It might not be the first course of action once you bring your little angel home for the first time from the hospital, but getting one of the best baby monitors should be your priority. Before the invention of baby monitors, parents had constantly been worrying about their baby’s safety every time they went to the other room. The ability to always see and hear your little one, even when you’re not nearby, is a huge relief.
The best baby monitor helps you learn about your baby’s habits, such as when they fall asleep or what time do they wake up. It also provides you with more freedom, as with a baby monitor, you can be doing chores elsewhere while keeping an eye on your little one.
These devices have significantly improved over the years. Nowadays, a high-end baby monitor is ultra-sensitive and comes with a high definition screen.
No longer do parents have to stare at old, thumbnail screens of obsolete monitors. The ubiquity of smart cams in homes also resulted in a wide range of such devices.
We have compiled a list of top rated baby monitors. The items on the list range from traditional infant monitors to smart baby moniter solutions. Here are our picks.
TOP RATED BABY MONITORS
Infant Optics DXR-8 Video Baby Monitor
Hardly any other infant monitor can compete with Infant Optics’ when it comes to video quality. The image it emits to the handheld parent’s unit is smooth and clear.
The device allows you to hook up to four cameras to one parent unit. However, you only get one camera in the package. The others are sold separately.
The DXR-8 allows the parent to control the cameras via the parental unit. Parents can tilt the camera up and down, zoom in to see better, and pan the came from side to side. It can all be done without going into the children’s room or disturbing the little one.
The Infant Optics is easy to set up. All you need to do is charge it, plug in the camera (or cameras), turn it on, as it’ll pick up the signal immediately.
A lag occurs only when there are fifty feet between the camera and the parental unit, which is quite good for such a device. The quality of the connections starts to degrade only after 120 feet.
Infant Optics claim the device can work at a range of seven hundred feet, but that’s only in perfect surroundings – such as outdoors and without any obstacles. After using it for eight hours in power-saving mode, with the camera and the parental unit on, you’ll still have three-quarters of the charge left. However, aside from the interchangeable lenses that allow the parents to get a closer look at their little one, and the infrared LED lights that are manufactured not to disturb the baby, there aren’t many extra features.
- Great Battery Life
- Useful Optical Zoom
- Simple Setup
- Easy Recharging
- Excellent Video Quality
- Not Possible to Take Snapshots
- No Video Recording
Motorola MBP36XL Baby Monitor
Motorola has launched yet another great parental gadget. The MBP36XL might be their best one so far. The unit comes with a sizeable five-inch screen that offers a clear, high-quality image.
The sound is excellent as well. Both the parent unit and the camera have rechargeable batteries. They allow the parents to use the gadget unplugged. The only thing that the Motorola MBP36XL is missing is a smartphone app.
The company is known for being one of the pioneers of the cell phone industry, but Motorola has so much more to offer. Their monitoring systems are one of their most thriving segments. They are one of the first company to commercialize baby monitors.
This system consists of a base unit and a camera. The base unit can be connected to up to four cameras, but you get only one with the package. The rest is sold separately.
Including more cameras enables you to use the split-screen feature. The camera can tilt, has a pan function, a zoom, and infrared night vision. There’s also a high sensitivity mic embedded into the camera that allows for two-way communication.
The base unit includes a stand you do, so not have to find something to lean the gadget on. The setup is quite straightforward. Once the batteries are fully charged, turn on the parental unit, and that’s it.
One of the best things about the unit is the audio notification system. Even when the screen is turned off, you can listen in on your little one.
- Room Temperature Display
- Excellent image and sound Quality
- Five Lullabies
- LED Sound Level Indicator
- Rechargeable Batteries
- No App
Summer Infant In View 2.0 Video Monitor
Finding a monitoring gadget with both a camera and a base unit at such a price seems like a steal. Of course, this pocket-friendly device comes with fewer features. There’s no tilt/pan function nor night vision, but the device is still great at its job.
You can rely on it to help you keep an eye on your child when you are in another room. The base station has a LED strip at the top. That feature allows you to turn the volume down as you can just keep an eye on the light.
The device is an expandable system; you can hook up to four cameras. It’s excellent for spacious bedrooms where one camera isn’t enough to cover everything. However, the camera’s special wide-view lens is large enough to cover most of the room.
The audio is satisfactory, and the device allows for two way communication. You can hear your child and talk to them through the microphone.
The device’s five-inch display is one of the largest you can find on a two way baby monitor. It goes hand in hand with the wide-angle lens. The resolution isn’t as good as it could be, though.
What it lacks compared to more expensive units it makes up for with its simplicity. The setup takes only a couple of minutes, and it takes just a few hours to reach full charge. The menu is simple and the volume can be adjusted from the side of the base unit.
- Large Screen
- Wide Angle Lens
- Easy Set Up
- No Remote Tilt/Pan
Nest Cam Security Camera
The device is a high-quality security camera that does a great job of being a baby monitor as well. It’s compatible with a variety of other devices. The unit offers exceptional video quality (1080p).
The setup isn’t the easiest, but the Nest company is known for its fantastic customer support, so you won’t have to go through the process all on your own. The camera is connected to Wi-Fi and comes with a digital zoom that allows you to enlarge the image up to eight times. You can connect it to your smartphone and use the two-way audio function to talk to your child.
The unit can be set up anywhere, so you can keep an eye on the pets or the babysitter, not only your child. You can connect it to your smartphone and watch what’s going on at all times. If the Nest Cam detects sound or motion, it’ll send a notification to your phone, or even e-mail, if you prefer.
In case you miss something, the app allows you to access photos of any activity that took place within the last three hours. However, if you would like to gain access to five, ten or thirty days of recordings, it’s still possible, but you’ll have to pay a monthly fee for that.
By installing the app on your tablet or phone, the device will act as the handheld unit. But there’s one big advantage to it – you can even talk to your kid while you are at work.
- Reliable Motion Detection
- Integration with other Nest Products
- Compatible with Alexa
- Great Image Quality
- Expensive Subscription Plans
When it comes to monitoring gadgets, the Nannit Plus is a game changer. The gadget is meant to be placed right by the bassinet or crib, instead of the changing table across the room or the baby’s dresser. That way, you get the best possible view.
You can look over your child wherever you are, thanks to the remote viewing that the Nannit smartphone app enables. The app puts those babysitter worries away.
The camera is equipped with night vision, so you’ll get a clear picture even without a nightlight in the children’s room. However, there’s a nightlight embedded into the camera that’s of great use when you are using the device during the night. It’s bright enough, but not too invasive, so it won’t disturb the child’s sleep.
The Nannit Plus comes with a whole bunch of extra features. It comes with a free stand that’s safe enough to be placed next to the infant’s sleeper. The camera can also be mounted on the wall next to the sleeper.
The device comes with humidity and temperature sensors, so you can always make sure the atmosphere in the children’s room is just right. The app also features an alert that will notify you whenever there is sound or movement.
But, the white noise and lullaby features might be the most useful of them all. The Nannit Plus doesn’t only help you keep your child safe, but it can also help you put your little bundle of joy to sleep.
- Superb video quality
- Humidity Sensor
- White Noise
- Room Temperature
- Moonlight Soother
- Excellent Mobile App
Project Nursery 5” Baby Monitor with Mini Monitor
The device comes with a micro-USB night vision camera, a five-inch display and a mini monitor that you can wear on your wrist for easier monitoring.
The base unit allows you to control the angle of the camera. The device comes with a built-in mic and speaker, allowing you to communicate with your little one while you are away. It also comes with a couple of pre-recorded lullabies that will help you send your child to sleep.
Setting up the unit only takes a couple of minutes – the most demanding part being pulling the plastic packaging off. The monitor can run up to sixteen hours on a single charge, while the mini monitor can run up to eight hours. The smaller display also features a speaker.
The project nursery baby monitor allows you to record video and snap photos onto a micro SD card – allowing you to eternalize precious moments from the earliest stages of your child’s life. Project monitor also offers its customers an app that allows the parents to keep an eye on their little on even when they’re out of the house.
You can also hook up two extra zoom cameras, but they are a special feature and are sold separately. There’s also the option of getting a smaller 4.3″ monitor, instead of the 5″ one.
- Extra Features
- Simple to Use
- Easy to Set UP
- Excellent Video Quality
- + One Mini Monitor
- A Bit Pricey
This baby moniter is unique in a couple of ways. Although it’s not the first monitor that comes with breathing detection, it is the first one that doesn’t require a special pad be placed in the child’s sleeper for it to work. It’s also one of the first gadgets of the kind that enables parents to watch the camera stream whenever they want on their smartphones.
Thanks to that feature, you don’t have to carry an extra handheld unit and can keep an eye on your little one even when you’re outside the house. The app’s always getting better as its developers are continually updating it.
The camera features both day and night vision modules. It is also equipped with a two-way audio function, allowing you to listen in and speak to your precious bundle of joy whenever you want.
The breathing detection feature is quite special as it helps you ensure your baby’s wellbeing – something that the camera and the microphone are not able to do on their own. Not only does it keep track of healthy vital cues, but it collects and stores all the data which the app turns into a real-time graph.
The app will also notify you in case something goes wrong. The manufacturer has taken extra steps to make sure that no one but yourself has access to the camera.
- HD Camera with Night Vision
- Excellent Video and Image Quality
- Breathing Detection
- Activity Log on the App
- Set Up Takes Some Effort
Owlet Smart Sock Monitor
What might be the most innovative infant monitoring gadget out there, and yet not feature a camera! Instead, the manufacturer has come up with a tiny smart sock that works as a pulse ox. It’s tasked with measuring the child’s blood oxygen saturation and heart rate.
In case something goes wrong, the parents are notified immediately. All you have to do it download the app to your smartphone. This device is especially great for infants who are at a higher risk of developing health problems.
The alerts are sent out in real-time, and the base station that comes with the package changes colors when something unusual is going on. The manufacturer doesn’t claim their device can prevent SIDS, but it can quickly draw your attention to problems that are connected with sudden infant death syndrome. You can use your HSA or FSA funds to buy an owlet smart sock 2 baby monitor.
Although the basic gadget doesn’t come with a camera, you can buy a 1080p HD camera separately. It can be used on its own or with the smart sock.
One of the most significant advantages of this device is the fact that it includes three different sock sizes, so you can rest assured it’ll be of great use to you throughout your baby’s first year. Although they are smart socks, they are very easy to clean, and the electronic components can easily be removed.
- Could Prevent SIDS
- Easy to Use
- Provides Peace of Mind
- Notifies Parents Immediately If There Are Problems
- Doesn’t Require an Internet Connection
- Doesn’t Work When the Infant is Awake
- No Video
CHOOSING THE BEST BABY MONITOR – BUYER’S GUIDE
What are the Different Types of Baby Monitors?
Audio Baby Monitors
The first baby monitor ever was just a baby sound monitor. They are pretty straightforward. You have the pickup base that is placed into your child’s bedroom or wherever they are sleeping. From then, you take the receiver wherever you go, provided that it’s within the signal range. The receiver allows you to hear everything that’s going on in the children’s room.
Nowadays, even audio-only units come with extra features. Typically, your modern monitor of the kind has two-way audio. It allows you to talk to your little one if you wish. Other additional features might include a white noise feature or a lullaby player.
Such monitors can be found in all shapes and sizes and often include a variety of hi-tech functions. However, what’s sets them apart from the rest is the fact that they encrypt the signal. Signal encryption significantly reduces the chances of getting cross signals or interference from your neighbor’s device of the same kind.
They use the 2.4 GHz frequency, which is seldom used by analog monitors. The frequency guarantees better quality data transmission, delivers increased signal capacity per second, and travels further before the signal degrades.
Video Baby Monitors
Video monitors are the most popular nowadays. Typically, they are both audio and video devices. They also come in all shapes and sizes.
If you are looking to buy such a device, consider where you will set up the video display in relation to the baby’s sleeper. Also, note if the camera has tilting and panning functions, night vision, as well as zoom. Sometimes, you might need to zoom in to see if your child is asleep or awake, as the angle can make it less visible. Such monitors often have the capability to be paired with two or more cameras.
Wireless Network Baby Monitors
Wi-Fi infant monitors can be either with or without receivers. The ones with receivers typically give you flexible access to the camera feed. In addition to the handheld console, you can usually access the feed through an app on your tablet or smartphone.
Before, it was hard to find a wifi baby monitor without a receiver, but nowadays they are more common, thanks to the ubiquity of smartphones. Basically, they are a bare camera, without any extra consoles.
To use them you have to rely on your smartphone or tablet. They are convenient as they allow you to use only your smartphone, without having to carry an extra console.
Movement Baby Monitors
They aren’t that common but are becoming more popular with each day. They revolve around an interesting concept, which includes putting a pad or some other contraption inside the child’s sleeper, and typically don’t have an audio or video feed. Instead, they detect the child’s movement and vital function.
Such a device is usually placed on your child’s clothing or underneath the mattress pad. They capture the infant’s breathing and alert the parents if the child has trouble doing so. Some research supports the claim that such devices have cut down the risk of SIDS significantly, although no manufacturer is ready to support such a claim.
What to Consider When Buying a Baby Monitor?
The best monitor is the one that is best suited for your family needs, so whether or not a monitor is good really depends on the parents. The extra features typically cost more but might be worth it as they offer peace of mind.
How to Choose One?
Whether or not a monitor is good for your family depends on a number of factors:
This makes sure no one else can listen in on or snatch your audio/video fee and gain insight into your home. Digital monitors are typically more expensive than analog models, but they also ensure you are monitoring your child and not your neighbors.
Such gadgets are excellent as they offer excellent usability range and portability. However, they can be attacked by hackers, so if you opt for such a unit, make sure it is secure and well encrypted. You’ll also need to secure your WLAN network and always check for updates.
Screen Size/Video Quality
Some video monitors have poor video resolution and screen size, while others have big screens in HD resolution. There are also the Wi-Fi consoles that don’t have a receiver, so you have to rely on your smartphone or tablet screen. The resolution and zoom function play an important role, as, with a low-res screen, it can be hard to tell whether your baby’s eyes are open or close – the difference is huge.
Some handheld consoles and baby cameras allow you to remotely zoom in, tilt or pan the camera.
The range tells you how far away you can be from the child’s sleeper and still be able to check up on them without the signal degrading.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS ABOUT BABY MONITORS
Q: What is the range of an infant monitor?
A: The majority of infant monitors operate at a maximum range between 600 and 1400 feet. Typically, this is in a clear airborne line, with no obstacles – such conditions can only be found outdoors. Walls, furniture, ceilings, insulation between the walls and floors can disrupt and reduce the strength of the signal. However, with a high-quality device, signal weakness or interference oughtn’t to be a problem.
Q: What is noise activation?
A: When the device detects a certain level of noise or a particular sound, it turns on and starts the transmission. Not all monitoring devices are equipped with this feature. Typically, it works as a battery saver as the device remains in standby mode when there are no sounds and motions to monitor.
Q: How do I make sure my WiFi connection is well-secured?
A: Set up a long password that doesn’t have any particular meaning – no birthdays or familiar phrases. Change the password every once in a while. When the device is not in use, turn it off. Set up a firewall between your device and your internet connection.
Q: Can the baby monitor be connected to my smartphone or tablet via an app?
A: Whether or not your monitoring device can be paired with your tablet or smartphone depends on the particular model. Make sure to check out the list of features before making the purchase. Some monitors have both handheld units and apps, while others can only be used via an app.
Q: How can I prevent the battery from draining quickly?
A: To make the charge last longer, do not set the volume at very high, as that’s know to drain the battery more quickly. Motion or sound activation can also help extend use. Setting the brightness at low may prove to be helpful as well. See if your device has a battery-saving function.
Q: Can I talk to my baby via the parental console?
A: If the device has a two-way communication function, you can. Typically, it’s composed of a microphone at the parent unit, and a speaker and microphone embedded within the camera.
Look for a monitoring system that is suitable for your family, home and lifestyle. For example, if you’re living in an apartment complex, a unit with a long range won’t be of significance to your family, but a model that can cancel out background noise will. Before making the purchase, think about what you want to use it for, aside from the obvious supervision functions.
Keep in mind, an infant monitor is there to making parenting more manageable, not to replace it. It can only do so much, even with all the extra features they come with. Don’t let it feed your parent anxieties; instead, use it to have fun with your little bundle of joy even when you are not next to them.
Use the device to talk to your little one and sign to them while you are outside the house or doing chores. Choosing the right baby monitor will not only keep your little one safe, but it can also put a smile on their face.