Cassettes to CDs

My task is to extract a number of tracks from audio cassettes and burn them to CD. I have attached my cassette player to the line-in of my sound card. I then fired up a program called dcart V4 to do the capture. Is my only level control the one available as a slider on the play control for my sound card for line-in? Should I adjust this so that the peak is around 0db ? Should I use another program to do the capture?
I have already tried a few captures without knowing about line-in levels. On some the captures are very low in volume. Can I just run the gain normalisation thingy in dcart v4 on all the files to get them to the same level? I did read something about signal to noise ratio. Is this what is going to stuff my quality if I just do gain normalisation? IOW, is a vitally important first step in my process ensuring that I capture at the best level possible?
I will probably do a bit of editing. I have dcart v4, but from a little reading here I suspect many will say use EAC instead. What would be the most common filter(s) user for audio cassettes? De-Hiss?
Once my files are complete I will burn them using Nero. That should be the easy bit.
Thanks for any help you may have. These cassettes are treasures and i dont want to let them deteriorate any more now that I have the equipment to save them.


I’m not sure how to answer the audio questions - not really technically enhanced in the audio department but this little device might be something interesting to check into:

You should be able to set the output levels on your cassette deck.

A freeware program by the name of Audacity could be of use.

I use Cool Edit Pro. It has since been bought by Adobe and renamed Adobe Audition.

I adjust the levels on my cassette deck but view the levels in Cool Edit Pro rather than my cassette deck meters. I have monitor out on my receiver, so I can record from any source, LP, CD, cassette, VHS, DVD, that I have connected to my stereo.

You could also go from the headphone out jack.
That would give you a line level out without having to adjust levels.

There should be a record level slider available, either in the soundcard mixer, or in the program doing the recording.

A different problem for me, when trying to transfer a cassette - SQUEAL