It is interesting how listening sessions in showrooms are conducted. They usually use the best possible recordings they have to present the gear they sell in the best possible light. However, I have often found it is precisely average-sounding recordings that reveal the most about the gear. In particular, one of the best traits of Bryston's BDA-2 D/A converter is the way it handles CD-quality audio. It presents it with consistent accuracy and quick trainsients. In my experience, almost any D/A converter will sound fabulous with excellent and/or high-resolution recordings but they won't be so great if you feed them an average recording, which most of them are.
While I won't claim there is no difference between CD-quality and high-resolution recordings, because there usually is, I think the differences are actually less evident with BDA-2 doing the decoding than with some other converters I have listened to. I assume it has to do with the way this converter was designed - only time-proven techniques were used where all the bases were covered (power supplies, circuit layout, discrete analog circuit etc.). It performs very consistently so the conclusion must be whoever designed this converter knew exactly what he/she was doing.
I don't know how many of you use older technology like DAT or MD but connected to such devices, I can only say BDA-2 performs very consistently there too, which is something I could never say for some other converters I have used. MD uses Atrac compression at 292 kbit/s but sounds very close to CD's 1411 kbit/s. I have explored many levels of this converter and am still discovering new things. I think James is having nightmares whenever he gets an email from me asking him to answer a dozen questions!