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PROCESSING AND EFFECTS
A LIMITER is the same as a compressor, but it is set to an extreme ratio of change (usually between 10 to 1 and infinity to 1). Limiters are often used to control the overall volume a sound can reach rather than try to control the rate at which it gets there.
A properly set limiter can stop sudden transients and allow the overall volume to be greater without worrying that the transients will cause distortion.
A poorly set limiter will create a very loud block of sound with no dynamics as if the clay head discussed in the compression section were squashed completely flat then made big enough for the flat top to be all at the maximum volume.