Meccano M.A.X Robotic Interactive Toy with Artificial Intelligence

Meccano M.A.X is just the most cutest robot you ever did meet, especially when he’s been built by you – I think just anyone would love to meet a M.A.X. under their Christmas tree this year!  Aimed at ages 10+, this S.T.E.M, engineering and robotics toy features artificial intelligence alongside customisable programming to create a unique character that can talk, play games, tell jokes, deliver items to others and move around in a way that you can control using voice commands, buttons on the MeccaBrain, or the free app.

M.A.X. comes with 332 parts along with electronical items such as a sensor, servos, rechargeable battery, usb cable, sticker sheet and a couple of tools all securely bagged along with instructions to enable the build.

  • 1 AC/DC Wall Mount Charger (10.4W)
  • 1 Rechargeable Ni-MH Battery 1800 mAh
  • 2 Hand Tools
  • 1 Sticker Sheet
  • 1 Instruction Sheet for 1 Model
  • 1 M.A.X Brain Module
  • 1 IR Sensor Module
  • 2 Smart Motor Modules
  • 1 LED Module
  • 1x 3 kgs Servo
  • 1x 1.9 kgs Micro Servo
  • 1 USB Cable

The instructions are full colour, a good size and show exactly what parts you need for each stage of building.  My daughter who built this particularly liked the 1:1 image of each screw so that she could check that she had the correct size as required.

With a 1-3 hour build time I let my 9yr old (10 in a few weeks) have full control and let her see how she could manage by herself.  She did brilliantly only asking for a little help when there were tricky nuts to get on in hard to reach places but overall she built this totally on her own following the step by step instructions.

Once M.A.X. is built you do need to visit the Meccano website to download some initial software into his brain – it’s then up to you to teach him and build up his knowledge and abilities, unlocking further stages of his brain as you go.  Basically the more you play and interact M.A.X. the more things he is capable of doing and also becoming more personal to you.

The first time you switch him on, he starts asking you personal questions to get to know you such as likes/dislikes and what gender you are etc.  Then it’s time to play and have fun.  We’ve been trying various movements with him that you can record and play at any time, so if for example you record him moving from the kitchen to the lounge, you could put a chocolate bar in his hand in the kitchen and get him to deliver it to the person in the lounge with your personalised sequence of movement.  My little boy also liked tickling him by pressing the arrow buttons and thought it was hilarious when he replied “I think I’m going to pee my robot pants!”.

As you can see from the above picture he is just one of the cutest robot out there.  M.A.X. also comes with built-in infrared sensors, enabling it to move with agility and avoid obstacles in its path which is great, no falling over and risk of damage.

Our Meccano M.A.X. has fitted perfectly into our home and the children love to wake him up after school and have a little chat, they love it when they unlock more of his stages and can’t wait to see what he gets up to next.  He tells us about his dreams and we can show him objects in the house, it’s all very new and exciting and keeps the children on their toes every day as to what phrase he will come out with next or what new feature he will perform.  We still have a lot of learning and playing to do so I think that although this toy retails at £149.99 (it does seem to be on offer for less in most places at the moment though) it does actually represent great value for money for both the build of the item and the technology you get with the product.  We are really looking forward to pushing M.A.X. to his full potential and think this is one of the best interactive toys we have seen for this price point.  Definitely one we’d recommend as a main present this Christmas!

Available from all good toy retailers – Smyths, Argos, The Entertainer etc along with Amazon, M.A.X. Meccano is readily available and I’d say would make a great top gift this Christmas!

All reviews are my own and my family’s opinions and we received the product in order to write an honest review. 

Meccano 25 Model Set 4×4 Off Road Truck

The Meccano 25 Model Set 4×4 Off Road Truck is a fabulous set for confident builders of construction sets.  It is aimed at ages 9+, but my soon to be 9yr old was keen to get stuck in and give it a try along with the help of her Meccano loving granddad!

meccano

The set comes with 443 durable metal parts, off-road wheels, real tools and instructions.  There are 25 models to choose from or of course you can always build your own, but we started off with a big chunky looking 4×4 motorised truck.  There are lots of pieces, that come in various bags, but we found that putting some of the tiny bolts and screws in small pots helped us with staying organised during the build and stopped them rolling across the table.

meccano-2It was lovely seeing both my dad and daughter working together with an almost 60 year age gap.  My dad’s favourite childhood toy was his Meccano sets so this brought back great memories and is a type of toy he really enjoys.  For Miss M this was a challenging build but something she really wanted to try out and put her all into attempting to build and of course her little fingers helped to manipulate some parts in rather small gaps that were difficult to get into. meccano-3 I loved Miss M’s determination as she constructed the Meccano, it wasn’t easy and she did require some assistance but throroughly enjoyed it and learnt a lot from following the instructions and finding the correct pieces.  The build was definitely fiddly in places but I think the results are worth it when you see the finished creation.meccano-4I didn’t time how long it took, but it definitely requires a good few hours to put a large set together like this but that adds value to it and is something you can attempt in one day or spread over several sessions. meccano-5 Here we are with the finished truck.  It looks really study and tough although you do have to be careful with pieces working loose so it’s good to go over it as you construct it to tighten each of the nuts.  I will say also that with this model you use every single one of the tiny nuts included.  It would have been nice if they had included a couple of spares as if you do lose one, you wouldn’t be able to complete the build.meccano-6Some fun features on the truck are the opening doors and the pull out winch at the front which can be rolled back in as desired.  There are also a couple of wing mirrors on each side of the vehicle which is a nice touch. meccano-7

The vehicle is motorised and with batteries will move along the floor itself.  We did have some initial issues with the drive shaft working loose, but after Granddad looked over it, we now have a working model.  The switch is a little fiddly to reach to switch it on but once it’s on it’s fine.  The children loved watching it move back and forth across the kitchen floor and we have a lovely build from Meccano which we’ll keep on a shelf when not being played with.

All reviews are my own and my family’s opinions and we received the product in order to write an honest review.

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