Video baby monitors are very useful devices that provide peace of mind to parents and make them more comfortable especially when they have to leave their babies alone for a while. These devices allow parents to see and hear what their babies are doing and instantly attend to baby’s needs and take better care of him.
There are a wide range of baby monitoring devices available on the market so it can be a little overwhelming when it comes to buying one. This short guide will help you choose the right monitor by explaining some essential functions and features you should look for when buying.
10 Things to Consider When Choosing a Video Baby Monitor
- Type of Transmission – Range is very important.
The type of transmission can be either analog or digital and it directly affects the operational range of the device.
Analog monitors usually have short range while the digital video baby monitors offer better signal quality and a longer operational range.
The longer range the better because it allows you to look after your baby no matter where you e.g. in the next room, or, downstairs, or even when you are outside of your house.
- Parent Unit (Screen Size, Controls)
There are standalone models that come with both camera as well as a monitoring device while other models allow you to use your smartphone for monitoring.
Standalone models work better for most parents because they work out of the box and don’t require to be set up. They are also relatively more stable – for example, you could miss that your baby is crying or needs your attention when you are talking on a smartphone.
Furthermore, smartphone apps tend to freeze which is another disadvantage of smartphone enabled baby monitors because you won’t get notified in such a scenario. Good video baby monitors on the other hand are designed to inform you about what your baby is doing during the day and night when they sleep or play.
With standalone models you have lots of options when it comes to screen size and quality (HD, color or black and white, etc.). Bigger screens usually come with higher price but they provide you better picture quality and the good ones allow you to tilt, pan, and zoom – so you can better see what matters the most.
- Night Vision
Night vision is a must-have feature for a baby monitoring device. It will allow you to see your baby in low light to complete darkness scenarios. It is recommended that you check the device’s night vision range capability before making a decision.
- Two-Way Communication
This is also a feature worth considering. Most baby monitoring devices allow only one-way communication. But there are some models that allow parents to listen as well as talk to their little ones, without them even being there. While this two-way communication feature is useful, it is not mandatory as a baby could get scared when he/she listens to your voice but can’t actually see you.
- Multiple Cameras
If you have two kids or twins, then you should consider buying the monitoring device that supports multiple cameras. Most inexpensive models come with one camera, but there are others that allow expandability as they support up to four cameras.
- Temperature and Humidity Sensors
Some advanced models come with temperature and humidity sensors that can help you set the best environment for your baby’s sleep. While having these sensors on a video baby monitoring device is good, be aware that some models aren’t really accurate when it comes to these measurements. That’s why it is recommended that you research before buying the one that comes with these sensors.
- Sound and Lights
This is a common feature that is quite helpful. When your baby makes a sound, the light on the parent unit will turn on. It is especially useful if you can’t hear the audio or there is a lot of noise at that time. So look for the model that comes with this feature.
- Out-of-Range Indicator
Out of range indicator is a must-have feature particularly if you plan on taking the parent unit outside. With combined use of lights and sounds, this feature will warn you when you are out of device’s range.
- Low-battery Alert
There are different models of video baby monitors available on the market. Some work only when plugged in while others use batteries. If you want to purchase the one that operates on battery, then it would be a good idea to choose the one that comes with low-battery alert. Because you don’t want such a device die at the worst possible time.
- Lullabies and Light Projection
Some models come with soothing light projection and preloaded lullabies. These are very useful features as they will help your baby sleep better. It is recommended that you look for those models, especially if your baby is having trouble getting a sound sleep.
All in all, these are some essential features you should look for when buying a video baby monitor. The most important of those include good audio/video quality, long range, and interference-free transmission.
Of course, there are some models that have even more features than the ones mentioned in this article, but the more features you have the more expensive the product. So in the end, it depends on your budget and needs. Also, beware that some models might come with some additional features but with low picture quality – you don’t want to buy such models as your main purpose for buying a video baby monitor is to be able see you kids. So video quality should be your main priority when looking for such devices.