At the time I bought my sound recorder, Zoom H4n, I was shown a very small and well built metal Sennhaurer that looked great for travel. It was only about three inches long and came highly recommended by a knowledgeable salesperson. There a a couple very popular Rode models as well. I am likewise interested in what others have to say.
As Stan recommends, don't use auto-levels as it will overly amplify quiet periods.