Richtige Fernseher haben Röhren!

Richtige Fernseher haben Röhren!

In Brief: On this site you will find pictures and information about some of the electronic, electrical and electrotechnical technology relics that the Frank Sharp Private museum has accumulated over the years .

Premise: There are lots of vintage electrical and electronic items that have not survived well or even completely disappeared and forgotten.

Or are not being collected nowadays in proportion to their significance or prevalence in their heyday, this is bad and the main part of the death land. The heavy, ugly sarcophagus; models with few endearing qualities, devices that have some over-riding disadvantage to ownership such as heavy weight,toxicity or inflated value when dismantled, tend to be under-represented by all but the most comprehensive collections and museums. They get relegated to the bottom of the wants list, derided as 'more trouble than they are worth', or just forgotten entirely. As a result, I started to notice gaps in the current representation of the history of electronic and electrical technology to the interested member of the public.


Following this idea around a bit, convinced me that a collection of the peculiar alone could not hope to survive on its own merits, but a museum that gave equal display space to the popular and the unpopular, would bring things to the attention of the average person that he has previously passed by or been shielded from. It's a matter of culture. From this, the Obsolete Technology Tellye Web Museum concept developed and all my other things too. It's an open platform for all electrical Electronic TV technology to have its few, but NOT last, moments of fame in a working, hand-on environment. We'll never own Colossus or Faraday's first transformer, but I can show things that you can't see at the Science Museum, and let you play with things that the Smithsonian can't allow people to touch, because my remit is different.

There was a society once that was the polar opposite of our disposable, junk society. A whole nation was built on the idea of placing quality before quantity in all things. The goal was not “more and newer,” but “better and higher" .This attitude was reflected not only in the manufacturing of material goods, but also in the realms of art and architecture, as well as in the social fabric of everyday life. The goal was for each new cohort of children to stand on a higher level than the preceding cohort: they were to be healthier, stronger, more intelligent, and more vibrant in every way.

The society that prioritized human, social and material quality is a Winner. Truly, it is the high point of all Western civilization. Consequently, its defeat meant the defeat of civilization itself.

Today, the West is headed for the abyss. For the ultimate fate of our disposable society is for that society itself to be disposed of. And this will happen sooner, rather than later.

OLD, but ORIGINAL, Well made, Funny, Not remotely controlled............. and not Made in CHINA.

How to use the site:

- If you landed here via any Search Engine, you will get what you searched for and you can search more using the search this blog feature provided by Google. You can visit more posts scrolling the left blog archive of all posts of the month/year,
or you can click on the main photo-page to start from the main page. Doing so it starts from the most recent post to the older post simple clicking on the Older Post button on the bottom of each page after reading , post after post.

You can even visit all posts, time to time, when reaching the bottom end of each page and click on the Older Post button.

- If you arrived here at the main page via bookmark you can visit all the site scrolling the left blog archive of all posts of the month/year pointing were you want , or more simple You can even visit all blog posts, from newer to older, clicking at the end of each bottom page on the Older Post button.
So you can see all the blog/site content surfing all pages in it.

- The search this blog feature provided by Google is a real search engine. If you're pointing particular things it will search IT for you; or you can place a brand name in the search query at your choice and visit all results page by page. It's useful since the content of the site is very large.

Note that if you don't find what you searched for, try it after a period of time; the site is a never ending job !

Every CRT Television saved let revive knowledge, thoughts, moments of the past life which will never return again.........

Many contemporary "televisions" (more correctly named as displays) would not have this level of staying power, many would ware out or require major services within just five years or less and of course, there is that perennial bug bear of planned obsolescence where components are deliberately designed to fail and, or manufactured with limited edition specificities..... and without considering........picture......sound........quality........

..............The bitterness of poor quality is remembered long after the sweetness of todays funny gadgets low price has faded from memory........ . . . . . .....
Don't forget the past, the end of the world is upon us! Pretty soon it will all turn to dust!

Have big FUN ! !
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©2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014 Frank Sharp - You do not have permission to copy photos and words from this blog, and any content may be never used it for auctions or commercial purposes, however feel free to post anything you see here with a courtesy link back, btw a link to the original post here , is mandatory.
All sets and apparates appearing here are property of
Engineer Frank Sharp. NOTHING HERE IS FOR SALE !

Saturday, August 6, 2011

NORDMENDE DeLuxe COLORSONIC 2400 PRESTIGE SK3 COLOR CHASSIS F7 INTERNAL VIEW.















































































































The NORDMENDE CHASSIS F7 here in this showed execution is the most advanced version of itself.

It's the first NORDMENDE featuring PROGRAMMABLE 6 DAYS CLOCK TIMER plus PLL SYNTHESIZER CHANNEL SEARCH usining a uCONTROLLER.

Further Special Sound features are present with AV and sound connectors.

These circuits are based on a Fairchild Semiconductors Chipset which was barely used in that era of time.

The control board carrying all logical functions was employing 2 battreryes, one for clock and on for the channel memory RAM.


These series are quite rare because NORDMENDE in few months was passing under the control THOMSON CSF brand going to re-developing a completely new chassis design even with the same models design.

The chassis design is modular and it's sligltly complex.



NORDMENDE DeLuxe COLORSONIC 2400 PRESTIGE SK3 COLOR CHASSIS F7 AMBIENT LIGHT RESPONSIVE CONTROL OF BRIGHTNESS, CONTRAST AND COLOR SATURATION Gain control arrangement useful in a television signal processing system
In a color television receiver, first and second amplifiers are respectively included in the luminance and chrominance channels to permit control of contrast and saturation. The amplifiers have gain versus control voltage characteristics including linear portions extrapolated to cut off at predetermined voltages which may or may not be the same. A first potentiometer is coupled between a source of fixed voltage equal to the extrapolated cut off voltage of the first amplifier and a gain controlling voltage source. The gain controlling voltage may be produced by a circuit including an element responsive to ambient light. The wiper of the first potentiometer is coupled to the first amplifier to couple a voltage developed at a predetermined point of the first potentiometer to the first amplifier to control its gain. A second potentiometer is coupled between a source of voltage equal to the extrapolated cut off voltage of the second amplifier and the gain controlling voltage source to receive a portion of the gain controlling voltage in accordance with the ratio of the extrapolated cut off voltages of the first and second amplifiers. The wiper of the second potentiometer is coupled to the second amplifier to couple a voltage developed at a predetermined point of the second potentiometer to the second amplifier to control its gain. In this manner, the contrast of the receiver may be varied over a relatively wide range while saturation is maintained substantially constant.


1. In a color television signal processing system of the type including luminance and chrominance signal processing channels, apparatus comprising:
first and second amplifiers respectively included in said luminance and chrominance channels, said amplifiers having gain versus control voltage characteristics including linear portions extrapolated to cut-off at predetermined voltages which may or may not be the same voltage;
a gain controlling voltage source;
means for coupling said gain controlling voltage to said first amplifier to control its gain;
potentiometer means coupled between a fixed voltage substantially equal to the extrapolated cut-off voltage of said second amplifier and to said gain controlling voltage source to recieve a portion of said gain controlling voltage in accordance with the ratio of the extrapolated cut-off voltages of said first and second amplifiers; and
means for coupling a voltage developed at a predetermined point on said potentiometer means to said second amplifier to control its gain.
2. The apparatus recited in claim 1 wherein said means for coupling said gain controlling voltage to said first amplifier includes another potentiometer coupled between a source of fixed voltage substantially equal to the extrapolated cut-off voltage of said first amplifier and said gain controlling voltage source. 3. In a color television signal processing system of the type including luminance and chrominance signal processing channels, apparatus comprising:
first and second amplifiers respectively included in said luminance and chrominance channels, said amplifiers having gain control voltage characteristics including linear portions extrapolated to cut-off at substantially the same predetermined voltage;
a source of gain controlling voltage; and
means for coupling said gain controlling voltage to said first and second amplifiers.
4. Apparatus comprising:
first variable gain amplifying means for amplifying a first signal in response to a first DC control signal, said first amplifying means having a first gain versus DC control voltage characteristic including a linear region, said linear region having a gain substantially equal to 0 at a DC control voltage equal to VO ;
second variable gain amplifying means for amplifying a second signal in response to a second DC control signal, said second amplifying means having a second gain versus DC control voltage characteristic including a linear region, said linear region having a gain substantially equal to 0 at a DC control voltage equal to AVO, where A is a number greater than 0;
a first source of fixed voltage substantially equal to VO ;
a second source of fixed voltage substantially equal to AVO ;
means for developing a third DC control voltage v;
means for developing a portion Av of said third control voltage v;
first means for deriving said first control voltage including means for providing the difference between said third control voltage v and said fixed voltage VO and means for adding a predetermined portion of the difference between said third control voltage v and said fixed voltage VO to said DC control voltage v; and
second means for deriving said second control voltage including means for providing the difference between a portion Av of said third control voltage v and said fixed voltage AVO and means for adding a predetermined portion of the difference between said portion Av and said fixed voltage AVO to said DC control voltage v.

5. The apparatus recited in claim 4 wherein A is equal to 1. 6. The apparatus recited in claim 4 wherein said first amplifying means is included in a luminance channel of a televeision signal processing system and said second amplifying means is included in a chrominance channel of said television signal processing system. 7. The apparatus recited in claim 6 wherein means for developing said third control voltage includes means responsive to ambient light. 8. The apparatus recited in claim 4 wherein said first means includes first voltage divider means coupled between said fixed voltage VO and said third DC control voltage v; and wherein said second means includes second voltage divider means coupled between said fixed voltage AVO and said portion Av. 9. The apparatus recited in claim 8 wherein said first voltage divider means includes a first potentiometer, said first potentiometer having a wiper coupled to said first amplifying means; and wherein said second voltage divider means includes a second potentiometer, said second potentiometer having a wiper coupled to said amplifying means. 10. The apparatus recited in claim 4 wherein said second gain versus DC control voltage characteristic includes a region between said voltage AVO and a voltage VB where the gain is greater than 0, said voltage VB being substantially equal to the voltage at which said second amplifying means has a gain substantially equal to 0; and wherein said second source of fixed voltage includes means for coupling said voltage VB to said second amplifying means. 11. The apparatus recited in claim 10 wherein said second source of said voltage AVO includes a third source of fixed voltage VB ; potentiometer means coupled between said third source of fixed voltage VB and said means for developing said third DC control voltage; and means coupled to said potentiometer means for developing said voltage AVO at a point along said potentiometer means; said potentiometer means including a wiper coupled to said second amplifier means, said wiper being adjustable to couple a DC voltage VFB and said third control voltage to said second amplifying means.
Description:

The present invention pertains to gain controlling apparatus and particularly to apparatus for controlling the gains of amplifiers included in the luminance and chrominance channels of a television signal processing system.
Recently, the maximum brightness available from television receivers has increased sufficiently so that a pleasing image may be reproduced under conditions of high ambient light as well as under conditions of low ambient light. Apparatus is known for automatically controlling the contrast and brightness properties of a television receiver in response to ambient light to provide a pleasing image over a range of ambient light conditions. Such apparatus is described in U.S. Pat. Nos. 3,027,421, entitled "Circuit Arrangements For Automatically Adjusting The Brightness And The Contrast In A Television Receiver," issued to H. Heijligers on Mar. 27, 1962 and 3,025,345, entitled "Circuit Arrangement For Automatic Readjustment Of The Background Brightness And The Contrast In A Television Receiver," issued to R. Suhrmann on Mar. 13, 1962.
Apparatus is also known for automatically controlling the contrast and saturation properties of a color television receiver by controlling the gains of luminance and chrominance channel amplifiers, respectively, in response to ambient light. Such apparatus is described in U.S. Pat. Nos. 3,813,686 entitled "Ambient Light Responsive Control Of Brightness, Contrast And Color Saturation," issued to Eugene Peter Mierzwinski, on May 28, 1974 and 3,814,852 entitled "Ambient Light Responsive Control Of Brightness, Contrast and Color Saturation," issued to Eugene P. Mierzwinski on June 4, 1974.
Also of interest is apparatus for manually controlling the gains of luminance and chrominance channel amplifiers. Such apparatus is described in U.S. Pat. Nos. 3,374,310, entitled "Color Television Receiver with Simultaneous Brightness and Color Saturation Controls," issued to G.L. Beers on Mar. 19, 1968; 3,467,770, entitled "Dual Channel Automatic Control Circuit," issued to DuMonte O. Voigt on June 7, 1966; and 3,715,463, entitled "Tracking Control Circuits Using a Common Potentiometer," issued to Lester Tucker Matzek, on Feb. 6, 1973.
When the gain of luminance channel is adjusted to control the contrast of an image, either manually or automatically, in response to ambient light, it is desirable to simultaneously control the gain of the chrominance channel in such a manner that the ratio of the gains of the luminance and chrominance channels is substantially constant over a wide range of contrast control to maintain constant saturation. If the proper ratio between the amplitudes of the chrominance and luminance signals is not maintained incorrect color reproduction may result. For instance, if the amplitude of the luminance signals are increased without correspondingly increasing the amplitude of the chrominance signals, colors may become desaturated, i.e., they will appear washed out or pastel in shade. Furthermore, it may be desirable to provide controls for presetting the gains of the luminance and chrominance channels to compensate for tolerance variations in other portions of the television signal processing apparatus.
In accordance with the present invention, apparatus is provided which may be utilized in a color television receiver to control contrast over a relatively wide range while maintaining constant saturation. The apparatus includes first and second amplifiers having gain versus control voltage characteristics including linear portions extrapolated to cut off at predetermined voltages which may or may not be the same. Means couple a gain controlling voltage source to the first amplifier to control its gain. Potentiometer means are coupled between a source of fixed voltage substantially equal to the extrapolated cut off voltage of the second amplifier and the source of gain controlling voltage to receive a portion of said gain controlling voltage in accordance with the ratio of the extrapolated cut off voltages of the amplifiers. A voltage developed at a predetermined point along the potentiometer means is coupled to the second amplifier to control its gain.
In accordance with another feature of the present invention, the means for coupling said gain controlling voltage to said first amplifier includes another potentiometer coupled between a source of fixed voltage substantially equal to the extrapolated cut off voltage of said first amplifier and said gain controlling voltage source.
In accordance with still another feature of the present invention the gain controlling voltage source includes an element responsive to ambient light .
These and other aspects of the present invention may best be understood by references to the following detailed description and accompanying drawing in which:
FIG. 1 shows the general arrangement, partly in block diagram form and partly in schematic diagram form, of a color television receiver employing an embodiment of the present invention;
FIG. 1A shows, in schematic form, a modification to the embodiment shown in FIG. 1;
FIG. 2 shows graphical representation of gain versus control voltage characteristics of amplifiers utilized in the embodiment shown in FIG. 1;
FIG. 3 shows graphical representations of gain versus control voltage characteristics of amplifiers which may be utilized in the receiver shown in FIG. 1;
FIG. 4 shows, in schematic form, another embodiment of the present invention which may be utilized to control the amplifiers whose gain versus control voltage characteristics are shown in FIG. 3;
FIG. 5 shows, in schematic form, an amplifier which may be utilized in the receiver shown in FIG. 1; and
FIG. 6 shows, in schematic form, another amplifier which may be utilized in the receiver shown in FIG. 1.
Referring now to FIG. 1, the general arrangement of a color television receiver employing the present invention includes a video signal processing unit 112 responsive to radio frequency (RF) television signals for generating, by means of suitable intermediate frequency (IF) circuits (not shown) and detection circuits (not shown), a composite video signal comprising chrominance, luminance, sound and synchronizing signals. The output of signal processing unit 112 is coupled to chrominance channel 114, luminance channel 116, a channel 118 for processing the synchronizing signals and a channel (not shown) for processing sound signals.
Chrominance processing channel 114 includes chrominance processing unit 120 which serves to remove chrominance signals from the composite video signal and otherwise process chrominance signals. Chrominance signal processing unit 120 may include, for example, automatic color control (ACC) circuits for adjusting the amplitude of the chrominance channels in response to amplitude variations of a reference signals, such as a color burst signal, included in the commposite video signal. Chrominance signal processing circuits of the type described in the U.S. Pat. No. 3,740,462, entitled "Automatic Chroma Gain Control System," issued to L.A. Harwood, on June 19, 1973 and assigned to the same assignee as the present invention are suitable for use as chrominance processing unit 120.
The output of the chrominance signal processing unit 120 is coupled to chrominance amplifier 122 which serves to amplify chrominance signals in response to a DC signal vC generated by gain control network 142. As illustrated, chrominance amplifier 122 provides chrominance signals to a chroma demodulator 124. An amplifier suitable for use as chrominance amplifier 122 will subsequently be described with reference to FIG. 6.
Chroma demodulator 124 derives color difference signals representing, for example, R-Y, B-Y and G-Y information from the chrominance signals. Demodulator circuits of the general type illustrated by the chrominance amplifier CA 3067 integrated circuit manufactured by RCA Corporation are suitable for use as chrominance demodulator 124.
The color difference signals are applied to a video driver 126 where they are combined with the output signals -Y of luminance channel 116 to produce color signals of the appropriate polarity, representing for example, red (R), green (G) and blue (B) information. The color signals are coupled to kinescope 128.
Luminance channel 116 includes a first luminance signal processing unit 129 which relatively attenuates undesirable signals, such as chrominance or sound signals or both, present in luminance channel 116 and otherwise proces ses the luminance signals. The output of first luminance processing unit 129 is coupled to luminance amplifier 130 which serves to amplify the luminance signals in response to a DC control signal vL generated by gain control unit 142 to thereby determine the contrast of a reproduced image. An amplifier suitable for use as luminance amplifier 130 will subsequently be described with reference to FIG. 5. The output of luminance amplifier 130 is coupled to second luminance signal processing unit 132 which serves to further process luminance signals. A brightness control unit 131 is coupled to luminance signal processing unit 132 to control the DC content of the luminance signals. The output -Y of luminance processing unit 132 is coupled to kinescope driver 126.
Channel 118 includes a sync separator 134 which separates horizontal and vertical synchronizing pulses from the composite video signal. The synchronizing pulses are coupled to horizontal deflection circuit 136 and vertical deflection circuit 138. Horizontal deflection circuit 136 and vertical deflection circuit 138 are coupled to kinescope 128 and to a high voltage unit 140 to control the generation and deflection of one or more electron beams generated by kinescope 128 in the conventional manner. Deflection circuits 136 and 138 also generate horizontal and vertical blanking signals which are coupled to luminance signal processing unit 132 to inhibit its operation during the horizontal and vertical retrace intervals.
Gain control unit 142 is coupled to luminance amplifier 130 and to chrominance amplifier 122 to control their gains. Gain control unit 142 includes a PNP transistor 152 arranged as an emitter-follower amplifier. The collector of transistor 152 is coupled to ground while its emitter is coupled through a series connection of a potentiometer 156 and fixed resistor 154 to a source of positive supply voltage VO. The wiper of potentiometer 156 is coupled to luminance amplifier 130. The series connection of a potentiometer 158 and a variable resistor 159 is coupled between the source of positive supply voltage VO and the emitter of transistor 152. The wiper of potentiometer 158 is coupled to chrominance amplifier 122.
The base of transistor 152 is coupled to the wiper of a potentiometer 146. One end of potentiometer 146 is coupled to the source of positive supply voltage VO through a fixed resistor 144. The other end of potentionmeter 146 is coupled to ground through a light dependent resistor (LDR) 148. LDR 148 is a resistance element whose impedance varies in inverse relationship with light which impinges on it. LDR 148 may comprise a simple cadmium sulfide type of light dependent element or other suitable light dependent device. LDR 148 is desirably mounted to receive ambient light in the vicinity of the screen of kinescope 128.
A single pole double-throw switch 150 has a pole coupled to the junction of potentiometer 146 and LDR 148. A resistor 151 is coupled between the wiper of potentiometer 146 and the other pole of switch 150. The arm of switch 150 is coupled to ground.
The general arrangement shown in FIG. 1 is suitable for use in a color television receiver of the type shown, for example, in RCA Color Television Service Data 1973 No. C -8 for a CTC-68 type receiver, published by RCA Corporation, Indianapolis, Indiana.
In operation, gain control circuit 142 maintains the ratio of the gain of chrominance amplifier 122 to the gain of amplifier 130 constant in order to maintain constant saturation while providing for contrast adjustment either manually by means of potentiometer 146 or automatically by means of LDR 148. If the gain of luminance were adjusted to control the contrast of an image without a corresponding change in the gain of chrominance amplifier 122, the amplitudes of luminance signals -Y and color difference signals R-Y, B-Y and G-Y would not, in general, be in the correct ratio when combined by divider 126 to provide the desired color.
When switch 140 is in the MANUAL position, the gains of chrominance amplifier 122 and luminance amplifier 130 are controlled by adjustment of the position of potentiometer 146. When switch 150 is in the AUTO position the gain of the chrominance amplifier 122 and luminance amplifier is automatically controlled by the response of LDR 148 to ambient light conditions. The voltage developed at the wiper of potentiometer 146 (base of transistor 152) when switch 150 is in the AUTO position is inversely related to the ambient light recieved by LDR 148. It is noted that the values of resistors 114, potentiometer 146, LDR 148 and resistor 151 are desirably selected such that the adjustment of the wiper arm of potentiometer 146 when switch 150 is in the MANUAL position does not substantially affect the voltage developed at the base of transister 152 when switch 150 is placed in the AUTO position.
The control voltage v developed at the wiper arm of potentiometer 146 is coupled through emitter-follower transistor 152 to the common junction of potentiometer 156 and variable resistor 159. A control voltage vL comprising v plus a predetermined portion of the difference VO -v developed across the series connection of fixed resistor 154 and potentiometer 156, depending on the setting of potentiometer 156, is coupled to luminance amplifier 130 to control its gain. Similarly, a control voltage vC comprising v plus a predetermined portion of the difference voltage VO -v developed across the series connection of potentiometer resistor 158 and variable resistor 159, depending on the setting of the wiper of potentiometer 158, is coupled to chrominance amplifier 122 to control its gain.
The gain of luminance amplifier 130 may be pre-set to a desired value by the factory adjustment of potentiometer 156. Similarly, variable resistor 159 is provided to allow factory pre-set of the gain of the chrominance amplifier 122. Potentiometer 158 is provided to allow customer control of saturation.
Referring to FIG. 2, the gain versus voltage characteristics of chroma amplifier 122 (gC) and luminance amplifier 130 (gL) are shown. The characteristic gC has a reversed S-shape including a linear portion 214. Extrapolated linear portion 214 of gC intersects the GAIN axis at GC and intersects the CONTROL VOLTAGE axis at VO. Similarly, the characteristics gL has a reverse S-shape characteristic including a linear portion 212. Extrapolated linear portion 214 of gL intersects the GAIN axis at GL and intersects the CONTROL VOLTAGE axis at VO.
From FIG. 2, the expression for linear portion 212 of gL is ##EQU1## The expression for linear portion 214 of gC is ##EQU2## From FIG. 1, the expression for vL is vL = v + (VO -v) K1 [3]
where K1 is determined by the voltage division of fixed resistor 154 and potentiometer 156 at the wiper of potentiometer 156. When the wiper of potentiometer 156 is at the emitter of transistor 152, K1 =0. The expression for vC is vC = v + (VO -v)K2 [4]
where K2 is determined by the voltage division of potentiometer 158 and fixed resistor 159 at the wiper of potentiometer 158. By combining equations [1] and [3], the equation for gL becomes ##EQU3## By combining equations [2] and [4], the equation for gC becomes ##EQU4## The ratio of gL to gC is thus ##EQU5## It is noted that this ratio is independent of DC control voltage v. Thus, although DC control voltage v may be varied either manually or in response to ambient light to control the contrast of an image reproduced by kinescope 128, the saturation remains constant.
With reference to FIG. 2, it is noted that although the linear portion 214 of gC has an extrapolated gain equal to 0 at a control voltage equal to VO, the non-linear portion of gC does not attain a gain equal to 0 until a control voltage equal to VB. That is, a control voltage of VO will not cut-off chrominance amplifier 122.
In FIG. 1A there is shown, in schematic form, a modification to the arrangement of gain control network 142 of FIG. 1 with provisions which allow a viewer to cut off chrominance amplifier 122 to produce a more pleasing image under conditions of poor color reception due, for example, to noise or interference. The modifications to gain control unit 142 shown in FIG. 1A include coupling potentiometer resistor 158 between a source of positive supply voltage VB, the value of VB being greater than the value of VO, and coupling a resistor 160 from a tap-off point 162 along potentiometer 158 to ground. The value of potentiometer 158 and resistor 160 and the location of tap 162 are selected so that voltage VO is developed at tap 162.
The arrangement shown in FIG. 1A allows for the adjustment of contrast while constant saturation is maintained and additionally allows a viewer, by adjusting the wiper of potentiometer 158 to voltage VB, to cut off chrominance amplifier 122.

Referring to FIG. 3 there are shown gain versus DC control voltage characteristics of chrominance and luminance amplifiers which do not have the same extrapolated linear cut off control voltage. The gain versus control voltage characteristic gL ' of the luminance amplifier has a reverse S-shape characteristic including a linear portion 312. Extrapolated linear portion 312 of gL ' intersects the GAIN axis at a gain GL ' and intersects the CONTROL VOLTAGE axis at a voltage VO '. The gain versus control voltage characteristic gC ' of the chrominance amplifier has a reverse S-shape characteristic having a linear portion 314. Extrapolated linear portion 314 of gC ' intersects the GAIN axis at a gain GC ' and intersects the CONTROL VOLTAGE axis at a voltage AVO ', where A is a number greater than zero.
From FIG. 3, the expression for linear portion 312 of gL ' is ##EQU6## where vL ' is the DC conrol voltage coupled to the luminance amplifier. The expression for linear portion 314 of gC ' is ##EQU7## where vC ' is the DC control voltage coupled to the chrominance amplifier.
A modified form of the control network 142 of FIG. 1 suitable for controlling the gain of a chrominance and a luminance amplifier having characteristics such as shown in FIG. 3 is shown in FIG. 4. Similar portions of FIGS. 1 and 4 are identified by reference numbers having the same last two significant digits and primed (') designations. The modified portions of FIG. 1 shown in FIG. 4 include the series connection resistors 460 and 462 coupled between the emitter of transistor 452 to ground. The values of resistors 460 and 462 are selected so that a portion Av' of the DC control voltage v' developed at the emitter of transistor 452 is developed at the junction of resistors 460 and 462. Furthermore, the series connection of potentiometer 458 and variable resistor 459 is coupled between the junction of resistor 460 and 462 and a source of positive supply voltage AVO '.
From FIG. 4, the expression for control voltage vL ' developed at the wiper of potentiometer 456 is vL ' = v' + (vO '-v')K1 ' [10]
where K1 ' is determined by the voltage division at the wiper of potentiometer 456. The expression for control voltage vC ' developed at the wiper of potentiometer 458 is VC ' = Av' + (AVO ' - Av')K 2 ' [11]
where K2 ' is determined by the voltage division at the wiper of potentiometer 458. By combining equations [8] and [10], ##EQU8## By combining equations [9] and [11], ##EQU9## The ratio of gL ' to gC ' is given by the expression ##EQU10## It is noted that this ratio is independent of DC control voltage v'. Therefore, gain control network 442 of FIG. 4 also allows for the adjustment of contrast while maintaining constant saturation.
It is noted that if A were made equal to 1, the arrangement gain control unit 442 would be suitable to control the gains of chrominance and luminance amplifiers having the characteristics shown in FIG. 2.
In FIG. 5, there is shown an amplifier suitable for use as luminance amplifier 130 of FIG. 1. The amplifier includes a differential amplifier comprising NPN transistors 532 and 534. The commonly coupled emitters of transistors 532 and 534 are coupled to the collector of an NPN transistor 528. The emitter of transistor 528 is coupled via a resistor 530 to ground. The collector of transistor 532 and the collector of transistor 534, via load resistor 536, is coupled to a bias voltage provided by bias supply 546, illustrated as a series connection of batteries. The bases of transistors 532 and 534 are respectively coupled to a lower bias voltage through resistors 533 and 535 respectively.
An input signal, such as, for example, the output signal provided by first luminance processing circuit 129 of FIG. 1 is coupled to the base of transistor 532 via terminal 542. The output signal of the amplifier is developed at the collector of transistor 534 and coupled to output terminal 544.
A DC control voltage, such as vL provided by gain control unit 142 of FIG. 1, is coupled to the base of an NPN transistor 514, arranged as an emitter-follower, via terminal 512. The collector of transistor 514 is coupled to bias supply 546. The emitter of transistor 514 is coupled to ground through the series connection of resistor 516, a diode connected transistor 518 and resistor 520.
The anode of diode 520 is coupled to the base of an NPN transistor 538. The collector of transistor 538 is coupled to the collector of transistor 534 while its emitter is coupled to ground through resistor 540. Transistor 538, resistor 540, diode 518 and resistor 520 are arranged in a current mirror configuration.
The emitter of transistor 514 is coupled to the base of a PNP transistor 522. The emitter of transistor 522 is coupled to bias supply 546 while its collector is coupled to the base of transistor 528 and to ground through the series connection of a diode connected transistor 524 and resistor 526. Transistor 528, resistor 530, diode 524 and resistor 526 are arranged in a current mirror configuration
In operation, the DC control voltage coupled to terminal 512 is coupled in inverted fashion to the anode of diode 524 by transistor 522. As a result, current directly related to the voltage developed at the anode of diode 524 flows through diode 524 and resistor 526. Due to the operation of the current mirror arrangement of diode 524, resistor 526, transistor 528 and resistor 530, a similar current flows through the emitter circuit of transistor 528. The gain of the differential amplifier comprising transistors 532 and 534 is directly related to this current flowing in the emitter circuit of transistor 528, and therefore is inversely related to the DC control voltage at terminal 512. The gain versus DC control voltage characteristics of the differential is similar to gL shown in FIG. 2.
Further, a current is developed through the series connection of resistor 516, diode 518 and resistor 520 in direct relationship to the DC control coupled to terminal 512. A similar current is developed through resistor 540 due to the operation of the current mirror comprising diode 518, resistor 520, transistor 538 and resistor 540. This current is of the opposite sense to that provided by the current mirror arrangement of diode 524, resistor 526, transistor 528 and resistor 530 and is coupled to the collector of transistor 534 so that the DC voltage at output terminal 544 does not substantially vary with the DC control voltage.
In FIG. 6, there is shown an amplifier suitable for use as chroma amplifier 120 of FIG. 1. The amplifier shown in FIG. 6 is of the type described in U.S. patent application Ser. No. 530,405 entitled "Controllable Gain Signal Amplifier," fled by L.A. Harwood et al. on Dec. 6, 1974.
The amplifier comprises a differential amplifier including NPN transistors 624 and 625 having their bases coupled to terminal 603 via a resistor 626. Chrominance signals, provided by a source of chrominance signals such as chrominance processing unit 120 of FIG. 1, are coupled to terminal 603. The current conduction paths between the collectors and emitters of transistors 624 and 625 are respectively coupled to ground via resistors 628, 629 and 630.
A current splitter circuit comprising an NPN transistor 632 and a diode 634 is coupled to the collector of transistor 624. Diode 634 and the base-emitter junction of transistor 632 are poled in the same direction with respect to the flow of collector current in transistor 624. It desirable that conduction characteristics of transistor 632 and diode 635 be substantially matched. Similarly, the collector of transistor 625 is coupled to a second current splitter comprising a transistor 633 and a diode 635.
An output load circuit comprising series connected resistors 636 and 638 is coupled between the collector of transistor 632 and a source of operating voltage provided by bias supply 610. Amplified chrominance signals are provided at output terminal 640 for coupling, for example, to a chroma demodulator such as chroma demodulator 124 of FIG. 1. Similarly, series connected load resistors 637 and 639 are coupled between the collector of transistor 633 and bias supply 610. An output terminal 641 at the junction of resistors 637 ad 639 provides oppositely phased chrominance signals to those provided at terminal 640. The gain associated with the cascode combination of transistors 624 and 632 is controlled in response to a DC control voltage, such as, for example, vC provided by gain control unit 142 of FIG. 1, coupled to the base of an NPN transistor 646 via terminal 602. Direct control current is supplied from the emitter of transistor 646 to diode 634 and 635 via a series resistor 652. A signal by-pass circuit comprising a series resonant combination 654 of inductance and capacitance is coupled from the anode of diode 634 to ground. Resonant circuit 654 is tuned, for example, to 3.58 MHz to provide a low impedance path to ground for color subcarrier signals.
Bias voltages and currents are supplied to the amplifier arrangement by bias supply 610, illustrated as a series connection of batterys. A voltage B+ is coupled to the collector of transistor 646. A lower bias voltage is coupled to the load circuits of transistors 632 and 633. The bases of transistors 632 and 633 are coupled in common to a still lower bias voltage. The bases of transistors 624 and 625 are coupled to a still lower bias voltage via substantially equal in value resistors 658 and 659. A resistor 694 is coupled from the common junction of resistors 658 and 659 to ground.
In operation, a quiescent operating current is provided through resistor 630. In the absence of an input signal at terminal 603, this current will divide substantially equally between the similarly biased transistors 624 and 625. If the DC control voltage at terminal 602 is near ground potential, transistor 646 will be effectively cut off and no current will flow in resistor 652 and diodes 634 and 635. In that case, neglecting the normally small difference betweeen collector and emitter currents of NPN transistors, the collector currents of transistors 624 and 625 will flow, respectively, in transistors 632 and 633. The transistors 632 and 633 are operated in common base mode and form cascode signal amplifiers with respective transistors 624 and 625. With the DC control voltage near ground potential, one-half of the quiescent current from resistor 630 flows in each of the load circuits and maximum gain for chrominance signals supplied from terminal 603 is provided.
Transistor 646 will conduct when the DC control voltage approaches the bias voltage supplied to the bases of transistors 632 and 633 of the current splitters. By selection of the circuit parameters, diodes 634 and 635 may be arranged to operate in a range between cut off to the conduction of all of the quiescent operating current supplied via resistor 630, thereby cutting off transistors 632 and 633 to provide no output signals at terminals 640 and 641.
At a DC control voltage intermediate to that corresponding to cut off of transistors 632 and 633 on the one hand and cut off of diodes 634 and 635 on the other hand, the voltage gain of the illustrated amplifier will vary in a substantially linear manner with the DC control voltage.
It is noted that although the characteristics shown in FIGS. 2 and 3 were reversed S-shaped characteristics, the characteristics could have other shapes including linear portions. For example, the characteristics could be substantially linear. Furthermore, with reference to FIG. 3, although gC ' was shown as having a linear portion that had a cut off control voltage lower than the cut off control voltage of the linear portion of gL ', the cut off control voltage of the linear portion of gC ' could be greater than the cut off voltage for the linear region of gL '. In addition, the gain control units and associate amplifiers could be arranged to utilize voltages opposite in polarity to those shown. These and other modifications are intended to be within the scope of the invention.










NORDMENDE DeLuxe COLORSONIC 2400 PRESTIGE SK3 COLOR CHASSIS F7 Frequency synthesizer tuning system for television receivers:


" A method for tuning a television receiver having automatic frequency control to the carrier frequency of a selected broadcast channel with an associated channel number including generating a variable frequency signal by means of a local oscillator, generating a reference frequency signal by means of a reference oscillator, and generating a local oscillator correction signal for matching an intermediate frequency signal derived from said local oscillator signal and the carrier frequency signal with a predetermined nominal intermediate frequency signal, said method being characterized by the use of a microcomputer and comprising:
generating binary signals representing first and second digital tune words, said digital tune words representing a selected channel;
storing said first and second digital tune words in a first data memory in said microcomputer;
reading said first and second digital tune words from said first memory and generating a divided-down local oscillator frequency by the use of said first digital tune word and a divided-down reference oscillator frequency by the use of said second digital tune word;
comparing said divided-down local oscillator and reference frequencies and generating a control signal representative of the difference in frequency of said divided-down local oscillator and reference frequencies;
coupling said control signal to said local oscillator for causing it to be locked to the frequency of said received carrier signal;
mixing the local oscillator frequency signal and the carrier frequency signal to generate an intermediate frequency signal;
comparing said intermediate frequency signal with said predetermined nominal intermediate frequency signal and providing a tuning voltage to said microcomputer, said tuning voltage being indicative of the magnitude and direction of a tuning error between said intermediate frequency signal and said predetermined nominal intermediate frequency signal;
incrementally adjusting the reference oscillator frequency by means of a tuning signal provided to said reference oscillator by said microcomputer in response to said tuning voltage;
detecting when the incrementally changing, divided-down reference oscillator frequency causes the intermediate frequency signal to pass said predetermined nominal intermediate frequency signal; and
incrementally stepping the divided-down reference oscillator frequency back a predetermined number of steps following the passage of said predetermined nominal intermediate frequency signal by said intermediate frequency signal in tuning said television receiver to the selected channel.
"

A television tuning system employs a frequency synthesizer system for establishing the tuning of the receiver. A programmable frequency divider counter is connected between the output of a reference oscillator and a phase comparator to which the output of the local oscillator in the tuner also is applied. The phase comparator output provides a tuning voltage for controlling the tuning of the local oscillator. A microprocessor is used to control the count of the programmable frequency divider and initially to set a count corresponding to the selected channel in a counter connected between the output of the local oscillator and the phase comparator. The tuning consists of three discrete time periods. First, a settling time to allow channel change transients to settle; second, a short period of forced search at a relatively rapid rate to insure proper tuning; and third, a slower rate of step-by-step correction to accomodate for station drift and the like during reception. This third time period is initiated either by the passage of a fixed length of time following the start of the forced search period or by sensing a preestablished number of changes of state in the output of the frequency discriminator during the forced/search period.


1. A tuning system for the tuner of a television receiver capable of receiving a composite television signal and including frequency discriminator (AFT) circuit means, said system including in combination:
a reference oscillator providing a reference signal at a predetermined frequency;
a local oscillator in the tuner providing a variable output frequency in response to the application of a control signal thereto;
a programmable frequency divider means having first and second inputs coupled respectively to the output of said reference oscillator and said local oscillator for producing signals on first and second outputs having frequencies which are a programmable fraction of the frequency of the signals applied to the inputs thereto;
phase comparator means having one input coupled with the first output of said programmable frequency divider means and having another input coupled with the second output of said programmable frequency divider means for developing a control signal and applying such control signal to said local oscillator for controlling the output frequency thereof;
counter circuit means coupled with said programmable frequency divider means for initially setting said divider means to a predetermined division ratio and operating to change the programmable fraction of division thereof in accordance with changes in the count in said counter circuit means;
control circuit means coupled with the output of said frequency discriminator means and further coupled with said counter circuit means for causing said counter circuit means to count at a first rate in a predetermined direction determined by the state of the output signal from said discriminator means in the absence of a predetermined signal output from said frequency discriminator means until a predetermined maximum count is attained, thereupon resetting said counter circuit means to a count which is a predetermined amount less than said maximum predetermined count and continuing to count at said first rate in the same predetermined direction from said new count to continuously change the programmable fraction of said frequency divider means in accordance with the state of operation of said counter circuit means, said control means operating in response to said predetermined signal output from the frequency discriminator means for terminating operation of said counter circuit means; and
further means for terminating operation of said counter circuit means at said first rate and causing operation thereof at a second slower rate.
2. The combination according to claim 1 wherein said further means includes timing means initiated into operation simultaneously with the setting of said divider means to a predetermined division ratio, and after a predetermined time interval said timing means producing an output signal applied to said counter circuit means to cause operation thereof to take place at said second slower rate. 3. The combination according to claim 1 wherein said counter circuit means includes a reversible digital counter coupled with said programmable frequency divider, means and said control circuit means causes said counter circuit means to count in said predetermined direction when the output of said frequency discriminator is of a first state and to count in the opposite direction when the output of said frequency discriminator is of second state; and said further means comprises means coupled with the output of said frequency discriminator and with said counter circuit means to take place at said second slower rate in response to a predetermined number of changes of state of frequency discriminator. 4. The combination according to claim 3 further including means responsive to the selection of a new channel in said television receiver for resetting said further means to an initial condition of operation. 5. The combination according to claim 4 wherein said further means comprises a search termination counter means operative to provide an output signal applied to said counter circuit means in response to a count thereby of a predetermined number of changes of state of said frequency discriminator to cause said counter circuit means to be operated at said second slower rate.
Description:
BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION
Both of the above mentioned patents are directed to frequency synthesizer tuning systems for use with television receivers to enable operation of the receivers with minimal viewer fine tuning adjustments. By the utilization of the frequency synthesizer tuning systems of these patents, the fine tuning adjustment which is necessary with conventional types of television receiver tuning systems has been substantially eliminated. The system employed in the '953 patent permits utilization of a frequency synthesizer tuning system which correctly tunes to a desired television station or channel even if the transmitted signals from that station are not precisely maintained at the proper frequencies. The '535 patent is directed to a signal seek tuning system adaptation of the frequency synthesizer tuning system of the '953 patent which still permits implementation of all of the desired wide-band pull in range of the frequency synthesizer system of the '953 patent.
The systems of the foregoing patents operate effectively to correct automatically for frequency offsets in a frequency synthesizer tuning system without affecting the operation of the conventional frequency synthesizer used in the system. The systems of these patents are in widespread use commercially and permit direct selection, with automatic fine tuning adjustment, of any desired VHF channel which the viewer wishes to observe. In addition, the signal seek adaptation disclosed in the '535 patent couples all of the advantages of the frequency synthesizer tuning system of the '953 patent with the desirability of providing bidirectional signal seek operation.
While the systems disclosed in the foregoing patents operate in a highly satisfactory manner to accomplish the desired results of accurate tuning without the necessity of fine tuning adjustments, the circuitry for accomplishing the desired results is somewhat complex. It is desirable to reduce the circuit complexity and the number of signal detectors for accomplishing these results without compromising the accuracy of operation of the system.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION
Accordingly, it is an object of this invention to provide an improved tuning system for a television receiver.
It is an additional object of this invention to provide an improved frequency synthesizer tuning system for a television receiver.
It is another object of this invention to provide an improved frequency synthesizer tuning system for a television receiver which includes a provision for adjusting the synthesizer loop for frequency offsets in the received signal with a minimum number of signal detectors.
It is a further object of this invention to tune the local RF oscillator of a television receiver to the correct frequency for a selected channel with a frequency synthesizer tuning system, and automatically to change the reference frequency of the synthesizer system, or adjust the count of a programmable divider that produces a signal that divides the frequency of the local oscillator of the tuner, if the AFT signal produced by the AFT frequency discriminator of the receiver is outside a predetermined range corresponding to correct tuning.
It is still another object of this invention to provide an improved frequency synthesizer tuning system for a television receiver which operates to adjust the synthesizer loop for frequency offsets in the received signal over a relatively wide pull in range in response to the output of the receiver frequency discriminator by changing the division ratio of a programmable frequency divider in the reference oscillator leg or local oscillator leg of the synthesizer loop at a first relatively high rate from an initial nominal value to a pre-established maximum in one direction, and then resetting the division ratio to a second nominal value once the maximum is reached and continuing to incrementally change the division ratio in the same direction from the second nominal value until a properly tuned condition is indicated by the output of the receiver AFT frequency discriminator, followed by control at a lower rate of operation to maintain tuning during transmitting station drifts.
In accordance with a preferred embodiment of this invention, the frequency synthesizer tuning system for a television receiver includes a stable reference oscillator and a voltage controlled local oscillator in the tuner. A programmable frequency divider is connected between the output of the reference oscillator and one input to a phase comparator, the other input of which is supplied by the output of the local oscillator. The output of the phase comparator then comprises a control signal which is supplied to the local oscillator to control the frequency of its operation.
A counter circuit is connected to the programmable frequency divider for initially setting the divider to a predetermined division ratio upon selection of a desired channel by the viewer. The counter then operates to change the programmable fraction of the division ratio at a first relatively high rate in a direction controlled by the output from the receiver picture carrier discriminator in the absence of a predetermined signal output derived from the discriminator. A control means causes the counter circuit to count in this direction until it is determined that a station is tuned or a predetermined maximum count is attained if no station is correctly tuned, thereupon resetting the counter circuit to a count which is a predetermined amount less than the maximum predetermined count. Counting is continued in the same predetermined direction from the new lesser count to continuously change the programmable fraction of the frequency divider in accordance with the state of operation of the counter. The high rate operation of the counter is terminated by the control means in response to a predetermined signal from the output of the discriminator, indicating that a station is correctly tuned, or after a fixed time-out interval; so that the system automatically adjusts for frequency offsets of the received signal which otherwise would cause the station to be mistuned if a conventional frequency synthesizer tuning system were used. After termination of the high rate operation of the counter, it is switched to a lower rate operation for maintaining tuning during transmitting station drifts.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS
FIG. 1 is a block diagram of a television receiver employing a preferred embodiment of the invention;
FIG. 2 is a detailed block diagram of a portion of the circuit of the preferred embodiment shown in FIG. 1;
FIG. 3 is a detailed circuit diagram of a portion of a circuit shown in FIG. 1;
FIG. 4 is a flow chart of the control sequence of operation of the circuit shown in FIG. 1 and 2; and
FIG. 5 shows a waveform and time/frequency chart, respectively, useful in explaining the operation of the circuit shown in FIGS. 1, 2 and 3.
DETAILED DESCRIPTION
Referring now to the drawings, the same reference numbers are used throughout the several figures to designate the same or similar components.
FIG. 1 is a block diagram of a television receiver, which may be a black and white or color television receiver. Most of the circuitry of this receiver is conventional, and for that reason it has not been shown in FIG. 1. Added to the conventional television receiver circuitry of FIG. 1, however, is a frequency synthesizer tuning system, in accordance with a preferred embodiment of the invention, which is capable of automatically changing the reference frequency when a frequency offset exists in the received signal for a particular channel.
Transmitted composite television signals, either received over the air or distributed by means of a master antenna TV distribution system, are received by an antenna 10 or on antenna input terminals to the receiver. As is well known, these composite signals include picture and sound carrier components and synchronizing signal components, with the composite signal applied to an RF and tuner stage 11 of the receiver. The stage 11 includes the conventional RF amplifiers and tuner sections of the receiver, including a VHF oscillator section and a UHF oscillator section. Preferably, the UHF and VHF oscillators are voltage controlled oscillators, the freuency of operation of which are varied in response to a tuning voltage applied to them to effect the desired tuning of the receiver.
The output of the RF and tuner stages 11 is applied to the remainder of the television receiver 14, which includes the IF amplifier stages for supplying conventional picture (video) and sound IF signals to the video and sound processing stages of the receiver 14. The circuitry of the receiver 14 may be of any conventional type used to separate, amplify and otherwise process the signals for application to a cathode ray tube 16 and to a loudspeaker 17 which reproduce the picture and sound components, respectively, of the received signal.
The receiver 14 also includes a conventional AFT or automatic fine tuning discriminator circuit and additionally may include a synch separator circuit for producing an output in response to the presence of vertical synchronizatin pulses, a picture carrier detection circuit, and an automatic gain control (AGC) amplifier. Outputs representative of these sensor components are shown as being coupled over a group of lead 20 to sensory circuitry 22, which in turn couples outputs representative of the operation of these various sensor circuits to a microprocessor unit 23 for controlling the operation of the microprocessor unit.
The microprocessor unit 23 is utilized in the system of FIG. 1 for controlling the operation of a frequency synthesizer tuning system capable of automatic offset correction. When the viewer desires to select a new channel, he enters the desired channel number into a channel selection keyboard 25. There are a number of different keyboards which may be employed to accomplish this function, and the particular design is not important to this invention. The channel selector keyboard 25 also may include switches or keys for initiating a signal seek function in either the "up" or "down" direction.
Information represented by the selection of channel numbers on the keyboard 25 is supplied to the microprocessor unit 23 which provides output signals over a corresponding set of leads 27 to the tuners (local oscillators) 11 to effect the appropriate band switching control for the tuners 11 in accordance with the particular channel which has been selected. In addition, the keyboard 25, operating through the microprocessor unit 23, provides output signals which operate a channel number display 29 to provide an appropriate display of the selected channel number to the viewer.
The microprocessor unit 23 also processes the signals which are used to operate the channel number display 29 through a multiplexing circuit operation to decode the selected channel number into a parallel encoded signal. This signal is applied to corresponding inputs of the count-down counter or programmable frequency divider 31 to cause the division number of the divider 31 to relate to the divided down frequency of the tuner local oscillators connected to the input of the divider 31 through a prescaler divider circuit 32 to the frequency of the reference oscillator 34. Thus, the division number or division ratio of the local oscillator frequency obtained from the output of the programmable divider 31 is appropriately related to the frequency of the reference crystal oscillator 34.
The output of the oscillator 34 also is applied through a countdown circuit or programmable frequency divider 35. Conventional frequency synthesizer techniques are employed; and the microprocessor unit 23 automatically compensates, through appropriate code converter circuitry, for the non-uniform channel spacing of the television signals. It has been found most convenient to cause the programmable frequency divider 31 to divide by numbers corresponding directly to the oscillator frequency of the selected channel, for example, 101, 107, 113 . . . up to 931.
In accordance with the time division multiplex operation of the microprocessor 23, the count of the programmable frequency divider 35 initially is adjusted to a fixed count by the application of appropriate output signals from the microprocessor unit 23 to a point selected to be at or near the mid-point of the operating range of the programmable frequency divider 35. Thus, the output of the divider 35 is a stable reference frequency (because the input is from the reference crystal oscillator 34) which is used to establish initially and to maintain tuning of the receiver to the selected channel.
The output of the programmable divider 35 is applied to one of two inputs of a phase comparator circuit 37. The other input to the phase comparator circuit 37 is supplied from the selected one of the VHF or UHF oscillators in the tuner stages 11 through the programmable frequency divider 31. The phase comparator circuit 37 operates in a conventional manner to supply a DC tuning control signal through a phase locked loop filter circuit 39 and over a lead 40 to the oscillators in the tuner system 11 to change and maintain their operating frequency.
With the exception of the use of the microprocessor unit 23, the operation of the system which has been described thus far is that of a relatively conventional frequency synthesizer system incorporated into a television receiver. This system is similar to the system of the '953 patent. As in the system of that patent, the system shown in FIG. 1, when the transmitted station or station received on a master antenna distribution system provides the station or channel signals at the proper frequency, operates as a relatively conventional frequency synthesizer system. If, however, there is a frequency offset in the received signal to cause the carrier of the received signal to be displaced from the frequency which it should have to some other frequency, it is possible that the system would give the appearance of mistuning to the received station. The microprocessor 23, operating in conjunction with the sensory circuitry 22, is employed in conjunction with the countdown or programmable frequency divider circuit 35 to eliminate this disadvantage and still retain the advantages of frequency synthesizer tuning.
Reference now should be made to FIG. 2 which shows details of the interface between the keyboard 25, the microprocessor unit 23, and the circuitry used in the frequency synthesizer portions of the system. A commercially available microprocessor which has been used for the microprocessor 23, and which forms the basis for the diagramatic representation of the microprocessor in FIG. 2, is the Matsushita Electronics Corporation MN1402 four-bit single-chip microcomputer. This microcomputer has two, four-bit parallel input ports labeled "A" and "B". In addition, three output ports, a five-bit output port "C" and two four-bit output ports "D" and "E" are provided. The internal configuration of the microcomputer 23 includes an arithmetic logic unit (ALU), a read only memory (ROM) for storing instructions and constants, and a random access memory (RAM) used for data memory, arranged into four files, each file containing 16 four-bit words. These words are selected by X and Y registers and this memory is used, for example, for timers, counters, etc., and also is used to hold intermediate results. To facilitate an understanding of the operation of the system, a portion of this memory is shown in FIG. 2 as a clock 81 and a reversible counter 82 connected between the "B" input port and the "D" output port. The microcomputer 23 is programmed to permit it to operate in conjunction with the remainder of the circuits shown in FIG. 2. The programming techniques are standard, and the microcomputer 23 itself is a standard commercially available circuit component.
There are several system parameters that must be selected in the operation of the system shown in FIG. 2. The selection of the nominal frequency of the two signals that feed the phase comparator circuit 37 is an example. Channel selection is provided by changing the frequency division ratio of the selector counter 31 which divides the local oscillator signal after this signal is passed through a prescaler circuit 32 and a divide-by-two divider circuit 41. The nominal frequency from the programmable frequency divider 31 (selector counter) is selected so that the local oscillator (tuner) 11 can be set exactly on frequency for all channels.
Since the frequency divider 31 is able to divide only by integer numbers, one distinct frequency possibility in the range of one KHz is obtained, another in the range of two KHz, etc. A choice must be made as to which of these values is optimum. Each value yields the nominal frequency of all of the 82 channels by simply multiplying by an appropriate integer for each channel. To simplify the phase locked loop filtering problem by the filter 39, it is desirable that the frequencies of the signals supplied to the phase comparator 37 are as high as possible. This permits rapid acquisition of a new channel along with a very clean DC control signal to adjust the local oscillator. A trade-off for this, however, must be made to permit fine tunning adjustment of the local oscillator automatically to correctly tune in stations which are off their assigned frequency, or to manually provide this feature, if desired. The two-speed operation of the system in accordance with the present invention allows a better trade-off to be made by allowing rapid acquisition and then a slower speed for precise tuning.
A compromise solution which is utilized in the circuit of FIG. 2 is to cause the frequency division chain from the local oscillator 11 in the tuner to the phase comparator 37 to be composed of the fixed divide-by-256 prescaler 32, and a fixed divide-by-4 division, which is accomplished by the divider 41 at the input of the counter 31 and a second divider 42 at the output of the counter 31. The variable frequency divider counter 31 then is loaded by means of three latch circuits 44, 45 and 46 at an appropriate time by the time division multiplex operation of the microcomputer 23 and a number that programs the programmable frequency divider counter 31 to divide by the numerical value of the frequency of the local oscillator in MHz for the channel selected. For example, if the receiver is to be tuned to channel 2, which has a nominal local oscillator frequency of 101 MHz, the programmable frequency divider 31 is set to divide by 101. If the receiver is to be tuned to channel 83, which has a nominal local oscillator frequency of 931 MHz, the programmable frequency divider 31 is set to divide by 931. In both cases, the variable divider 31 produces a 1 MHz signal. However, because of the fixed divide-by-256 and the two fixed divide-by-two dividers in series with the programmable divider 31, an output frequency of 976.5625 Hz is supplied from the output of the divider 42 to the upper input of the phase comparator 37.
The division ratio of the selector counter 31 is established by appropriate output signals from the latch circuits 44, 45 and 46, as mentioned above. The initial operation for changing, or maintaining, the division ratio of the divider 31 is established by an entry of the two digits of the selected channel number in the keyboard 25. The microcomputer 23 operates as a time division multiplex system for continuously monitoring the input ports and the output ports to control the operation of the remainder of the system. The selection of the two digits of the desired channel number is affected by a time division multiplex iscanning of the outputs of the D output port of microcomputer 23 and providing that information at the A input port. From here the information is translated again to the D output ports to the appropriate drivers of the channel number display circuit 29 and to the latches 44, 45 and 46, and to a pair of similar four bit latches 49 and 50 which control the divider ratio of the counter 35.
Although the D output ports of the microcomputer 23 are connected in common to all of these various portions of the circuit, the selection of which of the latches are enabled to respond to the particular output signals appearing on the D output ports at any given time is effected through the C and E output ports of the microcomputer 23 in a time division multiplex fashion. A decoder circuit 52, connected to the lowermost three outputs of the E output port of the microcomputer 23, is used to apply unique decoding signals at different times in the time division multiplex sequence of operation of the microcomputer 23 to the five latch circuits 44, 45, 46, 49 and 50, respectively. At any given time in the sequence, only one of these latch circuits is enabled for operation. A latch load signal is applied from the upper output (EO3) at each cycle of operation of the signals appearing on the E output port to set the latch circuit which is enabled by the output of the decoding circuit 52 with the data appearing on the other inputs to the latch circuit. This data simultaneously appears on the four outputs of the D output port of the microcomputer 23.
Thus, in rapid sequence, the latch circuits 44, 45 and 46 are set to store the division number corresponding to the selected channel entered onto the keyboard 25, and the latch circuits 49 and 50 are each operated to set the programmable divider reference counter 35 to a center or nominal count, which is always the same upon the selection of a new channel on the keyboard 25. Similarly, the two right-hand outputs of the C output port (CO6 and CO5) enter the two digits of the selected channel number in the drivers of the display circuit 29 at the proper time in the binary encoded sequence when these digits appear on the four-bit binary encoded representation of the D output port. This results in a visual display of the channel number selected.
In addition to the selection of a channel number directly by the keyboard 25, the keyboard also may include an additional switch 56, which is scanned in the time division multiplex sequence to determine if the receiver is placed in a "seek" mode of operation (when the signal seek capability is incorporated into such a receiver). Operating in conjunction with the signal seek switch 56 are a pair of "up" and "down" seek direction input switches shown with a graphic representation of the seek directions on the keyboard 25. A further provision is provided by two keys labeled "U" and "D", which are used for "manual" fine tuning of the receiver in the "up" or "down" directions depending upon which of the two keys U or D has been operated. The keyboard 25 includes one additional switch 58 which may be used to disable the automatic fine tuning (AFT) portion of the circuit by rendering the microcomputer insensitive to the signal output from the AFT circuit, in a manner described more fully subsequently.
As is apparent from the foregoing, the microcomputer 23 provides the intelligence, decision making, and control for the system operation. It is a complete self contained computer. The decisions or signal inputs upon which the microcomputer 23 bases its operation include, in addition to the inputs from the keyboard 25, inputs on sensory inputs into the B input port and into the SNS1 and SNS0 inputs as shown in FIG. 2. These input signals are used to provide an indication to the microcomputer 23 of the presence or absence of a received signal; and if the presence of such a signal is indicated, the inputs provide a further indication of the accuracy of the tuning of the receiver to that signal. If the system is being operated solely in a manual mode of operation (AFT switch 58 open), the microcomputer 23 disregards all of this sensory information and tunes to the frequency allocation of the channel selected in the manner described above. The system will stay tuned to this condition, operating as a conventional frequency synthesizer, whether or not a station is present in the received signal.
When the system is placed in its automatic mode of operation (similar to the mode of operation of the above mentioned '953 patent), the counter 82, integrally formed as part of the microcomputer 23, continuously adds or subtracts one number at a time from the nominal value or programmable division fraction entered into the programmable frequency divider 35 at the outset of each new channel number selection when frequency offset (mistuning) is present. The counter 82 is driven at a relatively high counting rate by clock pulses from the clock 81 during this initial or forced search mode of operation. Thus, automatic offset correction is provided for any channel which is off its assigned frequency. The offset correction automatically adjusts the frequency of the local oscillator by changing the division ratio of the signal from the reference oscillator 35 applied to the lower input of the phase comparator 37. By doing this, the output of the phase comparator 37 applied to the local oscillator 11 varies to cause the oscillator to be tuned in the proper direction to compensate for the transmitting station mistuning.
When the system is operating in its automatic mode of operation, the microcomputer 23 responds to the sensor information applied to it on its B input ports and on the S1 input port shown in FIG. 2. These inputs are obtained from the various outputs of the operational amplifiers shown connected to the corresponding input ports in the detailed circuit of FIG. 3. Depending upon whether the receiver is provided with a signal seek feature or not, one or more of the sensory inputs of the circuit of FIG. 3 are used. The system shown in the drawings has a capability of correcting for frequency offsets larger than 1.5 MHz on channels 2 and 7 and approximately 2 MHz on channels 6 and 13. The remainder of the channels have a range between these two values.
If the receiver is not tuned properly, the micromputer 23 executes the localized search of the tuning range mentioned above. Since there is a necessary settling down time for the tuning of a television receiver immediately following selection of a new channel, a time interval of 250 milliseconds has been selected to prevent any localized search or offset frequency correction until the expiration of this "settling down" time period. If, at the end of this 250 millisecond time interval, a properly tuned station is present, this is indicated by the sensory outputs from the television receiver and no localized search is effected to change the division ratio or programmable divider count in the reference counter 35 for a system that also has signal seek.
A system with no signal seek capability is described later that requires less sensory input but which uses a time period where a forced search is required directly after the settling time interval.
Upon termination of the 250 millisecond settling down period, the microcomputer 23 is rendered responsive to the sensory input signals on its sensory input signal ports. In the simplest form, only the output of the frequency discriminator 60 (FIG. 3) applied to three comparators 61, 62 and 63 is used to provide the necessary tuning information to the microcomputer 23. The outputs of these comparators are applied to the B12 and B11 inputs of the microcomputer. The comparator 61 simply is a conventional comparator for determining whether or not the output of the frequency discriminator is positive or negative, as indicated in the upper waveform of FIG. 5. The comparators 62 and 63 are each adjusted with appropriate reference input levels to provide a narrow window centered about the center tuning frequency (fc) of the receiver. If the tuning of the receiver, as indicated by the output of the frequency discriminator 60, is outside this window on either side of the central axis shown in FIG. 5, one output condition is indicated on the input terminal B11 of the microcomputer. Only when the tuning frequency is within the tuning window, indicative of a properly tuned receiver, is the appropriate input applied to the microcomputer input terminal B11. This input overrides any other input that may be present on the input terminal B12 and is indicative of a properly tuned receiver. The input from the frequency discriminator 60, as applied to the microcomputer on its input port B12, is used to determine the direction of operation of the counter 82 of the microcomputer for the localized search count signals applied to the latch circuits 49 and 50 to change the count of the reference programmable divider counter 35 on a step-by-step basis.
The lower graph of FIG. 5 plots the relative frequency of the local oscillator 11 to the received signal frequency with respect to time. The various arrows are used to indicate the manner of operation of the counter 82 in the microcomputer 23 in conjunction with the reference counter 35 for adjusting for any mistuning conditions which may exist after the initial station selection has been effected in the manner described above.
If the receiver is properly tuned, the outputs from the comparators 62 and 63 of FIG. 3 which are combined together and applied to the input port B11 of the microcomputer 23, provide an indication that the tuning is within the properly tuned center frequency window. As a consequence, no further operation of the microcomputer to change any of the outputs applied to the latch circuits 49 and 50 for the duration of this condition is effected. On the other hand, if the receiver is mistuned on either side of the proper tuning frequency, the various operating characteristics shown in FIG. 5 are effected.
Assume initially that the receiver is capable of making tuning adjustments over a range of fc plus Δf to fc minus Δf, as indicated in the top waveform of FIG. 5. Three specific examples of mistuning will then be considered. Initially, assume that the local oscillator is mistuned relative to the received signal to a frequency f1 as shown in the lower graph of FIG. 5. In this condition, the outout of the frequency discriminator 60 is positive since this signal frequency lies to the lefthand side of the center or properly tuned region of operation of the discriminator. Under this condition of the operation, the input signal applied to the sensor port B12 of the microcomputer 23 is such that the microcomputer counter 82 is caused to advance in a positive direction to change the programmable division ratio or count of the reference counter 35 in a manner to force the output of the phase comparator 37 to adjust the frequency of the local oscillator until the proper tuning indicated at point B in the lower graph of FIG. 5 is reached. The time interval for accomplishing this result is measured from the upper end of the arrow representative of the frequency f1 to the point B.
Now assume that the receiver mistuning is to a frequency f2 which as shown in FIG. 5 as located on the righthand-side of the center axis fc. In this condition, the discriminator output is negative. This is reflected in the output of the comparator 61 applied to the input port B12 of the microcomputer 23. The polarity of this signal is identified by the microcomputer 23 to cause the counter 82 in it to operate in the reverse direction. As this count is applied on a step-by-step basis through the latch circuits 49 and 50 to the reference counter 35, the division ratio or count of the reference counter (divider) 35 is changed. As a result, the reference oscillator signal applied to the phase comparator 37 causes the phase comparator 37 output to drive the local oscillator frequency in a direction opposite to that considered in the first example. This is shown by the vector interconnecting the top of the arrow representative of f2 to point A on the time/frequency graph of FIG. 5.
As discussed in the general discussion above, whenever the tuning frequency reaches the narrow window on either side of fc, the outputs of the comparators 62 and 63 provide the necessary indication on the sensory input port terminal B11 to cause termination of the operation of the counter 82 in the microcomputer 23. Then the reference counter 35 remains set to the count attained just prior to the appearance of this input signal on the input port B11 of the microcomputer 23.
A third mistuning condition can exist, and ordinarily this condition results in an ambiguity which cannot be corrected simply by responding to the signal polarity at the output of the frequency discriminator. This is indicated by the mistuned condition where the difference between the local oscillator frequency f3 and the transmitter frequency is such that the signal f3 lies in the range to the right of the negative portion of the discriminator output shown in the upper waveform of FIG. 5. In this condition, the associated sound causes the discriminator output to be positive; so that the television receiver normally would attempt to tune toward the next adjacent channel and away from the properly tuned center frequency of the channel which is desired. The output of the discriminator 60 in this situation is the same as it was in the first example considered for frequency f1; so that the counter 82 of the microprocessor 23 operates to change the count in the reference counter 35 in a manner to cause the local oscillator frequency to go higher toward a frequency f3 +Δf, as shown in FIG. 5.
A predetermined number of counts of the counter 82 in the microcomputer 23 are necessary for the microcomputer to count through the frequency range Δf, and this range is selected to be within the pull in or operating range of the system. Once this count has been attained, the microcomputer counter 82 immediately is reset back to a count which corresponds to a frequency 2 Δf lower than the frequency attained by the maximum count. This is indicated in FIG. 5 by the frequency f3-Δf. Because the microcomputer counter 82 is limited to counting a number of counts equal to Δf, this new frequency now is on the lefthand side of the center line fc, shown in both waveforms of FIG. 5. This places the local oscillator frequency at a point such that the frequency discriminator output is the positive output shown on the lefthand-side of the upper waveform of FIG. 5. Counting continues in the same direction as previously. This time, however, it is in a proper direction to bring about correct tuning; and when the center frequency is reached, the output of the comparators 62 and 63 cause the microcomputer 23 to stop its count. The proper tuning point attained is indicated at point C on the graph of the lower part of FIG. 5.
Because the counter 82 of the microcomputer is limited to a maximum count equivalent to Δf above its initial count and thereupon is reset to a new count equivalent to 2 Δf lower than the maximum count, it is not necessary to utilize any other sensory inputs in order to properly tune the receiver over a wide pull in range (as much as plus or minus 2 MHz). Only the output of the conventional frequency discriminator 60 is used to provide the necessary sensory inputs.
The counter 82 of the microcomputer 23 is operated by the clock 81 during the foregoing sequence of operation, immediately following the selection of a new channel by the operation of the keyboard 25, at a fast or high speed operation. Typically, the counter steps are 10 milliseconds per step; so that there are no initial visual effects which can be noticed by an observer of the television screen of the receiver being tuned. The maximum forced search period is approximately 900 milliseconds in duration. At the end of this time interval, a timer in the microcomputer 23 causes a signal to be applied through the outputs of the E output port to the decoder circuit 52 indicative of the completion of this time interval. The decoder 52 then applies a pulse on an output lead connected to the B13 input of the B input port of the microcomputer 23. This pulse is sensed by the microcomputer 23 and is applied to the clock 81 to change the clock rate to a much slower rate, approximately one-third (1/3) or one-fourth (1/4) the rate used previously during the forced search mode of operation. This then permits the system to accomodate station drifts which normally occur at a very slow rate during the transmission and reception of a television signal. As a consequence, it is possible to use more filtering in the filter 39 on the tuning line (FIG. 1) and employ a smaller frequency window for the channel verification sensed by the circuitry shown in FIG. 3. The result is a more precise tuning from the receiver than is otherwise possible if only a high speed operation of the clock 81 is utilized.
When the channel once again is changed by operation of the keys in the keyboard 25 or operation of the channel selection circuitry from a remote control unit, this new channel input is sensed by the microcomputer 23 from the signals applied to the A input port and the clock 81 is reset to its fast time or the forced search mode of operation; and the process resumes.
Instead of employing an additional decoding function in the decoder 52, a separate decoder also could be connected to the outputs of the D output ports to feed back the signal to the B13 input terminal of the B input port of the microcomputer 23. The operation of the system to change the rate or frequency of the pulses applied by the clock 81 to the counter 82 otherwise is the same as described above.
Although applicant has found that it is preferable to correct for mistuning or frequency offsets by adjusting the count or division ratio of the counter 35, such offset adjustments also could be effected by adjusting the count in the counter 31 in the local oscillator signal line. The operation in such a case is the same as described above for adjusting the count in the counter 35.
If the receiver is to be used with an automatic signal seek mode of operation, however, additional sensory inputs are necessary. These inputs operate in conjunction with the output of the frequency discriminator 60. The operation of the microcomputer 23 in controlling the count of the reference programmable frequency counter divider 35 is the same as described above. The additional sensory inputs simply are used in conjunction with the outputs of the comparators 62 and 63 to signal the microcomputer 23 to assure that tuning is to a picture channel rather than an adjacent sound channel. This is accomplished by utilizing the output of the synchronizing signal separator 65 which is applied to a comparator 67 to produce an output signal to the SNS1 sensory input of the microcomputer 23 only when vertical synchronizing signal components are present.
In addition, the output of a picture carrier detector 69 is applied to the input of a comparator 70 to produce an output to the B10 sensory input of the microcomputer 23. If the picture carrier detector 69 is producing an output indicative of the presence of a carrier, but no output is being obtained from the vertical synch separator 65 at the same time, the system is mistuned to a sound carrier and the microcomputer 23 is permitted to continue its localized search until a properly tuned station is found. Only when there is coincidence of signals from the picture carrier detector 69, the synch signal separator 65, and the automatic frequency discriminator window as determined by the comparators 62 and 63, is the microcomputer operation terminated to indicate that a properly tuned channel is present.
Further insurance of tuning the receiver only to a strong signal also can be provided by the addition of an AGC amplifier 72. This is connected to a comparator 74 coupled to the B10 input port along with the output of the picture carrier detector comparator 70. When the AGC amplifier 72 is used as a sensory input, the microcomputer operation, when the system is used in a signal seek mode, is only terminated to indicate reception of a valid signal when that signal is strong enough to produce the desired output from the comparator 74. The signal level which is acceptable is set by a potentiometer 75.
It should be noted that when the system is operated in a signal seek mode, the sensory inputs must indicate the reception of a properly tuned signal within a pre-established time period. If no signal is sensed by the various sensory input circuits operating in conjunction with one another as described above, the microcomputer 23 automatically steps to the next channel number and repeats the sequence of operation described above. This is when it is placed in its signal seek mode of operation. If signal seek is not employed, the additional sensory circuits 65, 69 and 72 are not necessary, and the inputs to the microcomputer which are provided from these sensory circuits are not utilized. The sensory signal input which is used both for a receiver without a signal seek capability of operation and for a receiver which has a signal seek mode of operation in it, is the output of the frequency discriminator 60 operating in conjunction with the comparators 61, 62 and 63 as described above.
As indicated above, the wideband method of tuning precisely to an incoming signal that is at the wrong frequency described here only needs the frequency discriminator sensory information. The method that uses the additional sensors described above is needed to make this system operate compatibly with signal seek but it is not restricted to seek operation.
For a system that does not use signal seek operation, only the frequency discriminator sensory input is required for proper operation. The discriminator 60 is used for both fine tuning direction information and to produce a frequency window to indicate the presence of a correctly tuned station (channel verification). Initially, after a channel change, there is a 250 millisecond settling time, the same as the operation described above with compatible seek. After that, however, comes a period of time where a forced localized search is produced by the microcomputer 23. The forced search is needed to insure that the system will correctly tune to stations that initially may be tuned to the undesired zero voltage crossover in the right half of the upper curve of FIG. 5. Such signals may be within the frequency window of the discriminator 60; and if a search is not forced, this system will not correctly tune. The compatible seek system described previously correctly tunes the local oscillator without a forced search, because the picture carrier detector and vertical detector do not give an output for this situation and the system automatically goes into its search mode of operation. However, the non-seek system does not have a picture carrier sensor input and must be forced to search for an initial period of time sufficient to allow the system to tune up to its maximum frequency and then reset (loop) back to a frequency of 2 Δf lower. Then it is tuned to the positive left half portion of the discriminator curve (FIG. 5) and the frequency window created by the discriminator 60 is sufficient to insure proper tuning. If the discriminator output produced by the desired incoming signal created an initial situation that produces the correct tuning direction information, i.e., in the left half of the curve of FIG. 5, or in the right half portion that gives the correct direction and frequency window information, the forced search would not be needed. However, the forced search will produce a correct tuning situation anyway. In these cases, the tuning either is correct to begin with or correct tuning is reached quickly. Then, even though the forced search is active, it simply alternates up and down through the correct tuning point because each time the receiver is tuned a little high in frequency, it produces a negative output from the discriminator 60; and the tuning direction signal causes the system to tune down in frequency. Then, a positive discriminator output is produced, and the system tunes up in frequency. This continues until the forced search is removed by time-out of the microcomputer 23 (a fraction of a second). At such time, the receiver is correctly tuned by the frequency window of the discriminator to be very near fc. The system cannot tune to the undesired discriminator crossover shown in the right half portion of FIG. 5 because the polarity of the tuning direction signal always causes it to tune away from that point.
The fast time or forced search operation of the system can be terminated in a different way other than the preestablished time-out period described above in conjunction with the operation of the circuit shown in FIG. 2. Generally, it is desirable to build into the system (or program into the system by means of software) such a maximum time-out period to effect the operation which has been described above to terminate the search and cause the clock 81 thereafter to operate in a low speed mode of operation. Termination also can be accomplished by sensing the number of changes in the direction sensor input applied to the B12 terminal of the B input port to cause the search to be terminated when this direction changes three times (or more). By doing this, any flicker that might be observed on the screen of the television receiver is minimized, since the forced search still takes place at the high rate of application of clock pulses from the clock 81 to the counter 82 in the same manner described above.
Termination of the search, however, also may be effected by means of a search terminate counter 78 (FIG. 3), which is advanced by pulses applied to it each time the output of the comparator 61 changes its sign (indicative of a change in direction for the counter 82) as applied to it through the B12 input port, as described earlier. After three of these changes, or some other number if desired, an output pulse is obtained from the search terminate counter 78 and is applied to the SNS0 input of the microcomputer 23. This causes the operation of the clock 81 to be switched to its low speed mode of operation to terminate the fast or "forced search" mode of operation. The next time a new channel number is entered on the keyboard 25, a reset pulse is applied to the search terminate counter 78 to reset it to its original or zero count, thereby readying it for another sequence of operation. It is apparent that the search terminate counter 78 may not always be operated to terminate the count, since the time-out interval which is sensed by the decode circuit 52 and applied to the B13 input port of the microcomputer 23 may occur before there are three changes of direction of the search. In any event, the next time a new channel number is entered into the keyboard 25, the search terminate counter 78 is reset; so that it is irrelevant whether this counter reaches a full count or not to effect the termination of the forced search operation of the system.
FIG. 4 shows the control sequence of the system which is stored in the ROM (Read Only Memory) of the microcomputer 23. The microcomputer 23 operates by always running through the flow sequence, via loops L1, L2 and L3. Loop L1 corresponds to a new channel selection by two digit number entry. Loop L2 corresponds to channel number increment or decrement by an up or down key operation, respectively, or by seek operation. Loop L3 corresponds to fine tuning, either manual or automatic. To obtain exact timing for system control, the microcomputer 23 receives a standard timing pulse from the output of the reference counter 35 divided in a divide-by-five counter 80 and applied to the A13 input port of the microcomputer 23. The control functions which are programmed into the microcomputer 23, as indicated in the flow chart of FIG. 4, are outlined in the following paragraphs.
Channel Number Correction: An invalid two digit channel number entry (0, 1, 84, 99) is corrected. When the operation of the receiver is in the signal seek mode, the next channel up from 83 is channel 2, and the next lower channel from channel 2 is 83.
PLL Control I: For a given channel number, a corresponding binary code for the PLL selector counter 31 is derived as described previously. For UHF channels, the local oscillator frequency separation between two adjacent channels is 6 MHz and the code for PLL is generated by the microcomputer 23 through means of a simple calculation. This code then is transferred from the microcomputer 23 to the latches 44, 45 and 46 as described previously.
PLL Control II: This routine of the microcomputer 23 is used to transfer the fine tuning data to the latches 49 and 50 which control the count of the reference counter 35 in the PLL circuit.
Channel Number Display: The channel number is transferred from the microcomputer 23 to the driver latches of the display driver circuit 29.
Key Input Detection: The keyboard is arranged as the matrix circuit shown in FIG. 2. ROM programming for scanning and acknowledging a keyboard entry only after successive indications provides protection against false entry due to contact bounce. The four data output lines of the D output port of the microcomputer 23 are used to transfer data to the phase lock loop section of the circuit and to the display circuit 29, as well as for scanning the keyboard matrix circuit.
Time Count: The microcomputer 23 receives a basic timing pulse of approximately 200 Hz from the output of the divider 80 and performs various controls for each timing pulse. By way of example, sensing for the vertical synch input (when the system is used with a signal seek capability) on the input port SNS1 takes place every 2.5 milliseconds. Automatic seek timing is selected to be 133 milliseconds for UHF channels. All of these timing pulses are derived from the basic synchronization timing pulse applied to the microcomputer on the A13 input port from the output of the divider 80. Various other timing values used in the microcomputer to properly time multiplex sequence the operation are derived from this basic timing pulse.
Sensor Input Detection: As described previously, the output of the comparators shown in FIG. 3 reflect the status of the tuning of the television receiver. If no signal seek mode of operation is used, only the frequency discriminator or AFT discriminator 60 is necessary. When a system is being used in a signal seek mode, a proper television signal receipt is indicated by the presence of a vertical synch signal at the output of the synch signal separator 65 and corresponding outputs are applied to the input leads B10 and B11 (high level input signals) indicative of tuning to the "correct tuned" frequency discriminator window and reception of a picture carrier. As stated previously, the signal present on the B12 input lead is used to determine the direction of tuning when the receiver is operated in its automatic mode.
Mode Detection: The status of the seek and automatic/manual (A/M) switches are detected. If the A/M switch (not shown) is in its automatic position, automatic seek and offset correction are active. If only the seek switch is on, only seek is performed. If the A/M switch is in manual, manual fine tuning (MFT) is active.
Automatic Mode: If the TV receiver is not properly tuned for VHF channels in automatic, the local oscillator frequency is shifted automatically toward proper tuning. The fine tuning data is generated in the microcomputer 23 and is transferred to the latches 49 and 50 for the reference counter 35 in the PLL circuit.
Manual Fine Tuning (MFT) Control: The local oscillator frequency is shifted by pushing the fine tuning up (U) or down (D) pushbutton or switch. This MFT control can be applied to VHF channels as well as to UHF channels.
Channel Up/Down: When a channel up (upward pointing arrow) or down (downward pointing arrow) key closure in the keyboard 25 is detected, or upon a direct access to an unused channel, this routine is activated and the system will advance to the next channel in the selected direction.
The foregoing embodiment of the invention which has been described above and which is illustrated in the drawings is to be considered illustrative of the invention, which is not limited to the specific embodiment selected for this purpose. For example, hard-wired logic could be used to achieve the various circuit operations which are accomplished by the microcomputer 23 in conjunction with the other portions of the system. The relative ease of programming and debugging the microcomputer 23, however, make it much simpler to implement the system operation with the microcomputer than with hard-wired logic. With respect to the sensor circuit inputs to the system, an added degree of operating assurance can be provided by the addition of a sound carrier sensor in addition to the picture carrier sensor shown in FIG. 3. If this feature is desired, the output of the comparator for the sound carrier is combined with the outputs of the comparators 70 and 74 at the input terminal B10 of the B input port of the microcomputer 23. Because of the manner of the circut operation which has been described previously, however, the addition of a sound carrier detector to the system is not considered necessary, even for a system operating in the signal seek mode of operation. This is in contrast to conventional television receivers having a signal seek operation, in which detection of the sound carrier generally is a necessity to insure that mistuning of the receiver to an adjacent sound carrier does not take place.
NORDMENDE DeLuxe COLORSONIC 2400 PRESTIGE SK3 COLOR CHASSIS F7 Controlled power supply for a television receiver equipped with remote control:BLAUPUNKT SWITCH MODE POWER SUPPLY.Blaupunkt-Werke GmbH (Hildesheim, DT)

A single isolation transformer supplies both the remote control receiver and the television receiver. A pulse generator such as a blocking oscillator which energizes the primary winding of the isolation transformer has its pulse width controlled in response to the loading of the circuit of the secondary winding of the isolation transformer, as measured by the voltage across a resistor in the circuit of a primary winding. This measuring resistor is interposed between the emitter of the switching transistor of the blocking oscillator and the receiver chassis. A transistor switching circuit for cutting off the low voltage supply to the scanning circuit oscillators of the television receiver is responsive to the output of the remote control receiver, to a signal from an operating control of the television receiver, and to an indication of overcurrent in the picture tube, independently.

1. A power supply circuit for a television receiver equipped for remote control comprising, in combination:
an on-off switch for connecting and disconnecting the television receiver and its power supply circuit respectively to and from the electricity supply mains;
pulse generating means arranged for energization through said on-off switch;
an isolation transformer having its primary winding supplied with the output of said pulse generating means;
a power conversion circuit connected to the secondary winding of said isolation transformer for energization thereby, for supplying an operating voltage for the scanning circuits of the television receiver and for supplying a plurality of other voltages to said receiver, at least one of which other voltages is also supplied to said scanning circuits;
a remote control signal receiver for remote control of said television receiver and controlled switching means responsive to said remote control receiver for switching said television receiver between a stand-by condition and an operating condition, both said remote control receiver and said controlled switching means being connected to a secondary winding of said isolation transformer for energization thereby, said controlled switching means having a switching path for connecting and disconnecting said scanning circuits of said television receiver respectively to and from a source of said operating voltage in said power conversion circuit and
means for reducing energy transfer through said pulse generating means to said isolation transformer when said television receiver is in the stand-by condition.
2. A power supply circuit as defined in claim 1, in which said pulse generating means includes rectifying means energized through said on-off switch for supplying direct current for energization of said pulse generating means. 3. A power supply circuit as defined in claim 2, in which said energy transfer reducing means includes means for varying the width (duration) of pulses generated by said pulse generating means in response to the extent of loading of the secondary circuit of said isolating transformer as measured in the primary circuit of said transformer. 4. A power supply circuit as defined in claim 2, in which said pulse generating means includes a blocking oscillator and said energy transfer reducing means includes means for reducing the width (duration) of the pulses generated by said blocking oscillator. 5. A power supply circuit as defined in claim 4, in which said blocking oscillator includes a switching transistor (5) and a load measuring resistor (7) interposed in a connection between the emitter of said switching transistor and the receiver chassis, and in which said pulse width reducing means is responsive to the voltage drop across said load measuring resistor. 6. A power supply circuit as defined in claim 5, in which said pulse width reducing means includes a controllable resistance (10) in the circuit of said blocking oscillator controlled in response to the voltage drop across said load measuring resistor. 7. A power supply circuit as defined in claim 1, in which said operating voltage connected and disconnected to said scanning circuits by said controlled switching means is the low voltage supply voltage (U 3') of the line scan and picture scan oscillators of the television receiver and in which said controlled switching means is controlled so as to switch off said low voltage supply voltage to put the television receiver in the stand-by condition. 8. A power supply circuit as defined in claim 7, in which said controlled switching means includes a first switching transistor (15) at the collector of which there is applied a direct current supply voltage (U 3) energized through said isolating transformer and a second switching transistor (24) for controllably short-circuiting the base bias of said first switching transistor, whereby a stabilized low voltage (U 3') exists at the emitter of said first switching transistor (15) when a positive signal is supplied from an operating control of the television receiver or from said remote control receiver to the base of said second switching transistor (24). 9. A power supply circuit as defined in claim 7, in which said controlled switching means is responsive independently to an overcurrent condition in the picture tube for switching off said low voltage supply voltage (U 3') in response to said overcurrent condition.
Description:
The present invention relates to a power supply unit including a blocking oscillator for utilization with a television receiver provided with ultrasonic remote control, and more particularly to a television receiver the operating conditions of which are normal operation, a stand-by operation, and the turned-off condition, and a power supply unit therefor that includes an isolating transformer.
In recent times television receivers have frequently been provided with ultrasonic remote control devices for the purpose of offering easier control. As more and more television receivers are utilized in combination with additional equipment, it becomes increasingly necessary to connect the receivers only indirectly to the electric power mains (house wiring). In a known advantageous solution of this problem, a power supply unit includes an isolating transformer which is wired up with a blocking oscillator in the primary circuit. The blocking oscillator is supplied with a d-c voltage which is obtained by rectification of the supply voltage. Compared to the isolating transformers which are directly mains-operated, these so-called switch-mode power supply units have the advantage that they can be made in considerably smaller size, as they are operated at a significantly higher frequency, and the further advantage that they require less expensive means for rectification.
It is necessary to supply television receivers equipped with ultrasonic remote control with the possibility for a stand-by operation in which only the ultransonic receiver is supplied with power and, in some cases, also the heating current for the picture tube. Usually a separate power supply unit is provided for the ultrasonic receiver and the heating of the picture tube, a unit that includes an isolating transformer of its own, the primary winding of which is directly mains-fed. Upon transition from normal operation to stand-by operation, the power supply unit of the blocking osciallator is switched off, so that the television receiver receives only the relatively small quantity of energy required for the ultrasonic receiver and, in some cases, also for the heating of the picture tube.
Because of the required second isolating transformer, this known circuit has the disadvantages that it requires both greater space and greater expenditure.
It is the object of the present invention to develop a simplified power supply unit which does not have the above-mentioned disadvantages.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION
Briefly, the television receiver and the ultrasonic receiver are connected to the same isolating transformer; means for the switching from normal operation to stand-by operation and vice versa are placed in the secondary circuit of the isolating transformer, and means are arranged in the primary circuits of the isolating transformer for reducing the amount of energy made available for stand-by operation purposes.
The main advantages of the present invention are that no separate isolating transformer is required for supplying the current during the stand-by operation, and that, during the stand-by operation, it is nevertheless only the power required for this operation which is consumed.
An advantageous embodiment of the present invention obtains reduction of the energy quantum transmitted through the power supply during stand-by by reduction of the pulse width of the pulses generated by the blocking oscillator.
Another advantageous embodiment of the present invention utilizes measurement in the primary circuit of the isolating transformer of variation in load occurring in the secondary circuit as a control variable for determining the pulse width.
A further advantageous embodiment of the present invention obtains the control variable for the pulse width across a measuring resistor interposed in the connection of the emitter of the switching transistor of the blocking oscillator to the chassis.
Still another advantageous embodiment of the present invention provides that the voltage drop across the measuring resistor controls a controllable resistor.
The advantageous embodiments described above offer highly simple and advantageous possibilities for measuring the variation in load upon switching between normal and stand-by operation, as well as for the consequent control of the energy transmitted via the isolating transformer.
The possibility of a simple and inexpensive switching between normal and stand-by operation is achieved by effecting the switching between normal and stand-by operation by means of switching on or switching off, respectively, the low voltage supply of the line scan oscillator, and, especially, by a first switching transistor which short-circuits the base bias of a second switching transistor at the collector of which a direct current supply voltage is present and at the emitter of which a stabilized low voltage exists, when a positive signal is supplied from the operating control of the television receiver or from the remote control receiver to the base of the first switching transistor.
The circuit arrangements just mentioned offer the advantage that they may simultaneously be utilized as a protective circuit. This is achieved by a switching-off device for the low voltage which can also be triggered at any time by a signal built up by overcurrent in the picture tube.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS
The invention is further described by way of illustrative example by reference to the annexed drawings in which:
FIG. 1 is a circuit diagram, partly in block form, of an embodiment of the invention;
FIG. 2 is a circuit diagram of one form of means for interrupting the power to the picture circuits in the stand-by condition in connection with the circuit of FIG. 1, and
FIG. 3 is a circuit diagram of one way of controlling the pulse width of the blocking oscillator 4 in response to the switching circuit 8 in the circuit of FIG. 1.
DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT
An on-off power switch 2 of the television receiver is connected to the supply terminals 1, providing a primary operating control for the receiver. Consquently, the supply voltage is also present at the output of the operating control 2 when the television receiver is turned on thereby, and arrives at a rectifying stage 3 comprising means for rectifying and smoothing the supply current as well as for suppressing interference. A d-c voltage, feeding a blocking oscillator stage 4, is present at the output of the recifying stage 3. The main part of the blocking oscillator 4, symbolically represented in FIG. 1 by a fragmentary circuit diagram, is a switching transistor 5, in the load circuit of which the primary winding of an isolating tranformer 6 is placed. A measuring resistor 7 is connected between the emitter of the switching transistor 5 and the chassis, across which measuring resistor a voltage is taken and applied to a load-dependent control circuit 8. The voltage taken at the measuring resistor 7 is fed via a resistor 9 to the base of a transistor 10 which serves as a controllable load for the blocking oscillator 4. A resistor 11 and a capacitor 12, each of which is connected to chassis with its other terminal, are also connected to the base of the transistor 10. The emitter of transistor 10 is connected to chassis, while the collector of the transistor 10 is connected back to the blocking oscillator stage 4.
In the secondary circuit of the isolating transformer 6, a d-c voltage supply stage or power conversion circuit 13 is placed, substantially consisting of a rectifying circuit 14, which, in the example shown, is provided with six outputs at which the voltages U 1 to U 5 can be taken off with respect to the sixth output connected to the chassis. At the terminal U 3, there is, in addition, a branch feeding both the collector-to-emitter path of the transistor 15 and also, through a resistor 16, the collector-to-emitter path of the transistor 15a. The emitter of the transistor 15a is directly connected to the base of transistor 15. The emitter of the transistor 15 is connected to chassis via a series connection of a resistor 17, a potentiometer 18, and a further resistor 19. The tap of the potentiometer 18 is connected to the base of a further transistor 20. The transistor 20 is connected to chassis by means of its emitter via a Zener diode 21, the collector of the transistor 20 controlling the base of the transistor 15a. The emitter of the transistor 20 is connected to the emitter of the transistor 15 via a resistor 22. A terminal for tapping off the voltage U 3' is connected to the emitter of the transistor 15.
The base of the transistor 15a is connected to a switching stage 23 responsive to a remote control ultrasonic receiver by a conductor leading to the collector of a switching transistor 24 which is connected to chassis via its emitter. The base of the switching transistor 24 is connected to an input terminal 28 leading into the television receiver via two resistors 25, 26 and a capacitor 27 connected in series, that input terminal 28 passing on switching signals from the receiver to the switching transistor 24, as will be explained in more detail below.
The cathode of a diode 29, which is connected to chassis via its anode, is connected to the junction point of the resistor 26 and the capacitor 27. The junction point of the two resistors 25, 26 is connected to chassis via a capacitor 30. The base of the switching transistor 24 is connected to chassis via a resistor 31. Furthermore, that base electrode is also connected to a terminal 32 to which an electrical switching signal is applied which is either built up in response to an ultrasonic signal received by the remote control receiver 32' or is supplied from an operating control of the television receiver. At the terminal 32, the switching transistor 24 receives the signal containing the information whether the television receiver is to work in the normal operating condition, i.e. to receive and process the sound and video signals, or in the stand-by condition in which it is substantially only the ultrasonic receiver that is supplied with current.
When a positive signal arrives at the base of the switching transistor 24, the latter becomes conductive, and causes chassis potential to be present at the base of transistor 15a. The transistor 15 is thereby blocked, and there is no longer any voltage at the terminal U 3'. Since the voltage U 3' serves as an operating voltage for the line and picture scan oscillator, the deflecting stages of the receiver cannot work and no high voltage and other related supply voltages are generated at the line circuit transformer. In consequence, by means illustrated diagrammatically in FIG. 2, the electric circuits connected to the terminals U 1 to U 3 are interrupted. The voltages U 4 and U 5 serve for supplying the ultrasonic receiver, i.e. they are required for the stand-by operation.
In case no counteracting means should be provided for, the variation in load would cause a voltage rise in the secondary circuit of the isolating transformer 6, which effect is, of course, not desired. Therefore, a measuring resistor is connected in the primary circuit in the emitter line of the switching transistor 5 of the blocking oscillator 6, the variation in load in the secondary circuit appearing at the measuring resistor 7 as a current variation. The current change thus produced, causes a variation in the base bias of the transistor 10, the capacitor 12 having an integrating effect to avoid undesired effects due to interference pulses and abrupt load fluctuations.
The change of the working point of the transistor 10 causes a change in the pulse width in the blocking oscillator stage 4, as more fully shown in FIG. 3, so that the energy quantum transmitted via the isolating transformer 6 is such that the required voltages are present in the secondary circuit. It should also be mentioned that the load-dependent switch 8 and the circuit of FIG. 3 are represented only by way of illustration and that many circuit arrangements may be devised by straight-forward application of known principles for controlling the pulse width.
The circuit connected between the terminal 28 and the base of the switching transistor 24 serves as a part of a protective circuit for the picture tube. Any overcurrent is measured at the low-end resistor 31 of the high-voltage cascade in conventional techinque. The voltage thus produced is fed to the base of the switching transistor 24, and causes the television receiver to be switched over to stand-by operation, so that no damage can be done to the picture tube. Thus, the device performing the switching between normal operation and stand-by operation is advantageously and simultaneously utilized as a protective circuit. The circuit 23, as shown, provides for stabilizing the potential at the base of transistor 24 and for integrating such possibly occurring overload peaks as are not intended to triggering the protective circuit.
Using the circuit diagram according to FIG. 3 it is possible in a simple manner to control the pulse width of the blocking oscillator 4 in response to the switching circuit 8.
According to the circuit diagram of FIG. 2 the terminal U1 is connected to a line scan oscillator circuit 40, the terminal U2 to a picture scan oscillator circuit 41 and the terminal U3 to a circuit 42 for a sound output stage. The circuits 40, 41, 42 get their operating voltage from the terminal U3'. If the operating voltage U3' is zero, the circuits 40, 41, 42 are interrupted. In this case the voltages at the terminals U1, U2, U3 remain.
The described circuit of this invention for controlling the voltage in the secondary circuit of the isolating transformer 6 offers the advantage that it is exclusively arranged in the primary circuit, and, therefore, permits an uncomplicated design which is easy to realize. To control the pulse width by measuring the load fluctuations at the low-end resistor of the switching transistor 5, represents a very useful means for control since, thereby the transmitted energy can effectively and easily be controlled.
The blocking oscillator stage 4 shown in detail in FIG. 3 incorporates an externally triggered blocking oscillator arranged to be triggered through an oscillator operating preferably at the line scanning frequency, which is to say its wave form is not particularly critical and it should be provided with means to keep it in step with the line scanning frequency, as is known to be desirable. The transistors 51 and 52 of the triggered output stage of the blocking oscillator circuit could be regarded as constituting a differential amplifier the inputs of which are defined by the base connections of the respective transistors 51 and 52. The input voltage applied to the base connection of transistor 52 is the Zener voltage of the Zener diode 53, thus a constant reference voltage. The operating voltage for the transistors 51 and 52 and for the Zener diode 53 is obtained from the supply voltage UB, which is to say from the rectifier 3. The diode 67 protects the transistor 52, for example at the time of the apparatus being switched on, against damage from an excessively high emitter-base blocking voltage. The capacitor 65 prevents undesired oscillation of the circuit of transistors 51 and 52, which could give rise to undesired disturbances.
At the base of the transistor 51, there is present as input voltage for the circuit a composite voltage that is the sum of three voltages. These are, first, the line scan frequency trigger voltage coupled through the capacitor 63; second, a bias voltage dependent upon the loading of the blocking oscillator stage resulting from the load on the secondary of the transformer 6, but detected by the voltage across the resistor 7 and actually controlled by the load-sensitive control circuit 8, and, third, a regulating voltage applied at the terminal 71 of the resistor 70, which regulating voltage is proportional to the voltage of the secondary winding of the transformer 6 and can accordingly be provided by one or another of the output circuits of the rectifier 14 of FIG. 1 or by a separate winding of the transformer 6 and a separate rectifier element connected in circuit therewith. This regulating voltage and the control voltage provided by the control circuit 8 are applied to the resistor 61 which completes the circuit for both of these bias voltages and their combined effect constitutes the bias voltage for the transistor 51 which determines its working point.
The circuit of the transistors 51 and 52 operates as an overdriven differential amplifier. When the trigger voltage exceeds the threshold determined by the base voltage of the transistor 51, the circuit produces an approximately rectangular output voltage pulse of constant amplitude. Since the trigger voltage is recurrent, the result is a periodic succession of rectangular output voltage pulses, but the duration or pulse width of these pulses depends upon the loading and the output voltage of the stage. The output voltage of the circuit constituted by the transistors 51 and 52 comes from the emitter connection of the transistor 52 and is furnished to the switching transistor 5, preferably through a driver stage 54, such as a transformer or another transistor stage for better matching of the circuit impedances. Of course, the collector circuit of the transistor 5 includes the primary winding of the transformer 6 of FIG. 1.
The described power supply unit thus represents a well functioning component subject to but a small number of potential sources of error, due to the simple design, and permits considerable reduction of costs in comparison with circuits and equipment heretofore known.













NORDMENDE DeLuxe COLORSONIC 2400 PRESTIGE SK3 COLOR CHASSIS F7 Programmable timer television receiver controllers:



Programmable television receiver controllers which may be manually programmed by a user to select or to limit the viewing selections for random times, typically in one-half hour intervals, throughout a predetermined time period such as a one week time period. Program selections may be made by setting suitable controls for the day, AM or PM, the half hour of the day and the channel desired, and entered into a memory by a push-button control. Thereafter a digital control clock automatically selects the pre-entered information at the appropriate times and provides a control signal which may be used to automatically select the identified channels to the exclusion of all others. Alternatively, the signal may be used to exclude the selected channel from selection manually. In one embodiment, the programmable controller is incorporated in the original design of the television receiver and in a second embodiment, an external controller is disclosed which can be attached to the antenna terminals of a conventional television. Additional embodiments include means for controlling other functions such as the ON-OFF function of the receiver.


1. A programmable television controller comprising:
a random-access memory means for storing data;
storing means for storing data corresponding to channel selections in said memory means at write-addresses corresponding to future time periods, with said storing means including a write-address for application to said memory means means for generating said write-addresses;
read means for reading out said data from said memory means by application of real time related read-addresses thereto when real time coincides with said future time periods and
control means for controlling the reception of a television receiver according to said data read from said memory means.
2. The controller of claim 1 wherein said memory means is a semiconductor memory. 3. The controller of claim 1 wherein said storing means includes a means for generating said write-addresses which is responsive to the position of at least one first switch and a means for generating said data corresponding to channel selections which is responsive to the position of at least one second switch. 4. The controller of claim 1 wherein said controller means controls the reception of said television receiver by limiting the reception to a channel corresponding to said data read from said memory means if said data is present. 5. A programmable television controller comprising: random-access memory means for storing data;
data means for selectively generating data corresponding to a television channel;
write-address means selectively generating a write-address corresponding to a future time for application to said memory means;
program means for selectively storing said data in said memory means at said write-address;
read-address means for generating said read-addresses responsive to real time;
memory read means for applying said read-addresses to said memory means for reading out said data stored in said memory means; and
control means for controlling the reception of a television receiver according to said data read from said memory means.
6. The controller of claim 5 wherein said memory means is a semiconductor memory. 7. The controller of claim 5 wherein said data means comprises at least one switch. 8. The controller of claim 5 wherein said write-address means comprises at least one switch. 9. The controller of claim 5 wherein said program means comprises:
means for normally coupling said read-address means to said memory;
means for normally placing said memory in a read mode;
switching means for momentarily decoupling the read-address means from said memory means, coupling said write-address means to said memory means, and switching said memory means from said read mode to a write mode.

10. The controller of claim 5 wherein said read-addresses are binary coded signals which increment on one-half hour intervals. 11. The controller of claim 5 wherein said control means controls said reception of said television receiver by limiting the reception to a channel corresponding to said data read from said memory means if said data is present. 12. The controller of claim 5 wherein said control means controls the reception of said television receiver by limiting the reception to a channel other than the channel corresponding to said data received from said memory means if said data is present. 13. The controller of claim 5 wherein said control means includes a pretuner means having at least one input for coupling to a television receiver antenna and a pretuner output for coupling to an input on a television receiver, said pretuner means being a means for selectively converting any one of a plurality of multi-frequency television signals present at said pretuner input to a fixed frequency signal. 14. The controller of claim 13 wherein said control means further includes a disable means for disabling said control means thereby preventing reception of any channel when a power source powering said controller is interrupted, said disable means continuing to disable said controller until said disable means is reset. 15. The controller of claim 13 wherein said controller is installed within a controller housing, said controller housing being located outside a television receiver housing which encloses the television receiver controlled by said controller. 16. The controller of claim 13 wherein said pretuner output is for coupling to an antenna input on the television receiver and the frequency of said fixed frequency signal corresponds to a predetermined television signal. 17. The controller of claim 13 wherein said pretuner output is for coupling to an input of an intermediate frequency amplifier stage in the television receiver and the frequency of said fixed frequency signal corresponds to the intermediate frequency amplifier stage frequency of operation. 18. A programmable television controller comprising:
a random-access memory means for storing data;
storing means for storing data corresponding to channel selections in said memory means at write-addresses corresponding to future time periods, with said storing means including a write-address means for generating said write-addresses for application to said memory means;
read means for reading out said data from said memory means by application of real time related read-addresses thereto when real time coincides with said future time periods and,
control means for controlling the reception of a television receiver according to said data read from said memory means, said control means including a pretuner means having at least one input for coupling to a television receiver antenna and pretuner output for coupling to an input on the television receiver, said pretuner means being a means for selectively converting any one of a plurality of multi-frequency television signals present at said pretuner input to a fixed frequency signal;
a controller housing for housing said controller, said controller housing being located outside a television receiver housing which encloses the television receiver controlled by said controller.
Description:
BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION
1. Field of the Invention
The present invention relates to the field of automatic controllers, and more particularly, to programmable controllers for use with television receivers and like equipment.
2. Prior Art
Many systems have been proposed for the automatic control of television receivers, that is, automatic channel selection for particular times of the day based upon programming information entered into the controller at some previous time. Most of these systems, however, are in substantial part mechanical systems which are not particularly easy to program, thereby being relatively expensive to manufacture and difficult to use. Accordingly, such systems have not enjoyed significant commercial use on conventional receivers.
Simple programmable television receiver controllers would provide a number of advantages over conventional channel selectors, and even over remote controlled channel selectors for a number of reasons. There may be programs of particular merit or interest which a viewer does not want to miss. However, the viewer's attention may inadvertently be drawn to another channel at the time, thereby failing to change channels to the more desirable program at the appropriate time. Also at the present time, a number of programs and movies being shown on T.V. are directed toward an adult audience, which programs may be undesirable or outright unsuitable for viewing by children, a situation which may only be expected to increase in the future. In addition, more andmore homes have at least one television receiver controllable at least a substantial amount of the time by children, whereby with conventional channel selectors the "viewers discretion" cannot be exercised by a parent. Accordingly, aprogrammable controller could be programmed periodically, such as once a week, so that those programs of highest merit or viewer interest, will be automatically selected and/or predetermined unobjectionable programs will be selected at times when objectionable programming is being televised on other channels. As an alternative, of course, objectionable programming itself could be programmed for the purposes of locking out such programs from the viewer's selections, e.g., eliminating such programming from the channel selections accessible from the manual channel selector.
U.S. Pat. Nos. 3,215,798 and 3,388,308 disclose automatic television programming systems of the mechanical or electromechanical type, whereby a rotary device mechanically tied to a time clock is programmed to provide some physical movement indicative of the channel to be selected at that time. Devices of the same general type involving some form of motor driven switching unit are also disclosed in U.S. Pat. Nos. 2,755,424, 3,496438, and 3,569,839. In all of these patents the mechanical complexity of the system disclosed is believed to preclude the widespread adoption thereof on receivers intended for consumer use. Further, most of these systems are operative on a number of switching signals equal to the number of selections desired, though some coding to somewhat reduce the complexity of such systems is known, such as that in U.S. Pat. No. 3,496,438. Also, obviously timing mechanisms or the electromechanical type for various other applications are also known, that disclosed in U.S. Pat. No. 3,603,961 being but one example of such devices.
BRIEF SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

Programmable television receiver controllers which may be manually programmed by a user to select or to limit the viewing selections for random times, typically in one-half hour intervals, throughout a predetermined time period such as a one week time period. Program selections may be made by setting suitable controls for the day, A.M. or P.M., the half hour of the day and the channel desired, and entered into a memory by a push-button control. Thereafter a digital control clock automatically selects the pre-entered information at the appropriate times and provides a control signal which may be used to automatically select the identified channels to the exclusion of all others. Alternatively, the signal may be used to exclude the selected channel from selection manually. In one embodiment, the programmable controller is incorporated in the original design of the television receiver and in a second embodiment an external controller is disclosed which may be attached to the antenna terminals of a conventional television. Additional embodiments include means for controlling other functions such as the ON-OFF function of the receiver.

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