Best Magformers Sets

Updated April 2020
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BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We only make money if you purchase a product through our links, and we never accept free products from manufacturers. Read more  
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.Read more 
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Why trust BestReviews?
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We only make money if you purchase a product through our links, and we never accept free products from manufacturers. Read more  
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We only make money if you purchase a product through our links, and we never accept free products from manufacturers. Read more  
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.Read more 
How we decided

We purchase every product we review with our own funds — we never accept anything from product manufacturers.

12 Models Considered
5 Hours Researched
1 Experts Interviewed
298 Consumers Consulted
Zero products received from manufacturers.

We purchase every product we review with our own funds — we never accept anything from product manufacturers.

Buying guide for best Magformer sets

Last Updated April 2020

Magnets appeal to children of all ages in a way few other toys do. Their natural attracting and repelling properties create endless fun for kids and adults alike. These magnetic forces make them especially useful in building toys … and the magnetic building sets made by Magformer are some of the best.

Magformers are geometrically shaped building toys made with cylindrical neodymium magnets. These rare earth magnets are specially shaped so they always attract, making them ideal for building. This feature, combined with the Magformers’ open shape, makes them exceptionally easy to manipulate — a perk for younger children in particular.

But Magformers aren’t just for preschoolers. Older kids can use them to reinforce STEM lessons and apply concepts of engineering, physics, and geometry in a memorable, hands-on way. Even adults can get caught up in the fun of Magformers.

With dozens of options available, it can be hard to know which Magformer set would get the most use in your home. Keep reading to learn more and check out our recommendations for the best Magformer sets on the market.

Some Magformers use solid-colored plastic; others are transparent. Both construction options are genuine and should keep the magnets inside.

Key considerations

Age

Though kids of all ages love to play with Magformers, not all sets are ideal for every age.

Preschoolers (ages 3 to 5) will enjoy basic sets, which usually feature 14 to 30 square and triangular pieces. The simple shapes make it easy for younger children to build successfully, while the limited number of pieces prevents them from getting overwhelmed. Basic sets include a variety of colors to stimulate your child’s eyes and creativity.

Elementary-aged children (ages 6 to 10) can let their imagination run wild with building sets of 50 to 100 pieces. More complex shapes like hexagons and pentagons join the basic square and triangular pieces in these kits, allowing more sophisticated creations. Some sets include wheels or other moving play elements.

Older kids (ages 11 and up), as well as older elementary students, can take their play to a whole new level with sets that include light-up LEDs, motors, gears, and wheels. These sets can be used to make rolling vehicles, walking dinosaurs, and other innovations that reinforce STEM concepts. These sets often have fewer tiles but are compatible with most other Magformer tile sets.

Everything you need and more

With 112 pieces, this set has something for everyone, including traditional squares and triangles, pentagons, and even wheel fixtures. The Challenger set combines pieces from several classic sets for the ultimate in versatility.  It engages all age levels, from precocious toddlers to bigger kids who are eager for the challenge of simple machines with moving parts. The number of pieces and wide age range make it an ideal set for households with two or more children or for a family where Magformers are a known favorite.                                                                                             

Features

Themes

Most Magformer sets are designed for free play, but some let your child build trucks, dinosaurs, Ferris wheels, rockets, and more. Other themed sets include construction vehicles with action figures, castles with princess figures, and even rustic log cabins. If you have a child who’s particularly goal-oriented, they may appreciate a project with a specific goal.

Colors

One reason kids find Magformers irresistible is their vibrant colors. Some packs come in primary colors; others feature pastel palettes. Sets can be used to reinforce early childhood concepts like color, and some children take their favorite hues very seriously. A set that prominently features a favorite color may catch a reluctant child’s eye and draw them into play.

Shapes

The most basic Magformers sets include only squares and triangles, which sets younger children up for success in building simple creations. Larger sets include a variety of triangle styles as well as pentagons and hexagons that allow kids to create more complex connections. Some specialized kits have unusual shapes not included in standard sets. All Magformers sets and shapes should fit together, but they may not work with magnetic tile toys from other brands.

High-tech components

One reason Magformers are beloved is their ability to grow with your child. More advanced Magformers sets include moving gears, wheels, walking robots, and illuminated LED components. These kits are a great way to keep older kids engaged and learning. It also promotes family bonding by promoting play with younger family members.

EXPERT TIP

Magformers are not usually compatible with other magnetic building sets because of the special shape of their rare earth magnets.


Staff  | BestReviews
EXPERT TIP

If your Magformers set doesn’t come with a sturdy storage container, make sure you have one on hand to avoid losing pieces.


Staff  | BestReviews

Accessories

Toy carpets: KC Cubs Playtime Collection Carpet
Magformers lend themselves to floor play, but sitting on hard surfaces can be uncomfortable. With whimsical shapes, numbers, and formulas, the KC Cubs Playtime Collection carpet is the perfect backdrop for STEM play and learning. A colorful pattern sets the mood for free play while protecting your tiles, floors, and joints from damage.

Magna-Tiles: 100-piece Magna-Tile Set
If you have older children in the house, you may prefer a magnetic building set with flat planes and more varied sizes. This 100-piece Magna-Tile set includes everything your child needs to get their empire started. Large squares make a great base, while assorted triangle pieces lend themselves to castle spires and skyscraper roofs. Notably, Magna-Tiles do not adhere well to Magformers, so bear this in mind when deciding what to invest in.

Rare earth magnets like neodymium were created in the 1970s and 1980s. They’re often used for industrial purposes, thanks to their strength.

Magformer prices

Magformers are an investment, so you’ll want to make sure you find a set your family will love.

Inexpensive: You can find small, budget-friendly Magformers sets for under $20. Sets in this price range only contain about 14 pieces and are designed for young children. 

Mid-range: Magformers sets with 30 or more pieces usually cost $25 to $35, depending upon the tile colors. Most sets in this price range include only squares and triangles. They’re best for families with one child or for those who are giving Magformers a trial run before making a bigger investment.

Expensive: Magformers sets that include technology components typically run $40 to $60, while deluxe sets with 100 pieces or more are likely to cost $90 to $120. High-tech sets should include gears, lights, or other moving pieces to make them worth the money. Deluxe sets should include a wide variety of shapes and colors, unique pieces not available in lower-end products, and possibly even some tech elements.

Pretty in pastels

Great for beginners, this 30-piece kit sets the mood with soft-colored triangles and squares. The Inspire package is one of just a few sets that come in this unique color scheme. It’s smaller than pricier kits, but it still includes enough pieces to build a house, pyramid, magic ball, and more. And of course, it will work with other Magformers sets if you decide you need more tiles down the road.

Tips

  • If you buy a set with moving pieces, make sure you have the batteries needed to power your creations.
  • A basic Magformer set easily fits in a diaper bag or purse for quiet fun on the go.
  • Cracked tiles should be removed from play immediately, since rare earth magnets can be dangerous to humans or pets if swallowed. If you wish, contact Magformers, LLC about their warranty policy before disposing of any damaged pieces.

Other products we considered

If you’re feeling overwhelmed by choice, take a look at this 30-piece basic Magformer set. It’s a great pick for preschoolers and a relatively inexpensive way to let your kids try them before splurging on a pricier set.

But if “more is better” is your philosophy, you’ll want to consider this 144-piece Magformers Smart Set. It’s got everything from basic pieces to isosceles triangles and hexagons. The set even includes wheels so kids can take their creations on the go.

Building with toys like Magformers can help your child with hand-eye coordination and spatial relations, and it can reinforce lessons in shapes, colors, and scientific principles.

FAQ

Q. Are Magformers sturdy enough for young children?
A.
Magformers are made from durable ABS plastic, which is tough enough to be used for power tool casings, auto body parts, and packing crates. These BPA-free shapes are ultrasonically welded together to house the super-strong neodymium magnets. They’re created with young kids in mind, so they’ll stand up to use and abuse … but they’re not indestructible. Swallowing magnets can cause intestinal damage requiring emergency surgery, so Magformers aren’t recommended for toddlers, who may still explore toys with their mouths. Magformers are recommended for kids ages three and up, and it’s wise to supervise play.
 

Q. How are Magformers different from Magna-Tiles?
A.
The biggest difference is shape: Magformers feature open geometric shapes while MagnaTiles are flat, solid tiles. Magformers are a natural choice for making dimensional creations, while Magna-Tiles work best for floor-based structures.

Most Magformers are slightly smaller than Magna-Tiles; this gives them an edge for younger children. All Magformers use rare earth magnets, while Magna-Tiles use both neodymium and ceramic magnets.

Be aware that both brands are pricey, and they do not connect well to one another. So, once you make a selection, you may want to stick with one or the other.
 

Q. How do you clean Magformers?
A.
Magformers shouldn’t be immersed in water because they have seams where water could seep in and grow mold. The manufacturer recommends wiping them with a dry towel. If your set needs heavy-duty cleaning, or if a child has been sick recently, consider cleaning them with disinfecting wipes.
 

Q. How many pieces do I need for multiple children?
A.
Most customers say that, even in the younger years, you’ll want at least 30 tiles per child. As kids hit grade school, you may want to increase that number to a minimum of 45 tiles per kid. This should help prevent squabbles and ensure everyone has what they need to complete their creation.

The team that worked on this review
  • Ciera
    Ciera
    Digital Content Producer
  • Kristin
    Kristin
    Writer
  • Melinda
    Melinda
    Web Producer
  • Melissa
    Melissa
    Senior Editor

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