When I first got this microphone I was a little disappointed. I was expecting a lot more. In fact I was tempted to sell it. However, after putting it through it's paces I have come to understand what this mic is all about. It's a very classy microphone. There is very subdued handling noise and it controls pops fairly well. Sibilance is not much of an issue but it is there if you really listen for it. This microphone records audio with somewhat of a natural compression and evenness. It has a very controlled sound to it. I am using this mic strictly for home studio vocals but I'm certain it would do well with other applications.
I am glad I gave this microphone a chance rather than selling it. What nailed it for me was when I was able to put this microphone in somewhat of a treated environment and then remove the metal grill. Once I did those two things I realized how awesome of a mic this is. I'm not saying that it's sound is worth more than the cost and I am not saying that the sound is worth less than what it costs. I take it for what it is, nothing more, nothing less. However, I will say this... I just recorded this mic against a Shure KSM 32 and this microphone held it's own. It sounded very close to the quality of the KSM. I was kind of impressed. I almost feel that I can sell all of my other microphones and make do with just this one. But who am I kidding? I don't think that is going to happen!
The more I use this mic the more I like it. This is the best mic I have used yet. It is extra transparent. I actually put it up against the Shure KSM 44 recently and I actually preferred the Sony for its transparency. The KSM has a touch more color. Not necessarily a bad thing but my ears are biased toward this Sony. I'm still trying to find a mic that will knock the Sony F780 off of the throne that I have it on but so far all contenders have failed.
This is a very capable mic. On vox it is crisp but not brittle. Off axis bleed sounds good. I used this mic for the MC at a classical music event, and left it on (at the other side of the stage from the musicians). When I listened to the music picked up during the performances, it sounded very well balanced and clear, albeit with a lot of ambient noises from the hall.
It feels sturdy and has never given me any trouble. In a rock setting, used as a vocal mic, it really shines. Proximity effect is predictable and easy to control. The signal is strong and clear--making it sit nicely in the mix.
I tried it on my Deluxe Reverb amp with the grill off, and it sounded just like my amp. I prefer it over my Sm57 but need it for vox most of the time.
I'm surprised not to hear more about this mic. They seem to go for far less then they are worth on ebay when they come up.