weight of the window function being applied is decreased (see b and c in FIGS. 7(A) and 7(B)). In the case of the high sound volume and the large beam angle, audio signals having flat sound volume characteristics are supplied to all the speaker units included in the speaker array device 2 without performing the sound volume control using the window function (see d in FIGS. 7(A) and 7(B)). Thus, side lobes become large, and the sound volume of the leaked sound becomes high.

    [0050] The present embodiment uses the addition control of high-frequency components and may use the side lobe control using the window function.

    [0051] The present embodiment may automatically set up the amount of high-frequency components being added and the weight of the window function being added on the basis of the sound volume set to the main volume 21, although it is possible for the user of the audio device to set up only the amount of high-frequency components being added.

    [0052] In addition, it is possible to control the cutoff frequency of the high-pass filter 25 and the Q factor in response to the sound volume set to the main volume 21 and the beam angle set to the beam processing section 22 of the main processing section.

    [0053] Since the beam characteristics depend upon the frequencies of audio signals as shown in FIGS. 2(A), 2(B), and 2(C), it is possible to divide audio signals into plural bands and to perform the beam control such that the window function differs with respect to each band. This makes it possible realize the similar beam characteristics with respect to all frequency bands.

    INDUSTRIAL APPLICABILITY



    [0054] The present invention provides an audio device, which performs beam control using an array speaker device, which can be connected to an existing audio-visual device, which can realize listening control on the audio contents with ease, and which can be applied to various audio-visual systems.


    Claims

    1. An audio device (1) comprising:

    a speaker array (2) aligning a plurality of speaker units;

    an audio signal processing section (12) comprising:

    a sound volume control (21) for controlling input audio signals in volume;

    a main processing section (22) for controlling timings of supplying first audio signals to the speaker units of the speaker array (2), so that the speaker array (2) outputs at least one sound beam emitted in a prescribed direction;

    a high-pass filter (25) for producing second audio signals by extracting high-frequency components from the volume-controlled input audio signals;

    a high-band control (26, 27) for controlling the second audio signals to be emitted with directivity characteristics distributed in an area; and

    an adder (23) for adding the first and second audio signals and for supplying the resulting audio signals to the speaker array (2); and

    a control section (10) for controlling an output level of the high-band control (26, 27),

    wherein the volume-controlled input audio signals are branched into the main processing section (22) and a sub-processing section, the sub-processing section comprising the high-pass filter (25) and the high-band control (26, 27),

    wherein the first audio signals are the volume-controlled input audio signals branched into the main processing section (22) and the sub-processing section;

    wherein the control section (10) is configured for controlling the output level of the high-band control (26, 27) in response to the volume of the first audio signals and/or an emission direction of the at least one sound beam.


     
    2. The audio device according to claim 1, wherein the audio signal processing section (12) is adapted for performing processing on the input audio signals independently with respect to the plurality of speaker units so that the speaker array (2) outputs the at least one sound beam, wherein the audio signal processing section (12) is configured to perform delay processing on the input audio signals so that the at least one sound beam reaches a focal position at a prescribed timing, and wherein the audio signal processing section (12) is configured to apply a window function, by which a volume gradually decreases from a center portion to both ends of the speaker array (2), to the input audio signals,
    wherein the audio signal processing section (12) is configured to control a weight of the window function being applied in response to the volume.
     
    3. A beam control method adapted to an audio device (1) equipped with a speaker array (2) aligning a plurality of speaker units, said beam control method comprising the steps of:

    controlling input audio signals in volume;

    branching the volume-controlled input audio signals into two branches;

    in a first one of the two branches, controlling timings, at which first audio signals are supplied to the speaker units, so that the speaker array (2) outputs at least one sound beam emitted in a prescribed direction;

    in a second one of the two branches, producing second audio signals by extracting high-frequency components from the volume-controlled input audio signals, and controlling an output level of the second audio signals to be emitted with directivity characteristics distributed in an area;

    adding the first and second audio signals; and supplying the resulting audio signals to the speaker array (2);

    wherein the step of controlling an output level of the second audio signals comprises controlling the output level of the second audio signals in response to the volume of the first audio signals and/or an emission direction of the at least one sound beam.


     
    4. The beam control method according to claim 3, further comprising the step of:

    performing processing on the input audio signals independently with respect to the plurality of speaker units so that the speaker array outputs the at least one sound beam;

    performing delay control on the audio signals so that the at least one sound beam reaches a focal position at a prescribed timing, thus applying a window function, in which the volume gradually decreases from a center portion to both ends of the speaker array, to the input audio signals,

    wherein a weight of the window function being applied is controlled in response to the volume.


     


    Ansprüche

    1. Audiogerät (1), das Folgendes aufweist:

    eine Lautsprecheranordnung (2), die eine Vielzahl von Lautsprechereinheiten ausrichtet;

    einen Audiosignalverarbeitungsabschnitt (12), der Folgendes aufweist:

    eine Lautstärkesteuerung (21) zum Steuern von Eingangsaudiosignalen bezüglich der Lautstärke;

    einen Hauptverarbeitungsabschnitt (22) zum Steuern von Timings bzw. Zeitsteuerungen der Lieferung von ersten Audiosignalen an die Lautsprechereinheiten der Lautsprecheranordnung (2), so dass die Lautsprecheranordnung (2) zumindest einen Schallstrahl ausgibt, der in einer vorgeschriebenen Richtung emittiert wird;

    ein Hochpassfilter (25) zum Erzeugen von zweiten Audiosignalen durch Extrahieren von Hochfrequenzkomponenten aus den bezüglich der Lautstärke gesteuerten Eingangsaudiosignalen;

    eine Hochbandsteuerung (26, 27) zum Steuern der zweiten Audiosignale, die mit Richtungscharakteristiken emittiert werden sollen, die in einem Bereich verteilt sind; und

    ein Addierelement (23) zum Addieren der ersten und zweiten Audiosignale und zum Liefern der daraus resultierenden Audiosignale an die Lautsprecheranordnung (2); und

    einen Steuerabschnitt (10) zum Steuern eines Ausgabepegels der Hochbandsteuerung (26, 27), wobei die bezüglich der Lautstärke gesteuerten Eingangsaudiosignale in den Hauptverarbeitungsabschnitt (22) und in einen Unterverarbeitungsabschnitt verzweigt werden, wobei der Unterverarbeitungsabschnitt das Hochpassfilter (25) und die Hochbandsteuerung (26, 27) aufweist,

    wobei die ersten Audiosignale die bezüglich der Lautstärke gesteuerten Eingangsaudiosignale sind, die in den Hauptverarbeitungsabschnitt (22) und in den Unterverarbeitungsabschnitt verzweigt sind;

    wobei der Steuerabschnitt (10) konfiguriert ist, um den Ausgabepegel der Hochbandsteuerung (26, 27) ansprechend auf die Lautstärke der ersten Audiosignale und/oder eine Emissionsrichtung des mindestens einen Schallstrahls zu steuern.


     
    2. Audiogerät nach Anspruch 1, wobei der Audiosignalverarbeitungsabschnitt (12) ausgebildet ist, um eine Verarbeitung an den Eingangsaudiosignalen unabhängig von der Vielzahl von Lautsprechereinheiten auszuführen, so dass die Lautsprecheranordnung (2) zumindest einen Schallstrahl ausgibt, wobei der Audiosignalverarbeitungsabschnitt (12) konfiguriert ist, um eine Delay- bzw. Verzögerungsbearbeitung an den Eingangsaudiosignalen auszuführen, so dass der mindestens eine Schallstrahl eine Fokusposition zu einem vorgeschriebenen Zeitpunkt erreicht, und wobei der Audiosignalverarbeitungsabschnitt (12) konfiguriert ist, um eine Fensterfunktion auf die Eingangsaudiosignale anzuwenden, durch welche eine Lautstärke allmählich von einer mittigen Position zu beiden Enden der Lautsprecheranordnung (2) abnimmt,
    wobei der Audiosignalverarbeitungsabschnitt (12) konfiguriert ist, um eine Gewichtung der angewendeten Fensterfunktion ansprechend auf die Lautstärke zu steuern.
     
    3. Strahlsteuerverfahren, welches an ein Audiogerät (1) angepasst ist, welches mit einer Lautsprecheranordnung (2) ausgestattet ist, welche eine Vielzahl von Lautsprechereinheiten ausrichtet, wobei das Strahlsteuerverfahren folgende Schritte aufweist:

    Steuern von Eingangsaudiosignalen bezüglich der Lautstärke;

    Verzweigen der bezüglich der Lautstärke gesteuerten Eingangsaudiosignale in zwei Zweige;

    in einem ersten der zwei Zweige, Steuern von Timings bzw. Zeitpunkten, zu denen die ersten Audiosignale zu den Lautsprechereinheiten geliefert werden, so dass die Lautsprecheranordnung (2) zumindest einen Schallstrahl ausgibt, der in einer vorgeschriebenen Richtung emittiert wird;

    in einem zweiten der zwei Zweige, Erzeugen von zweiten Audiosignalen durch Extrahieren von Hochfrequenzkomponenten aus den bezüglich der Lautstärke gesteuerten Eingangsaudiosignalen und Steuern eines Ausgabepegels der zweiten Audiosignale, die mit Richtungscharakteristiken emittiert werden sollen, die in einem Bereich verteilt sind;

    Addieren der ersten und zweiten Audiosignale; und

    Liefern der daraus resultierenden Audiosignale an die Lautsprecheranordnung (2);

    wobei der Schritt des Steuerns eines Ausgabepegels der zweiten Audiosignale aufweist, den Ausgabepegel der zweiten Audiosignale ansprechend auf die Lautstärke der ersten Audiosignale und/oder eine Emissionsrichtung des mindestens einen Schallstrahls zu steuern.


     
    4. Strahlsteuerverfahren nach Anspruch 3, welches weiter den folgenden Schritt aufweist:

    Ausführen einer Verarbeitung an den Eingangsaudiosignalen unabhängig bezüglich der Vielzahl von Lautsprechereinheiten, so dass die Lautsprecheranordnung den mindestens einen Schallstrahl ausgibt;

    Ausführen einer Delay- bzw. Verzögerungssteuerung an den Audiosignalen, so dass der mindestens eine Schallstrahl eine Fokusposition zu einem vorgeschriebenen Zeitpunkt erreicht, wobei somit eine Fensterfunktion auf die Eingangsaudiosignale angewendet wird, bei welcher die Lautstärke allmählich von einer mittigen Position zu beiden Enden der Lautsprecheranordnung abnimmt,

    wobei ein Gewicht der Fensterfunktion, die angewendet wird, ansprechend auf die Lautstärke gesteuert wird.


     


    Revendications

    1. Dispositif audio (1) comprenant :

    un réseau de haut-parleurs (2) alignant une pluralité de modules haut-parleurs ;

    une section de traitement de signal audio (12) comprenant :

    une commande de volume sonore (21) pour contrôler le volume de signaux audio d'entrée ;

    une section de traitement principale (22) contrôlant des instants de la fourniture de premiers signaux audio aux modules de haut-parleurs du réseau de haut-parleurs (2), afin que le réseau de haut-parleurs (2) produise en sortie au moins un faisceau sonore émis dans une direction prescrite ;

    un filtre passe-haut (25) pour produire des deuxièmes signaux audio en extrayant des composantes à haute fréquence à partir des signaux audio d'entrée à volume contrôlé ;

    un contrôle de bande haute (26, 27) pour contrôler les deuxièmes signaux audio à émettre avec des caractéristiques de directivité réparties dans une région ; et

    un additionneur (23) pour additionner les premiers et deuxièmes signaux audio et pour fournir les signaux audio résultants au réseau de haut-parleurs (2) ; et

    une section de commande (10) pour contrôler le niveau de sortie du contrôle de bande haute (26, 27),

    dans lequel les signaux audio d'entrée à volume contrôlé sont branchés dans la section de traitement principale (22) et dans une section de sous-traitement, la section de sous-traitement comprenant le filtre passe-haut (25) et le contrôle de bande haute (26, 27),

    dans lequel les premiers signaux audio sont les signaux audio d'entrée à volume contrôlé branchés dans la section de traitement principale (22) et la section de sous-traitement ;

    dans lequel la section de commande (10) est agencée pour contrôler le niveau de sortie du contrôle de bande haute (26, 27) en fonction du volume des premiers signaux audio et/ou d'une direction d'émission dudit au moins un faisceau sonore.


     
    2. Dispositif audio selon la revendication 1, dans lequel la section de traitement de signal audio (12) est adaptée à réaliser un traitement sur les signaux audio d'entrée indépendamment en ce qui concerne la pluralité de modules de haut-parleurs afin que le réseau de haut-parleurs (2) produise en sortie ledit au moins un faisceau sonore,
    dans lequel la section de traitement de signal au audio (12) est agencée pour réaliser un traitement de retard sur les signaux audio d'entrée afin que ledit au moins un faisceau sonore atteigne une position focale à un instant prescrit,
    et dans lequel la section de traitement de signal audio (12) est agencée pour appliquer une fonction de fenêtre, par laquelle le volume diminue progressivement à partir d'une partie centrale vers les deux extrémités du réseau de haut-parleurs (2), aux signaux audio d'entrée,
    dans lequel la section de traitement de signal audio (12) est agencée pour contrôler un poids de la fonction de fenêtre qui est appliquée en fonction du volume.
     
    3. Procédé de contrôle de faisceau adapté à un dispositif audio (1) équipé d'un réseau de haut-parleurs (2) alignant une pluralité de modules haut-parleurs, le procédé de contrôle de faisceau comprenant les étapes suivantes :

    contrôler le volume de signaux audio d'entrée ;

    brancher les signaux audio d'entrée à volume contrôlé dans deux branches ;

    dans une première des deux branches, contrôler des instants où des premiers signaux audio sont fournis aux modules de haut-parleurs, afin que le réseau de haut-parleurs (2) produise en sortie au moins un faisceau sonore émis dans une direction prescrite ;

    dans une deuxième des deux branches, produire des deuxièmes signaux audio en extrayant des composantes à haute fréquence des signaux audio d'entrée à volume contrôlé, et contrôler un niveau de sortie des deuxièmes signaux audio à émettre avec des caractéristiques de directivité réparties dans une région ;

    additionner les premiers et deuxièmes signaux audio ; et fournir les signaux audio résultants à la matrice de haut-parleurs (2) ;

    dans lequel l'étape de contrôle d'un niveau de sortie des deuxièmes signaux audio comprend un contrôle du niveau de sortie des deuxièmes signaux audio en fonction du volume des premiers signaux audio et/ou d'une direction d'émission dudit au moins un faisceau sonore.


     
    4. Procédé de contrôle de faisceau selon la revendication 3, comprenant en outre les étapes suivantes :

    réaliser un traitement sur les signaux audio d'entrée indépendamment en ce qui concerne la pluralité de modules de haut-parleurs afin que le réseau de haut-parleurs produise en sortie ledit au moins un faisceau sonore ;

    réaliser un contrôle de retard sur les signaux audio afin que ledit au moins un faisceau sonore atteigne une position focale à un instant prescrit, appliquant ainsi une fonction de fenêtre, dans laquelle le volume diminue progressivement à partir d'une portion centrale vers les deux extrémités du réseau de haut-parleurs, aux signaux audio d'entrée,

    dans lequel un poids de la fonction de fenêtre qui est appliquée est contrôlé en fonction du volume.


     




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    REFERENCES CITED IN THE DESCRIPTION



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    Patent documents cited in the description




    Non-patent literature cited in the description