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on January 31, 2009
Before you spend hundreds of dollars on other Spanish learning programs, give this one a try. I've tried demos of the more expensive programs, and considering their prices, they did not impress me. Learn to Speak Spanish Deluxe offers similar content as the other more expensive programs, but at a fraction of the cost. This is an excellent program that is easy to follow, shows your progress, rates your accent, has vocabulary drills, conversations, cultural movies, and two CD-ROMs you can listen to. The main program is on a DVD and installs easily on Vista. I highly recommend this program.
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on March 26, 2009
My husband and I have been studying various sources in order to learn Spanish for an upcoming trip to Mexico. Yet, it was not all coming together in a functional way. So we purchased Learn to Speak Spanish Deluxe 10 from Amazon.com.

This is so much better than the other sources that we could not believe the price. It has a DVD for computer installation, which also contains a number of movies so that one can get immersed in the language.

It comes with 3 additional CDs for improving pronunciation. Each word can be heard, imitated and recorded on the computer with instant feedback as to how one's pronunciation is coming. Not only is one able to hear pronunciation for sounds and words, but also for the vowels, one can see a moving animation of how the tongue and lips are shaped to make the sounds.

There are lessons set by the program or one can build her/his own lessons based on need. A pre-test tells one where he/she needs to start. There is a Spanish-English /English-Spanish dictionary with all of the Spanish words pronounced with the simple click of the mouse.

In addition to the 144 page quick reference guide book which comes with the program, there is a 170 page workbook in PDF format with exercises and answers. The workbook is excellent and gives the conjugation of a number of verbs. There are 40 interactive scenarios in which you speak to the person on the screen in an appropriate conversational way. The computer picks up your voice and the program gives you immediate feedback.

Even the games, which are fun, stress pronunciation and record your voice to see if you are saying the words and phrases properly. (I paid over $100 for a voice recognition program which types.) This program has a cute little gauge which registers how close you are getting to the proper pronunciation. It goes from tourist to native. Of course it has sound that that lets you know how well you are doing in addition to the gauge.

I could go on but . . . Why? Well, I will just a little. The words are listed in such a way that they are related. You can click on a button and have a drill in which a list of words is said in Spanish with the English meaning on the screen. You can if you wish, repeat and record to get immediate feedback for accuracy.

You can download to an MP3 or play the CDs when not at your computer. There is even an internet connection from the site which links you to travel information and time, weather conditions in various countries etc.

No, I do not work for the company but as an educator myself, I think every subject should have a program similar to this, then the USA would rank in the top five in education again. This is so much fun that kids could learn without pain and the reward would not only be in high scores earned on the computer but good grades in school as well. With the added benefit of usable knowledge.

This is the best $17.95 we have ever spent. Language courses in high school and college did not make language come alive like this. Our hats are off to the educators and program designers who developed this excellent learning program at such an affordable price. ¡Muchas gracias!
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on March 14, 2009
I was all set to purchase "Visual Link Spanish - Level I" but the reviews talked me out of it. Another reviewer advised getting this software instead. I'm glad I listened.

I'm impressed with the speech analysis features of Learn to Speak Spanish Deluxe 10. It really helps you develop more accurate pronunciation. It allows you to record and playback your own voice. You can then compare your recorded version to the speaker in the software. I Love it.

I tried the Demo CD of Visual Link Spanish - Level I. Considering that the course is much more expensive, I expected much more. But was disappointed. It is almost as if Visual Link Spanish is geared toward a Grammer school Level, where "Learn to Speak Spanish Deluxe 10" seems geared toward adults.

Since "Visual Link Spanish - Level I" would have cost about 5 to 10 times more, I was dissapointed to find that most of the disks included are AUDIO cd's. Also the software does NOT have speech Analysis features! I find audio cd's MUCH more difficult to learn from. So, I don't think I would have used them.

But if you like Audio cd's this software includes 3. I have only been using learn to speech Spanish several days, but it appears to have MANY lessons from beginner to advanced. It even includes an english-to-spanish & spanish-to-english translater!

Not only do I recommend this software, I would buy it all over again! I think you will be pleased too. Heck, for the low price, you can buy a few different programs. Hey thats a good idea... I think I might just do that.

THANKS AMAZON!
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on October 26, 2009
This is James from James Spanish (the learning Spanish blog).
Designed by language teachers with years of classroom experience, and using the latest learning theories, the Learn to Speak Spanish Deluxe 10 immerses you gradually into the Spanish language so that you learn quickly and naturally.

The package is impressive given the low price, and has all of the features that you would expect to find in a language learning product costing hundreds of dollars, including vocabulary drills, audio conversations to listen to and speech recognition and analysis.

Although the course is designed with beginners in mind, it is geared towards adult learning, and avoids the over simplification and annoyingly childish tone that many basic language packs have. The interactive format also makes it a nice choice for students who already have basic Spanish but would like to brush up their knowledge and improve their fluency.

One of the best features of this product is the speech analysis. Record yourself repeating a phrase you have learnt, play it back and compare yourself to the Spanish speaker in the course. This helps you to develop accurate pronunciation - an element often overlooked by other programs, but one of the keystones to communicating well in a second language.

The course covers real life situations, from restaurants to airports, shops to sightseeing. You pick up the vocabulary and phrases that you will need as a tourist or business traveler, and will learn enough to help you communicate on your trip.

Covering both the needed vocabulary as well as some information about sentence structure and grammar, the lessons give you more than just the set of stock sentences that you would pick up from a phrase book.

The course is designed to be interactive, meaning that you get involved in the learning, rather than just being told what to say and how to say it. This is a great way to learn and helps you to judge your own performance, repeating lessons whenever you need to, and moving on quickly with elements that you grasp easily.

You can also choose what to learn. Focus on vocabulary, conversations or specific situations, to help you learn what you need most.

The audio CDs let you continue learning in your car, while the mp3 files can be downloaded to your mp3 player or phone to allow you to practice just about anywhere.

Bundled with a handy reference book, this package is a good all round learning system at a fraction of the cost of similar products.

In closing my review of this product, I'd like to share with you the three Amazon products that I have found most helpful in my pursuit to learn Spanish. If you are truly serious about achieving fluency, I'd recommend getting all 3 of them if you can afford it.

1. Lights, Camera, Spanish (Book + DVD): Learn Conversational Spanish by Watching a Romantic Adventure This is actually a 90 minute movie for Spanish-language learners. It gives the option to watch the movie with subtitles but I'd recommend not using them to improve your Spanish. This "movie" also includes a workbook so that you can reinforce the Spanish vocabulary words and phrases from the film. The workbook also has lots of exercises to keep you engaged in the film. But be prepared to hear Chilean accents. Although pleasent to the ear, the accents from Chile are very different from most Latin American accents.

2. Verbarrator Version 1.1 (Windows Version) This software replaces the traditional verb conjugation books and makes learning how to conjugate Spanish verbs an interactive and fun activity. This should be a required resource for anyone who wants to improve their ability to conjugate Spanish verbs. Especially anyone who is challenged by the drudgery of learning how to conjugate Spanish verbs and who is looking for a new way to make learning how to conjugate Spanish verbs an easy and fun activity

3. Diccionario esencial de la lengua espanola de la Real Academia Espanola (Spanish Edition) If you are really serious about speaking the language fluently, then at some point you will need to replace your Spanish-English dictionary and get a pure Spanish dictionary with both the vocabulary words and the definitions entirely in Spanish. I use this one only because it was highly-recommended by a friend from Spain who teaches Spanish.
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on April 8, 2009
Having read other reviews, I expected a lot more but I think this software is very dull. It's also very inexpensive, but I don't think it's worth more than it costs. The same tired topics, which are good if you want to learn Spanish just to be a tourist. The structure is very basic: learn the vocabulary, a few basic multiple choice type exercises and on to the next lesson. My microphone, which works with the computer, didn't work with the software and there was no response from tech. support. But I decided I didn't care because the program is so unmotivating I'll just give it away. I know other programs cost more, but they are also much better.
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on November 14, 2010
First of all, I must say that there is a generous amount of learning Spanish materials included with this software. There are3 40 core lessons that are named after situations that learners of the Spanish language are likely to encounter. For example:

* Checking In
* in the hotel room
* making a long distance call
* at a restaurant
* asking for directions
* finding an address
* Introductions
* at a party
* making an appointment
* at the pharmacy
* at the doctor's office
* at the laundry
* at the gas station
* at the beauty parlor

All 40 of the lessons include the following sections: Vocabulary sections, Vocabulary exercises, Dialogs, Dialogs Exercises, Grammar, Grammar Exercises, and Interactive Conversation.

The software also features "workshops" where the student will have the chance to practice in five areas:
Grammar, Pronunciation, Vocabulary, Conversation, and Simulations

The software also has lots of games to help break the monotony of studying Spanish. I have not had a chance to play the games but they seem to consist of crossword puzzles and online games.

This software also includes a "progress" section so that you can measure how well you are learning how to speak Spanish. But one of my favorite sections of the software was the "tools" section which allowed me to customize my lessons. It even allowed me to set my "minimum achievement level" which I left at the default (70%). In this section, I was also able to select the lessons based on which was the most important to me to learn. Such as:

1. The Complete Program
2. Everyday Life
3. Business Spanish
4. Travel
5. Going Out
6. Shopping
7. Complete Customization

There was also a very detailed "help" section in the software. But I found the software so intuitive that I never had to use it.

My favorite section of the software was the "media section" that included short cultural videos and MP3 audio. The videos covered topics such as Mexican Traditions, Advise for Tourists, the National Museum and more. I highly recommend the Learn to Speak Spanish Deluxe for any beginner student of the language or for anyone who needs to learn basic Spanish for an upcoming trip to a Spanish speaking country. However, if you are an intermediate student, you will not find this software enough of a challenge.

The three things that I like most about this software is 1), its economic price 2), the enormous amount of learning Spanish material included for the price, and 3) the interactivity of the software.

Some other products that I recommend for Spanish language learners are Rosetta Stone Spanish. Rosetta Stone Spanish (Latin America) Level 1,2,3,4 & 5 Set with Audio Companion is pretty good if you are a visual learner like me. My only complaints are that in Rosetta Stone Spanish the Spanish is rather basic and the course is excessively expensive.

In order to speak Spanish fluently, you must also learn lots of new words. For increasing Spanish vocabulary, I recommend Quick Study-Spanish Vocabulary Flash Cards-1000 cards You get 1,000 of these cards at an excellent price.

To speak Spanish fluently besides having a stand alone course as your base and a method to learn new Spanish words, you will also need to master conjugating Spanish verbs. The best product for that is the
the Verbarrator Version 1.1 (Windows Version) software. The Verbarrator software does a great job of replacing the boring Spanish verb conjugation books and makes learning Spanish verbs enough fun that you will want to use the software every day. And the more you use the tool the quicker that you will learn how to conjugate Spanish verbs and reach fluency. The Verbarrator is probably the best investment that I have made in my journey to learn Spanish because it is a product that I will use daily until I reach fluency. Unlike some learning-Spanish products such as books that you will only read one time or some Spanish courses that you will at the most review 2 or 3 times from start to finish.

The last product that I recommend for anyone who is really serious about learning Spanish is The Ultimate Spanish Review and Practice w/CD-ROM (UItimate Review & Reference Series). This Spanish grammar book covers every aspect of Spanish grammar imaginable. To get the equivalent learning-Spanish value of this one book you would have to buy 3 or 4 books in the Practice Makes Perfect series.
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on April 15, 2009
This program makes up for what Rosetta Stone lacks - didactics. While it is not in the form of a live teacher - there are planned lessons and exercises to practice simple grammar and vocabularies.

It is broken up into sections based on categories - doctor's visit, gassing up, travel, etc. It has video clips, with english and spanish texts under it. Dictionaries can be installed. The voice recognition is easy to use, and give instant feedback.

For the price of $20, it is loaded! While rosetta stone is easily used - it is lacking in structured didactics. Too bad, one can't have rosetta stone at $20 also. In term of being "boring" - you pretty much can say that about any didactic program. Learning a language intensively is boring. I completed 2 years of college spanish in 17 weeks (7 in the US, and 10 in Ecuador). There is no easy way around that fact. Rosetta stone is more "exciting", and "fun". But it stops short of its ability to really teach you a language. Other programs also stop short of letting you achieve "low intermediate" spanish. This one might just do that, if you completed all the didactic exercises - which are very brief... My guess is that this course will give you the equivalent of first year high school spanish, or perhaps first semester college spanish. Rosetta stone will only complement a real spanish class or expose you to simple verb tenses. This program also comes with audio cds and a small reference book. The dvd can be installed on your hard drive, so you don't need to lug it along like Fluenz or other programs.

How you proceed with this program is by either choosing topics (dining, at the bank, at the airport, etc.), or by lessons (genders, present tense, past tense, etc), or by conversation (assuming you already know the rules and vocab). The preferred way to go is to choose the topic, learn the vocabs, learn to pronounce (by using running the list), and then go through the exercise). Like many other language programs, it is best if you had some formal class in spanish - but it is doable not knowing any spanish language. The lessons are very brief, and has about 1 example of each tense for each form of the subject pronoun. While it is brief, it serve just enough to explain the tense. You would have to combine this program with more repetitive exposure to the tense through didactic exercises through a book like "Practice Makes Perfect, Spanish Verb Tenses", or "Hello World, Spanish Free Conjugator" download. You can not go wrong in using this program in conjunction with other audiovisual methods such as Pimsluer, rosetta stone, etc.
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on February 5, 2009
First I completely agree with KeyBored's review. The others were less informative, but add some. I've only just started using Learn to Speak Spanish Deluxe, but I chose it based on these comments and a particular review I read that compared it's previous release to many other Spanish language programs rating it higher than almost all.

Personally, I've tried 5 different Spanish computer courses -- I recommend this over all the others (although the older Berliz course I used 10 years ago was also very good.) I recently tried the Rocket Spanish free demo, but was put off by the technique, the cost and the fact that it was oriented more toward translation.

I particularly like the MANY alternatives provided by Learn to Speak Spanish Deluxe 10 to learning and improving my knowledge and understanding of Spanish. From the manual to the drills to the interactive scenarios, there are many varied ways to develop your language skill. Of particular interest to me is the pronunciation feedback. Because of childhood experiences in many countries and languages, I have strong pronunciation skills -- but these language lab recordings with feedback and graphic display have dramaticly helped me with spoken Spanish. Some have difficulty with accents, some (like me) pick them up easily, but regardless this capability can help shape and sharpen your accent. I may always be spotted as an American speaking Spanish, but not as an American cow trying to speak Spanish! (That comes from an old insult -- not especially polite.)

Save some money, get this course and have fun learning or improving your Spanish.
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on October 14, 2008
I would recommend this course to any one who wants to learn spanish. The cd rom works well with the exception of one dialoge. If you are trying to follow along with the book when listening to the cd's, find the diolog first/ The diologs are randomly selected.The course topics are very interesting and the learning excersises are not boring.Yes , I am learning spanish and enjoying it.
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on June 23, 2009
Compare this to $100, $200 and $300 products that do the exact same thing. This is my second language I'm learning other than my native tounge so I know what I'm looking for.

This program uploaded smoothly onto my computer, took about 5-10 minutes and presto you can start. You also have the ability to have multiple users on one program which is nice for individual progress.

Program measures your progress, has voice recognition and enables you to choos what you would like to learn next. It is very comprehensive. Did I mention it is unbelievably affordable.

I give this product 2 thumbs up for its compatibility, ingenuis software and overall ease of use so anyone can figure it out.

It also comes with 3 CDs so you can listen to them in the car and practice that way.

I highly recommend it to anyone that wants to save a buck and learn the language, say good bye to Rosetta and those other expensive ripoffs.
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