Yeah man I mean its surely gotten to the point where it cant really get any 'louder', unless they make a new type of maximiser (no doubt!) then i cant see it going any further cos the sound quality will become just too degraded for even the commonest of 'pop' fans.
You are absolutely right. I find that modern compressors can achieve the same dynamic range as say, a track with no limiters on. In fact this is more the case with electronic music than anything else. I think what we need to get out is that loudness doesn't have to be an option, although a lucrative one, but eventually loudness will surpass even the abilities of modern limiters on electronic music. Of course we'll see how history pans out.
Good article, I also started over doing this when I was learning/researching into mastering. Its a pain in the arse but with careful tweaking you can still get it nice and loud while still keeping the dynamic range you require, you just have to make sure not to go to crazy, although some types of music and songs are easier to obtain loudness while maintaing decent dynamics. I guess its all to do with radio play and also makin your track stand out from the last one. Probably in the past 5-10 years part of judging mastering, specially in pop and dance music, has been to judge the loudness, and therefore the commercial viabilty of the track for radio play. When I master I use 2 brickwall limiters, the PSP Vintage Warmer 2 and the Waves L16. It can be annoying having to tweak so much but its possible to find a happy medium (with the aid of EQ's, Bboosters, Compressors etc) to have a track that is mastered satisfactorly loud(to modern standards)and have a great dynamic range.