I don't know how to write a review like the music tech publications do, but I can say briefly that I've used 4 different models of Sontronics' range of microphones over the course of 6 months at 8 location based recording sessions in 8 different old buildings with beautiful acoustic properties as well as overdubbing in my cellar studio on a variety of vocal performances, choirs, drum kits, stringed instruments, a trumpet, accordion and pianos. I could write down all the superlatives that are used to describe the quality of a microphone but I'm off the opinion that it's best if you can get your hands on these and try them for yourself rather than rely on what someone like me might write.
The Aria has become my most useful microphone and the Apollo is great for when I want to record more than an isolated sound source, for when I want to capture the sound of the whole space I'm in. I'm only tending to use the Oktava MK219s (my previous prime microphone) when I'm lazy and can't be bothered to set up and plug in the Aria's power supply. The MK219s have been relegated to drum kit overheads when the Aria is being used and the Apollo on overhead is a little too special to eq brutally in the mix.
I used the Aria as a drum overhead (SM57 on snare, MK219 across the kit and D6 in the kick drum) in a 4 mic recorder man set up on the track Coals. I think the drums have a special sound on that track as a result (Duncan also has a new Yamaha 9000 Recording Custom, a Noonan snare drum and the very best vintage Paiste cymbals I've ever heard).
The best value microphone on the market as far as I'm concerned is the SOLO. At the price point it is so much value. I've been using them once a month at the Guildhall for an open stage night instead of the in house Beta 58s and there is a clear quality difference - i much prefer the SOLO.
The STC1 holds up against my long term favourite the Oktava MK012 in the small diaphragm market. It's hard to let go of a favourite microphone so I still use the MK012s all the time. Both microphones have interchangeable capsules and I prefer the omnis on both for guitars. The cardioids are great for string sections and I like to use the MK012 cardioids on toms and snare drums - I haven't tried the STC1 yet for that application. Whilst recording acoustic guitars I observed that the STC1 imparts a softer flavour which is quite easy to listen to, whereas the MK012s seem to capture more of a crisp airy tone. . Both characteristics are useful to me so I'm really pleased. I got the MK012s when the UK£ was super strong. On balance the STC1 is better value given that the exchange rate no longer favours the UK £.
The most valuable thing about these microphones for me with what I've been working on is how easy my mixes were to construct and manipulate to good effect. I put this down to the microphones doing an excellent job imparting either accuracy or colour as I directed when setting up.
I have absolutely no hesitation in highly recommending Sontronics. I will purchase some of the models I haven't tried in the near future and anticipate making some great recordings with those too. Check out Sontronics here.