Share This

All active electronic circuits have a limit on how strong of a signal can pass through them. These limits are often associated with the positive and negative power supply levels. If the signal attempts to go beyond these limits, they instead get chopped or clipped off at that limit. For example, an input voltage of +12 volts may get through without alteration, but +13 volts at the input would come out as 12 volts. This clipping causes distortion in the waveform, usually adding higher harmonics (such as a harsh buzz). Different circuits enter clipping in different ways – some may have a bit of rounding off before they reach that flat threshold; this is referred to as soft clipping and is often desirable as it can be less harsh.

« Back to Glossary Index