Whatever your reasons to buy a night sky star projector, we’ll help you decide which one is the best to buy on the market. In this guide, we’ll explore the different types of star projectors, from realistic and accurate to playful or soothing child’s versions. We’ll cover things to look for when buying and review the TOP 5 Best Star Projector the market has to offer.
- What is a Star Projector?
- Types of Star Projectors
- What to Look for in a Star Projector
- TOP 5 Best Star Projectors
Star projectors bring the universe indoors, allowing users to project tens of thousands of images on their ceilings and walls. Of course, star projectors are not created equal, and models range dramatically in type, purpose, and features. While there are some that attempt to replicate the night sky with scientific accuracy, others are designed more for relaxation, and – often – for the entertainment of children.
So before you accidentally purchase a child's “nighttime” projector expecting to expand your knowledge of the cosmos, you should consider carefully reviewing each product to identify how best it should be used. From the realism and intended audience (kids or adults) to types of lights, style, and dozens of other criteria, there are dozens of ways these projectors differ.
So, to make it easier, we've taken 5 of the most popular items on the market and done a comprehensive review of each, comparing and contrasting them to see if we can identify the best star projector for your needs.
Star projectors use a light source to project images on ceilings, walls, or both, or simply create an “ambient” light show within a certain space. While many are designed for relaxation or sleep therapy, and create stylized or even cartoonish versions of stars and constellations, others are designed as learning tools, and feature various modes or disks and allow budding astronomers to engage in accurate stargazing any time of the day or year.
There is no “right” or “wrong” star projector, but there are literally hundreds of features to consider when choosing one to fit your needs. Here are just a few:
What does it project, and where?
Not all star projectors live up to their name. Indeed, some don't project “stars” at all. There are models that simulate auroras (or “Northern Lights”), and others that project entertaining images like turtles, duckies, or fish, while still others are completely customizable, and come with various settings and cartridges to alter the projection.
As light does not completely obey the borders and edges of a room, it can be difficult to confine the images a device projects to just one place. However, some more precise designs will only project on the ceiling or wall it is directed at. Others utilize global light, projecting on the ceiling, walls – even the floor at times. There are also, less powerful models that seem to only light up a small area, like a tent or closet.
Is it for adults or children?
While humans of all ages deserve a good nights sleep and a bit of relaxation, not all of us achieve it by the same means. This isn't to say that a star projector designed for a child couldn't work for an adult or vice versa, but unless you find a trail of translucent cartoon fish dancing across your ceiling to be particularly soothing, you may want to opt for a model that features a more adult-oriented display. Of course, most models will come with a “suggested age” designation, but it's really more about the user's preference.
Is it realistic or stylized?
Some stars and night sky lights like auroras can be simulated quite easily, giving the user the sensation of being outside or even being in space. Others, as we've mentioned, are more designed for entertainment purposes, projecting images that babies or children might find appealing or relaxing. There are some cases, of course, where interchangeable disks or covers can turn one into the other, so it's important to consider all the available options provided by any given model.
What power requirements does the unit have?
The vast majority of star projectors don't require any more than an outlet to plug into. However, if you're planning on taking it camping, or using it in a place (like a crib or child's bedroom) where a plug-in item might be dangerous, it's good to know if there are battery options as well.
Does is play sounds or have other unique features?
From lasers different colors to multiple functions, rotating engines, and sounds presentations – there are endless functions that anyone start projector could feature. In this case, the best course of action is to consider what you want first and then cross-check those models which have the majority of what you're looking for.
Regardless of model, type, or display, some features are common in most star projectors.
From a technology standpoint, you want to ensure that – if you're looking for a tool or learning instrument – the projector is accurate enough to convey useful information and allow the user to grow their interest in astronomy. For toys and relaxation tools, technology can take a back seat to functionality. Features like “auto-shutoff,” the ability to play music and songs, the ability to change or alter the display, and the ability to rotate or move can be huge factors in making a decision.
SOAIY Soothing Aurora LED Night Light Projector
The SOAIY stands out mostly because it is not a “star projector,” at all, though it functions in much the same way and serves the same purpose. Rather than projecting star fields, this unit uses a laser and several colored LED lights to simulate the Aurora Borealis or “Northern Lights.”
The SOAIY features 8 lighting modes, a rotating motor, and a 45-degree tilt, allowing for versatile viewing. The unit also features a speaker, which you can hook any device with an AUX up to in order to hear music while you watch the relaxing light show. It also has a remote control and “auto shutoff” timer with settings for one, two, and four hours.
The disadvantages of this product include its limited color scheme and lack of bright definition in some of the lower power modes. It also must be plugged into a wall to function, as there is no place for batteries at all. There have also been reports of some technical issues with the motor. In these reports, some users have claimed the motor either stopped working or began making a grinding sound. In the few instances this happened, however, customer service from the company proved quick and responsive.
The product could be recommended for any customer who wants more than just a “starry night” from their projector. Providing the rotating engine can stand up to it, it could provide hours of soothing light for both adults and children.
SOAIY: Check the current price
Star Sky Night Lamp
The Star Sky Night Lamp is unique in that it is designed specifically for children, who will love its multi-colored display of cartoon stars and shapes. This unit also offers both USB plugin and AAA battery operation, making it ultra portable, great for camping or places where a child may have trouble sleeping.
With 350-degrees of rotation and the ability, the Star Sky Night Lamp can cover most of the walls and ceiling of a small room with brightly-colored stars. Four LED beads utilize blue, green, red, and white light to create effects that are peaceful by night, and perfect for parties by day.
Unfortunately, there are a few disadvantages to consider with the Star Sky Night Lamp. For one, this lamp will only be entertaining to young children, as its bright lights and cartoon illustrations will not seem relaxing to adults or teens. It is also a very small unit so the shapes will lack definition if used in a room that is too large. Furthermore, some users have commented that the plastic dome is very easy to break, especially in the hands of children, and many have expressed concerns over motor failures.
This product can be recommended if used for children but not by children, as the likelihood that it will break is quite high.
Star Sky Night Lamp: Check the current price
Can You Imagine Laser Twilight Projector
The Can You Imagine Laser Twilight Projector offers a super-realistic panorama of the night sky inside your home. With effects the simulate stars, comets, galaxies, and clouds, this is an excellent toy for space enthusiasts, young kids interested in astronomy, or grown adults who just like sleeping outdoors.
The Can You Imagine features an entrancing mix of blue and green stars and clouds, which rotate gently to mimic the turn of the reach. The “clouds” can be turned off, and the unit comes with an auto-shutoff feature to save electricity. It can cover an entire ceiling while not being bright enough to disturb sleep, and the rotating engine is whisper-quiet.
On the other hand, some buyers were disappointed to find out that this unit is not intended as a toy for children, but an educational and relaxing simulation. Others would have preferred more color options than the green and blue, or a more high-resolution display. Fortunately, very few technical problems have been reported, though some buyers have had to return their product after the motor failed.
All in all, this unit could be recommended for mature children interested in space, or any teen or adult who wants to have a relaxing sight to fall asleep to.
Can You Imagine: Check the current price
Night Light Projector Remote Control
One of the best features of the Night Light Projector is that it plays music – up to 12 songs – in the style of a music box. This makes it an excellent addition to any child's nighttime routine.
The unit features an automatic timer that can be programmed to run for up to 16 hours, as well as a remote control, so parents won't have to worry about shutting it off once the child is asleep. It also comes with two covers (an undersea world and a starry night) filled with adorable cartoon images to dance around the room. Power options include battery and USB cord, and the covers can be removed to create a soft nightlight.
Though perfect for very young children, the Night Light Projector will not appeal to anyone over six or seven. While the music is a very nice touch, there is
no volume control, so if it is too loud, there is no changing that. Many users found the button system to be too complicated, and the remote control practically useless without labels, though there is an included instruction manual. Some users have also complained that the USB cord is far too short and that the device goes through batteries at an alarmingly fast rate.
This unit cannot be recommended for anyone over the age of 6, but could probably function quite well as a nightlight or “light mobile” for infants or small children.
Moredig: Check the current price
Cloud b Twilight Turtle Plush Nightlight Projector
The Cloud B Twilight Turtle Plush is as much of a toy as it is a baby or child nightlight. Cute and soft by day, this turtle puts on an amazing light show by night. Altogether, this can help ease a child's fear of the dark while simultaneously stimulating their imagination and providing a “friend.”
The Cloud b Twilight Turtle produces a calming night light on the back of the turtle while projecting display of blue, green, or amber star shapes. The design features a 45-minute timer to save battery, but it is easy enough for the child to turn on again themselves if they are not yet asleep. Using soft LED lights, the Twilight Turtle isn't bright enough to disrupt the child's sleep, nor will the lights get hot enough to pose a danger.
While marketed as a “soft plush” toy, many users feel the plastic shell is far too hard for kids to cuddle the turtle, and worry about putting even a battery-powered item in the crib with their child. Others would like options besides the standard “45-minute” timer. While this is not overly bright, it will prove overstimulating to some children.
This projector could be recommended to anyone with very young children or kids who are struggling with nighttime fears.
Cloud B: Check the current price
Comparative Chart of Star Projectors
Ability to hook up and play music.
Star Sky Night Lamp
Battery-power or USB cable for long-term use.
Can You Imagine
Laser projector with “stunning panorama” of the night sky.
Timer can run from 5 – 995 minutes with auto shutoff.
A plush toy that projects cartoon stars at night.
What’s the best for a ceiling?
Can You Imagine Laser Twilight Projector is a fantastic projector for a ceiling.
What’s the best for a baby/baby room/nursery/?
Cloud B Twilight Turtle is a soft little star projector that would create a wonderfully tranquil environment in any child’s room.
What star projector for a wedding can you recommend?
Sunnec Star Projector is a great option to consider for a wedding reception.
Is there any projector for iPhone?
No. But they can be built with the flashlight app.
What’s the best star projector with a timer?
Night Light Projector Remote Control has a timer.
What’s the best with a sound machine? Or with music? With nature sounds?
There are a few options we can recommend here:
Is there any projector made in the form of a torch?
Yep, here’s a great option: Laideyilan Projector Flashligh
What star projector with Bluetooth can you recommend buying?
We can recommend the following two options with Bluetooth:
What’s the best with nebula?
Parrot Uncle Rotating Laser Projector creates beautiful blue nebula cloud formations.
No matter what kind of star projector you want, there are plenty of options that can provide hours of relaxation, entertainment, or soothing lights to coax you or your child to sleep. While there is no simple “best star projection,” we hope you've enjoyed this list and welcome both your questions and comments.