Welcome to the forum :)[QUOTE=ggking7;2080843]“The idea that a re-read of a scratch will return random results is not from an understanding of how CD drives work (with various error recovery layers and possible interpolation) there is a good chance that an error will return the same each rip.”
“Drive specific issues (firmware bugs, build quality, bad design, hours in use, etc.), disc surface quality, and secure-ripping strategy all can cause you to get incorrect data read repeatedly with non-caching drives, which means that traditional “secure” rippers can be fooled.”[/quote]This is correct, in theory. Now the thing is, it hasn’t been proven (AFAIK) that a test & copy can fool you by returning twice the same error thus making you believe the rip is good though it’s not. I mean, I want an actual case, and a proof. People like to theorize a lot for the sake of it.
And I don’t understand this irrational fear about “possibly non 100% perfect” audio rips. The funny thing is, most people can’t even hear the vast majority of ripping errors that are not from huge disc defects. Picky ears will notice small artifacts, but many EAC users have trained ears, and the most picky of us are perfectly happy with the “test & copy” method. Two passes with matching CRCs, while not 100% secure in theory (as in the explanation you quote), still offers such peace of mind that I don’t ask for more. Those who are not happy with this method “because an error could still happen in theory” are IMO so obsessive that it’s close to paranoia.
Find me someone who demonstrated that a “test & copy” with EAC lead to an audible error despite correct CRC check, and I’ll start (maybe) to give the topic some attention. Until then, I treat it as useless conjectures.
So to your original question: are reliably perfect audio rips impossible? I guess the answer is yes, they’re impossible if you ask for perfection 100% of the time. That’s a limitation of the audio CD format and its error correction method. But who cares, since the odds of a glitch are so small, so close to null, when using proper methods like test & copy, good reader, no disc cache?
About offsets: what’s wrong with the online offset databases?
Relax, enjoy the music.