|Uncle Milton Homestar
|List Price: $299.99
Our Price: $149.95
You Save: $150.04 (50%)
Enjoy an amazing starry-night view in the comfort of your own home with the Homestar Optical Star Planetarium. Watch as a crystal-clear, rotating field of 10,000 stars is projected on your ceiling or wall, with random streaking meteors. Measures 7" x 7".
- Displays up to 10,000 stars on walls and ceiling.
- Motorized rotation of star fields
- Two high-res interchangeable image disks (for different starfield views)
- Futuristic sphere design
- Optical-quality lens system with adjustable focus
- Ultra-bright white LED light source
- Automatic timer for motorized image rotation
- Random streaking meteor mode
- Adjustable projection angle
- AC adapter
- Enjoy an amazing starry night view in the comfort of your own home with our pro series planetarium
- Futuristic sphere design with motorized rotation of star fields
- Two interchangeable hi-res image disks for different starfield views
- Adjustable projection angles which display up to 10,000 stars on walls and ceiling
- Recommended for 10 years and up
- Great product for the price
If you are looking for an accurate view of the night sky, but don't want to spend a ton of money, then this is the product for you. It's small so you can easily store it and is bright enough to project on high ceilings (in total darkness). I bought it for my 5 year old this past Christmas and it has been a huge hit. ...more info
- Nice home planetarium
I set mine up and tried it out in a dark room, and was not overly amazed, but it is very neat. Although it isn't as spectacular as that green laser star projector, it is way more realistic. If you want to see the stars, just like it is in the night sky, then this will do very nicely. If you want to feel like you are experiencing a trip in some far away galaxy, or want to see some sci-fi effects, the green laser projector will do better. I do like the fact that they have an optional disc with the constellations labeled on them.
I understand they have a better, and more improved version of this planetarium available now, with more discs. It certainly looks alot like this one, so I don't see why they don't make the discs available for separate purchase so I can see them on this projector, or make some new ones available.
All in all, this was worth the money, and it looks very professional. The music CD was a nice bonus, however I think they could have put more songs on it....more info
- Planetarium Like
There are other products that offer to project stars on your ceiling but this one by far is the best that you can come to having an actual planetarium in your home.
The projection is good on the first disk with familiar stars easy to pick out and the Milky Way well represented. The meteorite flying over is cute and never fails to catch ones eye.
The second disk with the outlines of the constellations is really helpful to get familiar with the night sky.
Overall it's a pleasure to project on the ceiling at night....more info
- You Can See The Milky Way!
This is a great toy for the price it is. It comes with two trays to show stars or the constellations and you can tilt the sphere to move the lights where you want. The sphere of Homestar is smaller than a basketball but larger than a softball. You can sharpen the light that comes out so the stars in the center are clear, but it gets blurry the farther out. Maybe this would look even cooler if it was shining on something dome-shaped. I Think the only downside is that the shooting star function is in a fixed place but shows at random times....more info
This was a gift for our grandson. As it turns out the entire family
just loves it and finds it a soothing influence....more info
- Not as great as I thought
The toy did not live up to my expectations. It was a bit flimsy and the stars we simply dots in varying sizes. Not as "cool" as the video makes it out to be. ...more info
- Recreate that sense of awe and wonder!
The description isn't exagerrating ... this little device generates over 10,000 points of light, plus the "haze" of the Milky Way, recreating a very realistic-looking night sky. For those who live in our light-polluted cities, Homestar will restore your sense of wonder and awe of the universe. It helps me to daydream (er, nightdream) as I did when I was a child. What's out there? Will humankind ever reach the stars?
The "stars" range in size, and the big ones may look a little fuzzy, but the sheer magnitude of detail will quickly make you forget. I have two units (and with the new $90 price, I'll be purchasing three more as gifts for family members). One unit is very quiet and unobtrusive. The other (which has been dropped a few times) is a little noisier. I'm not sure if the problem is the motor or the transformer.
These make great night lights and may give you a little sense of peace as you go to sleep. The shooting star feature is just a gimmick, but the kids like it. The rotation feature adds to the soothing effect as the starfield slowly rotates, giving you a different view. Best of all, you can set a timer to turn it off after fifteen, thirty or sixty minutes, saving the bulb for more nights of use. We've been using ours for seven months on the original bulb. The unit comes with two discs, but we never use the (unlabeled) constellation disc. Perhaps when the kids get older.
You will need a dark room to get the best effect.
This is one of the most satisfying purchases I have ever made (up there with the engagement ring and the Prius!)....more info
- Awesome Planetarium
My husband selected this planetarium for our daughter's Christmas present. The stars are amazing. It is really beautiful and looks fantastic on her ceiling, very bright and clear. It is worth the money. The whole family loves it from the the first grader to the grandmother....more info
- Way over priced: Uncle Milton Homestar
The Homestar is a very simple mechanical device, yet it is loosely fit. Its disc holder does not open/close smoothly. It comes with two still image night sky discs and a manual with only a few pages of writings/chart of the sky. Amazon has the best price on the market for this product, but for $133 we get very little - I expected highly educational, fantastic computer program/graphis/text conveying sophisticated knowledge of astronomy. Instead it only comes with a sound disc with background hums. The peripheral sky image is also fuzzy. The shooting star never changes its position. The sky image is exciting, but the device could be made better and the educational value could be made higher. The conclusion is - way over priced. I would think it is worth $30.Uncle Milton Homestar My purchase and return experience with Amazon though, was a pleasure. ...more info
- Simply Amazed...Cloudy Night Joy!
My interest in star-gazing and astronomy has really taken off in the last few years. I've taken two college-level astronomy classes; I have subscriptions to Sky & Telescope & Astronomy magazines. I am the proud owner of a Celestron SkyScout Personal Planetarium, a device that teaches one the REAL night sky, and a fantastic pair of Orion Mini-Giant 8x56 binoculars. So, you could say, I'm fairly familiar with the night sky and a tougher, more demanding customer on astro products than the ordinary Amazon shopper. Therefore, when I decided that I wanted an indoor planetarium, I knew that I wanted the best quality (most realistic night sky) that I could get for an affordable price. I also knew not to expect professional planetarium quality or totally true-to-life night views in any home-device and didn't expect anything too "colorful" or dramatic. My other planetarium deal-breakers were 1) technology-- I didn't want something so hard to use that I'd just give up on it after a while, and 2) childish--I didn't want some silly product with dancing UFO's, waving aliens, or such.
Armed with these criteria, I researched many days before I purchased this planetarium. I read the grand reviews and the not so grand ones for this product and for many other similar products offered at Amazon. I was slowly convinced that anything LESS than this Homestar would be a crushing disappointment and a waste of time and money. So, I justified the price as a much needed gift to myself---long over due, a reward for good grades :) ! I clicked "add to cart" and took the plunge...and it was one of the BEST decisions that I have ever made in Amazon!
My Homestar arrived today, a cloudy day that turned into a cloudy night. Thus, I was eager for the product! My first in-box impression of the Homestar was this: Sweet! The friendly, inviting box was well designed to protect the special device in it. Quality packaging was my first clue that this would be a truly "stellar" product--well worth the money. I unpacked the items carefully and found the planetarium with its image disks and adapter in good order. A pleasant surprise proved to be the curious Soundtrack CD "Le Jardin De La Sorci¨¨re" that came with the product! That actually made me smile. Here was a 15 minute sampling of that cool, spacey, otherworldly music that you hear in real planetariums! // Homestar is totally a fantastic out-of-box experience! You really feel like you have something unique in your hands, in your own home!
I loved the Special Note on the box that said: "Designed by the renowned Takayuki Ohira, who has been recognized by the Guinness Book of World Records as the builder of the 'world's most advanced planetarium." [For those who love cutting-edge products, I believe an updated Homestar Pro product with more features than this one I purchased has been, at this writing, developed and is entering / has entered the market. However, for the price and for my personal needs regarding a home planetarium, this Amazon product on this page satisfies me.]
The detailed Instruction Manual, a friendly booklet with a nice-sized reading font and English, was as impressive as the product's packaging. The text was well-written, well organized, and easy to follow. Good, clear graphics accompanied the directions and re-enforced key concepts. Great night sky facts and "star-hopping" tricks offered a nice touch, ensuring this product's label as educational. Much better than some pretty night light!
After reviewing the manual, I understood within minutes how to make my new planetarium shine its First Light, produce shooting stars, and move the sky image. My only little challenge was adjusting the focus for the first time, and this was partly from me being tired from the days work and forgetting my right from my left! [And as with a camera and telescope, it's always good business to take the lens cap off! LOL You really can see so much more of the world / universe that way! :) Fortunately, the manual reminded me to do this!] Focusing is one part of the product that may frustrate very young children under the age of eight, so parents may wish to note that as they shop (Durability factor if the all-too-eager young ones twist too hard the wrong way!).
The genuine excitement happened when I acquired sharp focus and had my first real view of the product's ability. It seemed as if the whole universe had stepped inside my house on this cloudy night. I gasped at the Milky Way splashing onto my living room ceiling like a river of stars. Yes, points and patterns of light--not shadows. I spotted Orion the Hunter and the Dippers. The shooting stars appeared--subtle but very appealing. [And yes, like another reviewer has stated: Homestar's shooting stars always appear in the same sky location, but that's OK by me, especially if the Diurnal motion (revolving sky) is switched on. I like this because it is a peaceful feature, not disorienting or distracting, especially if you are studying sky relationships among groups of stars. It's actually kind of interesting to focus on the shooting star area, pondering the universe, meditating, just being there with no particular worries. Pop the Homestar's audio CD in your stereo system and just relax.
So, this product earns my respect and my appreciation! Don't waste time and money on anything else. If you or your loved one loves star-gazing and wants to learn more about astronomy and star-gazing, then I highly recommend this product as both a learning tool and entertainment. No lesser device will do! If your astronomical appetites are larger than this Homestar device and you want more disks / features, you may want to check out what Takayuki Ohira is up to currently! :)
Only you can decide how much "space" you need. Either way, get Sirius! Get a home planetarium and never be gloomy on a cloudy night again. // UPDATE: December 2008. I have used this personal planetarium during mythology lectures in a darkened school lecture hall with great effect. The students were amazed at the stunning site of the Milky Way, and as they gazed up, I told them world myths related to the night sky. So, this is a great prop! :)...more info
- Daughters love it
My two daughters, 2 and 5 years old, really enjoy looking at the constellations. Easy to set up and the projection on our ceiling wall is excellent. I had no difficulty with focusing the image. Used it fives times only so I cannot fairly attest to it's durability. It looks to be well built though. Great deal for the price....more info
- Very accurate and durable product
I purchased this planetarium for my sons birthday. The criteria I had were brightness, accuracy, and durability.
Once lights are turned off, the stars or star and constellation images are viewed easily. The only issue is on a flat ceiling (which most users will be projecting upon) the edges are a bit blurry. There is a focus adjustment on the lens which can help this, but it cannot be fully corrected on a flat surface. Best placement is 10-14 feet from projection surface.
The star charts are very accurate. I have seen others that absolutely do not focus on this aspect which I feel is very important. There are 2 slides that come with this unit. Both are Northern Hemisphere, 1 with constellations and the other without.
Durability, I purchased this for my young son expecting a few mishaps with the unit. The first was at his birthday party where a guest knocked the unit off the table. It did not turn on initially, but after checking the slide compartment I found that the slide was knocked out of alignment and there appears to be a safetey mechanism that does not allow the unit to turn on if this occurs. Resetting of the slide was all that was needed for everything to work perfectly after.
This is a simple unit, there are only 4 controls and 2 adjustments:
-Power (on/off - 2 position toggle switch)
-Rotation - (stationary or clockwise(southern hemisphere) or counter clockwise (northern hemisphere))
-Shooting star feature - (on or off) Kind of a gimick as it appears in the same spot every time, but if it's rotating it does have a nice effect.
-Timer 15,30,60 minute settings, shuts down the entire unit. Great for my sons bedtime.
-Tilt adjustment (very solid able to tighten when optimal position is found)
-2x Starfield slides in slide cases (1 with constellations and 1 without)
-Power supply (unit does not run on batteries)
Overall I am very satisfied with this unit, it's a little more pricey, doesn't have a bunch of bells and whistles that other units have, but the accuracy, durability, and simplicity of use make up for this. Oh and my son loves to watch this before he goes to sleep at night.
10 out of 10....more info
- Fun to makeout, make love under
This is cute, if overpriced, and is pretty to makeout under. The room has to be pitch black though and the device isn't that vivid around the edges of the projection. Could use more shooting star projections, too.
I paid $[...] for it and I feel that is too much but if you can catch it for $[...] and can get dates, go for it....more info
- Nightime Spectacular
This thing is fantastic. I am an Ameture Astro-Photographer dedicated to photographing the celestial wonders of the night sky. When I saw the advertisement, I had to give this product a try. What a fabulous surprise. The most stunning thing to me was how realistic the view was projected on my flat ceiling. Having spent many nights under the stars while taking photos, and I am amazed how accurate this thing really is. My wife an I turn it on and watch the stars while going to sleep now. I'll bet this thing is lowering my blood presure, as it's so relaxing, watching the night sky as nature intended.
I Highly recommend it....more info
- Quality planetarium for your home
This is the best home planetarium I have seen (I used to work at a planetarium). Most toy planetariums are pretty poor. But this is really not a toy planetarium, and I would not recommend it to anyone other that a teen or adult that has more than a passing interest in astronomy. Its not really even a training planetarium, at least for beginners. This is for "stargazing" and mellowing out, not really for learning constellations.
Its sky is extremely good, rivaling the multi-thousand $$ machines. You need a DARK room, no night lights, etc. just like at real planetariums, and you need a white ceiling. (Mine has "popcorn" surface, which didn't cause a problem.) I turn off all the lights, close the door, turn on the "celestial" music included, and lie back on the floor, staring straight up at the "sky" as it slowly turns overhead.
If you know constellations, you can make them out. The stars are accurate, but its like a night sky in the middle of the high desert. Packed with stars and full glory of the Milky Way. So constellations are inundated with stars. Good for more advanced amateurs. I catch myself picking out the brighter star names I know.
I bet this would look good in a school planetarium dome of ~ 20ft or less.
The decreased ratings were just due to this is not really an educational toy for kids. For an amateur astronomer, its 5 star!
- Star projector--medium
For me this projector rates a c in value. It has too many stars to be a great teaching tool and lacks the magic of the laser star project to be rated as a great relaxation or mood setter. I contacted the seller to see if any other slides could be purchased that might make this a better educational tool and they said they didn't think so. Sooo I bought the laser star galaxy and it is much better at the mood setter. ...more info
- incredible night star display
Wow, what a trip. A rotating milky way with thousands of stars. Also constellations. Best viewed on a ceiling with 6 to 7 feet from projector.
I watch it every night and it puts me to sleep.Amazing product. No more hiking to Bryce Canyon for me to see the dark sky universe....more info