So I finally picked up a CAD e100s
Of course, it’s been officially retired from CAD's product line, so you can’t buy it new. The one I got doesn't seem too noisy*, and captures warm, smooth vocal characteristics I don’t always find with my Neumann TLM 103. I noticed more of a bass presence without the high-pass filter, but liked it, and with some help from an audio pro, this thing is sounding damn near perfect. Now whenever I record with this mic, it sounds like someone is adding a little bit of vinyl crackle - subtle but effective.
* A few years ago, CAD issued returns on “noisy” versions of this model, but used models are still available.
Impressive sound and simple user interface
Versatile and effective
Affordable ($500-$600 range)
Built-in -10db PAD switch and bass rolloff
Still a bit noisy at higher gains
Shock mount isn’t easily detachable
UPDATE: One Year Later
It's been a year of using my CAD e100s and, unfortunately, the noise issue only got worse. Sadly, the mic has been retired to a lonely wooden case and I don't plan on using it anytime soon. However, CAD has since released an updated, cheaper version - the E100Sx. I haven't heard anything yet but may consider this one down the line...
For now though, the CAD e100s has been a bust, and I'll be sticking with the Neumann.