An introduction to computer audio
Select the optical drive in the Devices panel and click Properties
In the device tab there is an option to enable error correction.
In Windows Media Player, a process to ensure that digital audio data is read from the CD-ROM drive accurately during playback or copying. Using error correction can prevent undesirable noises that are not part of the original material.
Source: Windows Help
The windows help text is as useful as ever but it probably means that if you enable this option WMP takes over the error correction of the optical player. Probably it read damaged sections of the CD multiple times to find the best possible values. At least I think so because users complains about the time it take to rip a CD with this option on.
Maybe with this option on, WMP rips the CD EAC style.