Best Baby Monitors 2018 – A Buyer’s Guide for Parents

Are you a new parent looking to keep an eye on your new little bundle of joy? Or maybe you’re a “seasoned vet” of a parent and you need to keep a prying eye on everything your little rascals are up to? Both are equally important and being a parent myself I know how much a sigh of relief it can be to quickly see what your kids are doing during the day and knowing they’re sleeping safe n’ sound during the night. Rest easy knowing that I’m about to give you an epic guide to the best baby monitors 2017 has available.

Best Baby Monitor Reviews 2018 (January Update)

We’re about to break down the top 7 video baby monitors for the year, so make sure you’re taking mental notes and spend some time weighing the pros and cons when making any purchase of a baby monitor this year.

Ready, set, let’s roll into it…

NameBattery LifeRangeLCD Size 
Infant Optics DXR-8
(Best Features)
6-10 hrs700 ft3.5"
Summer Infant Baby Touch

4-6 hrs400 ft3.5"
Motorola MBP36s

3.5 hrs590 ft3.5"
Samsung SEW-3043W
(Best of 2017)
4.5 hrs900 ft5"
Levana Ayden

48 hrs750 ft3.5"
HelloBaby Wireless

7-8 hrs960 ft2.4"
Infant Optics DXR-5

8-12 hrs800 ft2.4"

Infant Optics DXR-8 – Best Wifi Baby Monitor

As a parent looking for the perfect monitor for your kids, you want something sleek, easy to use and that’s going to get the job done. Well, look no more…seriously; the Infant Optics DXR-8 is
not only a high quality, award-winning baby monitor, but it also comes with some neat features like a 170-degree viewing range, a 3.5″ display, night vision modes and, best of all, interchangeable lenses! Keep reading and find out why we chose this specific model to grace our buyer’s guide list:

As Easy As 1, 2, 3

In today’s day and age, as parents, we don’t have the time to sit down and read manuals trying to learn to master items like a baby monitor (which should be as simple as possible, right?) Well, you’re in luck! The Infant Optics DXR-8 is literally plug and play – as easy as it can get – so you don’t need to worry and fuss about hopping on YouTube or pulling out that user manual unless it’s absolutely necessary. There is no setup involved and the DXR-8 gives you the security of 2.4GHz FHSS wireless transmission. Rest easy knowing that you have iron-clad privacy and protection with instant video and audio capabilities. We saw that navigating the controls was a cinch and adjusting things like brightness, audio levels and angles are as easy as it gets. If you’re the type who doesn’t want to worry about over complicating things, then the simple features will give you a sigh of relief.

Houston, We’ve Got Killer 2-Way Talk

It’s always nice to be able to have direct communication with your little one while they are playing in their room or being a little bit fussy. Most monitors incorporate two-way talk and the Infant Optics DX series is no different. The voice transfer is clear and you won’t have to worry about any direct static or feedback like with older monitors.

Charge er’ Up – And With Ease!

There’s nothing more frustrating than having baby monitors that die out on you in the middle of your child’s nap and you’ve got house cleaning to do, am I right? We found that the Infant Optics DXR-8 has amazing battery life with almost 6 hours of continuous charge with the screen being on the whole time. If you wanna’ switch it over to a power saving mode, then this beast of a portable unit can stay charged for up to 10 hours – holy cow! The battery time is great for those who don’t want to have to charge their units all the time or after every nap. Though small, another nice feature the DXR-8 has is the capability to charge literally anywhere such as your laptop or any outlets that a USB charger can be plugged into. It comes with a handy-dandy spare cable and charging is seriously a simple breeze when you can have so many different charging areas.

Hot or Cold… You’ll know

Good ol’ temperature monitoring comes equipped with the DXR-8 so you’re always in the know on whether or not things are getting too hot or cold. This is a pretty standard feature on most monitors, but this one had an extra nice display that showed the temperature in a clear, easy to see area on the screen. It may seem like a simple addition, but it is extremely well done!

A World’s First for Baby Monitors

That’s right – no other baby monitor can tout the feature that we are about to share with you… and that is interchangeable lenses! This brings a whole new level to what you are able to see and do with this monitor as you can equip it with three different lens options: a normal range lens, zoom lens or wide-angle lens. Included with this unit is the standard lens AND zoom lens. Hands down, this feature makes the cost (and additional cost for the wide-angle lens) totally worth it and super dynamic. The lenses are constructed well and give you so much versatility and the opportunity to place this baby monitor virtually anywhere and have the ability to see exactly what you need to. We can’t stress enough how unique and well thought out this feature is – this is what makes the Infant Optics DXR-8 one of our favorites for 2018!

One problem we saw with this monitor was its’ occasional wifi interference. This can be frustrating at times, especially when you don’t know what exactly is causing the interference. While moving the unit around to find the best spot can help, we still thought it was important to note as a possible issue for those parents who have a lot of digital interference in their homes

Final Thoughts

For the price and the features included, this is a solid baby monitor. We thought the interchangeable lens feature was brilliant and added a lot of different uses. To top it all off, it comes with a standard, but a wide range of features like temperature monitoring and two-way talk. While it can have some wifi interference issues, this is subjective and we’re sure a very small percentage of people will not experience that issue. Listen, don’t hesitate to pick up the Infant Optics DXR – 8 – trust us when we say you’ll be rocking some of the latest, greatest tech in a monitor that will help you keep an eye on your little one(s) and make sure they’re  safe and sound.
The Good
  • Game changing interchangeable lens features
  • Long lasting battery with great charging capabilities
  • Has a sleek look and simple features which make it easy to use
The Bad
  • Some WiFi interference issues in certain types of situations

Summer Infant Baby Touch – Long Lasting and Durable Monitor

The brand Summer Infant has been around the baby market for a while now, with their flagship baby monitor Summer Infant Baby Touch being one of the top models in their line. With an
industry standard 3.5″ LCD screen that has crisp colors and contrast to easily see your little one, this monitor made our list because of its’ known, positive reputation and numerous features:

Build, Grow and Expand Your Arsenal

As parents, we know that kids can be fast movers and in multiple places at one time (or so it seems!). Sometimes one baby monitor isn’t gonna’ be enough to watch your fast-moving toddler and the Summer Infant Baby Touch has your back: with the option to add up to 3 additional cameras, you won’t have to worry about being at the opposite end of the house, lose sight of that little rascal and wonder what they may be getting into. We thought having the option to include 3 cameras is a great way to expand and create a whole house security monitoring system that’s fast, easy and efficient. Linking the cameras isn’t hard at all and the interface to switch between the different monitors you have set up around your home is about as easy as it gets.

Low Volume? No Problem!

There’s sometimes you just need a little peace and quiet around the home, you feel me? Of course, leaving the baby monitor volume up defeats the purpose of that peace and quiet, so the Baby Touch includes a visual, sound indicating LED light. Whether you’re across the room or spending a little downtime watching TV, you’ll have the convenience of being able to see when your baby is making noise and active. While a lot of models have this LED indicator feature, we thought Summer Infant did a nice job making these indicators vibrant and easy to see from a distance (like from across a room).

Night Vision Like A Navy Seal

One thing we can’t stand with baby monitors is subpar night vision. Ya’ know, the kind that looks muddy, washed out and gives you horrible picture quality as soon as the lights turn out? After all, a major reason you purchase a baby monitor in the first place is to make sure your kids are safe n’ sound while they sleep, am I right? The Summer Infant Baby Touch solves this problem by giving you great quality in an automatic black and white night vision mode. That’s right, we said automatically. Nifty, eh? Listen, don’t waste your time on other monitors that make you change your day & night settings manually! With the monitor’s infrared LED’s you can sit back and watch it adjust to your room’s brightness and automatically enable its’ night vision mode as soon as it detects a darkened room or any type of low light conditions. So go ahead, watch your baby sleep with confidence knowing you’ll be able to see exactly what they’re doing – even in the dark!

Go Ahead… Throw It Around

Okay, don’t take us literally, but just know that the Infant Summer Baby Touch can take a beatin’ and keep on meetin’ your expectations, that is. It has a rugged outer body and a durable feeling to it. Some drops, bops and tumbles ain’t gonna hurt this thing, so if your little one gets a hold of it or the pet dog decides to use it as a play toy, you probably have nothing to worry about. We’ll even let you in on a little secret and tell ya’ that we heard it was able to survive some water, but don’t go testing it unless you have to! If you need something rugged and tough and that’s going to last a few falls, then this baby monitor needs to be in your arsenal, pronto!

The only (and I mean only) issue we saw with the Baby Touch was that we wished the viewing angle was a little bit wider. While it may be great to monitor a single crib, anything other than that is going to be difficult to fit in the whole frame. I know, we’re being nitpicky about this one, but for some of you out there, this is going to mean putting the camera a little farther back or picking up an additional camera to see everything.

Our Final Thoughts

There’s a reason we picked the Summer Infant Baby Touch as a top contender in our baby monitor’s review and buyer’s guide, and that’s because it knocks the socks off almost anything else out there. Do you need something with durability? You’ve got it. Do you want the ability to have cat-like night vision? Put a check right there. Sure, it has a little bit of a limited viewing angle which may not make it the best baby monitor for twins who sleep in separate beds (just an example). But listen… we’re not trying to hype this thing up too much (wink, wink), so the real dealio’ is that if you need a “do-it-all” kinda’ baby monitor, then this needs to definitely be on your list.
The Good
  • Has the option to add up to 3 additional cameras for tons of viewing solutions
  • Clear night vision that’ll automatically turn on when it detects low or zero light
  • As tough and durable as they come
  • Easy to see visual LED indicators for when the volume is low or off
The Bad
  • A limited viewing angle for certain situations

Motorola MBP36s – A “Do Everything” Baby Video Monitor

Motorola has been a high-quality brand for many products over the years and their baby monitors are no exception. Although the Motorola MBP36s may have very similar features to other monitors in its’ range (like night vision and room temperature readings), they’ve gone the extra little bit to include some features that we thought were designed in a unique way and well thought out:

Security Tighter Than A Bank’s Vault

We all know just how vulnerable technology is now n’ days due to hacking and many companies doing a sloppy job of protecting the user’s who are using their products. Out of all the different devices, you may decide to use in your household, baby monitors are one of the most important security devices you’ll rely on to keep an eye on your most precious assets. You deserve to have the best, most secure baby monitor and the Motorola MBP36s will deliver with encrypted audio data. In the very rare case that anybody wants to attempt to listen in (and they’d have to be pretty damn good to do so in the first place), then you can have peace of mind knowing it’s going to be near impossible to do so.

An Audio Legend

Audio should be a key point of focus for any baby monitor and, truth be told, a lot of monitors fall short. From jumbled voices to volume levels that seem all outta’ wack after a few months of use. You’re not gonna’ have to worry about that with the MBP36s as we think the audio is actually quite remarkable. You’ll have no troubles hearing your little one waking up in the wee’ hours of the morning or comforting them on those hot summer nights as they fall asleep to the soothing sound of your voice. With Motorola’s 2.4Ghz FHSS Technology built-in you’re going to have a consistent and reliable source of two-way communication at all times, with less dropped signals.

It Has Range!

Are we the only ones who think dropped signals are more frustrating than a juice stain on the carpet? Hopefully, you agree but our favorite feature on this monitor is the fact that it has a range of approximately 650ft (250m)! Now that’s range. The Motorola is definitely on the higher end of the scale with a connected viewing range that far. Whether you’re all the way in the backyard and need to check in on your kids playing in the living room or are literally living in a mansion, you’re going to have enough range on the monitor to get a clear signal. We even saw reports of moms being able to walk down street and still have enough signal to check in on their little ones; that’s pretty convenient, especially if you’ve gotta’ run out for a minute to a mailbox, am I right?

Baby Monitor Karaoke?

Not quite! But we thought Motorola adding five polyphonic lullabies to the unit was a pretty interesting addition, don’t you think? While we can’t see this being entirely practical to use all the time, it’s a feature that might get some use here and there. After those long days and sleepless nights, let the Motorola MP36s do all the singing work so you can give your voice a little rest!

Battery life on a baby monitor is one of those critical elements you need to have a lot of. Nobody wants to have to be charging these babies all the time and unfortunately, we’re going to have to list the battery life on the Motorola MP36s as very average, if not below. With only a 3.5 hour rated battery life, that’s hardly enough time for the unit to be off the charger, especially in one day.

Our Thoughts

While it’s a good baby monitor, we couldn’t help but think of so many different areas that could be improved upon. Maybe we are being too critical, but besides the amazing 650ft of range it has (which we loved), the included lullabies and high-quality audio, it didn’t have much else that took our breath away. Ultimately, if one of your primary needs is a monitor that lets you take it almost anywhere and still get a signal, then consider the Motorola MP36.
The Good
  • Great wireless range for the parent who really needs it
  • High-quality audio that’ll let ya’ hear even smallest of sounds
The Bad
  • Short battery life

Samsung SEW-3043W BrightVIEW – Best Baby Monitor for 2018 

We want to share with you our top monitor pick for this year – are you ready? Well, if we only could choose one out of the bunch that packed a bunch of features,  high quality, and overall durability, we’d have to name the Samsung SEW-3043W BrightVIEW our best baby monitor for 2017! When it has the Samsung name behind it, you know you’re getting a pretty spectacular product, especially with the beautiful viewing screen this monitor includes. Enough jibber jabber from us, let’s get into it:

Video That’ll Leave You Jaw Droppin’

One pet peeve of ours is that most baby monitors include quality that leaves so much to be desired. I mean, come on, we are in 2018 and we can hardly see our little ones within the small screen we are trying to view them. The Samsung SEW-3043W solves this issue by giving you 720p video. And yes, you read that right…we did say 720p. That is HD quality video so that you’re able to see every little detail when checking in on those little ones. This monitor’s video quality is, hands down, one of the best on the market and you’re going to notice the difference right away. Then again, we really didn’t expect anything less from Samsung when it came to the 720p picture quality. If you need a high-quality baby monitor that does an amazing job as far as video resolution goes, then put a point down (maybe even two) for the Samsung.

Rang, Range, Range…

We’ll just get right to it: the Samsung SEW-3043W has a range of up to 900 ft! This is an absolutely spectacular range that you’re gonna’ find very convenient. Most monitors in the market today are rocking a 600 ft ranges or less, so this is a breath of fresh air to know that you’ll be able to take this thing anywhere and everywhere. The range is always a key feature you need to be looking at when considering a monitor and the Samsung not only meets our recommended range of at least 400 ft but crushes it by giving you up to 900. If you’ve got a big house, move around a lot or just want the flexibility of being able to have a solid connection and see what is going on at longer distances, then the SEW-3043W is gonna’ deliver!

A True, Night Vision All-Star

Most baby monitors in today’s market have night vision. It is something we’ve come to expect and is a pretty standard feature. Where the Samsung SEW-3043W differs is that you are getting super, high quality, high-definition (720p) night vision capabilities up to 16 ft away! The night vision mode is impeccable and will give ya’ the security of being able to clearly see what is going on in the room during the night. We found that the night vision has very smart capabilities and even with bright night lights in the room the camera will still know when there is no light in the room and switches over to its’ internal night vision mode. Imagine the feeling of being able to lay down at night and knowing you’re able to clearly see your baby sleeping soundly through the night. Having this peace of mind can’t be replaced and if you’re at all wanting the best night vision capable baby monitor available, then add another point for the Samsung.

A Giant Display You’ll Fall In Love With

The Samsung SEW-3043W isn’t going to just give you the standard 3.5″ display. After all, this isn’t anything like your average baby monitors out today. You are going to get a big, crystal clear, touch screen capable, 5″ display! Icons and menus on the screen are easy to navigate and simple to understand: you’re not gonna’ have to sit feeling overwhelmed and frustrated with menus in so many different areas. It’s well-built and feels great in your hands, you’ll almost never want to put it down. Having a nice, wide 5″ display also means that glancing over at the screen is easier than ever when you’re busy folding laundry half way across the living room. We couldn’t say enough good things about this display even if we tried, except for the fact that you need to see it for yourself! If having a clear display bigger than most of the other monitor’s out right now wasn’t on your priority list, it needs to be.

As Quiet As A Mouse

Trust us when we say that you need a monitor that can pan, tilt and zoom quietly. Nobody wants to have their little one wake up when trying to scan the room or zoom in and see how they’re sleeping, right? You won’t have to worry about any of that with SEW-3043W baby monitor because it’s completely silent no matter how you decide to look around the room. We found that having stealth like silence when scanning around the room was a game changer as kids easily pick up on such the slightest noises in the room. Find any other monitor that claims it as quiet as a mouse and we’ll bet ya’ it still won’t beat out the Samsung…

Even though this is one of our favorite monitors for the year, it wouldn’t be fair to not tell you the few problems we found with it: for one, the battery wasn’t as good as we expected. On a full charge, it lasted around 4 hours, but this could be due to the 5″ screen size drawing more power. Also, the sensitivity of the touch screen was not nearly as quick as our cell phones. Overall, these were both small annoyances that hardly has any effect on the overall quality of the unit and how it performs, but we’re totally transparent around these parts and thought you should know

Drumroll Please… Our Final Thoughts

The Samsung SEW-3043W BrightVIEW is by far one of the better monitors out of our top picks. Having 720p video, silent motors when tilting or panning around the room, an epic range of up to 900 ft and an included 5″ screen truly leaves this monitor in a category of its’ own. If you asked us to recommend only two of the top baby monitors for the year, then this would be one of them. Do yourself a favor and check this thing out, sooner than later!
The Good
  • A 5″ screen so large you’ll wonder how you ever lived without it
  • Super silent motors when panning, tilting and zooming
  • An out of this world range of up to 900 ft
  • 720p video that’ll leave nothing to the imagination
The Bad
  • Battery life not as long as we had hoped for
  • Touch screen wasn’t as fast and fluid as a cell phone

Levana Ayden – A Quality Baby Video Monitor 

If you’re looking for a mid-range monitor that has sports some neat features, plus all of the features of some of the bigger brands, and at a reasonably lower price point, then the Levana Ayden is going to be right up your alley. While Levana may not be as popular of a brand as some of the others out there, don’t let that fool you. The quality and attention to detail are easy to see in the features, design, and feel of this baby monitor, that you’ll soon understand why we’ve added it to our list of must-see monitors:

Almost Too Much Battery Life?

Never! We hate spending our time charging baby monitors (and most any other type of electronics) as much as you do, so Levana has got a little clever and gave you 48 Hour Battery Life. Of course, this is capable when using the camera’s PEEP mode to help the battery last a little bit longer. Still, to have the option of having the battery last up to 48 hours is incredible and we know you’ll love it too. We found that while the camera was in a normal operating mode it had an average battery life of around 4 hours – not too shabby, but definitely not anything to write home about. Enable the PEEP mode whenever it’s needed and watch the battery life skyrocket! So whether you’ve got a long napper or just don’t want to have to deal with charging every few hours, then the Levana Ayden has your goods.

Clear and Confident Viewing

One feature that stood out to us was the clear image quality coming out of the unit. While it wasn’t as clear as some of the others on our list, for the price it definitely exceeded our expectation. As long as the camera is within a reasonable distance of the camera, you should have no problem seeing your baby breathing which we know will give you a great sense of comfort and security. As with other baby monitors, it includes decent night vision functionality that you’ll find useful at night when the lights are out. Overall, while it’s nothing near HD quality, you’re still gonna’ be pleasantly surprised that it will meet and possibly even exceed your viewing expectations.

Built Like A Tank

Like a tank rolling into battle, the Levana Ayden flashes a build quality that’ll withstand even the roughest of situations. Mistakes and mishaps happen, but you want to know that a product you just spent a decent amount of money on can withstand the daily life with you and your family. We loved the ruggedness and sleek look that the Ayden is rocking and found everything to be well placed and locked in. In today’s market, a lot of monitors (even some of the best) come off the showroom floor feeling cheap and flimsy with no confidence in them surviving a fall off the counter or an “accidental” toss across the room. Go ahead, let your guard down (a little bit) and know that, if need be, this baby monitor is ready to be taken through the wringer.

Signal Strength That’ll Leave Ya’ Smiling

You could probably be on the moon and still get the range out of this monitor. While it’s rated for a signal transmission strength of up to 750 feet, we felt like it was much longer. You’re going to get zip, nada and zilch issues when needing to take Levana Ayden to its’ max range and back again. We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again, but the range is one of the most important features when deciding on the best baby monitor for you and this totally delivers. Over time, some monitor’s signal strength weaken faster than you can watch an episode of House Wives without your baby crying, but we’ve seen multiple reviews of moms (and dads) saying the signal strength is still going strong- even a year and a half later!

One problem we repeatedly saw reports on was that the night vision quality was not very good. While this could be the case certain situations, it’s a really subjective problem and is going to depend on the area and distance you’re trying to monitor your baby from.

Our Ending Thoughts

Overall, this monitor is a good choice for the money if your budget is capped at how much it costs. While it does everything, it doesn’t really do anything amazingly well. It’s an average monitor and will suit the parents who want something that is going to work and get the job done. If you need to monitor your baby or little ones and want something with a really rugged build, okay image quality and the typical feature set of other monitors, then the Levana Ayden will fit you perfectly.
The Good
  • 750 ft signal range that’ll let you keep an eye from pretty much anywhere
  • Superb build quality
The Bad
  • Night vision quality not as high end as other monitors
  • No unique baby monitor features included

Hello Baby – Best Budget Wireless Baby Monitor 

The truth of the matter is that maybe you can’t afford to drop a ton of cash on a baby monitor, but you’re  still looking for something that offers all the features of some of the more expensive brands out there. If you’re in this boat then don’t fret because we’ve got a killer unit for you: the HelloBaby Wireless Baby Monitor. With great battery life, a feature set that rivals some of the bigger monitors out there and clear audio and video, you’ll be hard pressed to find a similar monitor in its’ price range:

Set It And Forget It

You’re gonna’ sigh a breath of relief when you open the package and first fire up the HelloBaby. It’s basically plug and play, doesn’t require any setup and allows you to spend less time worrying about all the “do-dads” and more time focusing on what is really important. We loved the camera base as you’re able to set it up at multiple different angles and not have to worry about it falling over. The included wall mount will make this thing a breeze to set up anywhere and give you the line of sight that you need to watch your little one(s). There’s nothing else we could really say about this except for the fact that it is truly a “set it and forget it” type of baby monitor in every way. There are not many times we can say a monitor is as simple as this one to get up and running, but it’s the truth. If you don’t have time to mess around with unnecessary, gimmicky features and want something that is going to give you what you need and when you need it, you’ve found your match.

Signal Range That Struts Its’ Stuff

With a monitor in the price range of the HelloBaby Wireless, you’d think that the range specs would be a bit lacking, but you’ll be surprised that is rocks a range of up to 960ft because of its’ 2.4GHZ band which helps to prevent signal loss. Signal strength really is as good as the reviews claim and you’re not going to have to be running around the house with the monitor just to get a good signal. We thought it was amazing that HelloBaby was able to incorporate such strong n’ solid signal capability within a monitor at this price point and we know that you’ll be just as relieved to know that you don’t necessarily have to spend top dollar to get a reliable baby monitor that can actually hold a signal.

Budget Battery Life Never Looked So Good

As we’ve rated this our budget baby monitor for 2018 we couldn’t help but expect the battery life to be on the lower end, but we were pleasantly surprised to find out the HelloBaby Wireless is capable of a 7-8 hour charge (and that’s with the screen-on!).  That’s right, you’re going to be packing quite the “battery punch” with this unit and at a steal of a price! Battery life is one of those features we rely heavily on and it can’t go without saying that it should b a top 3 feature for any baby monitor you’re looking at buying. We give the HelloBaby our absolute stamp of approval for offering a helluva’ battery into the unit.

Tired Of Hearing Static And White Noise? No More.

One issue we have seen with other monitors is that the audio feed does not turn off when the monitor goes to black. What this means is that you are continually getting a feed of static, white noise or any other constant sounds that are emitting from the room. Sounds annoying, am I right? Well, you’re in luck! The HelloBaby Wireless has solved this problem by having their VOX turn off within 30 seconds if it doesn’t detect any additional sounds in the room. With this, you’re going to be able to do the things you need to do and only have the sound turn on from the baby monitor when your baby starts crying and it is absolutely needed. This is an amazing feature that we wish a lot of the other monitors took note of and included in their products.

The first issue we noticed with the monitor was the fact that the image quality could have been a little bit better, especially at night. Secondly, the screen is a little bit small to our liking and we felt it was difficult to see under certain circumstances like looking at it from across a room.

Final Thoughts

If you’ve got a tight budget and want something that isn’t going to break the bank, then the HelloBaby Wireless is definitely for you. It’s simple to set up and isn’t going to take you very long to see why it made one of our top picks. Even though the screen could have been a little bit bigger and the video quality wasn’t as spectacular as we had hoped, it still gets the job done and gets it done well.
The Good
  • Convenient and easy plug n’ play setup
  • Really good signal range for a budget baby monitor
  • Automatic audio shut off (VOX) so you don’t have constant sound coming through the unit
The Bad
  • Video and sound quality could have been better
  • Night vision mode was a little bit lacking

Infant Optics DXR-5 – Portable Video Baby Monitor 

With close to 7,000 reviews on Amazon the Infant Optics DXR-5 has placed itself as a must have in the video baby monitor market. It not only has a fun, unique design to it, but it comes with an amazing TFT LCD screen that really has unrivaled quality. Infant Optics considers themselves the “Baby Monitor Specialists” and we’d have to totally bow down and agree. From their more advanced DXR-8 which we reviewed above, to now the DXR-5, you’re about to find out why we think you need to put this baby monitor on your radar:

“Oh So Smooth” Video…

Listen, if you’re looking for the smoothest video on the market then the Infant Optics DXR-5 is gonna’ be your new best friend. Not only does it have the usual crystal clear display, but it is going to be streaming video for you at an impressive 30 frames per second. I know, I know – you’re probably wondering, “What does that mean for me?” Well, you’re no longer going to have to worry about any lag or delay when tuning in to view your baby or kids playing in the other room. We found the video to be “oh so smooth” without any stuttering or delays. We have not seen the video this fluid on any other monitor, except for some of the higher end monitors like its’ bigger brother the DXR-8. This really is a feature you gotta’ see in order to get the full effect and once you do we promise you’ll never go back to any other baby monitor that gave you anything less than the best.

Privacy That’s Designed To Protect

Lemme’ be real: as a parent one of your concerns is that your little one is safe, protected and being watched over or else you wouldn’t be looking for a video baby monitor in the first place, am I right? Well, the Infant Optics DXR-5 was built to give you peace of mind by incorporating a standard 2.4GHz FHSS digital wireless communication link. To put it into more simple terms, you’re not going to have to worry about people from the outside viewing and listening in on your important moments’ thanks to the advanced data encryption feature FHSS (Automatic Frequency Hopping System). With the industry standard in data encryption built into this monitor, put yourself at ease knowing you’ve got nothing to worry about!

Easy To Use, Looks Good And It’s Built To Last

One thing we noticed right away with the DXR-5 was the unique design and quality that it put off. For some, the large buttons might seem a little out-of-place, but we found it actually helped simplify the use of the unit. With a nice, big, easy to see “power on” button and a navigational menu to the right, it’s straight forward and isn’t hard to use and when it comes to baby monitors you really do wanting simplicity. Yes, it’s made of a rugged plastic, but it really does feel solid when set up and you are having to maneuver and handle the baby monitor. We can see this monitor taking a few dings and drops and still keep on goin’. If you need an all-encompassing baby monitor that’s easier to use than a baby’s play toy, is good lookin’ and is going to last you, then you need to consider the DXR-5!

The one change we wish Infant Optics would make with this monitor is the fact that the screen is only a 2.4″ screen which is quite small and nothing to write home about. We felt they could have made the screen a little bit bigger within the unit and decreased the size of some buttons and the speaker.

Our Final Thoughts

As Infant Optics likes to say, this monitor is “Simple and Reliable. A Monitor for All”. We couldn’t agree more and think that anybody who wants to be able to pick up a relatively inexpensive baby monitor with the Infant Optics name should definitely give this a run!
The Good
  • Forget the lag and jag – you’ve got smooth video at 30fps
  • Simplicity is its name, easy to use is its’ game.
The Bad
  • We wish the screen was bigger than 2.4″

Baby Monitor Buying Guide

Maybe you know you need to buy a baby monitor, but you’re not quite sure where to start? No problem – we’ve got your back! In this buying guide we’re going to break down the most important features you need to be paying attention to, as well as provide you with an index of terms and definitions you may not be familiar with.

These are our top recommended areas you need to take note of when getting ready to purchase any baby monitor:

Analog vs Digital – Many of the baby monitors (both audio and video) have converted over to digital, but many cheaper monitors are still analog. The problem with analog monitors is they are a lot more prone to picking up outside signals and frequencies other than your own. In return, if somebody else is using an analog monitor then they are likely to pick up your signal as well. The rule of thumb is to spend the extra money, read the specs and make sure you get a digital monitor.

Audio vs Video Baby Monitor – While this buyer’s guide did not include any audio baby monitors, we recommend sticking to baby monitors that include video. Why you might ask? Well, in today’s day and age a video monitor is going to provide you with a lot more flexibility and the ability to accomplish the things you need to do on an everyday basis while still keeping an eye on your baby. We still think audio monitors can be handy in very unique situations, but they’re dated and rarely serve their purpose anymore.

Range – This needs to be one of the top factors when purchasing a quality baby monitor. We recommend getting any monitor with a range of over 500ft, but the higher, the better! The last thing you want is getting a very low-budget monitor that craps out on you every time you walk into the other room!

Automatic Night Vision – This feature comes standard on most baby monitors, but double-check and make sure. The last thing you want to have to deal with is walking into your little one’s room in the middle of the night just to manually turn on a night vision mode.

Sound Activation: This is standard on almost all the monitors we’ve listed in our buyers guide, but make sure the baby video monitor you are looking at purchasing not only has sound indicator lights to let you know when your baby is making noise but also turns the viewing screen on whenever there are any sounds other than ambient detected.

Expandability – If you think you are going to need additional monitors in the future, then make sure to pick up a system that is able to be added onto. Many monitor systems will allow you to expand up to 3 or 4 cameras and be able to control them all from one receiver which can provide great coverage for multiple children or additional areas in your home!

Privacy – We know you’ve heard the horror stories: new parents wake up to someone who has hacked through the baby monitor and is talking to their child. While this does happen, I’d have to say it’s probably pretty rare, especially with the current configuration of most monitors. While nothing in this world is 100%, there are a few things you can make sure of when on your hunt to find the best baby monitor.

  • Try to grab products from known, reputable companies: they have invested serious money into making sure their products are as secure as possible.  New companies tend to put security on the back-burner or use outdated security protocols that could potentially make it easier to break into.
  • If you’re using a monitor via wifi, make sure you change your router and the product’s password every 6 to 8 months.

Clarity  While monitors have come a long way over the past few years, you still want something that is going to give you decent video quality, especially at night. Having the definition and clarity to quickly see if your baby is breathing will give you a huge sense of relief and security.

Battery Life – This feature is HUGE! Do not miss this! Battery life will make or break a baby monitor, so knowing and understanding its’ capabilities when it comes to battery life is very important. While all monitors are going to vary by default and based on how you use it, here are a couple of quick ways to save on battery life:

  • Lower screen brightness whenever possible
  • Change out batteries every few months (depending on use)
  • Activate power saving modes that are built into some monitors

Return Policies – Nothing is going to work perfectly every single time, so make sure you read and understand the manufacturer’s return policy. Stick with the brands we have mentioned above and don’t venture out into new companies who are releasing new products and make sure the manufacturer has a solid return policy in case you do need to use it.

Our Favorite Baby Monitor Brands

  1. Infant Optics – Launched in 2011, Infant Optics has become a leading player in the baby monitor market. They aim to serve all parents in many different areas and fill the current voids they feel are in the baby monitor market.
  2. Summer Infant – Having been in the industry since 1985, Summer Infant knows a thing or two about babies. First launching with their famous Bouncy Seat, they now host a wide range of different products for newborns, toddlers and everything in-between. Their baby monitors are considered some of the best monitors on the market, and for good reason.
  3. Motorola – When it comes to electronics, Motorola is going to be in the game, one way or another. With their special line of baby monitors and their expertise in creating a “Smart Nursery”, you’ll quickly find that they’re one of the biggest brands in the game and provide quality baby monitors across the board.
  4. Samsung – Another big player in the baby industry, Samsung is bringing their skills and knowledge from the TV and smartphone industry and incorporating that same quality and technology that they’re known so well for and putting it into their baby monitors. You can’t go wrong with any of their monitors as they use most of the same features that make them a household name in today’s tech world.
  5. Levana – Started in 2001 out of a frustration with analogy baby monitors, Raj (the founder) created Levana. They were the company to bring the first video baby monitor to life that offered true wireless capability and a full-color screen. Their monitors are simple, effective and get the job done – keeping your baby safe!
  6. Hello Baby – Founded in 2007 on London’s trendy East End, Hello Baby was launched as a website that would help new parents by giving them everything they needed to take care of their baby, in one place. Their affordable baby monitors make it easy for parents with any budget to get a quality product that they can watch their little ones with!

Most Frequently Asked Questions About Baby Monitors

  • Question: Are wireless baby monitors safe?
  • Answer: Yes! There are so many “scare stories” out there about wireless baby monitors being hacked (which we aren’t denying CAN happen) that it is leaving so many parents in a panic. If you’re going to be using a wireless baby monitor which connects to your router, then take normal precautions and change your router’s password everything 6 to 8 months.
  • Question: How many monitors do I need?
  • Answer: First, we recommend going with a brand of baby monitor that is expandable and allows you to add aditional cameras to the system. For most parents adding ONE monitor will be all they ever need, but there are unique situations where you may want to have a visual eye on multiple areas of your home at the same time. Also, depending where you place the monitor (for example: closer to the crib or farther away) will determine how much viewing area you may have. We’ve even heard of parents having multiple children and getting a monitor for each crib or bed.
  • Question: How much can I expect to spend on a complete baby monitor system?
  • Answer: On average a good, reputable, branded system is going to cost you $120 to $175. Now, there are systems that are under $100, but you’ll typically lack the robust features and “nice to have” of the systems that are within that price range. Keep in mind that baby monitors will fluctuate in price and if you are patient and have a keen eye, you’ll be able to snag some good set-ups for a steal!
  • Question: What are some of the top baby monitor brands out right now?
  • Answer: Brands like Samsung, Summer Infant, Motorola, and Infant Optics are only a few of the top brands in the industry.

We’ll End With This…

Finding the best baby monitors (especially as a parent) is no easy task, and you want to make sure the ones you’re trying to protect are being watched over with the most respected and reliable systems available on the market today. When trying to find a video baby monitor system that is right for your family, just remember to focus on our most important areas for any system: Battery Life, Range, Expandability and Quality.

We hope you found a lot of value in this Baby Monitor buying guide and we’d love to hear from you! If you think we missed any other top monitors available for parents like yourself, please leave a comment below and let us know!

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