the last time I recorded a tambourine part I used my ShinyBox 46L and loved the result. Very natural with surprising detail and I even shelved off a little high end and HPF'd the lows. It was a very quiet part - just tapping the tambo with a drum brush, but there was none of that 'clanging' distortion that you can sometimes get with sources like a tambourine. (is it called inter-modular distortion, like the key ring shake test?)
With condensers a pad or a few feet or more of distance puts a natural pad on it.