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Feedback is fun. But feedback can get unpredictable, and explode!
Whether it’s feedback in a delay loop, a reverb, filter or straight up microphonic, a tanh can be inserted in the feedback path and used to reign in runaway oscillations.
In this context it functions as a limiter on feedback amplitude.
Instead of fading away to silence, when longer sustain is desired, or running away uncontrollably, a signal can be controlled much more easily with a tanh. There will be a much wider range at which a feedback oscillation will stabilise musically.
Running a triangle wave through a tanh will allow for some interesting wave shaping control.
Fully CCW and the resulting signal will be a slightly attenuated pass through of the original triangle wave. As the level is increased, the corners will soften and the wave form will shape into a sine wave.
As level is increased, the sine will soft clip and eventually settle into a unique peaked waveform.
Running any complex audio signal through a tanh channel is highly recommended. Drum voices especially!
The effect is sonically similar to compression, but achieved through complex wave shaping as opposed to gain reduction. Limiting is a more appropriate description but it definitely has its own unique characteristic.
Increasing the level will introduce soft clipping distortion/overdrive.