Looking for a baby monitor can be a little overwhelming. With the growing number of options, how do you choose the right one for your household. Should you choose digital or analog? Which frequency will work best in your home: 49 MHz, 900 MHz, 2.4 GHz, or the newer 1.9 GHz DECT? What about video or movement sensor options? Taking the time to learn about the various platforms and product features will help you determine which baby monitor will best meet your needs and expectations.
Why buy a baby monitor?
Baby monitors are wireless radio systems that can help you stay connected and aware of your baby's needs. They can alert you to times when your baby is crying or needs your help even if you are not in the same room. It is like having an extra set of eyes and ears that help you keep a closer watch on your baby for safety and peace of mind.
Philips SCD510 DECT
Parents and care givers will find that baby monitors provide a sense of security when babies are out of hearing distance. For times throughout the day or night when you may be in another area of the house or out in the yard, baby monitors can be used for remotely listening to and watching your baby.
Baby monitor systems can also help families and care givers keep tabs on older children at play, seniors who need care, and pets that need to be observed..
How to Choose A Baby Monitor
Baby monitors are available in a wide variety of styles, from audio monitors to models with video monitors and movement sensors. Finding the right baby monitor for your family will depend on your specific needs and which features are important to you.
Although most families find that the basic audio systems are sufficient for their needs, some families may decide that the additional features work better for their specific situation.
As you look at your options, remember it is better to choose a baby monitor with the features that fit your personal lifestyle and living environment, rather than basing your decision on price alone.
While it may be easier to just buy on impulse, it is worth taking the time to compare the various performance specifications and product features when shopping for a baby monitor. This will help you decide which baby monitor will best meet your requirements so that you are happy with your choice.
Performance Specifications to Consider:
Baby monitors are wireless systems that use radio frequencies to transmit sound and images between child units and parent units.
- Frequency - the bandwidth(49 MHz, 900 MHz, 2.4 GHz, or 1.9 GHz DECT)
- Signal format - analog or digital
- Range - the distance signal will travel, both line of sight and through construction materials
- Sound - the level and sensitivity to sounds from different directions for both parent and child units
- Power supply - whether parent and child units plug into the wall, use batteries, or both
- Battery life - the size of battery (i.e., 9-volt, AAA, or AA) and expected battery life
Philips AVENT with DECT
Philips AVENT with DECT technology offers crystal clear sound with zero interference and signal privacy.
Infant Optics Digital Video
Digital 2.4ghz wireless transmission, full color display, privacy encryption, night vision, up to 800' range.
Digital video monitor with color monitor offers enhanced security and greater audio/video signal quality.
Summer Infant Baby Touch
Digital technology, 3.5" color video display, 2-way talk, up to 400' range, touch screen for pan, screen, zoom.
Angelcare Baby Sound
Crystal clear sound transmission, excellent range, sensitivity control to hear breathing or voice-activiated.
Sound monitor and pressure sensitive movement sensor that can detect your baby's slightest movements.
Product Features to Consider:
Many of the product features that are built into baby monitor systems will affect ease of use, increase usefulness, and determine parent's overall satisfaction of the baby monitor.
- Parent unit - Is it compact? Use a belt clip? Is it easy to move about?
- Extra parent unit - Does it come with an extra portable unit for carrying about as well as one that can stay in parent's bedroom?
- Low-battery indicator - Is there a light or tone that warns of batteries that need to be recharged or replaced?
- Signal alert - Can the volume of the parent unit be adjusted? Can the parent unit use a visible signal or have a vibrating alert for times when a sound signal is not ideal?
- Intercom - Do you want a parent unit that will allow you to speak to your child at the push of a button?
- Video monitor - Do want a parent unit that will allow you to see your child as well as hear your child? Does the video monitor come with night vision?
- Movement sensor - Do you want a mattress sensor that alerts you to restless activity or lack of movement?