Preferences aside (which can be completely valid reasons for microphone choice) there are physical reasons, some of which Bob has touched on, for the variations in response that people experience. Mostly, it’s not a difference between large and small but between dual and single diaphragm pressure gradient mics, i.e. how the phase differences are developed to perform the desired directional cancellation. This creates not only differences in azimuth but in distance, beyond the classical proximity effect at low frequencies. There’s a good article buy Guy Torio, who was at Shure at the time, about this.