Which is better, lower capacity with faster recharge/delay, or higher capacity with slow recharge/delay?
Depends on your character for most shields but wtih Adaptives you usually want max elemental resistance which gives you stats in the middle but solid. It is 2 parts maliwan, 1 part hyperion
Depends - if you wanna max out resistances and health bonus, go with the parts @Derch mentioned, if you want to minimize recharge delay (e.g. for Aurelia and her ice dart), go for all tediore parts, and if you want to maximize shield capacity (e.g. for CS Athena or Safety First Claptrap with their recharge delay override), go for pangolin parts.
if you can find a Juggernaut Oz kit, they provide more elemental and other damage resistance as well. paired with an adaptive shield you will take hardly any damage. I have a Wilhelm level 70 and he has a damage resistance skill that paired with these two makes him pretty much invincible I love it.
I know, I have a Voltaic Juggernaut Oz Kit with incendiary, explosive and NE resistances.
Oh boy is it your lucky day, I just made a Shield Parts Guide, where I specifically looked at every single unique variation of the Adaptive Shield. Now for my personal recommendation, I do agree that it does heavily depend on your character and what you are planning on doing with it. However, if you are looking for a really good all-around Adaptive Shield, I would recommend one with a Maliwan Body, Anshin Battery, and a Hyperion Capacitor (The actual parts don’t matter though, as long as you have 1 Maliwan, 1 Anshin, and 1 Hyperion part it will be the same). It provides a really good Health Boost and Resistance while still having a decent Capacity, Recharge Rate, and Recharge Delay. Hope that helps