Browse Prior Art Database

Auto Volume Adjust (AVA)

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000127430D
Publication Date: 2005-Aug-30
Document File: 6 page(s) / 156K

Publishing Venue

The IP.com Prior Art Database

Related People

Cal Howell: INVENTOR

Abstract

A circuit or audio system that responds and compensates for ambient noise, by automatically controlling the volume output. Example: increases or adjusts the audio level of a car radio/stereo as noise from the road or engine becomes louder.

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                                                                                                                                                                Sony Corporation

                                                                                                                                                                Sony Electronics Inc.

                                                                                                                                                                IPD Case #50V8157.01

Title:

Auto Volume Adjust (AVA)

Description of the Invention:

A circuit or audio system that responds and compensates for ambient noise, by automatically controlling the volume output.  Example:  increases or adjusts the audio level of a car radio/stereo as noise from the road or engine becomes louder.

Inventor:

Cal Howell

Invention Disclosure:

The invention addresses the problem or nuisance of ambient noise levels that obstruct our hearing, making it difficult to perceive or listen to music, programs, or other information.  This invention can be useful in dealing with the variable surrounding noise levels.  The idea is to increase the volume just enough to compensate for ambient noise.  For example while driving, noise from the road or engine can become loud enough where you can no longer hear the radio from its original volume setting.  Alternatively, while watching television, it becomes hard to hear the program while someone is vacuuming, using a blender or hair dryer, etc. 

After researching to see if anybody else had thought of an Auto Volume Adjust, the inventor found one related to it called “Method and apparatus for automatic volume control in an audio system,” patent 6868162.  This related invention tries to address the same issues/problems, but appears to be more complicated than this design, requiring calibration or adjustment (auto-calibration procedure) when the system is used for the first time or when the room conditions have changed.  The inventor did not see any drawings, but their explanation on how it works seemed complex.  The inventor’s idea will not require an “auto-calibration procedure” after it is integrated or adapted into an audio system and seems to be less expansive with fewer parts.

The circuit designed and experimented with by the inventor simple, draws 10 to 25mA from a 9-volt source, and could be housed in a small package. It will automatically adjust volume of an audio system depending on the ambient noise level. A circuit (noise detector section) consisting of a condenser electret microphone (MIC1) op-amps (IC1A, IC1B) and a transistor (Q1) that provide the necessary gain for sounds picked-up by the electret mic (MIC1), detect the ambient noise level. The gain or output from the noise detector is applied to a transistor (Q2) that operates at multiple levels. The dete...