If you, like nearly all new parents, want to keep an audible or visual check on your baby while you are not in the room you will need a baby monitor. There are currently hundreds of them on the market and they vary from feature packed video enanbled units to simple buget audio monitors. So choosing the best one with the features you need may be more difficult than you think.
Baby Monitors Buyer's Guide
At The Baby Monitor Guide we want to make this choice easier. We have rounded up and reviewed the best selling and most highly rated baby monitors of each type (audio, video and breathing sensor). Judging them on feature set, range, reliability and price. We even let you know the best places online to buy them.
This is your standard baby monitor. Currently they are the most popular type and will enable you to listen to your baby from up to 300m range. Prices are low compared to video monitors and range is usually far superior.
- Can work over a long range or through thick walls.
- High quality audio signal with no interference.
- Many include additional features such as temperature display, two way talk back, night lights and lullabies
- No video
To be able to see as well as here you baby may be important to you. These are becoming increasingly popular as prices fall. They can lose signal much easier than audio monitors however.
- Can see as well as here your baby
- Can often add additional cameras if you wan to monitor more than one child.
- Many have night vision feature to see you baby in the dark.
- Expensive, though prices are dropping.
- Range is often not as long as audio only monitors causing you to lose signal more often.
If you are worried about cot death then a breathing senor monitor may be the answer. These will alert you if they pick up no movement from your baby over a short time (approx 15 secs) There are two types: pads or nappy clipons the both do essentially the same thing.
- Alerts you if your baby's breathing stops or is irregularly slow.
- Gives peace of mind
- Operates from batteries which do last for a very long time.
- If you don't place the pads or clip correctly and you may get false alarms which can be quite distressing.
Baby Monitor Features
There are many useful features that have been added to them over the years and as a result there a literally hundreds of baby monitors on the market all offering a different feature sets. These can include:
- Digital (DECT) transmission - enables a crystal clear signal plus being 100% secure and a long range. Avoid old analogue monitors not only because of the poor range and reception but it is very easy for anyone to listen in as there is no security.
- Temperature monitoring - your baby is very sensitive to room temperature and it is very important that newborns don't get too hot. A basic feature which I consider a must.
- Digital video - video monitors are getting very popular lately. The ability to actually see your baby sleeping in her cot is very reassuring and with additional features such as recording and camera panning I have a feeling that video may be the future of baby monitors. Again avoid old analogue video monitors as security is a issue.
- Two-way talk back - with this feature you will be able to talk to your baby from another room.
- Breathing sensor monitors - Enables you to monitor your babies breathing. If you baby stops breathing while sleeping - the major cause of cot death - an alarm will sound. These are usually separate products rather than additional features and come in two forms: sensor pads which go under the cots mattress or a nappy clip on monitor.
- Dozens of other features such as: lullabies, night light, out of rage alarm, pager, sound sensitive lights, torch and vibrate alert.
Which type of baby monitor is best for you?
If you don't want to spend much then a simple digital audio monitor which will give you good reception is all you really need. Sound sensitive lights are very useful as is a temperature monitor.
Video monitors are still a luxury as you will easily be spending over £100 on one and although the idea of being able to see you baby while she sleeps may be appealing it is unlikely that it will ever be absolutely necessary. If you have thick walls in you house you may have problems with reception if you buy a video baby monitor also.The breathing sensor baby monitors are largely for peace of mind. Some parents my simply find them reassuring to know that all is well.