A baby monitor gives parents the freedom and flexibility to do other things around the house knowing that they can see and hear if their child is safe and sound. More importantly it gives them a peace of mind that they will be alerted when their child really needs their attention.
However, buying one can be a challenge. With so many choices available out there which one to choose?
To save you time and help you narrow down the choices we have put together this guide how to determine which baby monitor is right for you.
Audio or video baby monitor
Due to technological advances and since the prices have come down there is no question in our mind that you should always choose a video baby monitor. You can buy a good one from $50 – $70. Audio monitors slowly but surely are becoming redundant. Besides, as a parent, you’d feel more comfortable seeing and hearing the baby.
Signal range is how far away you can be from your nursery or baby room and be able to see and hear your child. Depending on the price the range can vary from 500 to 800 feet. If you live in a small house or an apartment there is no need to pay a premium for extra range that you probably won’t need. If you live in a big house you want to make sure that the range is good enough allowing you to clearly see and hear what’s going on in your nursery. Also keep that the range will depend on how many walls the signal has to go through.
Being able to speak to your child through the monitor is a great function. It comes handy especially during night time. It allows you to come down the baby without being in their room. All it takes sometimes for the bay to come down is to hear their parent’s voice reassuring them that everything is OK.
It comes down to how long you can use the baby monitor without recharging it. If you anticipate using it for a prolonged time with recharging it. You’d want a baby monitor that has a good battery life. It can vary from 6-8 to 48 hours. Look for one that has PEEP Mode which allows you to extend the battery life when your monitor is in ‘sleep’ mode.
Baby monitors come usually with 2.4” to 3.5” screen size. Which one you need it depends on the size of your nursery.
Pan, Tilt and Zoom
If your nursery or baby room is large, you definitely want a monitor with Pan and Tilt feature. It allows you to scan and see every corner of your nursery. Pay attention to the Pan Tilt viewing range and if it is quiet when in use. You don’t want to disturbed your baby especially at night.
The zoom feature is somehow controversial. Majority of baby video monitors despite manufacturers claims don’t have ‘true’ zoom. All they offer is a digital zoom of a still image of your nursery. Infant Optics DXR 8 Baby Video Monitor is an exception. It offers true zoom lens. The downside is that you have to manually switch the lessens.
Expendable to multi-cameras
This feature allows you to add additional cameras to monitor multiple rooms at the same time as your family grows. What you need to pay attention to is if it has so called scan/cycle feature. Lower end baby monitors don’t have it meaning that you have to manually scan each room in order to see what’s going in there. Higher end will automatically scan each room every 1 to 3 min.
Most baby video monitors come with vision. The quality of the night image depends on the price. Please keep in mind that most baby monitors have night vision range about 8 feet away from the camera, anything further then that will be blurry and hard to see.
Before you go shopping have list of all the features you’d want from a baby monitor. And work it down to the most important depending on your budget. It will save you a lot of time and frustrations.
Last but not least, see our reviews and comparison chart of best baby monitors. We’re confident that you’ll find one that suits your needs.