to my opinion Lame 3.89 beta (http://home.pi.be/~mk442837/)is the best encoder there is.
Regarding the problem to change your options you could try using
frontend for the lame encoder. Use the lame.exe not the win32lame.dll.
A good frontend is Razorlame(free). Although it can have slight hickups (i.e. not completing a batch of perfectly good wav's) I don't know why it does this, though it's quite irritating.
A workaround for the problem is using another frontend. I use Exact Audio Copy. It's a great ripper/encoder (the best?)and it's free. www.exactaudiocopy.de
It takes a while to configure but then it's a piece of cake to work with it. Satcp wrote a good guide to get you through the proces to configure EAC. www.ping.be/satcp/tutorials.html
The great thing about EAC is it can rip your cd-tracks to wav's and it the backgroud encode these to mp3. Another great site about mp3's is www.r3mix.net.
I hope you find this information usefull. Happy ripping!
Plextor and Liteon: the best DAE outthere