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Selecting the best baby monitor and camera

There are so many options for baby monitors and cameras – but deciding which one to choose is not an easy decision.

From my experience, there is no perfect monitor, so it is best to looks at the positives and negatives of each one and pick the one that is best for you.

In the last 9 months, we’ve now used four different cameras / monitors.

Nest Indoor Camera
Summer Infant
Motorola MBP853 Connect Wi-Fi HD Video Baby Monitor
Motorola® MPB18 Video Baby Monitor with 1.8-Inch Digital Screen


Below are some key consideration points when buying your first, or next, camera and monitor:

  • Good image quality was really important to me when our LO was born until she was about 4 or 5 months old, and she was able to roll over both ways, and start crawling a bit – until we knew she was mobile and could roll both ways. For visuals, I found The Nest camera to be the best, especially in total darkness of night.
    Nest Indoor Camera, shooting in total darkness

    While the visual quality of the camera is important, so is the quality of the monitor. The Summer Infant has an incredible monitor, but it is a shame because the quality of the camera in night vision mode is the worst we’ve had.

  • When putting our little one to sleep, her room is often pitch black – which can make feeding really hard, and walking her from the sliding chair to the crib really tough, especially if there are any toys on the ground. I love the fact that the Summer Infant Monitor has a night light built into the camera, which can be controlled from the monitor – so you can turn on the night light when you are putting your LO to bed, then turn it off after you exit the room.
    Summer Infant nightlight
  • Controlling the temperature in our house can be tough, due to the fact that we run on different style radiators and a SpacePak air conditioning system, and as such Haddie’s room can be a little cold in the winter and a little hot in the summer. For me it is really important to know the temperature of her bedroom, so I can make adjustments. The Motorola Hubble has a room thermometer built in, which is awesome.
  • How important is pan and tilt from the monitor? Not all camera’s can be controlled from the monitor, so make sure you read the instructions.
  • Depending on your lifestyle, range can be really important – to date I’ve not found a camera and monitor with a range that is acceptable to me.
  • Have multiple kids, or planning for more kids?? I really like that you can add on camera’s to the Summer system, and keep a split screen.
  • Do you want to be able to monitor your camera while away from your house? Make sure you look at WiFi capabilities, where you can connect via your phone.

All in all, the Motorola has been my favourite in terms of features, but due to many technical issues with it – with next to zero help from their customer support – we decided to throw the entire system in the garbage in a rage of aggravation while in Florida.

I should note that we have not tried a VTech camera and monitor, which has received great reviews – the Vtech is my next purchase, as it has everything on my list above, with the exception of the built in light.

3 Responses

  1. aDadsAdventures
    | Reply

    When I looked at Baby Monitors/Cameras I didn’t like any of them and they were all really expensive.

    So I bought a Foscam IP Security Camera that can pan/tilt does IR and has two-way audio. It also lets me look at it on the desktops, tablets and phones. I also set up routing so that I can access it when I am outside the house.

    Being a Wi-Fi one too helps. I’ve read those stories where the baby monitor ones are easier to get access too. But the Foscam, you a) have to be in Wi-Fi range, b) know how to access the WPA2 security and I do also believe I only allow certain MAC addresses access to it so you would also need to know how to MAC Spoof 😉

    All of that for $80 CDN wasn’t a bad deal. 🙂

    • iSlutsky
      | Reply

      Do you have any issues without having a physical monitor? I love the Nest Cam, and I was thinking about just getting an old phone refurbished and using it as a monitor.

      • aDadsAdventures
        | Reply

        no issues.. just had to install the Foscam apps on the phone/tablet but can access the camera’s website via the build in web server.
        My Synology NASes can also record the feed if i was ever so inclined to. I’ve had the one camera in the kids bedroom for 4yrs now.

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