I have used the same drive and the same brand of CD successfully. It is only 3 particular CD's that have this problem.
When I first started burning CD's, I used a couple of them as a "backup" of my data and I "copied" all my mp3 files onto 3 other CD's (the ones that now act strangely).
At one point, my hard drive started having problems and eventually wouldn't even boot. I bouoght a new hard drive and recovered my OS from my original CD's.
Next, I tried to recover my data that I had copied to CD. Well, both of them acted strangely, sort of like they were blank CD's. They would make sounds and rev up, but they never did respond and nothing was visible on either of them. I even tried a recovery product on them to no avail.
I scoured the web looking for a similar poblem but couldn't find any quite the same.
I then tried to read them on other PC's, even different OS's, but the results were the same.
In desperation, I reverted back to the web and I found something that looked a bit promising. It said that the IMAPI CD-burning COM service in control panel/performance & maintenance/admin tools/services should be set to "automatic", rather than "manual", as sometimes it fails to start when required. This seemed to be the case with my system. After a reboot, I still couldn't read any of the CD's, but I am able to write to the 2 that I thought had my data on them. The other 3 still won't write.
BTW, also in desperation, I hooked up my old hard drive as a slave and lo and behold, I was able to recover my data and mp3's.
Back to the problem...
It seems to me that when I first tried to write each of the CD's, the process went through the motions, but never really wrote any data or music to the CD's. This would explain why there didn't seem to be any "burn marks" (rings) on the CD's. The "burning" question (pun intended) is why can I now burn onto the 2 CD's and not onto the other 3 (all the same brand) and all having gone through the same process? The only difference I'm aware of is that 2 were used to try to write data and the 3 I can no longer use were used to try to write mp3's, but this is probably a red herring. I can't imagine it makes any difference to this problem. I've been a little reluctant to buy new blank CD's for 2 reasons: a) I'm afraid I won't be able to write to them b) I'm a po' boy.
BTW, I recently read something about turning down the speed when writing CD's. I tried that and it had no effect on the problem, as expected.
Any ideas, anyone?