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MacSpeech Dictate for Mac

Average User Rating:
2.7
out of 24 votes

Quick Specs

  • Version:
    1.5.5
  • Total Downloads:
    21,018
  • Date Added:
    Oct. 13, 2009
  • Price:
    Update; $199.00 to buy

Publisher's Description

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User Reviews
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Results 1–10 of 24

1 stars

"Macspeech Dictate 1.5.8 crashes, crashes, crashes"

July 04, 2010  |  By phoneybalone

 |  Version: MacSpeech Dictate 1.5.9

Pros

Maybe it will be worth a poop in another 5 years.

Cons

Crashes, buggy, misrecognition, complicated, unintuitive, expensive.

Summary

I cannot believe that, after all these years, MacSpeech Dictate (formerly iListen) is still daring to sell, for $200.00 software that is next to useless for any productivity function. This software makes you work for the software, instead of the other way around. With all the crashing, bugs, misrecognition, and repeated "microphone setup" every time I have to restart it, I cannot believe that this overpriced app has saved me even 1 minute of time.

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2 stars

"Disappointing Australian version falls over too often"

June 28, 2010  |  By waldo1941

 |  Version: MacSpeech Dictate 1.5.9

Pros

Not much Mac Users have been the poor relations in this area for far too long!!!

Cons

Even when trained, the vocabulary does not respond well and in terms of reliability, this is not a very good product. Being physically disabled gives me the opportunity to test all such products and speech to text for the Mac still remains a dream.

Summary

I've had to battle with speech to text software for many years. It's meant running to computer systems because I prefer a Mac. Every speech to text software package for the Apple Computer has been a dud and MacSpeech promised so much. However, despite the fact that I have more than enough RAM, it falls over consistently and I lose work and there is an ongoing problem with feedback. The files requested after a crash are too big to be handled by the server. MacSpeech has now been taken over by Nuance, which produces Dragon NaturallySpeaking. Up to version 9, DNS on a PC set the standard for speech to text software but since then, it has slowly become more cumbersome and error-prone. Somewhat ironically, I discovered when Windows 7 was installed on my PC that the Microsoft speech program was excellent. It hides away in the accessories but is easily trained, is extremely reliable and as such, probably ensures that I will continue to use a PC when I would like to use only one system.

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2 stars

"Buggy, buggy, buggy, but useful for extended passages."

November 10, 2009  |  By jeffanony

 |  Version: MacSpeech Dictate 1.5.6

Pros

Decent and moderately trainable recognition.

Cons

ANY typing or keyboard navigation completely confuses it. It often crashes before you enter a word, just because you used your mouse or typed an email address in a form. Be prepared to restart it every half hour or so, sometimes more often.

Summary

A brilliant technology wrapped in a 1980's package that does not play well with others. Only appropriate for overcoming physical disability.

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1 stars

"Absolutely useless for dictation"

October 13, 2009  |  By avfolk--2008

 |  Version: MacSpeech Dictate 1.5.5

Summary

This review was originally posted on VersionTracker.com.
I have been a registered user, and upgrader -- since this product was introduced
eons ago at MacWorld. I bought two seats based on a demo. After lengthy
'training' and tweaks... the program is still as inaccurate and buggy as it was when
I first used it.

I suspect that the recognition engine is the fault as the Google Search app on
my Iphone works flawlessly -- without training and tweaks -- and does so on an
iPhone mic at arms length in a noisy car.

Avoid this at all costs. It is not worth the money -- and importantly -- the time.

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1 stars

"Useles pice of CRAP!"

August 15, 2009  |  By NO!!!!!

 |  Version: MacSpeech Dictate 1.5.2

Summary

This review was originally posted on VersionTracker.com.
I've bought every single incarnation of this software from version 1.0 of iListen and stupidly paid for every single upgrade including Dictate. I have never gotten a single version not one to function as advertised. IListen was useless. Dictate sounded promising but after flaking out another few hundred dollars it just crashes. Every now and then I try it again after an update but as of OS 10.5.8 and Dictate 1.5.2 it still crashes . At least iListen ran. Dictate is a dog.

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3 stars

"worst software purchase I?ve ever made"

June 16, 2009  |  By VancouverRMT

 |  Version: MacSpeech Dictate 1.5.1

Summary

This review was originally posted on VersionTracker.com.
Dictate is one of the most unstable and generally poorly designed major pieces of software I have ever had the misfortune to be stuck using.

Far from being a major improvement over MacSpeech's previous product, iListen, Dictate still feels as twitchy and poorly thought out as iListen ever did, even after a year and a half of development and at least two major updates. The only real improvement is that Dictate is based on a far superior speech recognition engine (and that's not nothing). However, it's a lot less use if the software wrapped around the engine totally sucks.

I purchased Dictate shortly after its release in early 2008, and have barely had a day of trouble-free use of the product ever since. Routine hanging and crashing has been the main problem. Due to an egregious Canadian localization bug, for several months I had to choose between a version of Dictate that would literally not launch all, and an older version that merely crashed frequently.

When 1.5 was release recently (May 09), I hoped I would finally be able to use Dictate with fewer hassles, but no such luck. Even running on a well-maintained year-old MacBook Pro, Dictate 1.5 (and 1.5.1) is as crashy as ever. Within minutes of using the new version, CPU usage spikes to 98% and stayed there ? not just bringing dictate to all but the entire machine, and even refusing to force quit. Lovely. Such experiences have been the rule with Dictate from the beginning!

For many months I communicated regularly with MacSpeech about my frustrations with their product. I cooperated diligently with a great deal of troubleshooting. I was often treated like I was some kind of ?problem? customer, despite the fact that I have some empathy for the kind of frustrations tech support workers have to cope with and try pretty hard to be nice to them. Some weren?t so bad, of course. But despite the professionalism of some individual tech support professionals at MacSpeech, the overall customer service experience was abominable.

Ultimately, MacSpeech simply was not willing to stand behind their product in any substantive way. I am a deeply annoyed customer.

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5 stars

"Has developed into an excellent program!"

May 28, 2009  |  By philip.playfer

 |  Version: MacSpeech Dictate 1.5.1

Summary

This review was originally posted on VersionTracker.com.
I am disabled and find typing difficult. As a result I have tried a lot of speech recognition programs including IBM's ViaVoice, Dragon NaturallySpeaking, iListen and now MacSpeech Dictate. Of all of these Dragon NaturallySpeaking is the most developed and so just has the edge in usability. The problem is it only works on a Mac if you are using Windows with programmes such as Parallels Desktop etc.

MacSpeech Dictate, when it first appeared, started shakily but was a vast improvement on iListen. The latest version however is almost as good as Dragon NaturallySpeaking and is just as accurate. Version 1.5.1 is worth the upgrade fee if only because it works more accurately and more quickly than version 1.5. I would now have no hesitation in recommending this program to anyone. I couldn't live without it. Some of the criticisms that I have seen of this program are down to the fact that people have not read the documentation.

Even MacSpeech's customer service has improved. Version 1.5.0 came with a bug that affected the British English version. Mac Speech quickly e-mailed me a workaround within two days. This update (version 1.5.1) seems to have sorted out the problem.

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1 stars

"Sadly disappointing"

May 17, 2009  |  By achlasaba

 |  Version: MacSpeech Dictate 1.5

Summary

This review was originally posted on VersionTracker.com.
I too purchased this program based on David Pogues recommendation.

Firstly, it was incredibly difficult to install. I have been using it for almost 6 months and it cannot be trained to learn my own user specific words and I am lucky if if I get an 85-90% accuracy. So, I have basically given up - I am typing this review.

Regarding 1.5: I would be willing to pay for the upgrade in the hope that the program has finally made the grade. However, the upgrade cannot be downloaded and, living outside the USA, I would have to pay an additional $49 for shipping.

Enough is enough. and I will probably to put MacSpeech Dictate on the scrapheap of obsolete applications!

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5 stars

"Top Notch Application"

May 16, 2009  |  By VersionTrackerUserOpinion

 |  Version: MacSpeech Dictate 1.3

Summary

This review was originally posted on VersionTracker.com.
There will always be complainers who have problems using applications through no fault of the application. I have been using MacSpeech Dictate for a little less than a year and it has been a wonderful program for me. It has cut my email writing time to a small fraction of the time it used to require, and it never makes spelling errors. It will use the wrong word quite often when two or more words sound the same, such as "to, too and two," but it provides text replacement options to quickly select and correct the error generally, and all done verbally. I have not used version 1.5 yet, but I have it on order and it should be here in the next couple days. I am sure it will be even better.

As to the issue of the cost of the upgrade, the upgrade costs roughly 25% of the full purchase price of the program, and that is resaonable. Those who feel it is excessive might wish to try to write the new code themselves. Money has to come from someplace to pay the costs. Good programs cost a lot to create and upgrade. Have you priced Photoshop lately? You get what you pay for generally, but MacSpeech is worth every penny.

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4 stars

"Don't you believe negative comments"

May 15, 2009  |  By Brass Hammer

 |  Version: MacSpeech Dictate 1.5

Summary

This review was originally posted on VersionTracker.com.
This product is exceptional. I never thought someone would come out with a good speech recognition application, but these guys did. My only complaint is the unbelievable $54.00 upgrade price. Once again those who support early applications get screwed, and those who wait get a good deal.

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Results 1–10 of 24

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Full Specifications

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What's new in version 1.5.5
Available free of charge to registered MacSpeech Dictate 1.5 customers using the "Check for Updates" feature.

  • Context menu for Available Commands window: Edit, Execute, and Copy Description to Clipboard.
  • Message to crash emails about the email not going to Technical Support directly.
  • Font in Available Commands Window to Helvetica Oblique to remedy minimal font installations.
  • Address Books with more than 900 (approx.) entries will have the Email Commands generation turned off to avoid resource issues.
  • Selection Commands now show under Status window in the Recognized Text area.
  • Menu mapping for apps bundled with Snow Leopard updated for the new versions
  • Commands with different context from Leopard to Snow Leopard
  • Issues with documents crashing while Caching or Closing
  • Versioning of Commands sets
  • Crash when pasting text into documents that have been cached
  • Empty dialog when exporting "nothing" from the Vocabulary Editor
  • Some Engine words not displaying properly in Training dialog
  • Retain cursor location in document after Cache Document is used
  • License key not always copied to proper location after License Key Validation
  • Crash when highlighting and moving text in a cached area
  • Turned off Spoken Alerts except for VoiceOver users
  • Crashing when users edited or navigated with mouse in some situations (not perfected just better)
  • Better handling of upper level Excel documents. Working within cells still requires use of Purge Cache while navigating
General
Publisher Nuance Communications
Publisher web site http://www.nuance.com/
Release Date October 13, 2009
Date Added October 13, 2009
Version 1.5.5
Category
Category Business Software
Subcategory Word Processing Software
Operating Systems
Operating Systems Mac OS X 10.5.6 Intel/10.6 Intel
Additional Requirements MacSpeech-certified noise-cancelling microphone (included with new purchase).
Download Information
File Size Not Available
File Name Not available
Popularity
Total Downloads 21,018
Downloads Last Week 4
Pricing
License Model Update
Limitations Not available
Price $199

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