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Can a broken CD damage a CD drive?

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I have a Macbook and have been busily ripping my CD collection to the hard drive. However, when I inserted one CD today, the drive made a rattling sound rather than the usual whirring - did not sound too good! So I ejected the CD as soon as I could and found it had a break in it - not sure how this happened. Got me thinking, could a damaged CD potentially damage the computer drive or laser? In this case, the break in the CD was at the outside edge and I believe CDs are read from the centre outwards, so the laser was probably not physically knocked by the CD - not sure how far the laser mechanism is from the CD when it is playing anyway?


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