I’ve had a pair of cracked audio CDs lying around now for the past couple of years from my old “Teach Yourself Norwegian” (great course btw!)… always wishing that eventually in time there might be a way to recover and play them. So after nearly 4 years since I last used them, I finally googled it and had some luck!
I finally googled “how to play a cracked cd” and the only helpful advice I found was this thread from 2004 which suggested perhaps scotch tape might work — though there was also adequate caution that playing a cracked CD may likely damage the CD-ROM or CD player itself! Luckily, I found a (slightly cracked) CD player out in the street a couple of months ago that still plays CDs (somewhat decently) – so I gave it a shot!
What would you know?… it started to play! I immediately setup my audio Y-cable to feed one line to my speakers and the other to my laptop mic, then fired up my favorite audio recorder – audacity! Cautious not to touch the CD player and skip tracks, I just noted the track length from the LCD screen (~1-2 min each) to my notepad and planned to chop up the huge audio file later in audacity.
So it was playing beautifully… until about track 12, then I started hearing a couple of “pops” in the audio every so often and then finally it was not able to play track 13 or later. I retried a couple of times but unfortunately it just wouldn’t go. =( Oh well, recovering 12 out of 18 tracks isn’t too bad!