(19)
(11)EP 3 297 293 B1

(12)EUROPEAN PATENT SPECIFICATION

(45)Mention of the grant of the patent:
04.11.2020 Bulletin 2020/45

(21)Application number: 17191361.9

(22)Date of filing:  15.09.2017
(51)International Patent Classification (IPC): 
H04R 7/12(2006.01)
H04R 31/00(2006.01)

(54)

SPEAKER

LAUTSPRECHER

HAUT-PARLEUR


(84)Designated Contracting States:
AL AT BE BG CH CY CZ DE DK EE ES FI FR GB GR HR HU IE IS IT LI LT LU LV MC MK MT NL NO PL PT RO RS SE SI SK SM TR

(30)Priority: 16.09.2016 JP 2016182239

(43)Date of publication of application:
21.03.2018 Bulletin 2018/12

(73)Proprietor: Alpine Electronics, Inc.
Tokyo (JP)

(72)Inventors:
  • TANABE, Kei
    Iwaki-city, Fukushima (JP)
  • ANZAI, Masami
    Iwaki-city, Fukushima (JP)
  • YAMAGAMI, Yu
    Iwaki-city, Fukushima (JP)
  • AOKI, Takahiro
    Iwaki-city, Fukushima (JP)
  • YOSHIDA, Yusuke
    Iwaki-city, Fukushima (JP)

(74)Representative: Schmitt-Nilson Schraud Waibel Wohlfrom Patentanwälte Partnerschaft mbB 
Pelkovenstraße 143
80992 München
80992 München (DE)


(56)References cited: : 
EP-A1- 2 432 252
JP-A- S6 437 199
US-A1- 2003 223 613
JP-A- S5 717 300
JP-A- 2005 223 807
  
      
    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


    [0001] The present invention relates to a speaker that generates sound pressure from the vibration of a diaphragm, and more particularly to a speaker that uses a diaphragm having a non-circular outside shape such as a track shape or an elliptical shape.

    [0002] A space in which a speaker can be installed may be largely restricted in the interior of a vehicle, a television set, and the like. Speakers that use a diaphragm in a track shape or an elliptical shape are widely known as speakers that can be installed even in a narrow space as described above.

    [0003] Unlike a diaphragm having a circular outside shape, however, a diaphragm having a track shape or an elliptical shape as an outside shape is not axisymmetric, but has a non-axisymmetric shape having a short-axis direction and a long-axis direction. Therefore, this type of diaphragm has non-uniform shape stiffness, so stiffness at some portions on the diaphragm is low. Accordingly, a speaker using a non-axisymmetric diaphragm generates a natural vibration mode, which is determined according to the non-axisymmetric shape of the diaphragm, and thereby causes a peak dip in the voice band, which is important in voice frequency characteristics. This prevents the speaker to produce high-quality sound. Another problem is that, in a jump mode during a large input, a voice coil is also deformed in the natural vibration mode together with the diaphragm and comes in contact with a magnetic gap.

    [0004] In view of this, a conventionally proposed technology reinforces portions with low shape stiffness on a non-axisymmetric diaphragm by forming thick portions in a rib shape along the long-axis direction and short-axis direction of the diaphragm as described in JP 2005-223807 A. In another conventional technology proposed in JP 2009-111802 A, reinforcing materials are formed by spraying natural fine fiber. These thick portions and reinforcing materials are used to locally improve the stiffness of the diaphragm.

    [0005] In the conventional technologies described in JP 2005-223807 A and JP 2009-111802 A, however, thick portions or reinforcing materials are formed on a diaphragm to compensate for reduction in shape stiffness, so these technologies have been problematic in that, after the thick portions or reinforcing materials have been added to the diaphragm, it has a new portion that is easily warped and that the total weight of the diaphragm is increased.

    [0006] JP S64 37199 A shows a speaker diaphragm constituted of highly elastic or strong fiber and a thermosetting or thermoplastic resin. Almost all the fibers in the radial direction of the diaphragm are stretched from a cone neck to a cone peripheral part. The board thickness of the cone neck part is thicker than that of the cone peripheral part 7b.

    [0007] US 2003/223613 A1 shows a speaker diaphragm which has a high rigidity and can improve sound transmission speed for better sound quality. The speaker diaphragm contains fibers of 3 to 50 mm length mixed in matrix resin. The fibers are oriented radially from center to periphery in surface layers of the diaphragm, while they are oriented in different directions in a middle layer. After setting the resin, these fibers are fixed in the matrix resin with certain tension applied thereto.

    [0008] JP S57 17300 A shows a diaphragm plate of a cone type, rectangular flat plate or ellipse type which is formed by using fiber reinforced metallic composite member. The orientation of fiber is made to long diameter for the ellipse type. The present invention addresses the actual situations of these conventional technologies with the object of providing a speaker that uses a non-axisymmetric diaphragm but produces high-quality sound and is highly reliable.

    [0009] The invention provides a speaker according to claim 1. Further embodiments are defined in the dependent claims.

    [0010] A speaker according to an aspect of the present invention includes a magnetic circuit having a magnetic gap, a frame fixed to the magnetic circuit, a voice coil disposed in the magnetic gap, a cylindrical bobbin around which the voice coil is formed, and a diaphragm configured so that the inner circumferential side of the diaphragm is fixed to the bobbin and the outer edge of the diaphragm is supported by the frame with an edge member intervening therebetween. The diaphragm has a non-axisymmetric shape with respect to a center axis passing through the center of the bobbin. The diaphragm is made of a molded material including fibrous fillers, and the orientation of the fibrous fillers is set such that, when a shape stiffness of the diaphragm is low along a short axis, the orientation of the fibrous fillers is set to match a short-axis direction of the diaphragm; or such that, when a shape stiffness of the diaphragm is low along a long axis, the orientation of the fibrous fillers is set to match a long-axis direction of the diaphragm That is, if the material stiffness of the diaphragm is assumed to be uniform, the diaphragm has first areas in which the amount of warp is increased during vibration and also has second areas in which the amount of warp is reduced during vibration. The orientation of the fibrous fillers is set so that the amount of wrap is reduced in the first areas.

    [0011] With the speaker structured as described above, since the diaphragm is made of a molded material including fibrous fillers and the orientation of the fibrous fillers is set toward radial direction in areas on the diaphragm, the areas having lower shape stiffness, portions, on the diaphragm, at which its shape stiffness is low can be improved without having to take the trouble to add thick portions or reinforcing members to the diaphragm. This makes it possible to suppress an increase in the weight of the diaphragm and to suppress it from being non-uniformly warped during vibration. Therefore, even though the speaker uses a diaphragm in a non-axisymmetric shape, the speaker can improve sound quality and can increase reliability.

    [0012] In the above structure, the diaphragm may have any outer shape if it is non-axisymmetric with respect to a center axis passing through the center of a bobbin. If, however, the speaker uses a diaphragm having an outer circumferential edge in a track shape or an elliptical shape and the voice coil is fixed to the central portion of the diaphragm, the orientation of the fibrous fillers is preferably set so as to match the short-axis direction of the diaphragm.

    [0013] In the above structure, the diaphragm is preferably made of a sheet-like raw material in which fibrous fillers are oriented in one direction in a thermoplastic resin. When this type of sheet-like raw material is used, a diaphragm that is superior in mechanical characteristics can be manufactured at a low cost.

    [0014] In this case, the diaphragm can also be formed by press molding or pneumatic molding. If, however, the diaphragm is formed by vacuum molding of a sheet-like raw material, the diaphragm can be easily manufactured to a desired shape.

    [0015] Even though the speaker according to the present invention uses a ncn-axisymmetric diaphragm, the speaker can improve sound quality and can increase reliability.

    BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS



    [0016] 

    Fig. 1 is a plan view of a speaker in an embodiment of the present invention;

    Fig. 2 is a cross-sectional view as taken line II-II in Fig. 1;

    Fig. 3 is a cross-sectional view as taken line III-III in Fig. 1; and

    Figs. 4A to 4C illustrate processes of manufacturing a diaphragm used in the speaker in Fig. 1.



    [0017] An embodiment of the present invention will be described with reference to the drawings. As illustrated in Figs. 1 to 3, a speaker in the embodiment of the present invention mainly includes a magnetic circuit 1 having a magnetic gap G, a voice coil 2, which is placed in the magnetic gap G and is driven due to electromagnetic interaction when a current passes, a bobbin 3, which is cylindrical and on which the voice coil 2 is formed, a cap 4 that blocks an opening formed at the top of the bobbin 3, a diaphragm 5 that vibrates together with the bobbin 3, a frame 7 that elastically supports the outer circumferential edge of the diaphragm 5 with an edge member 6 intervening therebetween, and a damper 8 disposed between the frame 7 and the upper end of the bobbin 3.

    [0018] The magnetic circuit 1 is composed of a bottom plate 9 having a center pole 9a, a magnet 10, in a circular ring shape, which is placed on the bottom plate 9, and a top plate 11 in a circular ring shape, which is integrally placed on the bottom plate 9 with the magnet 10 intervening therebetween. The magnetic gap G is formed between the outer circumferential surface of the center pole 9a and the inner circumferential surface of the top plate 11.

    [0019] The diaphragm 5 is a non-circular diaphragm having an elliptical outer shape. The central portion of the diaphragm 5 is fixedly bonded to the upper end of the bobbin 3. Specifically, the diaphragm 5 has a non-axisymmetric shape with respect to a center axis passing through the center of the bobbin 3. Due to this non-axisymmetric shape, the shape stiffness of the diaphragm 5 is not uniform. Specifically, with the diaphragm 5 used in this embodiment, the strength in the short-axis direction is lower than in the long-axis direction.

    [0020] The edge member 6, which is made of a highly flexible material such as scft rubber, is integrated with the outer circumferential edge of the diaphragm 5 by using an adhesive or another means. The damper 8 is disposed between the frame 7 and the inner circumferential edge of the diaphragm 5. The diaphragm 5 is supported by the frame 7 so that the diaphragm 5 is vibrated by the damper 8 along the axial line of the bobbin 3.

    [0021] With the speaker structured as described above, when a voice signal is input through a lead wire (not illustrated) extending from the voice coil 2, a current flow in the voice coil 2 and an electromagnetic driving force is exerted, so the bobbin 3 moves vertically along its axial line in the magnetic gap G according to the Fleming's left hand rule. The diaphragm 5 vibrates in response to the vertical movement of the bobbin 3, producing a voice output.

    [0022] The diaphragm 5 is made of a sheet-like raw material in which fibrous fillers are oriented in one direction in polyamide resin or a thermoplastic resin such as polyamide resin. In this embodiment, a thermoplastic carbon fiber reinforced plastic (CFRP) sheet (N6/CF is 20%) is used in which long-fiber (such as carbon fiber with a length of 4 mm to 12 mm) fillers are oriented in nylon 6 resin in one direction. Although described later in detail, the diaphragm 5 is formed by vacuum molding of the thermoplastic CFRP sheet. During the vacuum molding, the orientation of the long-fiber fillers is set toward radial direction in areas on the diaphragm 5, the areas having lower shape stiffness. Since, in this embodiment, the shape stiffness of the diaphragm 5 is low along the short axis, the orientation of the long-fiber fillers is set so as to match the short-axis direction of the diaphragm 5, as indicated by the arrows in Fig. 1. That is, if the material stiffness of the diaphragm 5 is assumed to be uniform, first areas in which the amount of warp of the diaphragm 5 is increased during vibration appear in the short-axis direction and second areas in which the amount of warp is reduced during vibration appear in the long-axis direction. Therefore, to reduce the amount of warp in the first areas, the orientation of the fibrous fillers is set so as to match the short-axis direction.

    [0023] Processes to manufacture the diaphragm 5 by vacuum molding will be described with reference to Figs. 4A to 4C. First, the thermoplastic CFRP sheet 20 is heated with a heater (not illustrated) to soften the thermoplastic CFRP sheet 20 as illustrated in Fig. 4A. The thermoplastic CFRP sheet 20 is then lowered toward a die 21 while the state of the thermoplastic CFRP sheet 20 is maintained. At that time, it is necessary to place the thermoplastic CFRP sheet 20 on the die 21 so that the orientation of the long-fiber fillers included in the thermoplastic CFRP sheet 20 matches the short-axis direction of the diaphragm 5 obtained after the vacuum molding.

    [0024] A vacuum pump 22 is operated to evacuate the space between the thermoplastic CFRP sheet 20 and the die 21 so as to bring the thermoplastic CFRP sheet 20 in tight contact with the die 21, as illustrated in Fig. 4B. After that, the thermoplastic CFRP sheet 20 is cooled to solidify it, after which the thermoplastic CFRP sheet 20 is taken out of the die 21. Then, the outer circumferential edge and central portion of the thermoplastic CFRP sheet 20 are die-cut. This completes the manufacturing of the diaphragm 5 in a non-axisymmetric shape in which the outer shape is elliptical as illustrated in Fig. 4C.

    [0025] As described above, with the speaker in this embodiment, the diaphragm 5 has an elliptical shape that is non-axisymmetric with respect to a center axis passing through the center of the bobbin 3. The diaphragm 5 is made of a sheet-like raw material (thermoplastic CFRP sheet 20) in which long-fiber fillers are oriented in one direction in a thermoplastic resin. The orientation of the long-fiber fillers is set so as to match the short-axis direction of the diaphragm 5. Therefore, the mechanical strength at portions, on the diaphragm 5, at which its shape stiffness is low can be improved by the long-fiber fillers oriented in this way. This eliminates the trouble to add thick portions or reinforcing members to the diaphragm 5. This makes it possible to suppress an increase in the weight of the diaphragm 5 and to suppress it from being non-uniformly warped during vibration. Therefore, even though the speaker uses the diaphragm 5 in a non-axisymmetric shape, the speaker can improve sound quality and can increase reliability.

    [0026] With the speaker in this embodiment, since the diaphragm 5 is obtained from a sheet-like raw material (thermoplastic CFRP sheet 20) by vacuum molding in which the thermoplastic CFRP sheet 20 is brought into tight contact with the die 21 and the space between them is evacuated by the vacuum pump 22, the manufacturing cost including the price of the die 21 is low and the diaphragm 5 with a desired shape can be easily manufactured.

    [0027] Although, in the above embodiment, a case in which the diaphragm 5 having an elliptical outer shape is used has been described, the outer shape of the diaphragm 5 is not limited to an elliptical shape. The diaphragm 5 may have any other outer shape that is non-axisymmetric with respect to a center axis passing through the center of a bobbin.

    [0028] For example, a diaphragm having a track shape or a polygonal shape may be used. Another example is a diaphragm called an oblique cone, in which a voice coil (bobbin) is placed at a position deviated from the central portion of the diaphragm.

    [0029] Although, in the above embodiment, the orientation of long-fiber fillers is set so as to match the short-axis direction of the diaphragm 5 having an elliptical outer shape, the non-uniformity of the shape stiffness of the diaphragm 5 is not determined according to only the outer shape but is determined according to a whole shape including a curved shape extending from the inner circumferential edge on the same side as the bobbin 3 to the outer circumferential edge on the same side as the edge member 6. If, for example, areas in which the shape stiffness, which is determined according to the whole shape of a diaphragm used, is low are present in the long-axis direction, it is necessary to set the orientation of the long-fiber fillers so as to match the long-axis direction of the diaphragm.

    [0030] Although, in the above embodiment, a case has been described in which vacuum molding is used as a means for manufacturing the diaphragm 5 from a sheet-like raw material (thermoplastic CFRP sheet 20), this is not a limitation. In the manufacturing of a diaphragm from a sheet-like raw material, it is also possible to use pneumatic molding, in which the sheet-like raw material is softened by being heated and the softened raw material is pressurized in a die to obtain a desired shape or to use press molding, in which the sheet-like raw material is softened by being heated and the softened raw material is clamped between an upper die and a lower die.


    Claims

    1. A speaker comprising:

    a magnetic circuit (1) having a magnetic gap (G);

    a frame (7) fixed to the magnetic circuit (1);

    a voice coil (2) disposed in the magnetic gap (G);

    a cylindrical bobbin (3) around which the voice coil (2) is formed; and

    a diaphragm (5) configured so that an inner circumferential side of the diaphragm (5) is fixed to the bobbin (3) and an outer edge of the diaphragm (5) is supported by the frame (7) with an edge member (6) intervening between the outer edge and the frame (7);

    wherein the diaphragm (5) has a non-axisymmetric shape with respect to a center axis passing through a center of the bobbin (3),

    wherein the diaphragm (5) is made of a molded material including fibrous fillers,

    characterised in that,

    when a shape stiffness of the diaphragm (5) is low along a short axis, the orientation of the fibrous fillers is set to match a short-axis direction of the diaphragm (5); or

    wherein, when a shape stiffness of the diaphragm (5) is low along a long axis, the orientation of the fibrous fillers is set to match a long-axis direction of the diaphragm (5).


     
    2. The speaker according to Claim 1, wherein:

    an outer circumferential edge of the diaphragm (5) has a track shape or an elliptical shape; and

    the voice coil (2) is fixed to a central portion of the diaphragm (5).


     
    3. The speaker according to Claim 1 or 2, wherein the diaphragm (5) is made of a sheet-like raw material (20) in which a fibrous filler is oriented in one direction in a thermoplastic resin.
     
    4. The speaker according to Claim 3, wherein the diaphragm (5) is formed by vacuum molding of the sheet-like raw material (20).
     


    Ansprüche

    1. Lautsprecher, aufweisend:

    einen Magnetkreis (1) mit einem Magnetspalt (G);

    einen Rahmen (7), der an dem Magnetkreis (1) befestigt ist;

    eine Schwingspule (2), die in dem Magnetspalt (G) angeordnet ist;

    einen zylindrischen Spulenkörper (3), um den die Schwingspule (2) gebildet ist; und

    eine Membran (5), die derart ausgebildet ist, dass eine Innenumfangsseite der Membran (5) an dem Spulenkörper (3) befestigt ist und ein äußerer Rand der Membran (5) unter Zwischenanordnung eines Randelements (6) zwischen dem äußeren Rand und dem Rahmen (7) von dem Rahmen (7) abgestützt ist;

    wobei die Membran (5) eine nicht achsensymmetrische Form in Bezug auf eine Mittelachse aufweist, die durch eine Mitte des Spulenkörpers (3) verläuft,

    wobei die Membran (5) aus einem Formmaterial gebildet ist, das faserige Füllstoffe beinhaltet,

    dadurch gekennzeichnet, dass dann, wenn eine Formsteifigkeit der Membran (5) entlang einer kurzen Achse gering ist, die Orientierung der faserigen Füllstoffe derart vorgegeben ist, dass diese mit einer Richtung der kurzen Achse der Membran (5) übereinstimmt; oder

    dann, wenn eine Formsteifigkeit der Membran (5) entlang einer langen Achse gering ist, die Orientierung der faserigen Füllstoffe derart vorgegeben ist,

    dass diese mit einer Richtung der langen Achse der Membran (5) übereinstimmt.


     
    2. Lautsprecher nach Anspruch 1,
    wobei ein Außenumfangsrand der Membran (5) eine Bahnform oder eine elliptische Form aufweist; und
    wobei die Schwingspule (2) an einem zentralen Bereich der Membran (5) befestigt ist.
     
    3. Lautsprecher nach Anspruch 1 oder 2,
    wobei die Membran (5) aus einem flächenkörperartigen Ausgangsmaterial (20) gebildet ist, bei dem ein faseriger Füllstoff in einem thermoplastischen Harz in einer Richtung ausgerichtet ist.
     
    4. Lautsprecher nach Anspruch 3,
    wobei die Membran (5) durch Vakuumformen des flächenkörperartigen Ausgangsmaterials (20) gebildet ist.
     


    Revendications

    1. Haut-parleur qui comprend :

    un circuit magnétique (1) qui possède un entrefer magnétique (G);

    un cadre (7) qui est fixé au circuit magnétique (1) ;

    un enroulement acoustique (2) qui est disposé dans l'entrefer magnétique (G) ;

    une bobine cylindrique (3) autour de laquelle est formé l'enroulement acoustique (2) ; et

    un diaphragme (5) qui est configuré d'une manière telle qu'un côté circonférentiel interne du diaphragme (5) est fixé à la bobine (3) et un bord externe du diaphragme (5) est supporté par le cadre (7), un élément marginal (6) étant intercalé entre le bord externe et le cadre (7) ;

    dans lequel le diaphragme (5) possède une configuration non axisymétrique par rapport à un axe central qui passe par un centre de la bobine (3) ;

    dans lequel le diaphragme (5) est constitué d'un matériau moulé qui englobe des matières de charge fibreuses ;

    caractérisé en ce que, lorsqu'une rigidité de forme du diaphragme (5) est faible le long d'un petit axe, l'orientation des matières de charge fibreuses est réglée pour correspondre à une direction qui suit le petit axe du diaphragme (5) ; ou

    dans lequel, lorsqu'une rigidité de forme du diaphragme (5) est faible le long d'un grand axe, l'orientation des matières de charge fibreuses est réglée pour correspondre à une direction qui suit le grand axe du diaphragme (5).


     
    2. Haut-parleur selon la revendication 1, dans lequel :

    un bord circonférentiel externe du diaphragme (5) possède une configuration en forme de piste ou une configuration de forme elliptique ; et

    l'enroulement acoustique (2) est fixé à une portion centrale du diaphragme (5).


     
    3. Haut-parleur selon la revendication 1 ou 2, dans lequel le diaphragme (5) est constitué d'une matière de base (20) qui possède la forme d'une feuille, dans laquelle une matière de charge fibreuse est orientée dans une seule direction dans une résine thermoplastique.
     
    4. Haut-parleur selon la revendication 3, dans lequel le diaphragme (5) est réalisé par l'intermédiaire d'un moulage sous vide de la matière de base (20) qui possède la forme d'une feuille.
     




    Drawing














    Cited references

    REFERENCES CITED IN THE DESCRIPTION



    This list of references cited by the applicant is for the reader's convenience only. It does not form part of the European patent document. Even though great care has been taken in compiling the references, errors or omissions cannot be excluded and the EPO disclaims all liability in this regard.

    Patent documents cited in the description