i usually just look for any kind of protein that is on sale. supposedly protein isolate is better than the ordinary whey protein, but personally i have not seen much of a difference. it doesnt really matter when you drink your shakes, but i would suggest however to drink one post workout, as your muscles need the protein after your workout to grow. im not expert on this, but i hope that helps a little bit. im sure someone else can chime in with more info.