The Homestar Flux is the newest iteration of planetariums in Sega's iconic lineup. Sega's Homestar projectors are considered by many to be some of the best on the market. The Homestar Classic has been a best seller for years. Focusing on realism rather than artistic depictions, they are valuable educational tools for kids and adults alike.
The Homestar Flux ramps everything up to the next level! It offers exceptional image clarity and some great features to bring the cosmos into your home. With all its praise in the astronomy community, is the Homestar Flux worth the buy? In this review, we're going to break it down to help you find out.
5-Watt LED light
Multilevel glass lens
Shooting star function
About 6.34 inches long, 6.26 inches wide, and 5.94 inches tall
Approximately 3.52 pounds
Two-year limited warranty
Homestar Flux Planetarium Review
The Homestar Flux is a sizable investment that's going to let you enjoy the breathtaking majesty of outer space in your own home. However, it's not going to serve everyone well. Before you jump the gun, here are some crucial factors to consider.
Ease of use
One of the first things you'll notice about the Homestar Flux is the simplistic control panel. It doesn't have a complicated button schematic like other galaxy lamps. There are only a handful of buttons and a single power switch. Once you figure out what those buttons do, running the projector is a cinch!
Setting up doesn't require a ton of experience or know-how either. The unit is spherical and sits atop a wire metal base. Two hinge points on the side hold the orb-like projector in place. However, those hinges also impact the projector's flexibility.
With a simple hand movement, you can tilt the projector to face wherever you want. Many galaxy lamps on the market today lack any positioning capabilities, so the Homestar Flux's base is a nice touch.
We do wish that Sega included a remote controller for this system. The Flux is easy enough to control, but having a wireless remote would have made it even more convenient. There's no way to make adjustments on the fly while sitting back and enjoying the show. You must get up and make those changes manually on the projector itself.
It's not exactly a dealbreaker, as the overall ease-of-use is top-notch. But, it's certainly something to keep in mind.
Don't the small size of this planetarium fool you! It's packing a myriad of features that set it apart from the competition.
The first is how this unit projects images in the first place! It does not utilize lasers. Remember: The Homestar Flux focuses on realism and celestial accuracy. To create a true-to-life depiction of the night sky, Sega decided to use disc-based film.
Like a CD an audio player, you can insert these discs into a pop-out tray. Once inside, a powerful 5-watt LED light will shine through and produce those awe-inspiring images.
You get two discs with the Homestar Flux. One is a real-world portrayal of what you would see in the night sky in the northern hemisphere. It contains over 60,000 stars! The second disc is modeled after the starry sky in the southern hemisphere.
Sega makes more than 30 different image discs compatible with the Homestar Flux, so there are plenty of opportunities to expand your system's capabilities.
The Homestar Flux also has a shooting star function. It's a highly advanced feature that produces sporadic meteors in the projections. They come at random, adding an even bigger touch of realism than before! The shooting star feature is exclusive to Homestar products. Some other brands may try to imitate it, but nothing quite holds up to Sega's system.
Overall, the performance capabilities of the Homestar Flux are impressive.
This projector doesn't have all the bells and whistles as some other units on the market. You're not going to find a ton of color variation, built-in speakers, or any other "party-focused" elements. The Homestar Flux is all about realism, and Sega paid attention to every detail to ensure that you're getting a high-quality experience.
It all starts with the lighting element itself. The Flux uses a 5-watt LED array, which is more robust than the previous iteration. The light is bright enough to project images clearly. However, it's also warm and comfortable on the eyes.
Sega pairs the light with a glass lens. The premium optics improves clarity. It enhances the brilliance and ensures that everything looks vibrant and sharp.
The Homestar Flux also has a small focus ring around the lens. You can use it to fine-tune the image and get things just right. According to Sega, utilizing the focus knob with proper placement can result in a picture as big as 114 inches in diameter!
What's In The Box?
Sega includes everything you need to get up and running. The box contains the Homestar Flux itself, a USB cable, a power adapter, and two projector film discs.
We appreciate that Sega uses a USB cable to power this projector. USB is quite versatile, allowing you to use a computer or power bank instead of a traditional wall socket. Another we like is that Sega includes a wall adapter! It might not seem like a huge deal, but many brands leave the adapter out to cut costs. Because one comes with the Homestar Flux, you don't have to shell out extra cash to buy one separately, which is always nice!
The Homestar Flux also comes with a two-sided poster. The poster complements the projector nicely. A tool for education, it lets you learn about the stars even during the daytime!
Finally, let's talk about the packaging itself. The quality of the box might not matter too much if you're buying this light for yourself. But if you plan to gift it to another astronomy buff, it makes a huge difference. Luckily, Sega didn't skimp on the packaging one bit! It comes in a sleek white box with silver lettering. However, a protective sleeve covers the main box. It includes images of the projector itself against a black backdrop flecked with stars.
Controls & Functionality
Let's talk about some of the control options on the Homestar Flux!
Like we said earlier, there's nothing too complicated about the control panel. It contains only three buttons and a switch!
The switch turns the light on and starts the projection show. To the left of that, you'll find a button with a star-shaped icon. This button controls the shooting star function. Press it to start the random streaks of light.
Next, you have the rotation button. The Homestar Flux can turn the image disc inside to create a slow rotation that mimics what you'd see outside. The cool thing about this feature is that you can set it to turn to the left or the right! That way, you can experience what people see in both the northern and southern hemispheres.
Finally, there's the timer. The timmer button allows you to choose between 15, 30, and 60-minute intervals. After the designated period, the Homestar Flux will turn off automatically to save power. You can also set the planetarium to shine without a timer if you want to enjoy the show for hours.
The buttons are self-explanatory and easy to understand. They also have small LED lights to indicate which selection is on.
The durability of the Homestar Flux is sufficient for its intended use. This model isn't made for outdoor use, so don't expect any form of weather protection or shock protection.
That said, the plastic materials are durable enough to withstand some light bumps and tumbles.
In fact, the overall quality of the Homestar Flux is noticeably premium. The plastic has a black satin finish that's soft to the touch. Meanwhile, the stable base is made out of rigid metal wire. There's no denying that the Homestar Flux is a premium item. You can tell that it's of a higher quality than cheaper galaxy lamps on the market with just one look.
One thing we wish the Homestar Flux has was a lens cover. The lens for this unit is glass, so it seems like the absence of a cap is an oversight. Luckily, you shouldn't have to worry about damage if you use the projector safely.
Customer Service & Guarantee
Sega is a long-established company with several decades under its belt. We would expect the Homestar Flux to come with top-notch support. Fortunately, Sega doesn't disappoint.
There are many ways to contact the Sega customer support team. On the official website, you'll find a contact form, phone number, and email address. The customer support team seems to respond pretty quickly, answering questions and providing assistance whenever they can. The team appears to be active on social media and marketplace websites, too.
The Homestar Flux also has a generous two-year warranty policy. It does come with specific limitations and restrictions, so make sure to read the policy to understand it better. Generally, Sega will repair or replace the Homestar Flux if you experience any manufacturer-caused issues during those two years. The fact that it comes with a warranty shows that Sega believes in the product, which provides excellent peace of mind.
Homestar Flux Pros & Cons
There's good and bad with most star projectors. It's important to cover all bases and display the facts both positive and negative.
The Homestar Flux takes everything that made Sega a player in the home planetarium field and bumps it up to the max! This star projector creates a beautiful home experience full of inspiration and whimsy. While it's not as colorful as some of its competitors, the realism is what makes the Homestar Flux over the edge.
It's like taking a trip through the stars! Throw in the shooting star function and rotation feature, and you have the recipe for something truly awe-inspiring!