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JP2016540240

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This translation is machine-generated. It cannot be guaranteed that it is intelligible, accurate,
complete, reliable or fit for specific purposes. Critical decisions, such as commercially relevant or
financial decisions, should not be based on machine-translation output.
DESCRIPTION JP2016540240
An on-board system is provided to enable attachment of an acoustic collector to a hand-held
electronic device such that sound is transmitted directly to the hand-held electronic device's
microphone. The mounting frame or band encloses a portion of the device and includes a tube
leading from the sound collector to the microphone of the device. In one embodiment, a tube
may be embedded in the frame and a removable mount may be provided to connect the sound
collector to the frame. The sound collector may be a chestpiece of a stethoscope or it may be an
open air sound collector such as a parabolic sound collector.
Acoustic acquisition system for handheld electronic devices
[0001]
[0001] This application claims the benefit of US Application No. 14 / 054,656, entitled
"ACOUSTIC COLLECTION SYSTEM FOR HANDHELD ELECTRONIC DEVICES", filed October 15,
2013, which is expressly incorporated by reference herein.
[0002]
[0002]
The present disclosure relates to the field of acoustic augmentation devices, including
stethoscopes and long distance sound collectors.
The present disclosure also relates to the field of mounting accessories for handheld electronic
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devices such as smart phones and tablets.
[0003]
[0003]
Acoustic collection devices with funnels, long tubes, and / or listening bells have been used for
centuries. As related within this context, sound collection devices can generally be considered to
fall into two categories: (1) Stethoscopes for short-range contact-based sound transmission, and
(2) Funnels used for non-contact, long-distance sound detection and amplification, such as
parabolic collectors.
[0004]
[0004]
The first medical stethoscope was made by the French doctor René Laennec in the 19th century.
Since that time, stethoscopes have become widely used not only by doctors, but also by scientists
and engineers in a wide range of areas with basic sound transmission / amplification
requirements. Modern stethoscopes consist of a chestpiece with a hollow stem connected to a
length of hollow tubing leading to two earpieces.
[0005]
[0005]
The chestpiece typically consists of two opposite sides, one carrying a higher frequency and the
other a rigid cup shaped bell for transmitting lower frequency sounds. A standard stethoscope
includes a semi-rigid frame that serves the dual purpose of mounting the earpiece and allowing
the stethoscope to be worn around the user's neck.
[0006]
[0006]
Funnels are often used for longer distance contactless sound collection. Although not widely used
anymore, ear trumpet has traditionally been used to assist people with listening to nearby
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2
conversations or sounds. Nowadays, parabolic microphones are widely used to collect sound
waves traveling a few hundred yards or so. The design of the parabolic microphone is fairly
simple: a cone with a parabolic inner wall concentrates the sound waves coming into the
parabolic geometric focus. A microphone is provided at the focus to collect the sound.
Alternatively, a tube with an aperture may be placed at the focal point and sound is transmitted
to the listening position via the tube.
[0007]
[0007]
In the present disclosure, the common names of "acoustic collector" or "collector" are: (1) a
chestpiece of a stethoscope, (2) a length of a funnel and a parabolic shape collector, etc. It is used
to refer to the sound collector in the nature of both non-contact sound collectors in the distance.
Also, these longer distance non-contacting sound collectors can be referred to as "open air"
sound collectors because they are not pressed against the surface like the chestpiece of a
stethoscope. Where the terms "stethoscope chestpiece" or "chestpiece" are used, this disclosure
uses those terms to refer to units that include a diaphragm and / or a bell. The unit need not be
used solely in connection with medical evaluation. "Chestpieces" are also used for a number of
applications that benefit from being able to detect changes in sound through materials. Also, the
size and shape of the chestpiece vary with the type and sensitivity of the diaphragm and / or bell.
As used herein, a "chestpiece" broadly refers to any unit having a surface for mounting to a
sound transmitting material and a hollow chamber for delivering the sound through a stem. Point
to.
[0008]
[0008]
With the advent of handheld electronic devices, some have proposed alternative stethoscope
designs that seek to combine a stethoscope with an electronic recorder or wireless transmitter.
For example, it has been proposed to attach a stethoscope chestpiece to an electronic recording
device placed along a tube that runs to the earpiece of the stethoscope. This in-line device
may be equipped with a microphone and a Bluetooth® type transmitter for wirelessly conveying
sound recordings.
[0009]
[0009]
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It has been proposed that a small stethoscope diaphragm be incorporated into the back of the
cellular phone. However, this design is of limited use as it requires the production of a cellular
phone with a small diaphragm that is already "embedded" in the body of the phone. This is a
special purpose application that most cellular phone manufacturers do not consider.
Furthermore, embedding a small diaphragm in the phone limits its size. It has been proposed to
have an electronic wiring connection between the chestpiece of the stethoscope and the jack on
the cellular phone, but this may also require other pieces of specially manufactured electronic
equipment It is.
[0010]
[0010]
Another proposed solution is to physically connect the tube from the stethoscope to the
microphone of the cellular phone. Such a design suggests that the phone has a microphone at
one end and that an adapter connect the stethoscope tube directly to the end of the microphone
equipped phone. These proposals require the chestpiece to be physically separated from the
body of the electronic device, and in some cases only connected by a long length of tubing. The
disadvantages of such a proposal are at least (1) installation instability, (2) the difficulty of
treating portable electronic devices and chestpieces as separate items, (3) poor sound quality and
transmission ,including.
[0011]
[0011] The applicant has realized that there is no suggestion to install the chestpiece of a
stethoscope directly on a modern portable electronic device such as a smart phone or a tablet.
[0012]
[0012] There may be benefits to the non-contact, open air sound collector embodiments that
come with portable electronic devices such as portable phones and tablets.
Object of the invention
[0013]
[0013] SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION In view of the above disadvantages of the prior art, there
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is provided a sound collector installation system that allows a stethoscope chestpiece or an open
air sound collector to be provided directly to a handheld electronic device as part of the
mounting frame. It is an object of embodiments of the present invention.
[0014]
[0014] It is a further object of the present invention to enable installation of a sound collector on
modern hand-held electronic devices such as smart phones and tablets.
[0015]
[0015] It is a further object of embodiments of the present invention to be able to releasably
mount the sound collector directly on the frame of the handheld electronic device.
[0016]
[0016] It is a further object of embodiments of the present invention to easily enable chest pieces
of various stethoscopes to be provided to a variety of different handheld electronic devices using
a universal attachment mechanism.
[0017]
[0017] It is a further object of embodiments of the present invention to enable a person to use a
handheld electronic device such as a smart phone to amplify sound through a room or a long
distance.
[0018]
[0018] It is a further object of embodiments of the present invention to provide means for
allowing the user to selectively enhance the frequency of certain sounds or to limit reception to a
certain frequency of sounds. .
[0019]
[0019]
The above objective is accomplished by providing a mounting frame that wraps around at least a
portion of a handheld electronic device.
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The frame is designed to allow the addition of a sound collector to the hand-held electronic
device and may include an embedded tube extending from the microphone of one or more
devices to the sound collector.
The sound collector may be a chestpiece of a stethoscope, or a longer distance open air sound
collector such as a parabolic shape sound collector.
In one embodiment, the frame may take the form of a band whose length may be adjusted to fit
many electronic devices.
In a preferred embodiment, the portable electronic device is equipped with software that allows
the user to selectively enhance and / or limit the frequency of the sound.
[0020]
[0020]
FIG. 1A is a plan view of an embodiment of the invention.
[0021]
FIG. 1B is a plan view of the opposite side of the embodiment shown in FIG. 1A.
[0022]
FIG. 1C is a side view of the embodiment shown in FIG. 1A.
[0023]
FIG. 1D is a side cross-sectional view of the embodiment shown in FIG. 1A and also shows other
attachment components.
[0024]
FIG. 2A is a cross-sectional schematic view of a frame attached to various devices.
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The circular figure on the right is an abstract representation of the extent to which the frame
surrounds the device.
FIG. 2B is a cross-sectional schematic view of a frame attached to various devices.
The circular figure on the right is an abstract representation of the extent to which the frame
surrounds the device.
FIG. 2C is a cross-sectional schematic view of a frame attached to various devices. The circular
figure on the right is an abstract representation of the extent to which the frame surrounds the
device. FIG. 2D is a cross-sectional schematic view of a frame attached to various devices. The
circular figure on the right is an abstract representation of the extent to which the frame
surrounds the device.
[0025]
FIG. 3 is a side view of a portion of an embodiment of the present invention, including a partial
cross-sectional view shown by the stripes.
[0026]
FIG. 4A is a side view of a portion of an embodiment of the present invention, including a partial
cross-sectional view shown by the stripes.
[0027]
FIG. 4B is a plan view of that part of the embodiment shown in FIG. 4A.
[0028]
FIG. 5 is a side cross-sectional view of an embodiment of the present invention.
[0029]
FIG. 6A is a plan view of another embodiment of the present invention.
[0030]
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FIG. 6B is a plan view of another embodiment of the present invention.
[0031]
FIG. 7A is a plan view of another embodiment of the present invention.
[0032]
FIG. 7B is a side view of the embodiment shown in FIG. 7A.
[0033]
FIG. 8A is a plan view of another embodiment of the present invention.
[0034]
FIG. 8B is a side view of the embodiment shown in FIG. 8A.
[0035]
FIG. 8C is a side cross-sectional view of the embodiment shown in FIG. 8A.
Detailed description
[0021] [0036] FIG. 1A shows an embodiment 30 of the present invention. A sleeve / frame 31 is
snugly fitted around the handheld electronic device 33 having a front surface 32A. The frame 31
is provided with a lip 32 which holds the edge of the device 33 slightly overlapping the front face
32A. The frame 31 is made of any number of materials, including a polymeric material having
sufficient rigidity to keep the lip 32 clamped around the edge of the device during normal use.
[0022] [0037] As shown, the frame 31 only covers the top of the device 33. In this mode, the
frame 31 is resilient enough to exert a force on the device 33 to help keep the lip 32 engaged
and preventing the frame 31 from falling off the device 33 You should have tension. In most
situations, the overlap of the lip 32 on the front face 32A needs to be barely visible to achieve
the desired fastening effect, as long as the frame is rigid enough to hold the rim. The addition of
a rubberized layer or process to the surface of the frame 31 in contact with the device 33 also
improves the grip of the frame.
07-05-2019
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[0023] [0038] Alternatively, the frame 31 may be designed to wrap more completely around the
device indicated by the dashed line representing the lower frame 31a. The frame 31a also
connects to the lip 32 as a lip 32a that clips the side of the device 33 and slightly overlaps the
front face 32A. If the frame 31 is designed in this way, there is very little chance of the device 33
falling off, so that the frame has enough elastic tension to keep the lips 32 and 32a in
overlapping engagement with the front face 32A. It may be made of a soft or rubbery material.
[0024] [0039] The overlapping aspect of the rims discussed here is also that at least a portion of
the device wraps around at least a portion of the device, such that the frame material is more
than 180 degrees, even if the overlap is only slight. It can also be described as "hooking onto" a
rim. This concept is shown visually in FIGS. 2A-2D. FIG. 2A is a cross-sectional view of device 125
partially wrapped in frame 127. The frame 127 is not suspended on the device, but instead only
covers three sides at right angles to one another. Thus, the arc covered by the frame 127 is only
180 degrees and can be understood by consideration of the abstract device 125 as a circle
shown in the figure to the right of the figure.
[0025] [0040] Referring to FIG. 2B, the device 125 is encased by a frame 131 having a lip 137
slightly overlapping the front of the device. In this case, the arc covered by the frame 131 is
slightly larger than 180 degrees. Similarly, in FIG. 2C, the arc covered by frame 133 around
device 125 is greater than 180 degrees by lip 139. If the frame completely surrounds the device,
it is said to cover a 360 degree arc.
[0026] [0041] FIG. 2D shows an alternative configuration in which the device 129 has an indent
143 that allows the lip 141 of the frame 135 to hooking onto the device 129. Thus, the arc
covered by the frame 135 is slightly larger than 180 degrees.
[0027] [0042] Generally speaking, "hooking onto" the device means that the frame covers the
three sides of the device and that the two opposite edges of the frame each overlap the fourth
side of the device Need to have a lip.
[0028] [0043] Frames of the type described here have already been built by manufacturers of
smartphone accessories such as "Incase Designs Corporation" and their construction is known in
the art. However, to the applicant's knowledge, none of the manufacturers of handheld electronic
device boxes have yet proposed to incorporate a stethoscope chestpiece into such a box.
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[0029] [0044] Turning now to FIG. 1A, the microphone end 35 of the hollow tube 37 (shown in
FIG. 1B) is seen at the top of the device 33. The position of the microphone end 35 is defined by
the position of the recording microphone on the device. In many modern smartphones and
tablets, there is more than one microphone on the device. For example, in the case of the iPhone
(registered trademark) 4S, two microphones exist. The first microphone has an aperture located
off-center on the top of the device. A second microphone (used to pick up voice during normal
telephone operation) is positioned off-center at the bottom of the device. Either microphone can
be used for the present invention, but allows the user to interact with the device (ie phone, digital
voice assistant, voice recording, etc.) without removing the frame from the device The top
microphone is selected.
[0030] [0045] Referring now to FIG. 1B, the other side of embodiment 30 is shown. The opening
39 in the frame 31 exposes the camera opening 47 of the device 33 and the flash element 49,
here shown with its partially exposed back 32B. It may be advantageous to combine the sound
recording made with the sound collector with the image recording (still or video) made by the
camera. For example, if the present invention is used as a medical stethoscope, the audio
recordings may be combined in the same computer file with the patient's image or video that
captures which audio recordings were made. In another example, if the invention is used as an
open air sound collector to capture sound through a long distance during a live event (such as a
sporting event), the camera is used for simultaneous recording of the event obtain.
[0031] [0046] The hollow tube 37-and the microphone end 35 of the hollow tube 37 itself-can
be incorporated into the frame 31 and be made in the same mold or be shaped by the same 3D
printer. The hollow tube 37 curves and passes along the back of the frame 31 towards the center
of the frame.
[0032] [0047] FIG. 1B shows an embodiment 30 provided with an embedded sound collector 44,
which, like the hollow tube 37, can be made in the same mold as the frame 31 or be shaped in
the same 3D printer. If the sound collector is made from the same mold as the frame, or is
manufactured with the same 3D printer or otherwise permanently attached to the frame, the
sound collector may It is called incorporated with the casing .
[0033] [0048] As a general matter, a funnel-like structure can function as a sound collector for
both stethoscope and longer distance sound collector purposes. As described, the sound collector
44 shown here may also be used for longer distance sound collection, but is specifically
configured to be used as a chestpiece of a stethoscope. As a comparison, FIGS. 8A-8C illustrate, in
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particular, alternative embodiments in which the sound collector is intended for long distance
open air sound collection.
[0034] [0049] Referring back to FIG. 1B, the hollow tube 37 passes along the back of the frame
31 and opens at the hole 45 of the embedded sound collector 44. The embedded sound collector
44 has an inclined inner wall 41 extending outward from the hole 45. The embedded sound
collector 44 is provided with a grooved or threaded outer rim 43 to provide a diaphragm or
other circular attachment such as a rubberized O-ring . As such, the sound collector 44 is
specifically designed to be used as a chestpiece of a stethoscope (although it may also be used
for longer distance open air sound collectors).
[0035] [0050] When designed to provide a diaphragm, the sound collector 44 is preferably
constructed of a rigid material such as rigid plastic or metal. However, without a diaphragm,
when used on its own as a chestpiece of a stethoscope, a soft, rubbery material which conforms
to the contour of the surface being heard and which is deformable to form a good seal There are
advantages to constructing the sound collector 44 from. Alternatively, lip 43 may be mated with
a soft rubbery sealing ring to achieve the same purpose, as discussed further below.
[0036]
[0051]
FIG. 1C is a side view of the exterior of embodiment 30, shown here on itself without device 33.
FIG. An opening 57 is provided for the button along the side of the device 33. Similar openings
may be provided wherever needed to access the surface of the device 33. The hollow tube 37 is
shown communicating along the back of the frame 31 with an embedded sound collector 44
projecting outwardly.
[0037]
[0052]
1D is a cross-sectional view of Embodiment 30. FIG. The inner backing 55 of the frame 31 is
substantially flush with the back of the device 33 when the frame is attached to the device.
Similarly, the upper lip 68 of the lip 32 partially overlaps the front face 32 A of the device 33,
thereby hanging down on the device in conjunction with the sides of the lip 32. The hollow tube
37 is shown as having a hollow core 53 leading from the sound collection hole 45 to the
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microphone end opening 34.
[0038]
[0053]
The embedded sound collector 44 may be configured with a hollow chamber 51 behind the
sloped inner wall 41. This design reduces the amount of material in the frame (and hence also
the weight of the frame). The hollow chamber 51 can be filled with a material having certain
sound attenuation / transmission characteristics to suit the specific application of the chestpiece
of the stethoscope.
[0039]
[0054]
FIG. 1D shows an embedded sound collector 44 with a grooved rim 43. This rim may serve
multiple purposes. In one mode, it can be designed as a mounting point for a hard annulus 62
carrying a diaphragm 64. Screw threads may be added to the rim 43 in order to mount the
corresponding threaded ring. Alternatively, the ring may be provided with the ability to snap fit
on the rim 43. The rim 43 can also serve as a mounting point for the resilient o-rings that are
also used for the attachment of the diaphragm.
[0040]
[0055]
As a particular matter, the diaphragm of the chestpiece of many modern stethoscopes is about
1.7 inches in diameter. For example, ubiquitous Littmann brand stethoscopes (manufactured by
3M) traditionally have chest pieces with a diameter of about 1.7 inches. Thus, there is an
advantage in designing the sound collector 44 to accommodate a diaphragm having such
dimensions (assuming that it is intended to be used as a chestpiece of a stethoscope).
[0041]
[0056]
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Depending on the application in which the sound collector is located, the sound collector 44 need
not be mated with the diaphragm. For example, the sound collector 44 can be used as a bell to
capture lower frequency sounds. Its use as a bell can be improved by fitting the rim 43 to a
rubber coated ring to create a seal on the listening surface. As noted, the sound collector 44 may
also be used as a longer distance sound collector. For example, a person with hearing loss may
use the sound collector 44 to collect and amplify the sound coming across the room. Also,
participants in a demonstration or sports event may use a sound collector 44 to amplify sound
coming over a longer distance.
[0042]
[0057]
So far, although the invention has been shown with sound collectors provided on a wide surface
of the frame, the frame may be designed with sound collectors provided at various other
positions. For example, a sound collector may be attached to the edge of the frame and be
acoustically coupled directly to the device's microphone. The size of the sound collector may vary
depending on the size of the device to which it is coupled. If the sound collector is attached to the
edge of the device, the size of the attachment matches the size of the edge of the device.
[0043]
[0058]
In the above embodiments, and in the following embodiments, to have a rubber coated or gel
sealing ring that can be compressed by the frame to form a tight seal between the tube and the
microphone It is noted that it is advantageous to design the opening of the hollow tube above the
microphone. This added sealing helps to improve the sound transmission quality.
[0044]
[0059]
In addition, the present invention operates with a sound collector that can be physically
separated from the frame and move independently with the length of flexible tubing connecting
the sound collector to the microphone of the handheld device It is noted that it can. This is
because the sound collector is either directly restrained (i.e. incorporated) into the frame, or any
independent movement is substantially restricted, so the collection attached to the frame In
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contrast to the embodiment shown in the figure showing the sound device. For example, the
sound collector 81 of the embodiment 70 in FIG. 3 is still attached to the frame as the neck 73
can be fixed relative to the frame 72 so that the sound collector 81 can not move freely from the
frame 72 It is considered to be attached.
[0045]
[0060]
The figures therein show the piping as being embedded in the frame, but the piping can be easily
fixed to the outside of the frame. As a practical matter, it is easy to manufacture a frame with
piping as an embedded conduit, and also reduce the degree to which the tube is ejected from the
side of the frame. Whether embedded or attached to the outside of the frame, such attached
piping is here "fixed" to the frame (with respect to extending away from the frame as a separate
member) May be called fixed.
[0046]
[0061]
FIG. 3 shows an alternative embodiment 70 of the present invention designed to allow easy
installation of a collector with a handle. Because the chestpiece of many stethoscopes has a
handle, the embodiment 70 is attached to the device by an open air sound collector (or as
discussed below, it has a handle) by other means But it is particularly suitable for use with such
chestpieces.
[0047]
[0062]
Here, the frame 72 is provided in a manner very similar to the frame 31. As in embodiment 30, a
hollow tube 78 is incorporated into the frame and leads to the opening of the microphone end
76 above the recording microphone hole of the handheld electronic device. Here, however, the
hollow tube 78 bends around the junction 73 and curves upwardly outward from the neck 75.
[0048]
[0063]
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The junction 73 and the neck 75 may be made of a relatively hard material, such as a hard
polymeric material, so as to tend to hold the chestpiece securely. Thereby, the chestpiece is
prevented from pivoting relative to the frame. Alternatively, the junction 73 may be provided
with a pivot joint 71 which allows the neck 75 to pivot relative to the frame 72. The bond may be
designed to have sufficient frictional force which tends to stay in place unless moved by the user.
Alternatively, the joint 71 may be provided with a screw that can be loosened to pivot the neck
75 and tightened to hold it in place.
[0049]
[0064]
In an alternative embodiment (not shown), the sound collector is attached directly to the frame
by means of a pivot joint, such as a ball and socket joint, which allows the sound collector to
pivot relative to the frame May be In such embodiments, each of the ball and socket has a hole to
allow sound transmission to the tubing leading to the microphone of the electronic device. The
opening of the hole in the ball and socket must be wide enough so that the air passage can be
maintained between the ball and the socket, even when the sound collector is pivoted.
[0050]
[0065]
As shown in the particular embodiment illustrated in FIG. 3, the neck 75 is designed to be wide
enough to accommodate the chestpiece handle of most stethoscopes. The design works with an
open air sound collector with a similar handle diameter, and the neck 75 can be designed to have
any diameter required by the user's application. A rubber coated bonding washer 77 may be
provided to improve the tightness and to grip around the stem 79 of the sound collector 81. The
washer 77 can be made of a rubber coated material with a relatively narrow opening that can be
elastically extended in order to securely grip the handle 79. Alternatively, removable washers of
various sizes can be provided to the device for mounting sound collectors with handles having
different diameters. Thus, embodiments 70 allow users to provide their own sound collectors and
modify the on-board system to match the user's preferences.
[0051]
[0066]
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Using a neck-and-handle system has the added advantage of allowing the sound collector 81 to
rotate within the neck 75 at any angle desired by the user. Alternatively, embodiment 70 is
designed with a sound collector permanently incorporated into the neck, and a rotational joint
may be added to neck 75 if rotational pivoting is desired. As seen at the pivot joint 71, the rotary
joint may be designed to have sufficient frictional force which tends to stay in place until moved
by the user.
[0052]
[0067]
FIG. 4A is a side view of a system 90 for providing a sound collector directly in the frame 87. FIG.
Here, the frame (shown in cross section), like the hollow core 53, is provided with an embedded
hollow tube with a hollow core 89. A raised slot 85 is provided on the surface of the frame 87 to
provide a crimped end 95 of the sound collector 97. The opening of the slot 85 is wide enough to
accommodate the crimped neck 99 of the sound collector 97. The crimped end 95 of the sound
collector 97 fills in the slot 85 a cavity 91 with a corresponding shape. The end 95 is provided
with a rubber coated tip 93 to form a seal with the inner wall of the cavity 91 for the opening 89
of the hollow core.
[0053]
[0068]
4B is a plan view of the mounting system 90. FIG. The raised slot 85 is shown with a dotted line
indicating the inner cavity 91. The sound collector 97 is shown on the other side of the sound
collector facing the frame 87, with a dotted line representing the shrunken neck 99 and the
shrunk end 95. The user can provide the sound collector 97 on the frame 87 by sliding the
crimped end 95 into the cavity 91 of the slot 85. The rubber-coated tip 93 can be made slightly
larger than the hollow space, which is elastically compressed, forming a tight seal that helps
guide the sound, and the sound collector falls out of the frame To prevent that.
[0054]
[0069]
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FIG. 5 shows another embodiment 100 of the present invention featuring an alternative
mounting system. Here, a frame 101 (shown in cross section) is provided as well as the frame 31.
A hollow tube with a hollow core 103 leads to an opening 105 on the back of the frame 101.
Here, a substantially rigid neck 109 is provided for mounting the corresponding handle 119 of
the sound collector 115. A rubber coated ring 111 surrounds the tip of the neck 109 and
provides a tight seal for the handle 119.
[0055]
[0070]
The neck 109 is also provided with a magnet portion 107 for attachment to the corresponding
magnetic or ferromagnetic material 117 at the tip of the handle 119. If magnets are used, the
magnets are selected to have a level of intensity such that the magnets do not interfere with the
functionality of the electronic device, depending on their position relative to the handheld
electronic device and the type of electronic device. Thus, the choice of magnet depends on the
technical parameters of the handheld electronic device being used with embodiment 100.
[0056]
[0071]
FIG. 6A shows an alternative embodiment 150 of the present invention. Here, the frame 158 is
designed to cover the entire back of the handheld electronic device (not just the upper portion in
the previous embodiment). In this regard, frame 158 is very similar to the standard protective
case currently marketed by companies such as Incase as a smartphone accessory.
[0057]
[0072]
The hollow tube 154 is embedded along an angle in the frame 158 (rather than the 90 degree
bond shown above). Although the invention can be used with angled tubing as shown in the
previous figures, it is noted that it is desirable to have the tubing with the least amount of flex
and through the shortest distance. The shorter the pipe, the less the bend it has, the better the
sound transmission.
07-05-2019
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[0058]
[0073]
Also included in the embodiment 150 is a second pipe 156 branched from the sound collector
155. This second tubing 156 terminates at an open end 160 covering the second microphone on
the opposite side of the device. In this way, device 150 can deliver sound to two different
microphones, even if only one is used at a time.
[0059]
[0074]
FIG. 6B shows an alternative embodiment 151 of the invention having a first tube 164 leading to
the microphone of the handheld device, and a second branch tube 170 which extends beyond the
frame 168 and divides into the ear tubes 172a and 172b. Indicates These ear canals function
similarly to those of conventional stethoscopes and terminate in earpieces 174a and 174b. The
entire length of the ear canals 172a and 172b is truncated here for illustrative purposes.
Embodiment 151 allows the user to listen to the stethoscope at the same time as the microphone
of the handheld device registers the sound it travels.
[0060]
[0075]
It is noted that the branched second tube 170 can be easily connected to different forms of
listening devices such as a second microphone. This second microphone can also be paired with
a recording device or speaker physically separated from the main hand-held device as well.
[0061]
[0076]
7A and 7B further illustrate another alternative embodiment of the present invention which
omits the frame and replaces the frame with a band 187 surrounding the handheld electronic
device 183. Band 187 is preferably elastic and sized to wrap tightly around device 183.
Alternatively, the band 187 allows the user to wrap around the circumference of the device 183
at the desired tightness--notched belt buckle or Velcro® end (not shown) or the like--usually It
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can be equipped with certain length adjusters.
[0062]
[0077]
Included in the belt 187 is a microphone mounting port 193 that allows for the attachment of
the hollow sound collector tube 181. The port 193 is preferably made of a hard hollow plastic,
and the tube 181 is preferably made of a rubber like material having sufficient elasticity to bond
with the port 193 as shown in FIG. 7B. . The port base 191-included with the belt 187-has a
rubbery seal to form a sealed connection with the microphone on the device 183.
[0063]
[0078]
Rather than utilizing the mounting port 193, the port alternatively has the features of a magnetic
ring and the corresponding end of the tube 181 provided with the magnetic ring to be joined.
Thus, the paired ring magnets hold the end of the tube 181 directly on the microphone port by
magnetic attraction.
[0064]
[0079]
The sound collector can be incorporated directly into the belt 187, with the tube 181 leading
from the sound collector to the port 193. If it is desired to use the present invention as a
stethoscope, the device 180 may also have many chestpieces with bulbous ends, to secure the
chestpiece to the belt 187. Taking advantage of the fact that one or the other of the rounded
ends is used. FIG. 7B shows a chestpiece 189 having a rounded bell 185. The belt 187 holds the
bell 185 and is equipped with a fitting 192 for fixing and holding it to the belt 187. Additional
padding may be added to the portion of the belt 187 that contacts the chest piece to reduce
direct transmission noise into the device 183.
[0065]
[0080]
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The fixture 192 is preferably an elastic band with a hole having a diameter smaller than the
diameter of the central portion 194 of the chest piece 189. The user can extend and drill the
resilient holes in the fixture 192 to fit the bell 185. In this case, the length of the attachment 192
should be such that it is resilient and holds the bell 185 firmly to the belt 187.
[0066]
[0081] Thus, embodiment 180 advantageously allows the user to take advantage of the present
invention with the user's choice of chestpieces and plumbing chestpieces, and the need to sell
chestpieces with the device lose.
[0067]
[0082]
8A-8C illustrate an alternative embodiment 200 of the present invention specifically designed to
be used as a non-contact, longer distance sound collector, ie, an "open air" sound collector. .
FIG. 8A shows the frame 203 of a handheld electronic device (which in this case is similar to the
standard iPhone case). Attached directly to the frame is a parabolically shaped collector dish 207
having a parabolically sloped inner wall 211. A rigid focal tube 205 extends across the valley
created by the parabolically sloped inner wall 211 and opens into a funnel 209 located at the
parabolic geometric focal point. The geometrical focus is where the collector plate 207 focuses
the sound waves. The focusing tube 205 is in communication with the embedded frame tube 202
which terminates at the microphone end 201 on the device's microphone.
[0068]
[0083]
FIG. 8B is a side view of an embodiment 200 showing how the focusing tube 205 crosses the
opening of the sound collector tray 207. FIG. FIG. 8C is a cross-sectional view of FIG. 8B showing
a parabolic curve of the inner wall 211. The focusing tube 205 opens at the funnel opening 209
a of the funnel end 209. The funnel 209 collects the sound that is reflected towards the focal
point of the parabolic inner wall 207. The sound waves are subsequently transmitted to the
microphone end 201 via the tubular conduit 215. The lips 213 and 217 of the frame 203 are
suspended on a hand held electronic device (not shown) to keep the embodiment 200 firmly
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attached thereto.
[0069]
[0084]
Although not shown in the figure, it may also be a separate unit that can be moved independently
of the hand-held electronic device from the collector's pan and focus tube and connected to the
hand-held electronic device via the length of the flexible tube It is possible. Such embodiments
allow larger sound collector pans to be used, which are supported by the user's hand rather than
relying solely on the support of the frame.
[0070]
[0085]
The test was performed using a device frame and a sound collector similar to that shown in FIGS.
1A-1D. First, the iPhone (model 4S) was placed about 14 feet from a fixed source. A comparison
was made between the sounds registered by the iPhone with and without the present invention
attached. When the invention was attached, a significant increase in volume was observed.
[0071]
[Various Handheld Electronic Devices] [0086] Although the figures therein show a framework for
use with electronic devices similar to earlier iPhone models, the present invention covers a wide
range of tablets, smartphones, cellular phones, etc. It should be understood that it may be used
with a handheld electronic device. The invention can also be used with many other handheld
electronic devices of any shape by using the same lip and attachment means as disclosed herein.
[0072]
[0087]
As used herein, a "handheld electronic device" includes (but is not limited to), in particular, the
iPhone (and similar devices), the iPad® (and similar devices), Tablets, smart phones, iPods (and
similar devices) equipped with microphones, mobile phones. The "smartphone" comes into the
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market without having any rectangular shape (as well as an rectangular shape, as well as an
Apple iPhone, or an Samsung iPhone or Samsung Galaxy phone) , Say flat handheld device with
similar functions). The "Tablet" is a microphone-equipped handheld electronic device (as well as
having an almost flat rectangular shape but not equipped with a telephone function, as well as
coming to the market without a rectangular shape, similar) Say any flat handheld device with the
features of. The tablet includes, for example, Apple's iPad, Barnes & Noble Nook, and Microsoft
Surface. The terms "smartphone / tablet" include both of those terms as defined herein.
[0073]
[0088] In accordance with the invention, the acoustic collector has a hollow acoustic tube
connected to the frame and positioned on the microphone of the device, wrapped around at least
a portion of the hand-held electronic device (as described above) and suspended therein It can be
provided to the handheld electronic device by providing a workable attachment frame.
[0074]
[0089]
Also, as shown in FIGS. 2B-2D, the frame can be made to be attached to a handheld electronic
device without hanging on the handheld electronic device.
For example, the embodiment shown in FIGS. 1A-1D may be functional without lip 32. One way
in which this may be achieved is by using magnetic attachment means to hold the frame to the
electronic device. For example, small magnets can be embedded in the edge of the frame that
tends to attract the corresponding edge of the electronic device. Alternatively, the magnet may be
embedded in a wide part of the frame. Whenever a magnet is used throughout this specification,
care should be taken to see if the particular electronic device used is disturbed by the magnetic
field at the location. Devices such as iPad are known to use magnets along their edges without
disturbing the functionality of the device. Alternatively, if it is not desired to use either the lip or
the magnet, the user uses it to ensure that the frame is not to be removed, but simply tightens
the frame to the electronic device ( It can be "a pinch".
[0075]
[0090]
It should be noted that the present invention can be used with a speaker and that it has the
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22
advantage that the user can hear the sound transmitted through the stethoscope at the same
time the sound is being received by the microphone of the electronic device. is there. Most
smartphones / tablets include their own speakers that can provide such simultaneous sounding.
By ensuring a tight seal around the microphone, feedback (howling) effects can be minimized. In
addition, software applications are available that reduce microphone feedback.
[0076]
[0091]
Alternatively, as shown in FIG. 6B, secondary tubing may be branched from the device and
connected to a separate listening instrument. The device is a separate microphone and speaker
system for producing the sound transmitted by the stethoscope. Providing a separate speaker
unit of this kind allows sound to be emitted at the location of the speaker, minimizing feedback
effects.
[0077]
[0092]
Applicants note that smartphones / tablets made of thin, flexible materials come to the market
and allow them to be bent or rolled like paper. It has already been proposed that such products
using OLED (organic EL) technology be put on the market. The present invention does so by
providing a rigid or semi-rigid frame that covers most or all of the device and can be tightened
against the edge (or edges) of the flexible device. Can be adapted to work with thin and flexible
devices. For example, a clipboard type locking mechanism may be incorporated into the lip of the
frame to lock the edge of the flexible device. Alternatively, the frame may be designed with the
lip of the edge hanging on the opposite side of the flexible device, the chords from the opposite
side of the frame across the front of the device to hold it in the frame It can be stretched. Rather
than using a lip, the frame may include one or more suckers for attachment to a flexible device.
Also, magnets may be used to attach the device to the frame, as long as the flexible device has a
metallic component.
[0078]
[0093]
Alternatively, the case is provided with a central entrance and all or part of the flexible smart
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23
phone / tablet is in much the same way as a hardcopy photo is slipped into a photo frame with
an entrance It can be plugged into the case and held firmly in them. Such a frame may have a
partially open front face to allow access to the viewing screen of the flexible device. Such a frame
may also be composed of a clear plastic material to allow the user to view through the frame on
the flexible device's view screen. If a frame with a socket is used, the sound transmission piping
may be provided in a predetermined manner in the frame so that the tube opens on the
microphone of the flexible device when the flexible device is inserted into the socket. It can be
embedded in place.
[0079]
[Frequency Manipulation Software] [0094] A problem that arises with the use of sound collectors
is that often many more frequencies of sound are collected than the user actually wants to hear.
Furthermore, the user's intended frequency may be less intense than others (thus not having
sufficient loudness). In the context of the present invention, this problem is achieved by
providing the handheld electronic device in question with software capable of eliminating
unwanted sound frequencies and / or amplifying the desired sound frequency. It can be solved
simply.
[0080]
[0095]
For example, human heart sounds are generally in the range below about 150 Hz. The test was
done by recording human heart sounds with a stethoscope connected by a tube to the iPhone's
microphone. The heart sounds recorded resulted in sub-par quality. And, a commercially
available acoustic frequency manipulation software application was used in conjunction with an
embodiment of the invention similar to the embodiment shown in FIGS. 1A-1D. These software
programs include the Thinklabs Stethoscope Application and an application named "My Baby's
Beat" (an application intended to allow pregnant mothers to record the heart sounds of their
fetuses). Inclusive. By using acoustic frequency manipulation software in conjunction with the
present invention, a much sharper sound output was achieved. Although many software
programs of sound frequency enhancement, equalization and / or cancellation exist in the market
and are known to those skilled in the field of digital sound manipulation, the applicant has
proposed in this As such, they do not know anyone who has proposed using such a program in
conjunction with an acoustic collector mounted on a handheld electronic device.
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[0081]
[0096]
In a preferred embodiment, the invention involves sound frequency manipulation software
installed on a handheld electronic device that can amplify certain frequencies and / or limit or
cancel others. Most users are not familiar with the frequency range of the sound they want to
listen to, so they can actively change which frequency is increased to identify the most likely
sound output As such, it is beneficial for the program to provide a simple, visible frequency range
selector tool. One known frequency range for typical applications may be shown as
approximately 20-150 Hz for human heart sounds, approximately 150-1200 Hz for most human
lung sounds, etc.
[0082]
[0097]
As noted herein, the frequency manipulation software described above works by amplifying one
sound frequency relative to another, or by limiting or canceling some undesired sound frequency.
Any of these techniques is referred to herein as "augmentation" or "augmenting" certain sound
frequencies.
[0083]
[0098]
Although the present invention has been described with respect to exemplary embodiments, the
present invention is not limited thereto. Rather, the appended claims should be construed
broadly to include other variations and embodiments of the present invention which may be
made by those skilled in the art without departing from the scope and equivalent of the present
invention. It is.
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