Finally, any last stereo width adjustments are applied before limiting and exporting the track.
A limiter is basically a finalising compressor, and allows for a final few dB of gain on the track to bring it up to commercial levels. If everything else is done right, you won’t need to push into a limiter too much at all. Some compressors allow for much more gain than others before driving distortion into the track, and it’s sometimes possible that more than one will be used to get the final result – i.e. one could add a touch of warmth, and another be very dynamic and transparent so work really nicely in combination in some applications.
As with everything there really is no set formula that can be followed as every single track will require a completely unique approach.
The main thing to remember though is with mastering less is more, and if a mastering engineer can achieve greatness with the tiniest of tweaks – then that’s the best possible outcome!