Had an addition in the family recently? Nothing like a bundle of love and joy adds to the level of excitement in a house. While in earlier times the arrival of a newborn wasn’t marked with the mother and even father having to make alternate plans and schedule all their activities accordingly.
But nowadays with females being employed and parents otherwise running a very busy schedule; sometimes they tend to lose focus of things and forget what/whom/why they are striving so hard for.
A baby monitor can do more than just alert you about when your baby is awake. Depending on your budget and requirements; this buying guide can come in handy when you are choosing among the different models found in the market.
10 Best Baby Monitors Comparison?Comparison Table 2017
|Name||Rating||Price||Battery Time||Display Type||Range||Warranty|
|Infant Optics DXR-5||4||$$||4 hours||Color, 2.4 in||250 feet||1 year|
|Levana BABYVIEW20||4||$$||4 hours||Color, 2.3 in||150 feet||1 year|
|Motorola MBP33||4||$$$||2.5 hours~||Color, 2.8 in||650 feet||1 year|
|Philips AVENT||4.5||$$$||+8 hours||Audio only||1050 feet||2 year|
|Philips AVENT SCD600||4||$$$$||8 hours||Color, 2.4 in||500 feet||1 year|
|Summer Infant Baby Touch Digital Color||3||$$$$||10 hours||Color, 3.5 in||400 feet||1 year|
|Summer Infant Best View Handheld||3||$$$||10 hours||Color, 2.5 in||350 feet||1 year|
|Summer Infant PictureMe Digital||4||$$||10 hours||Color, 3.5 in||350 feet||1 year|
|Infant Optics DXR-8 Digital||4||$$$||10 hours (power saving mode)||Color, 3.5 in||700 feet||1 year|
|Wi-Fi Baby 3||4||$$$$||Cored operation||Display can be via smart phone, tablet, etc||Range can be extended to the whole world via connecting to internet + home router||N/A|
Types of Baby Monitors
Majority of the people are not aware of the fact that there are several different types of baby monitors and each type varies from the other on the basis of its features, working and effectiveness.
Analog Audio Monitors
These are the simplest kinds of baby monitors. Simply put the concept is the same as having an ‘always on’ walkie talkie in place. The monitor of this type comprises of a transmitter and a receiver. The transmitter has a microphone whereas the receiver has a speaker. These are the cheapest kinds of baby monitors and are limited in their range as well as features as compared to the average baby monitor offered on the market.
Digital Audio/Video Monitors
These monitors form the general preference of the market. These monitors offer clearer audio quality as transmission is digital where the sound is first converted into data rather than being directly sent to the transmitter. Therefore a proper transmitter is also used. Digital transmission can automatically be inferred as increased range and flexibility.
Furthermore using the digital system allows for video transmission as well. The model and company of the monitor will determine the exact features here such as high resolution display, night mode, zero light LEDs and so on. These are the priced between the mid and upper range depending mainly on features such as range, encryption system, LEDs, alert options and so on.
Monitors with Sensors
Taking on monitors to the next level; sensors can greatly add to the overall value provided by the device. Baseline models with sensors have only a motion sensor which sounds an alert on the receiver (or parent unit) when some parameters do not match; e.g. a baby remaining motionless (not breathing) for more than 10 or 20 seconds and so on.
These sensors come in different models with both audio and video monitors so even if you wish to go without the video feature; you can do so without having to pay the high prices for video enabled models.
These monitors are basically limited to the house or area where they have been configured for use. Utilizing your home’s Wi-Fi connection; these monitors can be linked and accessed via your computers, laptops and even smart phones as well. While this type of monitor may not be useful if you take your baby around and the monitor as well; it can come in handy for fixed setups like daycares, etc.
If feasible then you can consider this option for your home as well. You’ll be having the option of checking up on your baby from work or anywhere in world for that matter. This type of monitor is quite similar to surveillance camera setups.
Well Known Baby Monitor Manufacturers
The quality, reliability and durability of baby monitors highly depend on its manufacturers. There are various manufacturers of baby monitor, each offer different features and models. It is very important to get enough information about the manufacturer before taking buying decision. Following is a brief overview of different baby monitor manufacturers and their offerings.
Infant Optics began its journey with the DXR-5, a video monitor which is ranked at the number 1 spot on Amazon.com. The company conducts extensive research on their products; a fact proved by their latest release the DXR-8 which is an embodiment of not only research but also customer guarantees and satisfaction. They put the customer first and many of the additions and changes in the newer model are based on customer reviews and feedback.
A renowned company founded back in 1997. Today Angelcare has a worldwide presence with it products reaching out to parents in more than 60 countries. They are ones who pioneered and introduced Sensor Pad technology; the technology which allows monitors to detect and alert parents of their baby’s movements. You can visit their testimonials section?to see what some of their customers have to say about the company.
No need for introductions here. Motorola has been a leader in its field since long. They are the specialists in mobile technology and offer a wide range of monitors such as video, audio, sensor equipped and so on. These monitors come with simple and touch interfaces as well.
While the name may appear rather casual; the principal company operating from behind the curtains is a research and development company named Biosentronics. Rather than simply surveying the market and imitating other products; these people focus on research and providing the best to parents and their children. Their motto is to ensure the betterment of today’s parents by connecting them with tomorrow’s technology.
Philips Avent has made its mark in the childcare market by providing close to a 100 years of quality products. Their products are made after strenuous research and are classified quite above the average level prevailing in the market; and so is their price level.
How to Select A Baby Monitor
This is a very common question mostly asked by parents. Following are a few things that will help you in buying the right baby monitor.
Analog vs. Digital
There is no question about what to choose here. The only thing good about analog is that it’s cheap. Even that premise is negated when you get static and lack of clarity through your receiver. Analog technology is quite old and obsolete now.
You cannot rely on analog systems and neither is this the time or place for experimenting on your newborn baby. Consider spending a little extra for a monitor which utilizes digital transmission so that you get clear feedback. A digital monitor will help you distinguish between the sound of your baby turning positions or a door opening or your baby crying.
Audio vs. Video
You can go for both or you can choose audio only. Note that video models automatically come with audio as well. Basically the only advantage an only audio model has over a video model is that it is cheaper, consumes less energy and is somewhat more portable.
Apart from that a video monitor takes the lead. You can keep ‘an eye’ on your child. This means you can also see where you child is headed. E.g. you don’t want them exiting their crib or coming into contact with something hazardous, etc.
If you choose a well reputed device then this won’t be an issue or require any special considerations since manufacturers keep this in mind themselves when designing a monitor. But, all the same, you should have it on your mind since you’ll be taking the monitor around. Some devices come with a sling or belt hook so that you can take the receiver around with you while roaming around the house.
If you’re getting a video model you should consider one with night vision. This will help not only in forgoing false alarms in the middle of the night but also help you see in the dark. Night times aren’t the only ones which count as ‘dark’ here. You’ll be ensuring a ‘dimly lit’ environment every time your child is sleeping and having a monitor which is struggling to give a good view is a bad idea.
The range (read: freedom) which a monitor affords you will be something you’ll thank your lucky stars for. Often times what happens is that you are bound to stay within a certain distance of the transmitter. Consider a monitor such as the Levana Sophia 2.4 which allows you to move around the whole house, go to the lawn, the backyard and even over to your next-door neighbour’s without any worry.
One Way vs. Two Way Communication
Many times by simply getting to hear your voice, your baby can be calmed down. A two-way monitor gives you this benefit. However make sure that there are options to adjust the volume as you don’t want to startle your baby with ‘shrieking, robotic sounds’.
Night vision is enabled using LEDs or infrared technology. Choose invisible LEDs as these can only be seen by cameras and do not affect the human eye. Your baby will sleep soundly even when bathed in light.
Battery vs. Corded Operation
You do not have to necessarily choose between the two. Rather you can take both. There are some audio monitors which run on batteries only but these are quite energy efficient so you don’t require cords for them. On the other hand there are corded monitors such as the ones connected via Wi-Fi, etc.
This feature will help you avoid ‘off times’ on monitoring your baby. You can forgo this feature if you keep spare batteries close by.
Reliability is your main concern here. If the device in question was a cell phone or a hair dryer, etc then you’d have room for error. However with monitors you need 100% reliability. Therefore quality and brand name should be your main focus. Once that aspect is in the green then additional features can be taken or left as per your convenience and requirements.