Today I think I'll start off my reviews of microphones, starting with one of my personal favorites, the Rode NT1-A.
The NT1-A is a large diaphragm condenser microphone, slightly tweaked from the original NT1 and released in an anniversary package which includes...
the NT1-A, neat little felt bag, 6ft XLR cable, and a shockmount with a fabric popscreen attached. The NT1-A is a pretty significant upgrade from the NT1, having all its circuitry redone and its frequency response extended on both ends.
This is a phenomenal microphone. It's marketed as the quietest microphone available, referring to its super low self-noise, and for good reason. You have to crank the input of this microphone up pretty high to hear its own workings sound off, and before that you can pretty much hear EVERYTHING that is happening in the room that it's in and noises coming from your body you didn't know you were making. The NT1A is great for recording all types of vocals, acoustic instruments like guitars, woodwinds, piano and brass on occasion, and can even make a great overhead for drum kits.
The rest of the anniversary package is alright. The XLR cable is just a stock cable who's manufacturer doesn't stick out in my mind right now, nothing special. The sockmount is also ok, although the pop filter can't be taken off of it which is pretty annoying. Where the pop filter connects to the shockmount is pretty flimsy, mine has pretty much broken off already. If I move it wrong it may snap off at this point. But other than that the NT1A is a great addition to any studio!
EDIT: Since so many people asked, the anniversary package can be picked up for around $230 USD so you might be able to pick it up on it's own for less, while getting a stereo matched pair can cost up to $600