Excuse me, did someone say “light up Legos?!” Um, why weren’t these light up building bricks invented when I was younger?
Okay, well, before I go into a full-fledged rant, let’s just jump into it.
In this post we’ll discuss this toy’s official name, its creator(s), how they work, some neat features, whether they’re compatible with the official Lego toy, how much they cost, and a few other thoughts.
First thing’s first, these light up building blocks are not the official Legos many of us have come to love. Though they are similar to the more well-known construction toy brand the actual name of these illuminated building blocks is “Light Stax.”
Back in 2010, Johnny Lin from Taiwan first came up with the concept of Light Stax and develops several DUPLO sized prototypes. In 2012 Lin meets Arno at a toy fair in Nürnberg, Germany. They team up bringing light up building block concept closer to reality. Then, Thomas from Abanico, Germany who is a friend of Johnny’s hops on board and helps brings these blocks to the European market. Finally, in 2014 Stefan also comes aboard to help with the Light Stax Junior product launch in Europe. In 2015 and 2016, the team develops a standard Lego-sized version of these blocks. As one can see, these light up toy blocks are pretty recent.
How Do They Work?
How do these awesome light up building blocks work? Do they capture fireflies or magical light emitting pixies and encase them in each block? Nah. Magic pixies obviously don’t exist, and that would be unnecessarily cruel to fireflies, ha.
Lame jokes aside, each individual brick has built-in electronics and contains a single light emitting diode (LED). The blocks light up once they’re connected to the battery operated power base.
The Power Brick
This is the most important piece; the source of magic, wonder, and light! This brick is the power source, and it is what makes each building block come to life.
A single power brick is included in each set and is capable of illuminating up to 500 other bricks. The power block is a black colored standard 2″ x 4″ brick, it’s rechargeable, and comes with a USB charging cable. A single charge can supply up to 50 hours of playtime.
The rechargeable feature is one I’m happy they included in this version (unlike its Duplo sized counterpart) because it eliminates the need to buy and replace conventional batteries; saving you some money, and producing less waste.
It also has different light modes.
Light Mode Feature
Another cool feature of the power base is it comes with 4 different light settings. Each one is sorted by color: Green, blue, red, yellow which is indicated on the power brick.
The green light setting simply powers on the bricks. In this setting, kids can use their creation as a nightlight. The blue setting enables the flash feature making each brick blink on and off. Switching to red enables a light fading feature which gives a slow pulsating effect. The yellow setting is a sound activated mode where each block briefly lights up when the power brick senses sound or noise such as a hand clap, voice, etc.
Here is a demonstration of these building blocks and its different light mode in action:
Are They Compatible with Legos?
Yes! These light up building blocks are compatible with Legos, and other similar type building blocks.
Note: While Light Stax and Lego pieces are compatible, the Light Stax blocks won’t illuminate if they are not in sequence.
Who Are They For?
These building blocks are geared towards children 6 years and older, which is essentially the standard age range for a toy like this.
Kids who love to build (most kids do!), or are huge fans of construction toys will most likely enjoy these.
These are also for adults who feel they have been robbed of their childhood because these didn’t exist when they were kids. Is anyone else with me on that? Ha!
How Much Do They Cost?
Ah yes, the most important question. What’s the damage, good sir?
Getting straight to the point there are two buying options:
– The 50 piece “Creative” set @ $30
– The 240 piece “Liberty” set @ $100.
Breaking down the cost, it is $.60 per piece for the Creative and $.40 per piece for the Liberty set. Unless you are running on a tight budget, the Liberty set is probably the way to go. You’re paying less per piece for the larger set, and you’re getting nearly 5 times as many pieces for shelling out the extra cash; giving your kid(s) more pieces to work and build with.
When I first stumbled on this fascinating toy I thought, “Wow, these are awesome! And wow, these are probably going to end up being super expensive!” After finally seeing the price, I was relieved to find it to be pretty reasonable. Despite the fact, each brick houses its own wiring and LED.
They’re not the cheapest toys out there, but they’re definitely not the most expensive. After reading the reviews, the overall consensus was customers were very happy with the purchase.
My favorite toys while growing up were my construction sets. That still holds true for kids today because children love to build. Construction is one of the most popular categories when it comes to toys.
Building blocks like these stimulate the imagination and nurture a child’s creativity to thrive. These days, many kids look to their smart devices and tablets for entertainment. I still remember my parents always telling me to shut off the TV and find something more constructive to do, and for good reason.
Electronics aren’t nearly as effective for a child’s brain development as traditional toys. There is a much bigger world than watching unboxing videos on Youtube or playing video games. I’m more for keeping kids busy with toys rather than keeping them busy with digital entertainment.
Light Stax combines a classic toy with modern day technology, making building blocks more attention-grabbing, entertaining, and fun!
Questions and Comments
Do you have a set of Light Stax, or want to know more? If so please share your experience and questions with us in the comments below!