Robert Houdin inspired a Generation
When we think of magic today a few images come to mind. The most notable of course would be the late Harry Houdini. However, Harry himself created his character after the late Jean Eugene Robert Houdin known later as just Robert Houdin. Mr. Houdin the son of a watchmaker later became the most famous Magician of his time, and is revered even today as one of the greatest Magicians to ever live. Why? First off it was, because of his ingenuity as an artist and performer. Secondly, and most notably Robert Houdin is solely credited for preventing a war.
Harry Houdini adopted a part of his name, and the mystery of the illusions that Robert had mastered. Houdini really added a layer of popularity, and mystic to the world of magic. While also performing seemingly death defying stunts. Overall, it's clear that the popularity of Magic wouldn't be so, without these two Gentleman of Magic.
Magic is sometimes one of those overlooked arts that truly can change ta life. Magic can bring a child out of his shell, build confidence, develop strong coordination, and communication skills as well as receive the feeling of inspiring others. Now with the magic of technology, Magic has become accessible to everyone with an internet connection. Where once we had to travel to a Magic Store now we simply travel to our computer, or smart phone. There are many online magic stores now, and we set out to find the best of the best to share the fun. After visiting, and purchasing from nearly 40 different stores we selected 5 that we feel offer something special.
Our first selection was really hard, there are many stores that offer a lot of exciting graphics, and fancy page transitions. But, we wanted to showcase the magic, customer service, and flow of the site. There are other sites out there that may have a better look and feel. But over all I was most impressed with the total package of all of these sites.
1) Nexus Magic Store - Nexus has a fantastic selection of magic from all over by multiple vendors. I am really impressed with the clean layout, and most of the product pages offer a video demo of the effect. And since the videos are hosted by Youtube it's viewable even by Smart phone technologies and with Nexus Magic's Large buttons, and very little flash; navigating Nexus with your smart phone is a breeze. Once you select your items you are redirected to pay for your order, most credit cards are accepted or pay with your paypal account. Now you can, learn about, watch demos, and buy magic from your phone on the go. That's Nexus Magics capabilities. Clearly, the 3g and 4g technology is the direction we are all going, and it's nice to see a website keep all of that in mind. And Customer service was exceptional to boot. (5 Stars)
2) Magic Whiz - This is a clean site not a lot of clutter and a decent selection. I did feel that certain products seemed pushed on you when you enter. I also noticed that they had a couple of links to direct you to Special Deals on Sale and yet there was nothing in that section when clicked. Overall this site is clean, but a little confusing. Customer service was good. (4 stars over all)
3) Eagle Magic Store - While this store is clean, and has an okay selection. I feel it is a bit too business for a magic store, and in my opinion I would say that the color selection is something I would expect from the Military not a Magic shop. I was also a bit chased off by all of photos of the owner. For a store to have been in operation for over a 100 years, I would have expected something more magical and less sterile. Service was just okay. (2-1/2 stars)
4) The Trickery - The state that they are the oldest online magic store, which may be true by the way this site flows. Not too impressed with the jumbled mess on the front page. I feel like every graphic is shouting at me. Click here! No wait click here! Click me! Please wait, I haven't been clicked forever please, please click me. Once you get past the front page though you can breath a little easier, though by not much. There must be 25 different fonts projected at you on the front page alone. Overall if you can tolerate the confusion, then this is a great site with tons of products with some hard to find gems. That is if you are up to the challenge to find them without getting a headache. Customer service was about the best part of the experience. I noticed that they say they are mobile, but clearly they are not automated to accept payment via mobile without calling them during business hours. So to me that's not Mobile. (3 stars)
5) Fantasma Magic - Fantasma this site sorry to say is very heavy, and as a result really slow. It really caters to young kids with the bright colors and the other types of toys that they offer. Fantasma is an example of too much design taking away from why we are there. To find some good magic efficiently, and not get lost or wait for the bogged down pages to load. One thing I will say that they did actually have specials in there sections so that was a plus. The service was substandard (2 stars)