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60 of 60 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A review for new users and how to get the most out of Dragon
***UPDATE*** I find that Dragon NaturallySpeaking 12 is spot on in terms of getting my words right. I've only used it for a few days but as far as voice recognition goes it's great. I followed all the advice below (because it's the best way to get good dictation) I feel that this product only gets better ever iteration. And I only use it for dictation and not mouse...
Published 24 months ago by Chuck Bittner

versus
16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Can NOT transfer your profile with this version
I have been enjoying using my Dragon naturally speaking software since I bought it a couple months ago. I have been vigorously training the software, so that it now makes minimal mistakes, keeping in mind that I can transfer my profile to different computers.
However, only today I found out I'm not able to transfer my profile with this basic edition, which is a...
Published 16 months ago by K.I.


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60 of 60 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A review for new users and how to get the most out of Dragon, December 31, 2012
This review is from: Dragon NaturallySpeaking 12 Basics, English (Old Version) (DVD-ROM)
***UPDATE*** I find that Dragon NaturallySpeaking 12 is spot on in terms of getting my words right. I've only used it for a few days but as far as voice recognition goes it's great. I followed all the advice below (because it's the best way to get good dictation) I feel that this product only gets better ever iteration. And I only use it for dictation and not mouse commands etc.

The following is a guide to helping new users to voice dictation to understand how to get the most out of Dragon NaturallySpeaking. Now these principles apply to all voice dictation software. I will update this review with more of the new features and how Dragon NaturallySpeaking 12 runs when I've had time to use the software more.

(This whole review is done with Dragon I will not edit it at all)

As a quadriplegic standup comedian (okay I'm the cant stand up comic) I spent a lot of time doing voice dictation. I have been using Dragon naturally speaking since 1995 and I must say it is truly an amazing product and Dragon Dictate for Mac/Dragon NaturallySpeaking are only getting better. I want to give a basic overview on voice dictation and being successful.

To see my comedy set just google: AskACapper or I'm The Can't Stand Up Comic

One other thing to note I do not use Dragon for mouse movements and commands as I had the ability to use a touchpad mouse so I will not delve into those features in my review. This will merely focus on how you can use voice dictation effectively to receive near 100% accuracy. And how Dragon does it almost perfectly every time.

One thing you need to think about when you get into voice dictation is speaking in word clumps. You have to think about what you want to have Dragon type for you then you have to say those sentences in chunks (I hope that makes sense) most people who complain about voice dictation don't take the time to realize this.

In the following example I did edit the text when errors were made for continuity of thought.

[Example]
if I wanted to say "Is that the wheelchair that goes upstairs?" "No it is not but it goes downstairs one time really fast!"
The way I attacked this sentence was "Is that the wheelchair -pause- that goes upstairs question mark -pause- no it is not -pause- but it goes downstairs -pause- one time really fast exclamation point

Here is another one "what is the worst thing that a handicapped person can hear? Is it a doctor telling you you'll never walk again? Or someone saying you can't go with us because you are disabled? No the worst thing we can hear is someone in a crowd yell "run for your lives" at that point I know I am boned.

Here is how I approached saying that joke out loud I will put in a - where I pause
what is the worst thing-that a handicapped person-can hear question mark - is it a doctor-telling you-you'll never walk again question mark - or someone saying-you can't go with us-because you are disabled-question mark - no-the worst thing that we can hear-is someone in a crowd-yell-open quote- run for your lives-end quote- at that point-I know I'm boned period
[End example]

I hope that helps you again understanding how to speak in clumps of words remember to keep your word count between pauses at about 7 to 10. If you do this you will be successful in using voice dictation. If you put a microphone near your mouth and learned to speak in word clumps I say you will have 99% accuracy every time.

Without speaking a word clumps and thinking about what you want to say is when voice dictation has problems, here is an example of a long sentence I will speak this without stopping and pausing at certain points.

What I said: I am not disabled I am just very lazy and really I'm only in this thing for the parking.
What Dictate heard: I am not disabled I am just very lazy and really I'm only in this thing for the parking.

There you go it got a perfect 19 word sentence correct but most of the time keeping your clumps lower helps the program not make mistakes that is just what I have found.

How to train your Dragon: DO ALL THE TRAINING Is all I have to say! Sorry for yelling out better now. But really one thing I found super helpful in doing voice dictation is doing all of the training that you can. While you might not feel like reading a bunch of chapters from random books it really helps and should be done. I make a rule to do all the training the program provides so that it gets used my voice.

Now the microphone that comes with Dragon is decent and will get you almost 99% accuracy. Right now I'm using a tabletop microphone I'm sitting about 6-8 inches away from the microphone and still getting perfect accuracy! Truly amazing how far it's come in 15 years.

What I appreciate also about Dragon is its low resource usage. I mean as I use Dragon through the years it would talk a lot of resources i.e. CPU power and RAM space but now on even a low-cost computer will be fully capable of running this powerful program. I would happily recommend at least 2 GB of RAM though.

Till I Collapse by Eminem lyrics, this is unedited straight dictation. First line is dictation - (Second is the true verse to compare.)
--------------------
As soon as the verse starts I eat it at MC's heart - (Soon as a verse starts I eat it at MC's heart) * ERROR
what's he thinking? How not to go against me? Smart. - (what is he thinking? How not to go against me? Smart.) * PERFECT
And it's absurd how people hang on every word - (And its absurd how people hang on every word.) * PERFECT
I'll probably never get the props I feel I ever deserve - (I'll probably never get the props I feel I ever deserve) * PERFECT
but I'll never be served my spot is forever reserved - (But I'll never be served my spot is forever reserved) * PERFECT
if I ever leave Earth that would be the death of me first. - (If I ever leave earth that would be the death of me first.) * PERFECT
Visit my heart of hearts I know nothing could ever be worse. - (Cause in my heart of hearts I know nothing could ever be worse.) * ERROR
That's why I'm clever when I put together every verse - (That's why I'm clever when I put together every verse) * PERFECT
my thoughts are sporadic, I act like I'm inadequate - (My thoughts are sporadic, I act like I'm an addict) * ERROR
I rap like I'm addicted to smack like I'm Kim Mathers. - (I rap like I'm addicted to smack like I'm Kim Mathers.) * ERROR
the fact is I would rather sit back and bomb some rappers. - (The fact is I would rather sit back and bomb some rappers.) * PERFECT
So this is like a full-blown attack I'm launching Them - (So this is like a full blown attack I'm launching at them) * ERROR
the track is on some battling raps who wants some static - (The track is on some battling raps who want some static) * PERFECT
because I don't really think that the fact that I'm slim matters - (Cause I don't really think that the fact that I'm Slim matters) * ERROR
a plaque of platinum status is wack if I'm not the baddest. - (A plaque of platinum status is whack if I'm not the baddest.) * ERROR
--------------------

I would say that there were a few errors in that resuscitation of that rap but not bad, and good enough that it would save me about 30 minutes to type that okay maybe 15 but I do type one key at a time.

ONE BONUS OF VOICE DICTATION TO NOTE:
Is that voice dictation sometimes makes mistakes but those mistakes can really be great. So sometimes voice dictation will misunderstand what you say what the end result is better than or uses different words then you are going to ever use. For example the other day I went to use "definitely demonstrates" and Dragon burped out "deftly demonstrates" and in the context it's error was a better fit is so bonus when that happens! Keep that in mind voice dictation for the win!

So all in all I recommend Dragon to anyone with a disability for sure, and if you are dyslexic Dragon can really help you also. I think you'll find that this program will free you from the keyboard when it comes to entering tax into e-mails or documents web forums and the like.

I am Chuck Bittner and I approve this message LOL!
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24 of 25 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Buy this or Home, whichever is cheaper, April 27, 2013
This review is from: Dragon NaturallySpeaking 12 Basics, English (Old Version) (DVD-ROM)
When the price of Dragon NaturallySpeaking Home 12.0, English came down to $36, I place an order on Amazon. Then, the next day, Fry's Electronics put this "Basics" version on sale for $20! So I cancelled the Amazon order and bought this instead. What a deal!

When Fry's ran the ad for Basics, I searched the net but couldn't find much about it. Nuance doesn't list it in their product comparison sheet. Apparently it's a discontinued version. (Used to be called "Essentials" before.)

The kid at Fry's says that the only difference between Basics and Home is that you can use your cell phone as a remote mic with Home. Not sure why I would want to do that. But apparently he was correct - I've installed v 12 Basics and it works like my old Dragon v10.1 Home. In fact, it works better, since it now works with Corel WordPerfect Office X6 Home & Student. (Whereas Dragon 10.1 did not. See my review of WP X6 there.)

I downloaded the generic PDF manual from Nuance for v 12 and haven't been able to find anything to distinguish Basics from Home. Even the Natural Language Commands for WP are available in this Basics version.

The Basics version comes with a headset. Not sure if the Amazon version of Home does or not.

As for performance - I've been using Dragon v10.1 previously, which worked fast enough for me. But Nuance is correct - they really sped things up if you have a multicore processor. I'm running an overclocked quad core Phenom (3.6 GHz) on Win7 64 and whole phrases of text pop up in seconds. (And I have the slider set for maximum accuracy at the expense of speed.)

I read in these reviews that v 12 of Dragon was really buggy. But Nuance just released a large patch that takes you to v12.5. Works for me. (BTW, you have to be logged in as Administrator for the updater to work.) But even Nuance hints at a memory leak, saying you should shut down and restart Dragon once a day.

Operationally, v 12 is much like v 10, although they've improved the interface and set some defaults different. If you've used Dragon before, they rearranged the furniture a bit, but you'll still feel at home.

The documentation has gotten a bit better too. They are up front about telling you that although you can install the program on a partition that's not C:, the speech files will be installed on C:. They warn you to do a custom install, so that you're not loading Indian English, Australian English, UK English, etc. (The speech files took up 1.5GB on C:. Yikes!)

If you're upgrading, you will have to let the software "upgrade" your user profile. But it does that automatically when you try to load your old profile, so it's a no brainer.

For now, Amazon sells Basics for more than Home. Whichever one you buy, it's a good deal.
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18 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Husband Trains his Dragon, January 1, 2013
This review is from: Dragon NaturallySpeaking 12 Basics, English (Old Version) (DVD-ROM)
While I watched!!!

My husband is a hunt and peck typer. He also has one hand and is not Internet Savvy.
I bought this for him so he could speak what he wanted to type. He has stories to tell that I would like to get on paper. This has worked out perfectly.

He can use it on Social Networking sites or commenting on chat forums.

It doesn't always type what he speaks exactly, but it's easy to correct, and learns his speech pattern. Some of the mistakes were pretty funny.

No complaints. It was a good purchase for us. (him)

lisa
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16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Can NOT transfer your profile with this version, August 30, 2013
By 
K.I. (Dallas, Texas United States) - See all my reviews
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Dragon NaturallySpeaking 12 Basics, English (Old Version) (DVD-ROM)
I have been enjoying using my Dragon naturally speaking software since I bought it a couple months ago. I have been vigorously training the software, so that it now makes minimal mistakes, keeping in mind that I can transfer my profile to different computers.
However, only today I found out I'm not able to transfer my profile with this basic edition, which is a disaster because I invested many hours to train the software. If I knew, I would have bought a premium edition because I have several computers and I was planning to install Dragon software in very near future, not to mention without the training every single computer.

If you have one computer and you think you will not use again in your future computer, this basic edition is a good buy, otherwise you will be paying the price difference by your precious time and effort in training the software again from scratch. To me, it's not worth $50.

FYI, you can install any edition of Dragon 12 software to up to 2 computers. I cannot speak for older versions.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars It's every bit as good as I was told, March 16, 2013
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Dragon NaturallySpeaking 12 Basics, English (Old Version) (DVD-ROM)
At first I wasn't happy with Naturally Speaking 12. It made many errors in dictation, would not respond to commands, took forever to load, would cause my computer to freeze up,etc. I played around with it despite these annoyances and contacted Nuance technical support. I got a response from them quickly but in the meantime the software mostly corrected itself. That alone is impressive but the accuracy is even more impressive. It takes a brief training period for the software to learn your manner of speaking and vocabulary. As long as you don't speak too quickly and enunciate well it is practically flawless. There are a few trouble spots that still need some work but I would highly recommend this software to anyone who wants to dictate rather than type. It is truly amazing software and I would not part with it for anything.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Works Great With Windows 8, February 11, 2014
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Dragon NaturallySpeaking 12 Basics, English (Old Version) (DVD-ROM)
I'm a long-time Dragon user. I'm a ghostwriter, which means that I do a ton of phone interviews and then transcribe them so I have material to work with when I write books. I don't use the program for anything other than that-- I just use it in conjunction with Word. The program was pretty terrible in its earliest versions-- accuracy was lousy. But my last version before this was 10, and accuracy had improved a lot.

Then I involuntarily got Windows 8. That is, I bought a new computer and it came with Windows 8. My Dragon 10 wouldn't work with it, so I'd have to get version 12 if I wanted to continue using it. Early reviews suggested that it was not fully compatible with Windows 8, so I held back and used the built-in dictation program on Windows... which is better than nothing, but ended up being extremely inaccurate and frustrating. When the price dropped, I decided to go ahead and try out Dragon 12.

Well! It's actually 12.5 now. They've released a new upgrade, which you get free with the program. When you install, you just have to tell it to check for updates and it'll automatically install 12.5. (Don't pay extra on other sites for version 12.5!) Apparently that has improved compatibility with Windows 8.

Basics has the same accuracy as Home, but some bells and whistles are missing, limiting its use with e-mail and cell phones, apparently. For my purpose, that doesn't matter at all. I need it for a very "basic" purpose-- just for use with Word.

All I can say is WOW... it works wonderfully! I just transcribed an 8-page interview nearly flawlessly. The minor errors here and there were easily correctable. I was amazed by how much better this worked than any program I've tried before, AND I wasn't even using a high-end microphone-- I just used the one that came with it. I did my 4 minutes of training, and it worked so well that I barely had to glance at the screen to make sure it was transcribing correctly.

One of the great improvements is the headset-- it must be a noise-filtering one, because it no longer tries to pick up the voice on my tape recorder in the background or ask "What was that?" when the phone rings or something. It just homes in on my voice really well.

I had no problems with installation or use, and I'm thrilled to be back in business. This cuts my workload way down and I'm so happy I upgraded. Better yet, I'm glad I upgraded at a ridiculously low price.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Totally pleased, January 8, 2013
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Dragon NaturallySpeaking 12 Basics, English (Old Version) (DVD-ROM)
The dragon software works great. I was really surprised how accurate it is in transcribing my voice to words. I have stated a life story for my kids and it is amazing how fast you can get through it. A few simple commands and you are off and running. Great deal1
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent., December 1, 2012
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Dragon NaturallySpeaking 12 Basics, English (Old Version) (DVD-ROM)
Love it! Use it all the time, and it makes my job of creating stories more enjoyable. I love it!
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Can't Live Without It!, December 17, 2012
This review is from: Dragon NaturallySpeaking 12 Basics, English (Old Version) (DVD-ROM)
I just bought this 24 hours ago and I am in love with it! I can't imagine working without it again.

I type at least 7000 words a day, and this has already made my life SO much easier. The truth is that I can think much faster than I can type, so this has doubled my productivity.

My wrist is getting a huge break from typing, and I don't even have to be looking at the computer screen to be typing. I can have my eyes closed. Granted, I could type with my eyes closed anyways, but it just feels different when you are doing speech to text.

As a caveat, it is important to speak clearly into the microphone. If you slur your words or tie them together then you will have mistakes.

Not only can I type my articles and blog posts with this program, but I can do so much more with my browser and with my computer in general. I can open and close browser windows and files.

All in all I totally recommend this for anyone who has a lot of typing to do. I think it will give your wrist a break and it will increase your productivity throughout the day.

Oh, and I'm not sure why that person had such a hard time installing it. For me it was as simple as putting in the disk and following the instructions.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great, November 30, 2012
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Dragon NaturallySpeaking 12 Basics, English (Old Version) (DVD-ROM)
I bought this for my husband he's a big gamer. He loves this it is a hands free way to game and communicate for him
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Dragon NaturallySpeaking 12 Basics, English (Old Version)
Dragon NaturallySpeaking 12 Basics, English (Old Version) by Nuance Communications (Windows 7 / Vista / XP)
$49.99 $34.99
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