just started german!
i just started German and right of the bat i can't pronounce or spell (from listening) hardly any of the words. I've read through the grammar lessons at the bottom of each lesson for how to say the vowels and what not. but still i always get mixed up. any pointers? ex. they say brot, i hear bort, they say manner, i hear mano.
Btw the problem you had with "Männer" is that "er" at the end becomes an a-schwa (Near-open central vowel).
Try to look at german spoken Videos or Movies with german subtitles :)
You can't expect letter combinations to sound like they do in your native language. It takes a while to get used to new sounds.
Just a hint: if you can’t type the special characters
ä ö ü ß, replace them with
ae oe ue ss respectively. That is standard, and anything else just confuses native speakers.
I started few days a go too. When I read text to computer like it's written, computer understands the text even I don't sound exactly like "real german". Also real people understand my deutsch quite ok (been in Berlin few times), just keep on saying the words best you can.
I just started with German as well, and yes, it sounds really confusing at first. But like any foreign language, just stick with it and you'll start hearing it, then pronouncing it, better and better! I think our minds are incredible, how we can learn to distinguish sounds we never heard before....it's part of the foreign language learning process!! Keep it up! ^_^