Waveshaping is one of the basic ways of distortion synthesis. In its simplest form it works like any overdrive effect by limiting a signal with a non-linear shaping function. Depending on the implementation, these shaping functions can have any form.

Shaping Function

The following example shows a simple tangential shaping function $y=\mathrm{tanh}(g x)$. For high pre-gain values, the function converges towards a step function and the output of a sinusoidal imput signal becomes a square wave.