dBpowerAMP. OK, after much experimenting, this looks like the best of the bunch for setup and also for quality.
First, it doesn't make a mystery what codecs you need. You can download the Windows Media 9 Codecs (confusing that Windows Media Player is version 10, but but the codecs are 9). The Microsoft site is incredibly confusing on this point.
It is a shareware product, but it also uses LAME MP3 encoding with the familiar presets for 3.93. I haven't learned the 3.96 and above presets yet.
Also has an easy selection system. When it starts, just asks you what files you want. Amazing how many of the other converteros don't do this.
It also knows about MPEG-4 format files and can encode and decode them. These MP4 files are what iTunes uses. It also can use Nero's HE AAC encoder too, so it is a dream product.
They also have a synchronizer that works with iPods and everything else. Might be more convenient than iTunes. It apparently will intelligently rip and then move to a device. Kind of cool. Call Svetaplayer.