Spanish Levels 1, 2 & 3 (Instant Immersion) (Spanish) CD-ROM – 31 Mar 2011
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Top customer reviews
**Content vs. Packaging vs. Layout
***Cost vs. Benefit analysis
****Pro's and Con's/ Recap
*Instant Immersion, is a 8 c.d. + 1 DVD language tutorial program created by the
European company, "Euro Talk."
From the product description, the set "guarantees" that it is the quickest way to learn a
foreign language: in this case, Spanish. And, it should come in handy living here in
Miami. The product has a lot to offer (and that shouldn't be discounted), but it may be
overselling its capabilities.
**Content vs. Packaging vs. Layout--The packaging is a very slick two-sleeve box set
with a beautiful woman and idyllic setting on the cover. All of the discs, all nine (9) of
them are cramped together at the bottom of the second sleeve. The entire remainder for the
packaging from the opening sleeve to the top part of the second sleeve is empty. What a
waste of packaging, nevermind the waste of creative graphic designing.
The layout has a childlike-theme to it. As a result, it is very simple to follow, but at the
same time, it felt like they were talking to a five-year old. I suppose if you're starting from
scratch with no knowledge whatsoever, then maybe this is the most enticing way to
Each of the discs has a hodgepodge of vocabulary, common phrases and response sections.
Six (6) discs, the first section, cover the basics: building on elementary (but, common)
words to business/ internet/marketing.
One (1) disc is a mystery game, "Who's Oscar Lake?" This is a game that reminds me of
"Clue," where getting the right answer enables one to move on with a bit more knowledge
about the mystery character. But, this game uses the vocabulary and phraseology from the
previous discs as the foundation.
One (1) is a compact disc full of mp3 files to be listened to on your computer or to be
stored on an iPod or other mp3 player.
And, the final disc, Disc 9, is a DVD of the first six (6) discs of this program.
***Cost vs. Benefit analysis. With all of my minor misgivings, this is a good deal anyway
you slice it. You get nine (9) discs. The audio segments are clear and the subject layout is
pretty straightforward regardless of the thematic presentation. The game, "Who is Oscar
Lake?" is a big plus. With this program, you're able to utilize different parts of the brain
for retention: visual, auditory and tactile. The program retails for $50 (US) and that's a
bargain. Instant Immersion is absolutely correct when they state that they can offer a
comparable product to Rosetta Stone at a fraction of the cost. The biggest flaw, I would
point out (besides the horrendous packaging) is that the graphics, particularly the images
are dated, perhaps lately 1980's. And, the mp4 file were of very low quality, you'd see the
pixels of the tutors fade in and out like an old tv that was loosing its reception. They cut
far too many corners for me to give it 5-stars.
Also, I'd like to point out, that it is recommended that you use one of those in-ear
headphone/speaker combo's for the Response sections of the program. I tested out
answering a question from the speaker on my MacBook Pro and then answered the next
question using my Blackberry headphone/speaker OEM (Original) 3.5mm STEREO Hands-free Headset for RIM Blackberry 8330 CURVE (by Alltel / Sprint / US Cellular / Verizon Wireless) and the difference was blatantly obvious.
If you don't own one, here's another suggestions for your consideration. Ultimate Ears MetroFi 170vi Noise Isolating Earphones w/ Microphone
****Pro's and Con's/ Recap
+ Nine (9) discs. Fairly simply, yet fun way to grasp the fundamental of any language.
+Price. $50. That works out to a little more than $5/disc. Rosetta Stone, $595.
+Mystery game, "Who's Oscar Lake?" is engenders a positive reinforcement of thematic
+ One (1) cd of mp3 audio files, that can be played at your convenience.
-Waste of packaging. Company shouldn't be so thoughtless as to waste in our global
effort to be more conscious of the environment. (Although, I have a fondness for beautiful
-Old pictures and low-resolution graphic files take away from a positive experience. Stop
be so chintzy!
-Company shouldn't market as the fastest way to learn. Maybe in comparison to Rosetta
Stone, but all of these programs should be used in conjunction with a tutor/teacher. You
need positive feedback and constructive criticism if for no other reason than diction.
Recap. Very good program. The value of the program is well worth the investment and
there isn't any program offering near the bargain that you have here. You should use a
headphone with a speaker for best results. The waste of packaging and the use of lowgrade
graphics represents a conflict of interest as far as the product shows me.
Four to four and a half stars.
Most helpful customer reviews on Amazon.com
*I am happy that info is delivered incrementally and you can go anywhere you want, basic to difficult and back again. You can even wear it while you sleep and learn it subliminally if you like! Or, learn it in your car using the mp3 disc. It is very versatile.
I was disappointed in the overall structure of the software. I thought I would learn more with each disk, and the phrases that are emphasized are more geared towards individuals who need to know Spanish on vacation or while studying abroad. The first two levels provide good vocabulary practice, but do not challenge the student to construct sentences. There are important Spanish basics, such as verb conjugation, that should be a major lesson in the first two levels. I felt like I was spending a bunch of time reviewing simple Spanish words, rather than learning to construct sentences. The creator of the software made some practice games to help the learning process, but for my level I've found the games are a bit too simple, even when I did not remember most of the vocabulary that was taught before the lessons. A lot of what I learned from the software is something that I can figure out by picking up a Spanish-English dictionary. I needed more practice dealing with verbs, sentence structure, expressing feelings, and more in-depth practice with telling time.
I hate to be so critical of the software, because it can be interactive (the games) and there is some variety between the disks. It is also colorful- graphics, sound, etc. is pretty solid. However, for the price the software is originally marked at, I would invest in a e-book or even find some credible online tutorials if you are a student or someone hoping to learn Spanish for scholarly purposes. If you want to learn some basics, and practice in an interactive way to prepare for a vacation, a business trip or studying abroad, then this may be a good refresher in some important Spanish phrases you should know.
In conclusion, the usefulness of this software depends on what you are looking for. Are you a student who needs to eventually become fluent and construct your own phrases? Or are you simply looking to learn the basic, everyday phrases? Your answer to this question will determine if you will find use in this program.
Note: I have not looked over the DVD; I am just rating the disks and programs I have gone through; this is why, despite initial dissapointment, I am grading the software three-stars rather than two.
I was not that impressed with it. They save money by having cheap graphics (although I can't believe a few photos would be more expensive than their quick hand-sketches). It primarily teaches you vocabulary and phrases, which is helpful, but you need grammar, too, if you ever want to talk about your own ideas.
I may go back--- it's certainly helpful if you know no Spanish (like me).
But in the meantime, I've found, on the Internet, the following:
1. Spanish Dictionary, with free Spanish lessons (It has great graphics. And you can create your own flashcards with an automated audio for pronunciation).
2. LoMas TV - Spanish Immersion TV, which costs $10.00 a month. It has videos with spoken Spanish by natives. But, in addition, it has English and Spanish subtitles underneath, and an instant dictionary, so that you can figure out what is being said. This is real instant immersion.
Both much better than 'Instant Immersion Spanish' and less money, too.