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Price:$20.99 - $87.25
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Showing 1-10 of 4,881 reviews(Verified Purchases). See all 5,321 reviews
on January 7, 2015
As a kid (more years ago than I care to admit) I played with the Phillips electronics set; it came with multiple values of resistors, capacitors, inductors, a few transistors, switches, and wires, instructions to make about 30 different circuits and a booklet which explained how and why things worked. That set has been off-the-market for ages, so reading that this set allows a child to build 100 circuits made me curious. I bought it for my kids and after opening the box had to realize that it is just advertising hoopla.
Your reaction to this set will depend on what you expect. If you are pleasantly surprised at connecting a few terminals and having something that works, this is the toy for your child. If you hope it will teach at least elementary electronics, you (like me) will be disappointed
I will list first the positives:
1) my 9-years-old child took to it like fire to straw; in the first 24 hours since opening the box (including one full day of school) he has blazed without help through about 2/3 of the projects, and shows no sign of getting bored. The 6 years old one, instead, shows no interest.
2) all components worked
3) the molded-plastic box liner helps keep the pieces neatly organized and identify what might have been dropped on the floor and risks being forgotten at the end of the play session.
And for the negatives:
1) There are maybe 15 basic circuits here, and multiple variations on each one. Example: a circuit will allow you to turn on a light by clapping your hands, and another circuit will allow you to start a siren by clapping your hands. The manufacturer counts those as two different circuits, even though the only (minuscule difference) is using as output the light bulb vs. the speaker component. Do not expect anywhere near the level of fun that "over 100 exciting projects" could provide.
2) Most of the elements provided are (really) just a glorified piece of copper wire of various lengths. There is two IC, a couple switches, an input and output unit each for sound and light, a DC motor, a battery holder; the rest could be replaced with unbent paperclips, and nobody would be the wiser. For over $20 I would have hoped to get more than a couple dollars' worth of components.
3) The instructions are erector-set-like: you are vaguely told what the circuit is supposed to do and given a picture representation of what it should look like. There is no discussion/explanation of why it should work as planned, or what each component does. The one control IC is provided in a sealed opaque box with unlabeled terminals and no description of what other circuitry might be embedded inside the plastic case.
4) The microphone is extremely insensitive. On circuits which are triggered by sound you get better/faster/repeatible response by hitting the IC component that by making noise near the sensor (microphone).

Summary: out-of-the box this seems a construction set (think Lego City) with electricity. If left alone with the toy a child will learn how to connect the pieces and follow instructions, and little more. A child left with the toy will not understand electricity and electronic any better than a child without the toy unless he/she has also access to a DMM or (preferably) an oscilloscope and a relative showing what happens to the voltages and waveforms when different terminals are connected on the ICs .

I would definitely recommend this toy before a playstation, but want to believe there are better products out there.
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on December 13, 2015
I purchased this as a gift for a clever 6 year old, although I know the box says 8-108. The idea was to show her how it worked to see if she had any interest in electronics. I was concerned it wouldn't maintain her attention, so before gifting it my partner and I decided to try it out so that we could explain it to her. We both have Masters degrees, and his is in engineering, so we figured it would be a piece of cake. He also played with similar, though much more complex kits, beginning at the age of 9 (but he was far more advanced in engineering skills than his peers) and had a blast.

While using the kit, I was trying to look at it from the average kid's perspective.

The first thing we noticed about the kit, especially for me considering I wasn't really exposed to circuits as a child aside from a brief period in junior high, was that for the most part you couldn't just look at the pieces as a newb and understand what they were. They have symbols like "U1, U2, U3, WC, S1, SP, R1...". It would have been extremely helpful if the resistor, for example, was actually labeled "RESISTOR". Page 2 is incredibly useful since it names each piece.

The kit seems to assume you have some basic understanding of circuits before you even get going. For me I like to jump in and try things out; learn as I go. I despise manuals. With this kit however, you really need to take the time to read the manual, especially since a wrong arrangement can actually short out some of the pieces. If you have an inpatient kid or one without great reading skills you'll need to help them with this. I've attached some photos so you can see the complexity of the manual. There is a lot of really good info in there if you are willing to take the time to read it. It's 45 pages in length.

We worked through several configurations together, and then started to feel like there was too much redundancy. A new configuration would often just be the replacement of a particular piece, or it would involve taking two configurations and linking them together. After going through maybe 6-8 different configurations (and believe me, those would be pretty cool for someone who had never worked with circuits before) we stopped, because flipping through the book we found we weren't seeing a whole lot of additional variety.

The plastic base seems well made and although I feared I would crack it as I popped the pieces in place, I didn't. I did find it difficult to pull some of the pieces apart after they were snapped together (literally had to use my teeth on more than one occasion).

All in all, this is a very high quality kit, though somewhat limited it what it can do. I think something like this would have been great when I was just starting to learn circuits in the 7th grade. To get the full value you need to not only follow the circuit configurations to achieve a certain output (fan, dimmed light, siren) but also really read and understand why certain things are happening and how each unique piece contributes to that.

I'd recommend this for your budding 8-year old junior engineer, or purchase it for your ~12-year old when they start learning about this sort of thing in school. It makes for a great hands-on activity to supplement school learning. I wish I had something similar. For the price it's a deal. I doubt it would keep my 6-year old niece's attention, even if we worked through it with her, but we'll hold on to it to see how she progresses over time and will share it with other kids we know as it makes sense to.
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on December 18, 2016
(We bought this smaller 100-piece set as a gift for my nephew - My 8-year-old son got the 300 piece set in October for his birthday, and my nephew came over and played with these and loved them too!) My son does NOT PLAY by himself. He came out of the womb never wanting to be alone. He is very chatty, social but very intelligent. He gets bored with regular toys very quickly. He prefers thinking games, electronics and books. These Snap Circuits have been the best money we've ever spent on a toy for him. He will sit and play with these quietly in his room for hours, and when he comes out he will show me what he built. The other day he built the AM radio and his eyes lit up with excitement as he "tuned" the radio to find different stations. He felt PROUD of himself and felt really smart. Obviously this made ME proud. :-) We just ordered the Snap Circuits LIGHTS set for Christmas and I know he will love it.
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on October 30, 2015
We bought this for my son for his birthday and hid it in the closet until this past weekend for him to open. We tried building circuits using the spinning propeller circuit and the piece is defective and doesn't spin. The item is now past the 30 day return so we are stuck with a set where he cannot fully use the circuits. Very frustrating because it is a cool concept.
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on February 16, 2017
My 5-year old has worked through the first 30 experiments. I helped him figure it out, and once he got the logic of the diagrams, it was all over. Occasionally I have to troubleshoot a circuit, but for the most part, this is a great tool to support STEM education. Just enough lights/noises/motion to make him laugh, and challenging enough that he keeps coming back to it. I will say that you need to work through the first several diagrams and explain it, esp if your kid can't read at a a minimum 3rd grade level. The instructions are somewhat technical, so take your time to read through it before you start putting pieces together, and then use the different "exercises" to teach the point that the toy-maker imparts for each lesson. I expect we will be playing with this game for a long time... Even redoing the easier exercises and learning things that were hard to grasp the first time. Solid, well built components that can stand up to "enthusiastic" handling.
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on March 5, 2017
This is a terrific item for younger children as well. I have zero circuitry knowledge and used this with my 5 yo granddaughter. She was fully engaged, and she has no superstar intelligence, she's just a regular kid. The kit comes with good instructions and diagrams. There are approximately 60+ configurations that you can put together. It took about 5 min. for me to get my bearings and begin with her. It required me working with her attentively, an older child could be more independent. Within the first hour we were trying to come up with our own circuits, and trying to see what happens as parts are removed or added. There are noises, fans and lights which delighted her. The pieces are pretty sturdy, all the ones I had worked. I did try with my 3 yo granddaughter and she had interest but was not engaged, still time. The both learned new words and new ideas. As the concept of a closed circuit sinks in it is an item to use over and over again. So glad I took a chance on this item.
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on April 29, 2017
What I like:
-the wide age group. I've used it with young kids and older adults...who all think it is fine!
-Different colored parts to help with assembly
-wide variety of projects
-ease of "snapping" items together
-bigger instruction manual which outlines what is occurring in the circuits.
-provides many opportunities to learn
-materials appear well-made and fairly durable
-takes 2 AA batteries (some other kits require batteries that I don't have around the house)
-easy to clean up

What I don't like: *note these are super nit-picky and very minor*
-the box does not fold together easily. The opening on the side is awkward and makes it difficult to completely close or open (if its closed all the way). I usually just leave it partially closed, because the parts are tight enough in the box they usually don't fall out (though they have fallen out once or twice) when I went to grab it for the next time.
-there are no step-by-step directions. It does come with a picture which you can use to build the items, but I use this sometimes in therapy and would have appreciated a breakdown of instructions for those who have difficulty assembling things without instructions (however; I have just been typing up my own by using the picture, so it is not a big deal, just something to note).

Overall:
-very pleased!
-would highly recommend
-fun for adults and for kids!
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on March 24, 2017
My 5 year old is constantly asking questions about how the world works and is very inquisitive, especially about science type things. We saw this as a deal for Christmas and couldn't resist. Each experiment is laid out nicely in the instruction manual and provides a narrative discussing what is going on in the experiment. There are enough experiments that you can do a few for 30 minutes or so and then put it away for a day or so and pull it out and do some more. By the time you finish all of the experiments you can go back and do the first ones. In the beginning, I was putting the experiments together and talking him though how to interpret the diagrams but now he can do the experiments himself. This is a great learning tool and very educational. If I set this out beside one of his other hot wheels type toys and told him to pick which one he wanted to play with, I guarantee he would pick this Circuits toy every single time. I plan on buying one of the bigger kits for his birthday in a couple of months!
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I recently purchased the Snap Circuits Jr. Kit for my nephew for his birthday. My kids love the SC-300 set, and I wanted a budget friendly version I could gift to family and friends. This set didn't disappoint. The Snap Circuits Jr. set is smaller than the SC-300 set, and has only 100 activities vs the 300 activities in the bigger set. While there are less activities, the pieces are 100% compatible with the larger set and with other Snap Circuits sets.

The instructions are easy to follow - if your kid can do Legos, they can definitely do the projects featured in here. All the pieces fit perfectly in the box, and the overall set it great to give your kids an introduction to engineering. The pieces fit easily together (they snap together!), are fairly durable, and are all clearly labeled for ease in construction. This is a very clever toy and would be a great gift to give to family and friends as a "teaser" version of the Snap Circuits series - and again, if your gift recipient finds they love it, they can always upgrade with other sets and the pieces are compatible.
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on February 24, 2017
It's a great idea but has quality control issues. I bought this for my 8 year old for Christmas, and he really loved it. I had to return the first delivery due to a failed component in the kit. We have had the second kit for about 2 months and maybe 4-5 play cycles, and already the snaps are starting to break on the components; the switch to be specific. I really hope they address this as it is a fantastic concept and I am saddened by the lack of quality. If I knew how to get a replacement part I would in a heart beat.
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