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Berlitz Spanish Premier

Platform : Mac OS X, Windows 98, Windows 2000, Windows Me, Windows XP
3.6 out of 5 stars 48 customer reviews

Price: $19.94 + $3.89 shipping
Only 1 left in stock.
Ships from and sold by Bargain Buyers Software.
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Product Description

BERLITZ SPANISH PREMIER (WIN 98,ME,2000,XP/MAC 10.1 OR HIGHER)

Product Details

  • Product Dimensions: 9.6 x 8 x 2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds
  • Domestic Shipping: Item can be shipped within U.S.
  • International Shipping: This item is not eligible for international shipping. Learn More
  • ASIN: B000GCGQAA
  • Item model number: ZSX
  • Date first available at Amazon.com: October 2, 2001
  • Average Customer Review: 3.6 out of 5 stars 48 customer reviews
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #6,219 in Software (See Top 100 in Software)
  • Product Warranty: For warranty information about this product, please click here
  • Discontinued by manufacturer: Yes
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Customer Questions & Answers

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Mary Hawkins on August 12, 2007
I decided to give this product a shot before I bought something more expensive, but I wish I'd just gone ahead and committed to something more serious. As a learning environment, this product is scattershot and poorly put together. I kept looking for the "start here" button -- while the box trumpets the several ways to learn, there's just no easy way into the language. The software is supposedly an immersion environment for beginners, but it starts with lengthy dialogues and short sentences rather than the simple phrases you need to learn when you're an absolute beginner. The software also doesn't resize at all, so the software screen just looked tiny on my large monitor. The iPod vocabulary is pretty good, but it's missing a lot of things --it includes "sister-in-law", but not "mother", and only has three seasons. The stand-alone flash card program is good for what it is, but it uses that same limited vocabulary. I belatedly found that the box comes with a copy of Spanish Guaranteed, an all-audio CD program, and while it seems like a decent course, it's the only part of the package in Castilian Spanish.

This software might help someone who needs a brush-up on first year Spanish, but if you're looking for a quick course so you don't feel lost when you step off the plane, there are many options that are much better. I also found many free online resources that did a better job, including one that gave me the proper pronunciation of that missing season, el otoño.
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clunky, not mac friendly, poor vocab, fake "total immersion" (basically just people having brainless conversations that are too fast for beginners and too insipid for intermediaries). Berlitz has a really bad reputation and it's easy to see why when you receive this kind of product in the mail.

I work in a school where we receive dozens of products to sample every month.

Berlitz (aside from the really old editions, from the 1950's) is always the worst.
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You have to read a long manual before you can figure out how to use this Berlitz Spanish program on computer. I got so frustrated that I went out and bought a Spanish book.

The only thing I like about the Berlitz program is the flash cards.
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I was quite disappointed with this product, and had it not been for the price after rebate, I would have certainly returned it. For a beginner, this program can easily be overwhelming, especially in the most important feature which is the "immersion environment." The speech pronunciation guide is a farce. I had a native of Puerto Rico listen to the female voice and she said unequivocally that it was terrible. The program gave my native speaker friend poor pronunciation grades--even when she tried over and over again. Much of the program is not intuitive. The details are not worked out well. An example is the bookmark feature which supposedly allows you to start back where you would like. No--you have to go through each and every bookmark you've made before getting to the last bookmark--and you can't name the bookmarks. I could go on and on, but I think you get the idea. I'm still struggling with it, but it is painful.
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Before you purchase this product you should be aware that Nova Development has an extremely unethical approach to processing the rebates they offer so prominently to move their product. For example, the address on the rebate form that you download from the Amazon site is located in Calabasas, CA. This is an old address for Nova Development. The Company has not provided the post office with a forwarding address, which causes any rebate submissions mailed to the Calabasas address to be returned to you as undeliverable by the USPS. This fact has been brought to the attention of Company representatives by many customers and the vendor has done nothing to correct this problem. Get the picture? Nova Development will place as many hurdles in front of you as possible to scam you out of your paltry $10 rebate. We as customers have a duty to refuse to do business with unethical companies like Nova Development.
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Verified Purchase
I've been interested in learning another language for some time. Back in high school and college, my foreign language experiences (French and German) were disappointing. Mostly my fault. Now that I'm in my sixties, I thought I'd try again. I had looked at more expensive products, but I'm not ready to spring for that kind of money. The reviews I read on Amazon for the Berlitz product sounding promising, so I thought I'd try it.

My fairly new laptop is a Vista (Home Premium) based machine so I checked to make sure this product would run under Vista before I purchased it. It says it does, and, in fact it does, but you need a whip and a chair to get it installed. Each time I launched the install process, it would hang-up just before the end of the process. All the files installed, but no desktop icon and the product would not launch. After several tries, I emailed the support box at Nova. They responded promptly. Before you install, run msconfig and modify the startup process so no other startup items are loaded. Now run the install process again. It runs through and works correctly. In the email, they did not mention the fact that there is a general Vista patch on the Nova web site for all the Berlitz Premier language products. Once you get the install complete, go to the Nova site and run the patch as well. You're good to go!

I guess, more to the point, is this a good product to learn Spanish? I think it is. It provides many approaches for you to do the needful (read the manual before you start). It includes CDs that you can use in your car. There videos that help you put the language into context. I know some of the reviews complain about the accent of the speakers. I can't speak to that point since I have no real experience. I could end up speaking Spanish badly with a strange New England accent, but I'll be speaking Spanish!

I think I have gotten fair value for my money. No more, no less.
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