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There are seven pitch classes which are represented by first seven letters of Latin alphabets (A, B, C, D, E, F and G). A musical note is represented by Pitch class and octave level, So according to pitch classes there are basic 7 notes and 8th note is represented with as same pitch class as first but double the frequency. The octave is used to differentiate between two notes and is a representation of frequency ratio of two.

Musical notes start from C0, c0#, D0, D0#,.... the lowest note frequency i.e. for C0 is 16.35Hz (based on center frequency A4, 440Hz). Another major component of musical note is duration. There are total 10 durations which are Quarter, Whole, Half, Eighth, Sixteenth, Thirty Two, Sixtyfour, six, twelve and twenty four. These durations vary depending on tempo (beats per minute) of the music/tone.

In music library we focused on notes from C5 to B6 as they coveres almost all variations for simple tone generation and octave level is produce good sound level on hardware (lower frequency means lower sound, higher the frequency higher the sound).


Generating a particular frequency is nothing but a square wave with desired time period. We can use one of the 8051's timer to generate a particular frequency. Lets say if you want to generate C5 note which has a frequency of 523.25Hz, the time period for C5 will be 1911.132µS. The output square wave with 50% duty cycle will have high and low time of 955.566µS (= 1911.132/2).

Lets say your controller running at 12Mhz oscillator will have one Machine cycle of 1µs. To generate 955.566µs we need 956 (~=955.566/1) machine cycles. We can load timer with a value of 64580 (65536-956) and toggle any I/O pin at that interval will give us the reqired frequency. Now this I/o pin can be connected to a speaker to produce sound for that note.

In the library provided we are using Timer2 in auto reload mode for square wave generation. You can use any timer i.e. timer0 or timer1 in 16bit mode for frequency generation. For your convenience I have provided an excel sheet that will generate timer values for a given crystal oscillator frequency.

You can also download the sample tone recorded and tested using this library:

The sample program and hex file produces following tones:
1. Adam's Family
2. Looney Toons
3. Flintstones
4. Pink Panther
5. Beethoven Play
6. SaReGaMa (Basic Indian sound 7 tones in forward and reverse order).

If you have any doubt regarding this library please make use of forum

Tags play music 8051tone generation 8051pwm sound 8051musical notes 8051play musical notes 8051

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03 Apr 2019: 16:36 PM
Can i see the circuit diagram please?
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Wed Jul 15 2020, 09:59 AM
Sharon Jefferson
As you know, Google is constantly changing its SEO algorithm. The only thing that has remained consistent is that adding an explainer video increases website rank and most importantly keeps customers on your page for longer, increasing conversions ratios.
Thu Jun 11 2020, 06:27 AM
sir could please send the code for I2C and wifi interfacing with 8051
Tue May 19 2020, 10:29 PM
Does anyone have microcontroller programming software for STC15F104W (core 8051, 4 k, 128 byte, 6 I/O pin, UART ... DIL8), that works?
Sat May 02 2020, 07:38 PM
Tamu Gurung
Hi I am looking for a assembly language program for a digital decimal counter. Time counts max limit of 2 mins starting from 2.00 mins and ending at 0.00. time is to be displayed on 4 7-segment LED displays. Edsim51 simulator to be used. Thanks
Wed Mar 25 2020, 01:39 PM
Sir kindly send the code file i2c for 8051
Fri Mar 13 2020, 10:36 PM
@ Rohitnani,ABEBE..which project ?
Fri Mar 13 2020, 12:55 PM
how can get hadwere of this project
Sat Mar 07 2020, 05:11 PM
Sir, Could you please send me the zip file input password....
Wed Feb 26 2020, 04:58 PM
Peter Parker
Is it possible to send multiple messages using only 1 GSM module?
Sat Feb 01 2020, 10:12 AM
Pearl Olin



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