I had the opportunity to use the mic both in the studio and live.
I first tested the mic in a friend's studio on a protools system. People have used many different mics on my tenor in the past. I've found that only few of them worked without disfiguring my tone: a well EQ'd TLM103, a U87 and maybe a Coles 4038 for a certain vibe. I placed the mic at more ore less 2 feet from me, at neck height, angled down towards the left hand. Everything was flat on my friend's setup. I played the full range of the horn at various dynamics in order to test the mic's ability to reproduce details and nuances. Before my friend pressed "play" to let me listen to the take, he commented on how hot the mic was, that he had to turn down his preamp quite a bit compared to most mics he uses. What I heard on the tape immediately reminded me of a U87, with maybe a more compressed sound and a midrange presentation that wasn't as "liquid". I was seriously blown away!! It was like we had recorded the sax and applied some subtle processing to it while keeping my tone true to itself: no boxiness in the midrange or sizzling buzz on the high end (like so many mics). The "in your face" quality of the recorded take, with just enough air from picking up the room to remain natural surprised me. Most mics, when placed this far, sound a bit distant and take on a weird veil over the midrange frequency unless you apply a well setup compression - still it is more than often not enough to correct this behavior.
A few hours later, I setup the mic for a live gig at a convention center sort of place. Now, I had my doubts about using a condenser for a live performance but I'd been getting tired of using the usual suspects: 57, 58, re20, 421 and so on. These mics all have either a mid or high mids coloration which I loathe. I can hardly stand to hear myself through these mics. Also, they need to be very close to the sound source to deliver which means I usually have to shove it down the bell of my tenor or close to it resulting in an unnatural tone, and my movements being restricted. That's a big problem as I'm the kind of player who moves a lot when he plays. I feel restricted if I have to freeze in front of a mic and my playing usually suffers from it. So I decided to setup the mic very much like in the studio, only a little closer. When we first started playing, I immediately noticed the fatness and 3D dimension of the sound coming out of the monitors although these were rather low quality ones. The more we played, the louder the band got. By the end of the gig, I had the HM2D seriously cranked up: no feedback or rumble whatsoever. Actually the singer's SM58 started picking up a low end rumble by the end of the gig. I thought it was my mic so I muted it and I realized it wasn't it. I was sold on it.
I can say the HM2D is without a doubt the greatest sounding mic for tenor sax I've ever owned, both live (which is why I bought it for in the first place) and in the studio. How did I manage to live without it for so long?