Reviews on The 5 Best Video Baby Monitor in 2016
Buying the Best Video Baby Monitor:
Why buy the best video baby monitor you can afford? For every parent, the well being, and safety of their baby is of paramount concern. Parents will take every step possible to ensure their baby is healthy and safe at all times. One way that they do this includes buying the right baby products. There are many different products available, each with a different purpose and designed to make life as a parent easier.
A product that parents will purchase prior to the birth of their baby is a video baby monitor and there is a great selection of these available on the market. Choosing a video baby monitor has clear advantages over one that simply offers sound. However, finding the right video baby monitor for you may seem like a daunting task as you will need to compare the different features that each has to offer.
In this review, we shall take a look at the questions you should ask yourself before making a purchase and also at some of the common features you will see in the product information for each item.
To help you further, there are then reviews of six of the video baby monitors currently available, including an overview of the product and a list of the pros and cons of each of the monitors.
Choosing the Best Video Baby Monitor:
Making a decision may seem overwhelming at first, especially if you are having difficulty in understanding the different features available. First, you need to be clear about what it is you want and expect from the device.
Second, you need to learn more about what some of the common and desirable features of the best video baby monitor are and whether these features are something you actually need.
Below is an overview of the questions you should ask yourself to make your search easier and also an outline of some of the key features to look for from a monitor.
Questions to Ask Yourself:
Each parent has different needs when it comes to finding the best video baby monitor for them. Ask yourself the following questions:
• Will you be using the monitor outdoors or simply moving from one room to the next?
• Do you intend to travel abroad and take the monitor with you?
• Do you want to see your child or just hear them?
• Are additional features important to you? If so, which ones?
8 Key Features in Video Baby Monitors:
Understanding the features of a baby monitor is a common difficulty that parents face, but it is these features that differentiate between a good product and an excellent one. It maybe that each person is looking for something different from a video baby monitor, but every parent needs to know some of the key features to look for are as follows:
• Range- each baby monitor has a different range. The size of your house and if you intend to use the monitor outside is important when looking at the range.
• Signal- the signal can affect the clarity of the sound. The main options are analogue, digital or digitally enhanced cordless telecommunications (DECT).
• Voice activated (VOX) mode- One of the greatest benefits of this is it helps save the battery as it will go to sleep when no sounds are detected.
• Monitor size and clarity- If the image isn’t clear, then you may as well save the money and buy a sound-only baby monitor. Read reviews to see ow clear the image actually is before making a purchase. Size can also make a difference, so compare several products.
• Two-way communication- The ability to communicate with your device via the monitor can help you to soothe your baby. Also, if one parent is in the room with the baby and the other parent is in the room with the parent unit, this feature enables them to easily communicate with each other.
• Lullabies- Some baby units have the option to play lullabies to your baby. This can help them to sleep without you being in the room to comfort them.
• Room temperature monitor- Keeping the nursery at the right temperature is important to the health of your baby. Choosing a video baby monitor with this feature removes the necessity to buy separate equipment to monitor this.
• Night vision sensors- The time when a parent needs a baby monitor the most is often at night while their child is sleeping. It makes sense to look for monitors that have night vision sensors so you can clearly see your baby in a darkened room.
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Video Monitors vs. Audio Monitors:
When deciding which product to buy, you need to think about the pros and cons of a video baby monitor in comparison to an audio-only monitor. The main advantage of a baby video monitor over an audio monitor is that you have the additional reassurance of being able to see your baby.
With an audio monitor, you are alerted to when your baby cries or is moving in their crib, yet you might find it difficult to monitor their breathing. A video baby monitor allows you to see your child’s chest rise and fall if the image quality is good. Once your baby is able to leave their baby and move around the room, a video baby monitor has clear advantages.
However, it is important to remember that these units are not a replacement for one-on-one supervision from a parent. The main disadvantage of a video baby monitor is they are significantly more expensive than audio monitors.
Electromagnetic Fields (EMFs), Wired and WiFi Devices:
An interesting piece of information you will see when comparing product information for each baby monitor relates to EMFs. As there has been some concern about the potential health effects of EMFs, the level of EMFs is now displayed alongside other important product information. This allows parents to make an informed decision when making their purchase.
In theory, the lower the EMFs the better as this will reduce the potential risk of harm. The debate is still underway as to whether there is any risk at all.
There is some documentation that EMF's should be limited especially to developing babies. I will be covering this subject in another blog post and giving you choices. Many parents are concerned about EMT radiation affecting their growing child. It is not without merit and very worth discussion.
Wired devices such as those connecting to the Internet via Broadband, have what is known as low-frequency EMFs. WiFi devices use radio waves and these have high-frequency EMFs. In the past, parents who have had concerns about the potentially negative effects of EMFs have preferred to use wired devices.
In spite of having high-frequency EMFs, wireless devices have many other benefits that make them preferable to wired devices. These are predominantly the ease of use, convenience, freedom to move around with the device and the ability to view your child from remote locations if you choose a device that is completely Internet based.
Static in Baby Monitors:
A common problem for parents is static and interference affecting the sound clarity of their baby monitor. Static and interference in a baby monitor are usually caused when using a device that has the same frequency signal band as the baby monitor. The main culprits are mobile phones, stereo speakers, microwaves and WiFi routers. Radio frequencies may also cause interference and static. There are steps you can take to reduce this problem. Try moving the unit, changing the channel or turning on the baby monitor before other gadgets. Better still, if you buy a digital or DECT monitor in the first place, then you will avoid the problem of static almost entirely.
Tips for Using a Baby Monitor Safely:
Although most video baby monitors are easy to use and extremely reliable, it is essential that you take appropriate steps to ensure you are using the baby monitor safely. Using the following tips can help:
• Read the instructions thoroughly. Each product will offer different guidance on how to use the monitor safely.
• Fasten wall mounting brackets securely. Choose a sturdy and flat section of wall to mount the bracket and then apply pressure to ensure it is safe.
• Don’t position the unit directly above the baby to avoid accidents when moving the unit.
• Keep the unit out of arm’s reach from your baby. They should not be able to touch the unit or pull on any wires or cords that are attached.
• Position the baby unit in a place that allows the camera to cover the whole room. Once your baby is on the move, it will help you to keep an eye on them and make sure they are safe.
• Test out the product before using it to monitor your baby. Rate the time when you set it up to wander around the house with the parent unit to see if there are any areas where you are out of range or where you experience more interference.
• Don’t rely on the range information. Each product has a different maximum range and you will find this in the product specifications. Many things can impact on the range of a unit. Some parents find that the number of walls between the parent and baby unit or closing interior doors can significantly affect the range of the video baby monitor.
Can You Use Video Baby Monitors Used Outside?
In most instances, video baby monitors are designed with the intention of the camera or baby unit being used in the room where the baby sleeps or plays. This sometimes means that the unit needs to be fixed to the wall or close to an electrical point. However, some units do not need attaching and rely on rechargeable batteries. If using the baby unit section outside is important to you, then it is important to check the product information before purchase.
The limitations of parent unit depend predominantly on the range of the product. In most cases, it is possible to safely use the unit outside providing you are within the range of the baby unit. If you are planning to use the parent unit from different locations, including those that are outside, it is often best to choose an Internet-based product as this allows you to check on baby even if you are at work or having a weekend away.
The simplest ways to decide whether or not a video baby monitor will meet your needs is to read reviews of the product. Reading baby monitor reviews will help you to learn more about the features that each monitor offers and the major advantages of choosing that product over its competitors
. Below is an overview of six of the best video baby monitors you might like to compare and consider. Take a look at the pros of each to help you to decide if the monitor meets your criteria. Similarly, think carefully about the cons of a product. In some instances, the cons are irrelevant if it is not a priority when making your choice. On the other hand, the cons may sway you to eliminate a particular monitor from your potential purchase list.
1) Infant Optics DXR-8- Overview
The Infant Optics DXR-8 was the first video baby monitor on the market to offer interchangeable lenses that each offers different views. These are a regular lens, a wide angle lens, and a 2x optical zoom lens. The monitor delivers real-time video streaming to the parent unit and there is the option to view this in black and white night vision. Even when the sound is turned down, parents are alerted to their crying baby by a sound-activated LED feature.
Consumers have the option to purchase up to four separate cameras to use with the unit and these are sold separately. The parent unit offers scan, tilt and pan viewing options. This monitor comes with rechargeable batteries and a cable to use with a USB or AC adaptor. This monitor operates on 2.4GHz FHSS.
Pros of the Infant Optics DXR-8
• Easy to set-up and use
• Excellent image and sound quality
• Two lenses with a pan and scan function controlled from parent unit
• Good battery life
• Sleek and stylish design
• Range of up to 700 feet
Cons of the Infant Optics DXR-8
• At 3.5”, the monitor screen is smaller than many other competitors
• Some customer reviews suggest that the beeping is annoying
• No docking, a feature that is useful for easy charging
• In comparison to other video baby monitors, the features are limited
2) Philips AVENT SCD630/37 Video Baby Monitor with FHSS- Overview
The Philips AVENT SCD630/37 Video Baby Monitor with FHSS offer the wireless connection and all the typical features parents have come to expect from a video baby monitor. The FHSS technology means you can expect an interference-free, secure and private connection.
One of the best features of this device is the voice activation mode as this prevents background noise and also saves battery life. The device is completely portable and easy to carry. There is the option to mount the baby unit on the wall. The parent unit is rechargeable and a back-up battery provides reassurance if there is a power failure.
Pros of the Philips AVENT SCD630/37 Video Baby Monitor with FHSS
• FHSS technology
• Voice activation mode
• Choice of lullabies on baby unit
• Temperature monitoring
• Nightlight and lullabies
• Optional wall mounting for convenient use and storage
• Talkback features for comforting a baby
• Easy to set up
• Automatic infra-red night vision
• A range of over 900 feet
• One of the cheaper options available
Cons of the Philips AVENT SCD630/37 Video Baby Monitor with FHSS
• Although sound quality is good, images are of a poorer quality
• Difficult to adjust to get a good view of baby
• Poor instructions, so difficult to use all the features with ease
• At 3.5”, the monitor screen is fairly small
3) Samsung SEW-3043w BrightVIEW HD- Overview
The Samsung SEW-3043w BrightVIEW has many of the standard features that parents have come to expect from a video baby monitor and they are of a comparable quality to its main competitors.
Former models of Samsung video baby monitors have received poor feedback from consumers. However, Samsung has worked hard to resolve these issues and this is apparent with the new and improve Samsung SEW-304w BrightVIEW HD.
Pros of the Samsung SEW-3043w BrightVIEW HD
• Use up to four cameras with the expandable system
• A two-way talk feature, aiding communication
• Good quality image
• Simple to set up and use
• 900 feet range
• Quiet mode with LED sound indicators
• Night vision up to 15 feet using LED lights
• Secure, wireless, interference-free signal
• Voice-activated mode
• Reasonable battery life
Cons of the Samsung SEW-3043w BrightVIEW HD
• Touch screen options are difficult to use
• You need both hands to use the monitor
• No room temperature monitor feature
• Some customers report an annoying audio delay
• Short delay once power button is pressed
4) Summer Infant Clear Sight- Overview
The Summer Infant Clear Sight is a sleek and affordable option for parents of babies and young children. This video baby monitor does not have some of the features of its more expensive competitors, it is possible that you do not need these anyway.
It does have a decent selection of useful features, though, such as talk to baby communication, night video, and screen auto sleep. Furthermore, it boasts automatic night vision, 2x digital zoom and the option to use up to four cameras. The video monitor operates on 2.4GHzwirelss digital technology.
Pros of the Summer Infant Clear Sight
• Clear instructions and simple set up
• Images are clear in both color and black and white
• Excellent battery life
• You can add additional cameras to more rooms
• Clear two-way talk feature
• Great build and design quality
• Automatic night vision
Low battery and out of range indicators
Cons of the Summer Infant Clear Sight
• No warning that signal is lost
• Small monitor at just 2”
• The range is fairly limited at just 600 feet
• Range is severely affected by walls and closed doors
• Below average sound quality
• Limited field of view
5) Nest Cam- Overview
The Nest Cam is Google’s updated replacement to the Dropcam Pro. One of the major improvements includes an upgraded resolution to 1080p from just 720p, though it will drop to a lower resolution if bandwidth is limited. It also boasts a new, industrial design.
This is a really reliable product with WiFi connection and the range is limited only by the strength of the WiFi connection available in your home. Wherever you have access to WiFi, you can use this video baby monitor.
For this reason, this is the ideal choice if you travel away from home with your baby on a regular basis. In spite of the excellent features available on this product and its fantastic reviews from consumers, the price is comparable to competitive products and is great value for money.
Pros of the Nest Cam
• Excellent image and sound quality
• Usable anywhere there is WiFi
• Almost unlimited range (if you have good WiFi!)
• You can use the camera with a tablet or a smartphone with a data plan
• Possible to use with an unlimited number of cameras
• An unlimited number of invited viewers can view the video via the app
• Both sound and motion detection
• Two-way communication feature
• Large field of view
• Zoom, pan and tilt options
• Automatic night vision LED sensors
Cons of the Nest Cam
• Can only be used if there is strong WiFi connection throughout the house or location of use
• Quite a complex set-up procedure in comparison to many other monitors
• Designed as a surveillance camera rather than a baby monitor, alerts are often delayed after movement or sound is detected
• No room temperature monitors or lullabies features
Which is the Best Digital Video Baby Monitor ?
Deciding which is the best product depends entirely on which features are important to the person who will be using them. If the range is the biggest concern, the Nest Cam has an unlimited range if you have a strong WiFi connection.
Alternatively, the Samsung SEW-3043w BrightVIEW HD has an impressive range of up to 900 feet. If having a range of features to use is an important factor, then the Nest Cam is probably the best option.
Overall, there are some fantastic options for video baby monitors available on the market right now. By understanding the different features available and taking into consideration the pros and cons of each product, finding the right baby monitor for you should be a relatively simple and stress-free process.
Remember, what suits one family does not necessarily meet the needs of the next. Therefore, it is important not to take the lead from what other people are buying.
Consider your options carefully. Amazon has a great selection of video and audio baby monitors to help make sure you purchase the best video baby monitor for your family!