Inovonics Model 201 Average & Peak Limiter #3 (Refurbished & Recapped)


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Vintage Inovonics compressor / limiter from 1970s USA. This 201 is in excellent condition and has been carefully recapped & refurbished in our workshops. It’s been switched to 220 Volt operation so no external transformer required

Tested & working 100%. Photos show the 201 for sale

The Inovonics Model 201 is an American-made single-channel limiter with peak & average response settings. Introduced in the late 70s, the 201 is a favourite with American engineers including Bruce Swedien & Michael Brauer

The Model 201 has separate controls for average (RMS) and peak limiting plus attack & release controls and an input gain control. This is similar to an 1176 in that it acts as a threshold control

In use the 201 is a punchy, dynamic compressor with a characteristic sound

“It was one of the first dual slope limiters made. It will compress then hit the limiter, sort of a bend and then a flat line if viewed on a graphic gain reduction chart. These were very popular in LA studios in the 1980’s.- Jim Williams

Jim Woods designed these for Innovonics in Santa Cruz, CA back in the late 1970’s. He told me the last run of 5 units was built in 1995. He still services them I think. They might still also have parts” – Jim Williams

“It can sound aggressive if set that way, sort of a dirty dynamite.” – Jim Williams

“I use it anywhere i would use a Distressor”

“This thing is awesome on drums if you’re going for a certain type of sound”

“Amazing on kick and snare. Great for rock guitars. Cool as a parallel mix bus”

“Killer on kick and snare… extend the note for days…

Not a one trick pony at all IMHO. Compress, limit, hold the note in the limiter section to extend it (a nice feature they added), great for guitar solo’s, kick, snare, vocals… one of the best VCA comps ever made, again IMHO.

Until you play with one and use it during a tracking or a mix session, you really can’t appreciate what these compressors can do. Sit there with an electric guitar some time and dial it in while you play, guaranteed you’ll have a lot of fun”

It seems to hit the signal pretty hard, of course in varying degrees depending on how you set the parameters, but in general it’s a pretty heavy sounding compressor/limiter. It has it’s own sound… This thing is awesome on drums if you’re going for a certain type of sound”

Vintage unit in very good used condition. Supplied with XLR pigtails. Converted to 220 VAC with captive cable & UK power plug. EU power plug supplied on request. Tested & working 100%. Photos show the 201 for sale

Dual-slope limiter with peak & RMS response. Connections via terminal strip with XLR pigtails (supplied). 220 VAC with captive cable and new UK power plug

This is a late-model 201 where the gain control module has not been potted. This means it will be repairable should that be needed in the future

Standard 1U rackmount with odd, offset rack mounting holes

Product page


Data Sheet



Vintage unit in excellent used condition. Refurbished & recapped in our workshops & converted for use on 220 volts for the UK / EU. Supplied with XLR pigtails. Tested & working 100%. Photos show the 201 for sale