Thursday, December 14, 2017

The 10 Best Baby Monitors for new parents

Infant Optics DXR-8
Best of the best

With so many excellent features, this baby monitor is in a class of its own. ...

Samsung Wisenet BrightView
Best bang for the buck

A user friendly baby monitor with great features and an even greater price tag. ...

Today’s technology has dramatically advanced how parents monitor their precious babies. Now, whether in or out of the home, parents can see and listen to their babies sleep, talk, move or cry. It’s an amazing opportunity for parents to watch their babies even when they are unable to be there with them or when trying to teach them how to sleep by themselves.

If you are looking to purchase a baby monitor, but are unsure which one to buy, then check out our expert reviewed list of the best baby monitors. Not only will this baby monitor buying guide provide you with the best baby monitors on the market today, but it will also help you to decide which one to purchase and answer any questions that those of you on the fence might have.

 

6 Reasons why you should use a baby monitor

If you are on the fence about buying a baby monitor, or don’t quite see the need for one, then check out the following reasons why you should use a baby monitor:

              • Peace of Mind : Baby monitors provide parents with peace of mind, knowing that they can monitor their precious little ones and see what’s going on in real-time. It reduces the stress and worries that result from not being in the same room with your baby.
              • Where the baby sleeps: If the baby sleeps in a different room than you, then it’s best to get a baby monitor. It will provide you with visual and audio monitoring of your baby, so that you can see what he/she is doing at all times.
              • Are you a deep sleeper?: Some parents are lucky enough to sleep deeply at night time. Unfortunately, if you are a deep sleeper with a baby, then it will be hard for you to hear your baby wake up or cry in the middle of the night. A baby monitor can provide the audio at a loud enough level for you to wake up upon hearing your baby cry or talk.
              • Personal Space: Sometimes, we parents needs some alone time to just unwind and decompress. Having a baby monitor will allow you to put your baby in his/her crib or playpen, while you just curl up in your recliner chair and relax. Personal time will keep you sane when taking care of a newborn baby.
              • Work from Home: For those parents that work from home, you can understand the challenges that come from trying to take care of your kids while working. It’s nearly impossible to give your full attention to work or your baby(s). That’s where a baby monitor will come in handy. You can sit the baby or toddler in their room or in front of the TV, go over to your work space, and then work while you are monitoring them.
              • Not just for babies: Some customers think that these monitors are good to use only when their children are babies. But, that’s not the case. These monitors are also good for when your toddlers are playing in another room or when they’re watching their favorite TV show and you are in the kitchen making them lunch. These monitors can also be used as a makeshift security system for your front door. Just place one component of the monitor outside the door and keep the other one inside. It will allow you to communicate with strangers or see who’s at the door without having to open the door.

Top 10 Baby Monitors

Now that you are armed with the knowledge of what to look for in a baby monitor, check out our list of the best baby monitors on the market today. We have poured through dozens of monitors to provide our expert baby monitor reviews and Top 10 list:

  • Infant Optics DXR-8 Editor Rating:

    The Infant Optics DXR-8 Video Baby Monitor with Interchangeable Optical Lens is a top-of-the-line camera that comes packed with useful features such as interchangeable lenses, multiple camera support, high-quality streaming, and a fantastic battery life. The great features of this baby monitor camera fully justify the high price tag and makes it, in our opinion, the best baby monitor on this list.

     

    The Infant Optics DXR-8 Video Baby Monitor comes with the following key features:

    Interchangeable lenses: This baby monitor comes with a normal lens and an additional zoom lens. A wide-angle lens can also be purchased, which will display your entire room. Furthermore, additional cameras can be added to monitor up to four rooms at once.

    Versatiledisplay options:The camera streams high-quality video to a 3.5” LCD display screen both in regular light as well as night mode. The camera can be remotely swiveled around so you can point it to the other side of the crib. There are pan and tilt options which are smooth and quiet.
    Audio options:It’s also possible to switch to an audio-only mode, where an LED display panel on the front of the monitor will alert the users to any sounds from the other side. The handy intercom system allows users to talk back to the baby if required. This audio-only option allows for a battery life that lasts up to 50% longer.
    Easy to use:This is a plug and play camera which makes for a no-hassle set up. It has a compact frame which makes it easily portable. Furthermore, it comes with a USB cord which makes it very easy to charge the battery no matter where you are.

    Pros

    • Allows you to change the camera angles remotely
    • High-quality streaming without lag
    • Can be expanded to up to four cameras around different rooms
    • Displays the room temperature
    • Night vision
    • Plug and play
    • Great battery life with full display of up to 6 hours and power-saving mode of 10 hours
    • Simple USB charger

    Cons

    • Expensive
  • Samsung Wisenet BrightView Editor Rating:

    This is another high-end baby monitor which gives the Infant Optics DSR-8 a run for its money. It has a roomy 5” monitor display with fancy touchscreen controls that are intuitive and easy to use, no matter a user’s level of tech-savviness. The four sweet lullabies, the soft night light, and the intercom system may help users get their babies in the habit of falling asleep without being in the same room, especially if the child wakes up often. The Voice Activation mode helps picks up on the faintest of noises, and it can also be calibrated to transmit the softest of sounds, depending on the user’s needs and preferences.

     

    The Samsung Wisenet BrightView has the following key features:

    High-quality video transmission: The monitor features a 720p HD live video transmission over a 2.4 GHz frequency for a playback that is high in quality and detail. Up to 4 areas can be monitored giving you freedom to roam around the house. Though the 900 foot range is quite effective indoors, it may be more difficult for the monitor to pick up signal if you step outside the house with the camera unit still inside the room.

    Display options: This device boasts a 5″ touch screen LCD monitor with intuitive controls, letting users set up with ease. Pan and tilt the camera to get a good look of the room or track your growing baby as it crawls around the crib. There is a built-in stand and belt clip so you can remain hands free yet look at the monitor. There is a night vision feature that displays video reaching up to 16 feet.

    Personal assistant options:Play one of four pre-recorded lullabies to your baby, soft night light. Set up feeding schedules and alerts.
    Voice activation: Voice activated mode (VOX) picks up on the faintest of noises if you choose to switch over to audio-only mode. The display will be automatically activated when the softest of sounds is made. Or perhaps you want to only hear when your baby is in distress, in which case you can calibrate the VOX to pick up loud noises only.

    Pros

    • Intuitive touch controls
    • 5″ LCD monitor
    • 720p HD live streaming
    • Secure 2.4 GHz frequency
    • Built-in stand and belt clip for monitor
    • IR night vision up to 16ft
    • 4 pre-recorded lullabies
    • Soft night light
    • Program feeding schedules and alerts
    • Voice activated (VOX) mode to calibrate audio sensitivity

    Cons

    • Harder to pick up signal outdoors
    • Expensive
  • Babysense Video Monitor Editor Rating:

    The Babysense Video Monitor is packed with features, yet comes at an affordable cost. Its 2.4" LCD display streams high-quality video over a 2.4 GHz FHSS to a range of up to 900 feet in open spaces. It comes with all the features that higher-end cameras contain such as the ability to pan and tilt the view, night vision, a 2x zoom function, and an ECO mode which conserves battery by turning off display until the camera set picks up on a sound.

     

    The Babysense Video Monitor has the following features:

    High-quality color display: The monitor piece has a 2.4″ LCD display, and buttons on the side for easy navigating. It transmits high-quality video over a 2.4 GHz frequency up to 900 feet in open spaces. If the user goes out of range, an alert will appear on the screen.

    ECO mode: The ECO mode will conserve battery life of the monitor by switching off the display. If the camera piece picks up on a sound in the room, the monitor display will automatically activate so you can have a look at whether you need to go attend to the baby. Users can choose either low sound, medium, or high sound levels to activate the monitor.

    Display modes: This camera gives users the option to tilt and pan across the room just like its higher-end counterparts. A night vision display captures movements even in the dark. The 2x digital zoom is also possible

    Lullabies and more: Users can pick one of the polyphonic lullabies to help their baby go back to sleep. Additionally, there is also an alarm as well as a timer function built into the monitor.

    Pros

    • 4 GHz FHSS technology
    • Range of up to 900 feet in open spaces
    • Alerts you when you are out of range
    • Option to set up an alarm or timer
    • Displays the room temperature
    • Two-way communication
    • Pan and tilt
    • Night vision
    • 2x digital zoom
    • ECO mode to save power. Monitor lights up if sound is detected
    • 3 options for sound sensitivity
    • Supports up to 4 cameras
    • Polyphonic lullabies
    • Affordable

    Cons

    • Relatively small screen display
  • VTech DM221 Audio Baby Monitor Editor Rating:

    With the highest range of up to 1000 ft in outdoor areas or 160 feet indoors, the VTECH DM 221 is one of the best audio-only baby monitoring devices in the market. Transmitting flawless audio over up to two devices, this monitor ensures that you and your partner (or nanny) can easily keep track of your baby even if you are in separate rooms.

     

    The VTech DM221 Audio Baby Monitor has the following key features:

    DECT 6.0 technology: The monitor utilizes the DECT 6.0 audio technology, which ensures that you get flawless audio transmission minus the background noise that is often a problem with old-school audio monitors.

    Multiple parent units: The device comes with two parent units, so two people can keep an ear out for the baby, even if they are in different rooms of the house. Users can use the parent unit as a walkie talkie to talk back to their child and perhaps even lull them back to sleep.

    Alert system:The monitor has a bar graph that indicates the level of sound coming from the baby’s room. The display goes from one to five bars. Users can choose vibration alerts rather than the usual beeping, so as to maintain the peace and quiet.

    Multi-language support:Although the default mode for the monitors is in English, users can also opt to view their display in French or Spanish.

    Pros

    • DECT 6.0 audio technology that transmits flawless audio
    • Indicates the sound level using a bar graph
    • Vibrating alerts
    • Intercom
    • Monitor for up to 18 hours at a time
    • French and Spanish language support
    • Nightlight for the baby

    Cons

    • No video
  • Philips AVENT SCD630 Editor Rating:

    Another feature-packed top of the line baby monitor is the Philips Avent SCD630, which will help you look out for your baby's safety. With a high-res 720p video display and sound level lights on the parent unit, you will be able to track every move and noise.

     

    The Philips AVENT SCD630 Baby Monitor has the following key features:

    High-res video streaming:The device transmits a high-resolution video of 720p over a secure FSHH connection onto the parent device, which has a 3.5″ screen dedicated to viewing only. The buttons are separate from the screen. It has a range of 300m (985 ft) in open spaces and 50m (164 ft) indoors.

    Digital zoom: A digital zoom lets you go up to 2x magnification, though unlike its competitors, there are no options to swivel around the camera with pan and tilt functions, so you will have to ensure the angle is perfect when you set up.

    Long battery life:When fully charged, the device has a long enough battery life to run overnight. The sound-only mode also allows for a lengthy operating time by turning off the screen. There are 3 lights on the parent unit that display the 3 noise levels coming from the baby’s room.

    Pros

    • 720p High-res video streaming paired over FSHH.
    • Easy set up
    • Digital zoom
    • 5″ screen
    • Automatic IR Night vision
    • 3 lights indicating sound level
    • 300m range outdoors (985 feet), 50m (164ft) indoors
    • Battery life is long enough to run overnight easily
    • Talkback from the unit
    • Pre-programmed lullabies
    • Monitors room temperature
    • Ability to mount on wall

    Cons

    • No remote pan or tilt options
    • Does not support additional cameras
  • Summer Infant Baby Touch Editor Rating:

    With an intuitive touchscreen, remote control of camera angles, intercom support, and a charging dock that allows up to 6 hours of transmission, the Summer Infant Baby Touch monitor is one of the better options available in the baby monitor market and it certainly provides plenty of features for a great price. Users can also add up to 3 more cameras to monitor different rooms of their homes, while using the same parent unit.

     

    The Summer Infant Baby Touch has the following key features:

    Shows the entire room: On a 3.5″ touchscreen monitor, you will get a crystal clear video transmission of your baby’s room. The intuitive controls can be used by anyone, letting them remotely change the camera angle up and down or left and right. There is also a multi-level digital zoom which goes up to 2x magnification.

    Easy set up: The device can be deployed in a couple of minutes. The camera has a sleek design, which can be wall mounted or used on a tabletop. The parent unit has a belt clip as well as kickstand so you can move around the house while monitoring, but the range is not as good as other cameras at a similar price range.

    Multi-camera support: If users would like to set up cameras in multiple rooms, this is a great option as up to 3 additional cameras can be integrated into the system such that each of them transmits to the same monitor.

    Pros

    • 5″ touchscreen
    • Remotely adjust camera angles with an up to 2x multi level zoom
    • Auto night mode
    • Intercom
    • Supports up to 4 cameras
    • Rechargeable battery and docking station for up to 6 hours of transmission
    • Kickstand and belt clip for monitor
    • Wall mount, and tabletop camera set up

    Cons

    • Range is not as good as other cameras in the market
  • Motorola Dual Mode Baby Monitor Editor Rating:

    Do you miss your precious bundle of joy while you are at work? Or perhaps you would like to keep an eye on your little one while you are out and the sitter is watching him or her? This device is the ideal one for you as it lets you not only monitor from home, but also remotely from your smartphone, tablet, or PC. What's more, is that it even has all the usual useful features that any baby monitor should have, such as the ability to move the camera around remotely, zoom in, talk back through the parent unit, and view the baby's room temperature.

     

    The Motorola Dual Mode Baby Monitor comes with the following features:

    Home and Away: It’s great to have a baby monitor to keep an eye on your sleeping child at home, but if you are a working parent, you can also view your little from the office, or supermarket, or wherever you are. All you need to do is download the WiFi Hubble app onto a compatible device. This can be a smartphone, tablet, or even a PC.

    Capture precious moments: Additionally, if you happen to catch a precious moment, you can even take a screenshot or record the video transmission. There is an option to avail the Cloud Video Recording service which will keep all the videos of what’s going on in your home, and let you access it from anywhere. There are options to choose the service for a day, a week, or a month. Motion-triggered recording means that you will only see useful footage, rather than hours of a still shot.

    High-quality video streaming: The unit shows an amazing 720p HD video with a 320×240 resolution that can show a fairly clear image even on bigger screens like the tablet or PC. The parent unit of the monitor has a 3.5″ screen. Unfortunately, there are some issues with lags in video, or disconnection from the camera unit altogether.

    Pros

    • 720p video with 320×240 resolution
    • View the transmission over Wi-Fi using compatible devices
    • Record or take a screenshot from within the app while viewing video
    • Motion-triggered Cloud Video Recording (CVR) service
    • Pan, tilt, and zoom the camera remotely
    • Temperature sensor
    • Talk back through the parent unit
    • 5 pre-programmed lullabies
    • Infrared night vision

    Cons

    • May have issues with remaining connected to the camera unit
    • Occasional lags in video transmission
  • Cocoon Cam Baby Breathing Monitor Editor Rating:

    The Cocoon Cam Baby Breathing Monitor brings a unique breathing monitoring technology to your home. This technology has been tested extensively in various hospital NICUs including at Stanford University. The best part is that the breathing monitoring does not require that you put any wearables on your little one. There is a free 6-month subscription to the Cocoon Insights, which will bring all this data to your device. Additionally, it also supports remote viewing from a compatible device.

     

    The Cocoon Cam Baby Breathing Monitor comes with the following features:

    Monitors baby’s breathing: This device monitors the baby’s breathing and displays this data over a breathing graph which can be viewed on a smartphone using a Cocoon Insights subscription. The first 6 months of this subscription are given for free with the purchase of this product.

    Easy set up: This camera can be wall mounted very easily near the baby’s crib for maximum efficiency. Additional set up requires only a few minutes to connect the smartphone with the camera. No additional wearables need to be put on the baby in order to monitor breathing.

    Audio and Video transmission: If a user chooses not to renew the subscription, they can continue using the camera as a regular baby monitor with audio and video. The video camera is a 720p HD camera and the audio delivers crisp and clear sound both ways.

    Pros

    • Tried and tested breathing monitoring
    • Remote viewing of video feed
    • No wearables required
    • Easy wall mount
    • Highly secure transmission
    • Record transmission and create videos
    • Easy set up within minutes
    • Free 6-month subscription
    • Works without a subscription for audio and video monitoring
    • Advanced IR vision

    Cons

    • Compatible app only available on the US App/Play Store
    • Some software issues that will hopefully be fixed in future updates
    • No parent unit: must be used with a smartphone
  • iBaby M6T Editor Rating:

    The iBaby M6T lets users see almost every corner of their baby's room thanks to 360-degree scan and 110-degree tilt options. Day or night, the video will continue to transmit to a smartphone or other compatible device whether connected over Wi-Fi, 4G, 3G, or LTE. Temperature information is relayed along with humidity percentage. Two-way communication lets you talk to your baby from afar.

     

    The iBaby M6T has the following key features:

    The USP of this camera is that not only does it transmit 720p video, but it also lets users swivel around the camera a whopping 360 degrees around the room, as well as 110 degree tilting, so you can inspect almost the entire room if you need to. The powerful night mode switches on automatically in low light conditions. Additionally, it will also tell you the temperature as well as humidity information of your baby’s room.

    High-quality audio: There is high quality audio to ensure you don’t miss it if the baby is calling out to you, and you can even talk back to it through your smartphone. The monitor employs an echo-cancelling technology to bring you and your baby crystal clear sound.

    Stay connected:Whether you have Wi-Fi connectivity, or you are out and about on 4G, 3G, or even LTE, you will remain connected to your baby. Alerts will be sent to your phone based on your preset preferences and you will continue to receive these if you are talking on the phone.

    Pros

    • Prompts users in case of sound or motion detected
    • 720p video with smooth 360 degree panning and 110 degree tilt
    • Temperature and humidity sensors
    • Sleep mode to save power
    • Noise cancelling audio intercom
    • Night vision
    • Ability to connect over Wi-Fi, 4G, 3G, or LTE
    • Ability to record videos
    • Sends alerts even during phone calls

    Cons

    • No parent unit; smartphone must be used for monitoring
    • Video transmission may drop when internet connectivity is slow
  • Nest Cam Indoor Security Camera Editor Rating:

    Though not labeled or marketed as a baby monitor, the Nest Cam Indoor Security Camera can certainly be used as such. With its top-of-the-line video transmission, easy set up, compatibility with Amazon Alexa, and smart alerts, this camera is definitely worth its cost for those who want to keep a close eye on what's going on in their home while they are away.

     

    The Nest Cam Indoor Security Camera has the following key features:

    Superior video transmission:This camera features a glass lens that transmits a flawless 1080p HD view of the room in which it is set up. Its amazing night vision allows a thorough look at the entire room at night, rather than a spotlight view. Transmission can be viewed on a smartphone from anywhere, 24/7.

    Compatible with Amazon Alexa: The camera will pick up on audio from the room but it will also let you talk to someone in the room if you need to. Additionally, its compatibility with Amazon Alexa lets you talk to the camera directly to control its functions.

    Cloud storage: To get the most out of this camera, users should subscribe to Nest Aware that will bring custom alerts and only notify you when a person is in the room. It will record such videos and recordings can be scrubbed for quickly seeing what went on during the time you were away.

    Pros

    • 1080p HD video with 8x digital zoom
    • Compatible with Amazon Alexa
    • Sleek design
    • Phone or email alert if motion is detected
    • Two-way communication
    • Magnetic stand
    • Custom Activity Zones for alerts
    • Nest Aware trial for continuous cloud recording and alerts

    Cons

    • Subscription-free viewing is somewhat cluttered with banner ads.

How to choose the best baby monitors

Just like any other technological consumer product, there’s a wide selection of baby monitors. This can be a bit overwhelming to first time baby monitor buyers. Besides your budget, we’ve compiled a list of factors that will help you to decide which baby monitor is the best for you:

Audio or Video: One of the first things you need to take into consideration is whether or not you want the baby monitor to have a video option. If you don’t mind not seeing your baby, and just hearing them is enough, then a full audio baby monitor is an ideal option. If you want to see what your baby is doing at all times, then a video baby monitor is the best choice.

Clarity: Regardless if it’s video, audio, or both, you want to make sure that the baby monitor offers high clarity with their video signal and audio. Skip the outdated monitors with distorted displays and go to the selection of monitors that have a sharp video clarity. Additionally, make sure the audio is clear and you can actually hear the baby. Lastly, make sure the video and audio operate effectively at night time.

Display: How big of a display screen do you want on the baby monitor receiver/display unit? There are some baby monitors with a 5” display, which makes for a more enjoyable viewing especially for those who might have trouble seeing. Taking it a step further, some monitors have 720p displays, which makes the picture look very clear. This is also a good idea if you want a crisp Night Vision view.

Range: Since you don’t plan on sitting in the next room, or the same room as your baby, then you will want a baby monitor with good range of distance. This is perfect for those who have bigger houses or if you need to run outside real quick to throw out the trash. A baby monitor with good range will allow you to still watch or listen without any distortion or disruption.

Adjustable Camera: Another decision that needs to be made is where you want to position the camera. Will it be directly on the baby at all times or will it cover the whole room? Do you have to change the location whenever you want to change the view or can you tilt and pan the camera from the baby monitor display that you take with you? These options can be decided before purchasing the baby monitor and it’s solely based on your set-up preference.

Camera Lenses: Some of the more reputable baby monitors have interchangeable camera lenses. This is a nice option for those of you who don’t want to pay extra for the tilt, pan and zoom features. You can simply fix the monitor to one location, but use either a wide angle lens or an extra zoom lens to cover the exact width and distance of your baby, baby crib, or baby’s room.

Multiple Cameras: If you have more than one child, or want to set up monitors in multiple rooms, then look for a baby monitor system with the ability to add extra cameras. This ensures that you can monitor any room in the house at all times. Additionally, it ensures that you can watch multiple kids at all times, and it prevents you from having to remove and/or resituate your baby cameras to watch your baby while he/she is in a different room other than their bedroom.

Two-way Intercom: Not only is it nice to hear your baby talk and cry, but it’s also a wonderful option to talk directly to your baby through the monitor system. This can save you from having to get up from bed during the middle of the night and going to sing the baby a lullaby. Now, you can sing directly from your bed, or another room in the house, and watch as your baby falls back to sleep.

Wired or Wireless: Wired baby monitor systems require that the device be plugged into an outlet at all times. This is a good idea if you don’t want to worry about battery life or plan on staying in one room when monitoring. Wireless baby monitors allow users to move more freely through the house, without any restrictions from wires. But, you will need to be mindful of the battery life with wireless monitors. So, make sure you choose a wireless baby monitor that has long lasting battery life.

Ease of Setup: For newbies, it might be best to choose monitors that are easy to set up. Some baby monitors literally start up within 30 seconds of removing from the box. Additionally, if you are not a tech wiz then you might want to avoid displays with dozens of features and buttons. This can get really confusing and it might prevent you from the peace of mind you are trying to achieve by monitoring your baby.

Activation Sensors: If you are using wireless devices, or battery operated devices, then you might want to consider a baby monitor system that only turns on when the baby moves or makes a noise. This motion and sound activation will save on battery life and possibly be used for additional purposes like preventing SIDS.

Remote Activation: It’s nice to have all of these features for a baby monitor system, but you need to decide if you want to be able to turn these features on remotely or by physically walking over to the device and turning them on. Remote activation makes it easier to turn on features like night vision or music, rather than having to army crawl into your baby’s room to turn on these features without waking him/her up.

Conclusion

As you can see, there are many fantastic options for baby monitors at different price points and with loads of features. The best baby monitor for you really depends on what features you want and need. It cannot be overstated just how much peace of mind and security that these monitors provide parents. However, we do want to remind those consumers that these monitors are not baby sitters, they are a way for parents to keep an eye on their bundles of joy in-between physically going into their room. We hope that our Best Baby Monitors Buying Guide has provided you with the information needed to make your purchase and we want to congratulate you on having a baby.

Baby Monitors

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