Audio Tone generator circuit

A tone generator circuit can be used for various applications such as alarms, bells, indicators, etc. A tone generator consists of a square, triangle, saw tooth periodic wave generator circuits, commonly square wave generators. Such periodic signals produce a beeping sound when connected to audio transducers such as a speaker, piezo, etc.

Simple Tone generator circuit using 555

The below circuit consists of an astable multivibrator using a 555 timer IC. It generates a continuous square wave output. The circuit has an oscillation frequency about 670-680 HZ. The audio frequency of the circuit can be changed to wide ranges by varying the values of any of the resistance R1, R2 or the capacitance C1.

To calculate the resultant frequency from the values of R1, R2, C1,

The frequency,  f = 1 / (0.69*(R1 + 2*R2)*C)

For frequent tuning, it’s better to replace the resistance R2 with a potentiometer. In the position of R2, connect the wiper terminal and either one of the end terminals of the pot.

NE555 siren, alarm indicator, tone generator circuit diagram

555 tone generator circuit diagram


Choose a Loudspeaker with appropriate impedance and power, an ordinary 8 ohms Loudspeaker can work fine. The output resistance should be adjusted with the power rating of the selected Loudspeaker.

To improve the output quality, amplify the output signal using a transistor. The circuit can perform well even without amplification.

components required

IC – NE555

Resistor – R1 – 15k, R2 – 100k, R3 – 100

Capacitor – C1 – 10nf, C2 – 100nf


Supply – 9v battery

Op amp tone generator circuit

This circuit is a tone generator using an op amp. Here also the circuit is an astable multivibrator which generates a square wave signal around 3KHZ  frequency.

Op amp tone generator circuit, audio generator operational amplifier, op amp square wave signal generator

The output current which can deliver by a 741 op amp is very small. So, if it has connected directly to a speaker, the generated sound will not have enough volume. Thus, the output signal has amplified using a transistor.

Astable multivibrator of an op amp will contain both positive and negative half cycle. But here the emitter of the transistor is connected to the negative of the supply. So it only contains 6V for high state output. And a 0V for low state or during the negative half cycle.

The capacitor C1 and R3 have connected to signal ground or Equipotential. If the supply is taken from a single supply unit, the equipotential for the supply can be obtained from a voltage divider network. Or by using two series battery or supply, a reference node can take as signal ground or zero volts.

components required

IC- 741

Resistor – R1  – 15k, R2,R3  – 10k, R4 – 3.3k

Capacitor – C1  – .01uf

Transistor -Q1 – BC547

LS – Loudspeaker

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