Plextor and TDK are generally rated the best burners. If you have a scsi-based pc go with Plextor. Stay away from Yamaha IMHO - had 2 units crap out on me. Have burned hundreds with my scsi-based Plextor without a misshap.
If your going to use your burned cds in your audio system, check your manual or manufacturer to make sure your player will read a cdr, some don't. Stick to premium quality blanks, the cost difference is minimal. Some swear by Mitsumi gold for audio cdrs, others rave about black by Memorex. Experiment and decide yourself.
Software is another area where personal tastes vary. Your burner will come with a version providing at least basic capabilities. If you want some opinions read the threads in discussion/news groups like alt.comp.periphs.cdr and comp.publish.cdrom.software.
As Kennyt says, if burning from an audio source you'll need to wire through the sound card. Better soundcards DO make a difference.