I've successfully set up RIM's Blackberry Desktop Manager 188.8.131.52 [Aug 15 2007] on Vista (Home Premium) w/ Outlook 2007 (12.0.4518.1013) without having to install the Blackberry Desktop Redirector. I did this quite by accident - I didn't know the DBR _had_ to be installed before the first configuration. I have had no crashes, however, there was one sync issue below.
The caveat; I had to clear the sync and reset Intellisync configuration once because of the dreaded "Unable to get data from an Outlook or MS Exchange record. ..." error. Since then I've had no problems, even with Outlook closed.
Also, the first time it sync'd the time zone was changed but I unchecked the "Update device's date and time" box and obviously fixed that one
I'll keep you posted if any further issues arise.