The quality of manufactured audio discs (i.e. 'pressed') varies widely based on my experience.
Of course it would be nice if all the discs measured as the example BoSkin showed us.
However, using my recent batch of over 30 pristine originals (straight from cases to be scanned for errrors), I have noticed that the quality varies a lot.
The scan by Sgt_Strider is by no means rare, based on what I've seen, even on discs that have no copy protection. Usually discs with copy protection have lots of C2 (and CU if you're using Plextools for the scan).
Here's an example of a recent audio cd I bought:
Scan of a pristine original audio CD - no copy protection used
Of course, one is still able to easily extract all the tracks accurately and make a decent burn out of it:
Scan of a CD-R copy of the same disc
Now, I don't like illegal copying. I buy and own originals myself, but the CD audio quality is getting worse every year especially when one considers Cactus Data Shield based copy protected discs.
No wonder people are buying pirated copies or burning stuff themselves. With a little effort, their copies will be of better quality and tolerate handling better before developing audible problems in playback.
My friend got lots of professionally pirated discs from our last trip to Moscow and I tested them out of curiosity. Some of those pirated discs measure better than many of my brand new originals.
Sad, isn't it?
PS To put things into perspective. I don't think the "Load" scan above is horrible, it's just less than optimal. Higher glass master cutting speed, higher speed moulding, lower quality control, cheaper materials... it's all been done in name of profits, and cd prices still go up...