After reading the one rave review I bought the beginning Italian CD's but I was never able to progress beyond lesson # 1. I downloaded the all the corresponding written material on their website in addition to the audio on the CD's, but I still wasn't able to get anywhere. I've been to Italy several times, I can understand a bit and I read a menu in italian etc., and I've had some very basic Italian in the past, but I wanted to study Italian as we're going there next spring.Finally after weeks of not mastering anything, and not progressing in the slightest, their system just didn't seem to work for me, I mentioned my problems to a friend and he suggested the Pimsleur which he swore by. My friend has using Pimsleur for years for different languages and currently he's studying daily Italian from their CD's. I ordered it, and it's all audio CD's for the Italian, not written material to download, but I was immediately learning, and making progress, and moving onto different lesson. I would suggest that if someone want to learn a language buy the Pimsleur any day rather the Berlitz, but of course it could work for someone else, but it didn't work for me, nor did work for my friend, before buying the Berlitz I strongly suggest looking into the Pimsleur CD's . They're really excellent, and you'll no doubt be making progress veyr fast, the primsleur are better than the Berlitz.
The Italian Berlitz CD set is a very good introduction to the language for a beginner. It is well organized, and provides ample opportunity for the student to repeat the material in the pauses. I found it helpful to print out the lessons from the Berlitz website, so I could compare the sounds of the spoken words with the printed words.