BLUE microphones has been in the industry for a short time but have already made a mark on providing excellent quality mics with a unique look and vibe. While many of their mics are great they are out of reach for many recordists. A few years ago BLUE answered this problem with the original Bluebird and other essential series mics. Recently many of those mics got an overhaul enter the Bluebird SL. If you are looking for a high quality mic to build your studio around or you're looking to upgrade from something less expensive the Bluebird SL is a great choice to consider. It's dubbed as Blue's swiss army knife mic as it can handle just about any application you throw at it from instruments to vocals. Although designed to be a workhorse mic I feel the mic's sonic signature best suits acoustic guitars and female voices or any application where the source would benefit from a crystal clear, detailed, modern timbre with extended highs, rich lows and smooth mids. The SL version is a darker blue finish but Blue didn't just adjust the cosmetic the mic itself now features a couple things the original Bluebird lacked a low end roll off switch and a pad switch to attenuate louder sources. Both of these features are very important especially when using the mic in a typical home studio setup. The roll off works well on most sources (vocals especially) you'd be recording as it'll get rid of any mud and low frequencies that you don't need to capture that can cause havoc on your mix later. The pad is great to keep louder sources from overloading the mic causing distortion/clipping. Although I own about 20 different mics (some much more expensive) my original Bluebird is still one of my favorites and is often my mic of choice for many things I record. The Bluebird SL takes the original and makes it even better it along with the Baby Bottle SL happen to be my two go-to recommendations for most people looking for a first mic or their first upgrade.